The film lifts the veil on the painting titled “Salvator Mundi” (The Savior of the World), which mysteriously resurfaced several years ago and was sold at Christie’s for a record $450 million to the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman, in 2017.
“The Savior For Sale: The Story of Salvator Mundi” recently premiered on France 5, a channel of French broadcaster France Televisions, and was unanimously praised by critics. MK2 Films has now sold the title to Koch Media for a multi territory deal (Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland), Avalon (Spain), Nos Lusomundo (Portugal), Planeta Inform (CIS), Andrews Film (Taiwan) and South Korea (Challan). Further talks are underway, notably in Japan, Scandinavia and Australia/New Zealand.
A modern tale of globalization, Vitkine’s documentary delves into the unknown secrets of the art world and explores the influence that one painting can exert on personal and geopolitical interests.
“The Savior For Sale” follows characters at the auction houses of New York, a revered da Vinci expert, an opportunistic Swiss go-between, a Russian oligarch, the Louvre in Paris and an Arabian prince.
The film explains that although “Salvator Mundi” was attributed to Leonardo da Vinci after its discovery, experts at the Louvre said the painting may be a collaborative work from Da Vinci’s atelier, with only a small contribution from the master.
These revelations sent a shockwave in the art world and more twists can be expected in the coming weeks, with the documentary tipped for an international premiere at a major festival, according to MK2 Films.
“The Savior For Sale” was produced by Zadig Productions and France Télévisions.