Autlook Boards IDFA Forum’s ‘Architecture as Invention’ on Gound Zero Master Planner Daniel Libeskind (EXCLUSIVE)

Vienna-based Autlook has boarded sales on the Danish docu project “Architecture as Invention” in which seasoned doc filmmaker Michael Madsen shares existential and creative conversations with U.S./Polish star architect Daniel Libeskind.

The IDFA Forum Pitch entry is Autlook Film Sales’ third Madsen doc pick-up after his multi-awarded “Into Eternity,” IDFA Green Screen Doc winner in 2010, and Sundance 2015 selected “The Visit.”

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“Michael Madsen’s distinguished approach to themes and grand ideas creates films that endure; they are timeless and iconic, always speaking for humanity, much like the architecture of one of the greatest architects of our time, Daniel Libeskind,” said Autlook CEO Salma Abdalla.

A trained architect himself, Madsen has an intimate knowledge of the discipline, explored diversely in his earlier works “Into Eternity,” which delved into the construction of a nuclear waste bunker in Finland, and the 26-minute “Halden Prison,” part of the Wim Wenders-initiated “Cathedrals of Culture.”

Here, through creative conversations with Libeskind, most famous for the Jewish Museum in Berlin and the master plan for New York’s Ground Zero, Madsen intends to free his main character from the usual practical constraints in architecture and let him build inside his imagination.

Through Madsen’s suggested imaginary dream journey technique, Libeskind will be asked to fulfil six architectural challenges over six days, that will form the narrative and visual backbone of the film, with related themes taken from the architect’s earlier works and life story. The ultimate goal, according to a statement, is for the 77-year-old visionary architect to create his final masterpiece, “an unbuilt project resonating all his previous projects and life story.”

Michael Madsen
Michael Madsen

“My interest is to explore the actual architectural genesis process by challenging a master to create inside the perhaps most sacred space of us humans: our imagination,” Madsen told Variety. “When I realized this connection between making a film and building inside every audience member, this is when I knew that a film with Daniel could be more than a film on architecture,” he added.

The documentary in development is being produced by Paloma Productions’ Per Damgaard Hansen, credited for “Winter Brothers,“ and the co-produced triple Oscar-nominated “Triangle of Sadness.” Sweden’s Auto Images and Germany’s Fruitmarket are co-producing.

“I believe ‘Architecture as Invention’ will be an engaging and visually strong feature documentary for an international audience, exploring the creative process of Daniel Libeskind but also exploring some very central questions about being a (creative) human,” said Hansen, who will be looking for co-financiers, broadcasters and distributors at IDFA Forum.

“Architecture as Invention” is among 20 international docu projects selected for the IDFA Forum Pitch platform, running Nov. 13-14, next to Amsterdam’s leading international documentary film festival, unfolding in the Dutch capital until Nov. 19.

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