dir. Tahir Rana, Éric Warin, Canada, France, Belgium, 2022, 92 min
Featuring the voice of Keira Knightley as Charlotte, this is a heartbreaking tale of overcoming family hardship during a horrific time. With stunning artistry, Canadian directors Éric Warin and Tahir Rana bring justice to their subject’s work and deliver a powerful story of determination. This stunning animated drama brings to life the remarkable true story of Charlotte Salomon, an enigmatic young German Jewish painter who created a sprawling masterpiece in the face of both private turmoil and sweeping global cataclysm.
Born into a wealthy but troubled family in Berlin, Charlotte is preternaturally gifted, with a wild imagination and grand ambitions. In 1933, at age 16, she sees her dreams dashed. The antisemitic laws and violent mobs of the Nazis, who have seized power in Germany, force her out of school and later spur her to leave for the South of France, where, despite relative and temporary safety, life for Charlotte becomes increasingly difficult. Struggling to comprehend — and come to terms with — both a traumatic past and present, she sets out to paint her autobiography. Within 18 months, Charlotte completes nearly a thousand gouaches depicting the lives of everyone near and dear to her.
Q&A with the producer Julia Rosenberg!
Julia Rosenberg, January Films, Producer. Julia Rosenberg founded January Films in Toronto early in 2005. The boutique production company works with both Canadian and international talent and financing to create feature films, documentaries, and television. January Films has produced, co-produced, or executive produced nine features: Charlotte, starring Keira Knightley, Sundowners, featuring Tim Heidecker; Natasha, written and directed by David Bezmozgis; Omamamia starring Marianne Sagebrecht and Giancarlo Giannini; Real Time, starring Randy Quaid and Jay Baruchel; the feature documentaries The Bodybuilder and I, winner of Hot Docs Best Canadian Film; Teenager Hamlet, 15 Reasons To Live, and Ben Gurion, Epilogue. Charlotte is January Films' first animated film. Earlier in her career, Julia co-produced several notable feature films, including Being Julia, directed by Istvan Szabo and starring Annette Bening, and Jeremy Podeswa's Fugitive Pieces featuring Rosamund Pike.