NEON has acquired the North American rights to Honeyland, the wistfully delicate and visually stunning documentary from Macedonian filmmaking duo Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska. The film marks NEON’s fifth acquisition out of Sundance, with the company landing more films than any other key player at Sundance this year.
Honeyland has gathered rave reviews following its World Premiere in Sundance, receiving three jury prizes for: World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Documentary, World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography and World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Originality.
Nestled in an isolated mountain region deep within the Balkans, Hatidze Muratova lives with her ailing mother in a village without roads, electricity or running water. She’s the last in a long line of wild beekeepers, eking out a living farming honey in small batches to be sold in the closest city – a mere four hours’ walk away. Hatidze’s peaceful existence is thrown into upheaval by the arrival of an itinerant family, with their roaring engines, seven rambunctious children and herd of cattle.
Directors Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska commented: “Honeyland began as just another simple story, but it grew to become so much more. We are so proud of the final film, and there is no better way to get immersed in it than to experience it on the big screen. Thank you, NEON, for the opportunity to bring Honeyland to audiences the way we always wanted it to be seen.”
Stefanov and Kotevska’s debut feature was produced and edited by Atanas Georgiev and stars Hatidze Muratova, Nazife Muratova, Hussein Sam, Ljutvie Sam, and Mustafa Sam, with cinematography by Fejmi Daut and Samir Ljuma.
NEON premiered Todd Douglas Miller’s stunning cinematic event, Apollo 11, and John Chester’s The Biggest Little Farm at Sundance 2019, and had an impressive hot streak of acquisitions, nabbing the rights to Alejandro Landes’ cinematic thriller Monos, Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala’s horror film The Lodge, Abe Forsythe’s Little Monsters, and Julius Onah’s Luce.