Sony Pictures Classics buys Berlinale film ‘The Teachers’ Lounge’

Sony Pictures Classics bought “The Teachers’ Lounge”, the drama by Ilker Çatak whose world premiere took place at Berlin Film Festivalfor North America, Latin America and Eastern Europe (excluding Hungary).

“The Teachers’ Lounge” marks the fourth feature film by Çatak, who co-wrote the screenplay with Johannes Duncker. The film was shown in the Panorama section and won the Label Europa Cinemas award for Best European Film, as well as the CICAE Arthouse Cinema award.

Produced by Ingo Fliess and shot by award-winning cinematographer Judith Kaufmann (“Corsage”), “The Teachers’ Lounge” stars Leonine Benesch (“The Crown”), Michael Klammer, Rafael Stachowiak and Eva Löbau.

Benesch stars in the film as Carla Nowak, a dedicated sports and math teacher who starts her first job at a school. She stands out among the new staff for her idealism. When a series of thefts occur at school and one of her students is suspected, she decides to get to the bottom of it on her own. Carla tries to mediate between outraged parents, opinionated colleagues and aggressive students, but is relentlessly confronted by the structures of the school system. The more desperately she tries to get everything right, the more the young teacher threatens to snap.

“Being part of the Sony Pictures Classics family is a reward for any filmmaker,” said Çatak. “The artists in their ranks have influenced me along the way and it’s a great honor to now be able to count me among them,” continued the director.

Sony Pictures Classics said, “In Ilker Çatak’s ‘The Teachers’ Lounge,’ everyday life in a school is a metaphor for the complexity and conflict of the world at large.”

“We identify with the protagonist who makes one mistake after another thinking she is doing the right thing. She is us. The film is brilliant, precise, dramatic, beautiful,” SPC continued.

The deal was negotiated with Pamela Leu of Be For Films, part of Playtime Group, on behalf of the filmmakers.

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