"A King for Patagonia. An Undeveloped Super Production"
A documentary feature by Lucas Turturro
83 min. | Argentina | 2011
In 1971, the graphic artist and publicist Juan Fresán sets out to make a film about the incredible story of Orélie Antoine de Tounens, the mad French man who, 100 years before, had proclaimed himself as "King of Patagonia and Araucaria" with his own constitution, currency and ministers. The film was called “La Nueva Francia”, but it was never finished for two reasons; lack of funding, and because the author was forced into exile to Venezuela. If the story sounds familiar, it might be because in the 1980s Carlos Sorín made “A King and His Movie”, inspired by that frustrated shooting, where he worked as the director of photography. In 2004, Fresán contacted Lucas Turturro to help him rescue the film footage that had been preserved.
Fresán died in July of that same year, but Turturro decided to follow the trail of that truncated film and to recover unseen material, by returning to the original locations, and gathering testimonies to shed light on the two tales –one inside the other– that compose this true story, which is stranger and more fascinating than any fiction.
Film Festivals & Awards:
Special Jury Prize Mar del Plata International Film Festival. Argentina (2010)
Special Jury Prize Málaga Film Festival. Spain (2011)
Filmes du Monde, Montreal. Canada (2011)
Uruguay International Film Festival. (2011)
Latino Film Festival, LAFF. Belgium (2012)
Tandil Film Festival. Argentina (2011)
Tucumán Film Festival. Argentina (2011)
Nominated for the Cóndor de Plata prizes for Artistic Innovation (2012)
Produced by Geometras del Señor Sur