Brazil, 1885. In a female boarding school in the hinterlands, four enslaved black girls plan to run away. Their white mistresses uncover the plot and demand to go along. Forced together, the group finds shelter at an old farmhouse, where the black girls will challenge power structures and explore their desires and individualities, developing new relationships and ways of living.
What have you achieved so far with the BoostNL programme?
The programme has completely changed our development process, broadening horizons for our project and ourselves.
The first change was about the activities involved in this process – originally focused on script development: through BoostNL we started to look at international co-producers, sales agents and marketing experts.
The second one was about team involvement, as the activities included more actions from our producer and director, leading to important conversations about collaboration and task allocation. Perhaps even more important: there’s been much professional and personal growth, especially for our director and screenwriter, who'd never had the experience of participating in an international film market.
What would be your ideal next steps for your project?
Our short term goals are to finish our screenplay's final draft, secure 75% of our financing through national public funding, find an international co-producer to secure the remaining 25% and a sales agent to make sure that our film will find its international audience.
Right now, our priority is preparing for IFFR, updating and polishing our dossier in order to present our project's full potential.
Concept still: Quatro Meninas
Concept still: Quatro Meninas (dir Karen Suzane, BoostNL 22–23)
Quatro Meninas - Stills (1)
Karen Suzane is a Brazilian director with a degree in filmmaking from Fluminense Federal University. Her first short film, The Woman I Was, was screened at FEST in Lisboa and Mostra Tiradentes, winning four awards. Other works include the webseries Gastronomic DNA and the short films A Dress to See Mom and Capitalism Killed My Parents, currently in post production.
Quatro Meninas is her first feature project, for which Karen was awarded by the Hubert Bals Fund and joined the Rede Paradiso talent development programme.
Marcello Ludwig Maia is a Brazilian producer with more than twenty five years of experience. Founder of República Pureza Filmes, he had films screened at international festivals like Berlinale, Locarno, Rotterdam, Toronto, Toulouse and Havana.
Karen Suzane, director
Marcello Ludwig Maia, producer