Lightdox welcomes on board HAPPY PILLS by Arnaud Robert and Paolo Woods
We are pleased and excited to share the news of the latest title in our line-up — the feature documentary Happy Pills by Arnaud Robert and Paolo Woods, which just had its World Premiere as the opening film of the 63rd edition of Festival dei Popoli.
The documentary takes us on a journey through six different countries into a world where chemistry is the ultimate response to every human aspiration. From antidepressants to opioids, from painkillers to stimulants, the film questions our entire consumer society and the Eldorado of prescribed happiness.
HAPPY PILLS is produced by Luc Peter and Katia Monla of Intermezzo Films (Switzerland), in co-production with RTS Unité des films documentaires, SSR-SRG, and ARTE G.E.I.E.
Anna Berthollet, founder and CEO of Lightdox, comments: “We’ve enjoyed a productive collaboration with Intermezzo Films on multiple titles. As it’s important for us to nurture long-term partnerships with our producers and directors, the decision to work together on this project felt a natural one. The feature debut of Arnaud Robert and Paolo Woods is an insightful look at the core of human nature, the pursuit of well-being, through the prism of the capitalistic promises of the pharmaceutical industry. Multilayered, thought-provoking, but above all humanistic – we gladly look forward to bringing this film to an international audience.”
Co-director Paolo Woods says: “In the 5 years that Arnaud and I worked on the Happy Pills project we came to realize how much chemistry and the chimera of happiness are intertwined and that this is a global phenomenon that speaks both about the pharmaceutical industry and about our very deep human nature.”
Arnaud Robert is a Swiss journalist, director and writer. His work has been published by National Geographic, Le Monde, Le Temps, La Repubblica, Néon, Les Inrockuptibles, Vibrations. He is a regular contributor to Radio Télévision Suisse. He has directed three documentaries that won awards at Vues d’Afrique festival in Montreal and Jean Rouch Festival in Paris. His last medium-length film, Gangbé, world-premiered at Visions du Réel 2015.
Paolo Woods is a Dutch-Canadian photographer based in Florence. He is dedicated to long-term projects that combine photography with investigative journalism. He has published books on oil networks, Iran, Chinese in Africa, Haiti and on tax havens. He has received two World Press Photos awards. Happy Pills is his first film.
HAPPY PILLS is also a book published by Editions Delpire, Paris, and an exhibition which opened September 2021 at the Ferme des Tilleuls, Lausanne and is currently on tour.