Private Project

We Put the World to Sleep

Adrian and Duru get lost in the characters they play in an apocalyptic film and embark on a secret mission to end the world for real.

Second entry in Adrian Țofei and Duru Yücel's trilogy which includes Țofei's cult horror movie Be My Cat: A Film for Anne (called "hidden gem and dazzling debut" by IndieWire) and their upcoming feature Pure.

Note: The content of this movie is entirely fictional. Adrian Țofei and Duru Yücel do not share any similarities with their fictional characters "Adrian" and "Duru".

  • Adrian Țofei
    Director
    Be My Cat: A Film for Anne (2015)
  • Adrian Țofei
    Writer
    Be My Cat: A Film for Anne (2015)
  • Duru Yücel
    Writer
  • Adrian Țofei
    Key Cast
    Be My Cat: A Film for Anne (2015)
  • Duru Yücel
    Key Cast
    Grandpas Know Best (2012)
  • Erisse Peterson
    Key Cast
  • Andreea Enciu
    Key Cast
    No One Gets Out Alive (2021)
  • Danha Yunes
    Key Cast
  • Adrian Țofei
    Producer
    Be My Cat: A Film for Anne (2015)
  • Duru Yücel
    Producer
  • Adrian Țofei
    Editor
  • Adrian Țofei
    Cinematography
  • Adrian Țofei
    Production Design
  • Danha Yunes
    Executive Producer
  • Jay Sorensen
    Executive Producer
  • Ada Taylor Hart
    Executive Producer
  • Ricky Chen
    Executive Producer
  • Jacob Hair
    Associate Producer
    Rick and Morty (16 episodes, 2019-2023), The Taking of Deborah Logan (2014)
  • Project Type:
    Feature
  • Genres:
    Metaphysical Drama, Psychological Horror, Apocalyptic Sci-Fi, Thriller, Mystery, Adventure, Dark Romance, Antihero film, Meta-cinema, Psychotronic, Mumblecore, Satire, Mockumentary, Screenlife, Queer cinema, Post-cinema, Relationship Drama, Postmodernist film, Artificial Intelligence, Supernatural Horror
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 37 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    August 15, 2024
  • Country of Origin:
    Romania
  • Country of Filming:
    Romania, Turkey, Ukraine
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    1.77 : 1
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
Director Biography - Adrian Țofei

Adrian Țofei (pronounced Tsofei) is a Romanian filmmaker and actor best known for his cult horror movie Be My Cat: A Film for Anne and his upcoming feature We Put the World to Sleep.

IndieWire called Be My Cat: A Film for Anne a “hidden gem, nonstop nightmare, chilling character study and dazzling debut”, Blumhouse said it’s a “new intelligent found footage film you need to see”, and Dread Central named it “revolutionary and dangerous”. Adrian won Best Actor at Nashville Film Festival for Be My Cat, as well as Best Film at A Night of Horror in Sydney. He directed, produced, wrote and starred in the movie, which premiered in 2015 at Fantasporto, traveled the festival circuit and received critical acclaim (88% fresh on RT), being ultimately released by Terror Films in 2018, and has since attracted a cult following.

Adrian Țofei has been married to actress and writer Duru Yücel since 2017, and they have also become partners onscreen in their feature We Put the World to Sleep, an international coproduction 7 years in the making and their most ambitious project to date.

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Director Statement

This is the second entry in a trilogy made together with my wife, actress and writer Duru Yücel. All three movies are very different in style and substance, yet forming a cohesive universe. "Be My Cat: A Film for Anne" is anchored in irrational instincts and impulses, "We Put the World to Sleep" in the conscious rational mind, and "Pure" in mysteries beyond reason.

Duru Yücel and I met in 2015 at the Bosphorus Film Festival in Istanbul, and around that time we began developing We Put the World to Sleep. We shot it over a period of 5 years in 13 cities, villages and remote locations across Romania, Turkey and Ukraine, using a diverse international cast (Black American, Latin American, East European, Turkish) and touching on issues our world is racing towards. It’s by far the most ambitious, difficult and disturbing project we ever did, facing numerous challenges over the years and taking a toll on our personal lives as well due to the extensive periods of living in character (ironically, the movie deals with similar themes).

A main goal was to combine the metaphysics of "2001: A Space Odyssey" with the realism of "The Blair Witch Project", two of the movies that impressed and influenced me the most as a filmmaker. The script mostly consisted of plot points. After creating and maintaining an alternative psychological reality for our characters, we shot about 150 hours of footage improvising guerrilla style, then came up with the details of the story in post-production while editing.