6-8 October 2019

22nd Asian Project Market

2018 Project

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PROJECT The Palace (4K / color / 100 / Nepal) NO 19
PRODUCTION Aadi Production, Fictitious Features
PROJECT STATUSScript Development, Pre-production
Anil Baral is producing, The Rosenbergs, starring Elisabeth Moss and financed by 2929 Entertainment. Prior to starting fictitious features, Baral worked as the Director of Development for the director, Kimberly Peirce, under a deal with DreamWorks.
Baral has worked for fifteen years in the Hollywood film industry as a development executive, writer, and producer. His screenplays have been awarded the Tribeca Institute & Sloan Foundation Screenplay Award, The 2016 Athena List, highlighting projects with strong female role, and the New York Foundation for the Arts Screenplay Award. The Palace is his first feature film since directing short films at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Film & Television program.
Deepak Rauniyar (b. 1978) is a director, screenwriter and producer. A former critic, he became the first Nepali director to compete at a major international film festival when his debut Highway (2012) premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival. His second film White Sun (2016) premiered at the Venice International Film Festival 2016 to rave reviews, the Hollywood Reporter calling it “A standout - it′s a delicately-observed, multi-generational story which will prove awards-bait at festivals across the world over the coming months ? ” and has screened throughout the world, including at the Toronto, Busan, Locarno and Rotterdam, and was Nepal’s official selection for Academy Award Best Foreign Language Film. The New York Times recently described Rauniyar as one of “The 9 New Directors You Need to Watch." He is an alumnus of the Toronto and Berlinale Talents Labs as well as the Cannes Cinefondation. Rauniyar is developing Raja (his third feature as director) along with The Palace (Anil Baral), which he is producing.
When a family fails at the “Western” dream, they are forced to return to Nepal. Their son, DEV, isn’t happy about leaving his school and friends because he knows they aren’t coming back. But he softens when they decide to help his uncle take care of a Himalayan palace for the winter.
None of them have ever lived in such a beautiful place, and once they get there, they begin role-playing as if they are royalty. At first, this is fun, but soon Dev becomes possessed and thinks he is, in fact, the Crown Prince. Initially, his family dismisses the signs, thinking he’s just taking the role-playing too seriously. But Dev becomes paranoid, thinking his uncle is trying to depose his father—whom he believes is the King—and take over the throne. And as Dev’s Cousin, ANU, watches a movie, a famous actor appears out of the TV and tells her he’s going to make her a Bollywood star. This seemingly harmless imaginary friend is just one of the ghosts haunting The Palace.
As the ghosts come out of the woodwork, they chase the families into the great hall. There, they find Dev sitting on an ancient boy’s throne, unafraid of the spirits – they appear to do his bidding. Soon, Anu discovers that her cousin isn’t the first person to have been possessed, but she is unable to get through to Dev. As the royal ghosts terrorize them, they must fight for their lives in the snowy mountains of Nepal.
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