AGENT OF HAPPINESS

Arun Bhattarai, Dorottya Zurbó |
Bhutan, Hungary |
2024 |
94Min |
Nepali, Dzongkha, English
10-12 PG V
How can you measure happiness? The country of Bhutan invented Gross National Happiness to do just that, and Amber is one of the agents who travels door to door to meet people and measure how happy they really are. A hopeless romantic, he is still living with his elderly mother at the age of forty and dreams of finding love: a happiness agent in search of his own happiness. We join him on a cross-country road trip meeting citizens from all walks of life, reminding us of the fragility and beauty of our own happiness. No matter where we live.
Arun Bhattarai, Dorottya Zurbó
Noémi Veronika Szakonyi, Máté Artur Vincze, Arun Bhattarai
Arun Bhattarai, Dorottya Zurbó
Amber Kumar Gurung, Guna Raj Kuikel, Hemlata Gurung, Tshering Tshering, Yangka Lhamo, Wangmo Lhamo, Sarita Chhetri, Karma Wangdi, Tashi Tshomo, Dechen Selden

Screenings

21 July 17:00 Pavilion 12
28 July 12:00 Gateway 8
Mehraneh Salimian, Amin Pakparvar

Arun Bhattarai, Dorottya Zurbó

Arun Bhattarai is a director, producer, and cinematographer from Bhutan. He premiered his first feature-length documentary The Next Guardian (co-directed by Dorottya Zurbó), an intimate family story set in Bhutan, at IDFA in 2017. The film has been screened at more than forty international festivals. He graduated from the first edition of DocNomads Joint Master in documentary directing in 2014. His recent short documentary Mountain Man, about Bhutan’s only glaciologist, won the best pitch prize at If/Then Global Short-Pitch at IDFA 2019 and is supported by the IDA-XRM Media incubator program. His new film Agent of Happiness is supported by the Sundance Film Institute, Catapult Film Fund, and DMZ Docs Fund, among others. The project was developed at the Points North Fellowship 2022, True False Rough Cut Retreat 2023, and Dok. incubator 2023. He established his own production company, Sound Pictures, dedicated to creative documentaries in 2015 and is one of the few independent documentary filmmakers in Bhutan. Dorottya Zurbó premiered her first feature-length documentary The Next Guardian (co-directed by Arun Bhattarai), an intimate family story set in Bhutan at IDFA in 2017. Since then, it has been screened at more than forty international festivals (True/False, San Francisco IDFF, MoMA DocFortnight, etc.). She worked concurrently on her directorial debut Easy Lessons, a feature-length documentary about a young Somalian refugee girl who tries to adapt to Hungary which premiered at the Locarno Film Festival Critics Week section in 2018. The film participated in more than forty international festivals and received the Hungarian Critics Award for Best Documentary in 2019 among others. Besides filmmaking, she has been teaching at the prestigious DocNomads Joint Master program in Europe.