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16 May 2008

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  • The UK's Revolver has picked up rights to J.C.V.D. , the latest Jean-Claude Van Damme film being sold by Gaumont. The film has been generating a lot of buzz on the Internet and is a hot seller for the French studio. A mix of reality and fiction, the J.C.V.D. looks at what happens when a movie star is forced to turn into an ordinary guy. It is also a story of redemption. Other sales on the $17m (Euros 11m) picture include Koch Media in Germany, Spentzos in
  • [Rec] directors return for sequel to horror hit

    Filmax is promoting a sequel to the hit horror film Rec with the same directors, Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza, attached to direct.Rec 2 will have the same 'claustrophobic concept' as the first film, seen through a handheld camera lens, according to Filmax.Full details for the film, such as cast, budget and shooting dates are being kept secret for now, but there has already been interest from
  • 24 City (Er Shi Si Cheng Ji)

    Dir. Jia Zhangke.China, 2008. 107 min.
  • 2929 International takes on worldwide sales to Waters' Fruitcake

    Todd Wagner and Mark Cuban's 2929 International has acquired worldwide sales on John Waters' Fruitcake starring Johnny Knoxville and Parker Posey.This Is That's Ted Hope and Anne Carey will produce along with Killer Films' Christine Vachon and Pam Koffler. Hope, Vachon and Knoxville previously worked on Waters' 2004 comedy A Dirty Shame.Fruitcake char
  • A Christmas Tale (Un Conte De Noel)

    Dir: Arnaud Desplechin. France. 2008. 150mins.
  • Adhen (Le Dernier Maquis)

    Dir: Rabah Ameur-Zaimeche. France-Algeria. 2008. 93mins.Rabah Ameur-Zaimeche has addressed the schizoid nature of the clash of French and Algerian cultures before, most notably in the lovely Bled Number One, set in a small Algerian village. In Adhen, traditional religion comes up against contemporary capital in a factory that makes red pallets and repairs trucks in a depressing industrial zone just outsideParis. There i
  • A-Film still in the arthouse buying game

    New A-Film boss Wilco Wolfers has arrived in Cannes in acquisitive mood and keen to dispel the idea that the Dutch distribution outfit is in a period of retrenchment and is moving away from releasing arthouse fare.New acquisitions include Pablo Trapero's competition title Lions Den (Leonera) and Gregor Jordan's thriller Unthinkable starring Samuel L. Jackson (fro
  • After box-office boost, Norwegian film looks to future

    Norwegian films have reached a record high of 32% market share in the first quarter of 2008. The figure was announced in Cannes this week by Wiegard Harsvik, deputy minister in Norway's Ministry of Culture and Church Affairs. 'The first quarter was way beyond target,' Harsvig commented of figures that were given a major boost by the robust box-office performance of Nils Gaup's The Kautokeino Rebellion (on NonStop's Cannes slate.) Gaup's historical saga has already been seen by over 3
  • Afterschool

    Dir: Antonio Campos. US. 2008. 122mins.
  • Alain Sarde plans $50m Emmanuelle film - with a PG13 rating

    Roman Polanksi's longtime producer Alain Sarde is lining up a $50m prequel to Emmanuelle with the erotic franchise's rights holder Alain Siritzky.What Else Emmanuelle' will be the first theatrical release in the series since Emmanuelle IV came out in 1984 and is scheduled to begin shooting at various exotic locations in September.The producers are out to casting for the lead role of the sexu
  • Anchor Bay takes US rights to Surfer, Dude

    Anchor Bay Entertainment has picked up US rights to Surfer, Dude starring and produced by Matthew McConaughey in a deal brokered by CAA.The company plans a late summer release followed by DVD roll-out in the tale of a pro surfer who returns home to Malibu and experiences an existential crisis.Woody Harrelson, Willie Nelson and Scott Glenn star and S R Bindler directed. McConaughey's production company jklivin produced and Jason Ber
  • Andrea Arnold dives into Fish Tank with UKFC, BBC Films, Limelight

    Andrea Arnold is following her Cannes 2006 jury prize-winner Red Road with her second feature Fish Tank, which is being backed by the UK Film Council’s New Cinema Fund with $1.1m (£570,000).Sources close to the film say it will start shooting in Kent, England on June 23 with a cast of mostly unknowns — the story is about a teenage girl.Fish Tank is being produced by Kees Kasander for Kasander Films with Paul Trijbits as executive producer. Funding partners include BBC
  • Anna J Foerster to direct Secret Hunter

    Crevasse Films has attached Los Angeles-based German director Anna J Foerster to its new action thriller Secret Hunter.Screenwriter Adam Preston is adapting the script based on British explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes' novel. The story is about an American ice climber and games designer who witnesses the murder of his father and travels to Antarctica to find out the truth of his father's history.Stephen Evans of Brittania is executive
  • Arclight's Hamilton teams with Ruddy and Grodnik in new production outfit

    Arclight Films chief Gary Hamilton and producers Al Ruddy and Dan Grodnik have formed the production company Crazy Max Films and lined up its first two projects.The company plans to make five action films a year with Arclight handling all international sales on the slate starting with the thrillers Second Wind and Carjacked.Wayne Kramer wrote and will direct the $20m
  • Arnaud Desplechin's A Christmas Tale is first competition sale to US

    In the first US sale of a Competition title at Cannes, Wild Bunch has sold Arnaud Desplechin's A Christmas Tale to IFC. The family drama, which screens here on Friday, stars an ensemble cast including Catherine Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric, Chiara Mastroianni, Emmanuelle Devos, Anne Consigny and Melvil Poupaud. Produced by Why Not, it will be released by Bac in France.Furthermore, Wild Bunch has closed a Japan sale on Steven Soderbergh's
  • Arthouse picks up international on Louise Bourgeois

    Arthouse Films has picked up international rights to Louise Bourgeois: The Spider, The Mistress And The Tangerine by Marion Cajori and Amei Wallach.Arthouse will introduce the film to buyers at Cannes and will distribute internationally through its output deals with Madman Entertainment in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa and Revolver Entertainment in the UK.Louise Bourgeois: The Spider, The
  • Arturi Films in Cannes unveiling footage of Zimbabwe documentary

    UK production company Arturi Films is in advanced production on especially timely Zimbabwe documentary Mugabe And The White African.Channel 4’s More 4 True Stories strand has bought the UK broadcast rights via commissioning editor Sandra Whipham.The film follows a white farmer, Mike Campbell, who is taking Robert Mugabe to court for the loss of his human rights and racial discrimination. Mugabe has tried to confiscate Campbell’s
  • Bankside says g'day to four Australian features

    UK-based sales company Bankside Films has added four new Australian features -- all shooting this summer or autumn -- to its slate.They are Andrew Lancaster's Accidents Happen, Rupert Glasson's Coffin Rock, Ana Kokkinos' Blessed and Rachel Perkins' Bran Nue Dae.Hilary Davis and Stephen Kelliher of Bankside have
  • BBC Films former head David Thompson sets up Origin

    David Thompson, the former head of BBC Films, is launching a new independent film and TV production company, Origin Pictures.Origin kicks off with a three-year, first-look development deal with BBC Fiction for both feature films and TV drama.Also for its TV projects, Origin also has a first-look development deal with major international sales company Fremantle Media Enterprises. Origin will have 'significant backing' from Anant Singh's production/financing com
  • BBC's slate includes Mighty Boosh film, Debbie Issit's Nativity

    BBC Films has announced a full development slate following its recent restructuring. The production arm of the Beeb is following The Other Boleyn Girl and is at work now adapting the script for The Boleyn Inheritance - one of the sequels also written by Philippa Gregory.The book is told through the eyes of different characters - Anne of Cleves, Katherine Howard and Jane Boleyn - so Scarlett Johansson an
  • Ben Stassen announces further sales on 3D title Fly Me To The Moon

    Early in the market, it is clear that buyers' appetite for 3D fare shows no sign of waning. Ben Stassen, director/producer of Fly Me To The Moon, has announced further sales on the animated 3D adventure, which is being released in the US later this year by Summit.Stassen has confirmed that Momentum will be releasing the film in the UK after a mini-bidding war among British buyers and that Les Films Seville has picked up Canadian rights. Other
  • Berdejo to direct romance Jennifer Can in Spain, US

    Fast rising Spanish director Luis Alejandro Berdejo is preparing the $3m romance Jennifer Can for Notro Films, Versus Entertainment and Videntia Frames Producciones.Berdejo will begin shooting at the end of October in San Sebastian on his story of a hospital caretaker who develops a relationship with a young patient confined to a water tank due to a rare skin disease.Adolfo Blanco, Tomas Cimadevilla, Iker Monfort and Adrian Guerra
  • Beta cinema sales catch fire

    German outfit Beta Cinema has closed a number of eye-catching deals on its Cannes slate. Heart Of Fire, which screened in official selection in Berlin, has gone to the UK (Metrodome) and to the US (Seventh Art).In the wake of its Oscar success earlier this year, Stephan Ruzowitzky's holocaust tale The Counterfeiters has been selling briskly in Asia and the Middle East. Deals now confirmed by
  • Better Things

    Dir: Duane Hopkins. 2008. UK. 93minsCoping as best they can, the perpetually glum inhabitants of a rural town in the South West of England feel emotionally isolated, verging towards distraught in Better Things. Permeated by dispassionate drug use depicted without a shred of glamour, writer-director Duane Hopkins’ debut feature displays considerable craft. There is no plot to speak of. But loosely interconnected mini-portraits gradually deliver cathartic symmetry f
  • Blind Loves (Slepe Lasky)

    Dir: Juraj Lehotsky.Slovakia. 2008. 76mins.A film its actors will never see, Blind Loves traces four blind people in theSlovakRepublicand investigates, in a seamless meld of documentary and fiction, how they experience love. Touching and original, this first full-length outing from documentary and music-video director Juraj Lehotsky works by unsettling the audience: the question of who’s acting (and how much) becomes tangled up with issues about the boundary betwe
  • Blindness

    Dir: Fernando Meirelles. 2008. Brazil-Canada-Japan. 118mins.In Blindness, Fernando Meirelles valiantly attempts to pin down Nobel laureate Jose Saramago’s largely metaphorical work of fiction for the big screen: by giving the audience eyes on a world suddenly hit by a plague of blindness. The result makes for a traumatic viewing experience, but never does Mereilles convincingly illuminate the wrenching fear of his source material.The laudably-ambit
  • Boogie

    Dir: Radu Muntean.Romania. 2008. 103mins.InRomania, Radu Muntean’s third feature film will ultimately be seen as a carefully-studied, remarkably accurate image of the country’s thirtysomething generation right now. Elsewhere, however, Boogie looks like an old-fashioned throwback to those endless talky New Wave films. A far cry from his earlier Fury and particularly The Paper Will Be Blue, this is a loose, slow-moving elegy in which a happily married
  • Brazil's Otero Group partners with Latin American Film Co

    The Latin American Film Co (TLAFCo), the three year-old joint venture between Eduardo Costantini of Costa Films and Harvey Weinstein of The Weinstein Company, has established a new strategic partnership with The Otero Group in Brazil.Julia Otero of Otero Group will act as the senior partner of TLAFCo in Brazil and focus on the development of future projects to be shot in the country. Otero will also aim to secure tax incentive funds and evaluate potential investors to further expand
  • Bruce Beresford named jury president of Asia Pacific Screen Awards

    Bruce Beresford will be president of the international jury for the second Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSAs), to be held on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia on Nov 11, 2008. Beresford is currently filming Mao's Last Dancer, an adaptation of the book of the same name, which is partly shooting in China. APSA chairman Des Power said: 'Bruce Beresford's remarkable body of work spans cultures and continents and it is particularly approp
  • Cam Galano remains at New Line as head of international

    Highly respected 20-year New Line veteran Camela Galano has been confirmed as president of New Line International Releasing after the studio's international sales operation was closed down by Warner Bros recently.Galano will continue to oversee and manage the release of New Line films in more than 120 territories for Warner Bros Pictures International (WBPI) and reports directly to Richard Fox, the executive vice president of international at Warner Bros.Galano will also
  • Cannes Reviews

    Click on film title to see review Competition Screen scores x = bad * = poor ** = average *** = good **** = excellent Adoration **
  • Cannes sales 2008

    Click here to see stories in fullFinal Cannes deals Ealing deals include Dorian Gray to Alliance FilmsSplendid buys include Swing Vote, UnshakableArtificial Eye takes The Class, Il Divo and two other Cannes titlesGerman distri
  • Capitol restructures but says business is solid

    Following recent disparaging press reports and rumours following staff departures, Capitol Films managing director Peter Naish reiterates that the business is solid, if a bit dampened by current market conditions.Naish, who joined Capitol from Icon about a year ago, said that the recent departure of his co-MD Nick Hill wasn't a sign of the business going downhill. Ed Clarke and Sofia Neves have also recently left Capitol, to join Kudos and HanWay respectively.'When David
  • Cathay, Emaar unveil details of Dubai exhibition venture

    Reel Entertainment, the Dubai-based joint venture between Singapore exhibitor Cathay Organisation and Dubai property developer Emaar Malls Group, has announced that its new chain of multiplexes will be named Reel Cinemas. The first two Reel Cinemas are on target to open their doors in the last quarter of this year. Dubai Mall, the 12.1 million square foot flagship project for Emaar Malls, will feature the largest cinema in the city-state.Built at a cost of S$45m, the deluxe megaple
  • Celluloid Dreams gets Beresford's Mao's Last Dancer

    Celluloid Dreams has acquired Mao's Last Dancer for international sales. Bruce Beresford's film is the inspirational story of ballet dancer Li Cunxin and was adapted from Li's autobiography by Jan Sardi. Sardi was nominated for an Oscar for Shine in 1997
  • Chinese cinemas close to mourn earthquake victims

    Cinemas in China began a three-day suspension from today until Wednesday, as part of national mourning for the people killed in the earthquake which struck the south-west of the country on May 12. China's State Council on Sunday ordered a nationwide display of respect for the dead. All public amusements will be suspended during the three-day mourning.Following the order, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) announced all cinemas in China will have their op
  • Cineart snaps up competition titles

    Belgian arthouse distributor Cineart has been snapping up titles in Cannes official selection. New acquisitions include Waltz With Bashir (on The Match Factory's Cannes slate) and Korean title The Chaser (sold by Fine Cut.)Among the films it has already acquired are Brazilian competition title Linha De Passe from Walter Salles and Daniela Thomas as well as Joachi
  • Cinefile picks UK rights to Gardener

    Scottish distribution company Cinefile have bought all UK rights to Jean Becker's Dialogue Avec Mon Jardinier (Conversations With My Gardener). The film opened in France in June 2007, recording admissions in excess of 1.2 million and earning a Best Actor Cesar nomination for Jean-Pierre Darroussin. Daniel Auteuil stars as a weary Paris painter who returns to the countryside where he is unexpectedly reunited with his boyhood friend,
  • Cinemavault acquires international to Sundance doc IOUSA

    Toronto sales company Cinemavault has acquired international rights to Patrick Creadon's I.O.U.S.A. following its premiere at Sundance.Christine O'Malley, Sarah Gibson and Open Sky Entertainment produced the documentary about America's skyrocketing debt.Cinemavault has also picked up Fat Head starring and directed by comedian Tom Naughton. The documentary exposes the myths behind modern diet
  • Cinemavault picks up worldwide rights to action epic Kinta

    Cinemavault has picked up worldwide rights excluding Malaysia to the martial arts action epic Kinta.CL Hor's film boasts performances by leading Malaysian martial artists including former World wushu champion Robin Ho and former Tai Chi world champion David Bao.The story takes place against the background of the Chinese migration to Malaysia during the tin ore rush in the 1880s when gang wars frequently erupted in the Kinta Valley.
  • Citigroup merchant banking affiliate to offer film advisory services

    New York, Los Angeles and Paris-based Citigroup merchant banking affiliate Continental Entertainment Capital (CEC) will begin offering financial advisory services to North American and European clients.CEC CEO Benjamin Waisbren will personally advise clients and lead a team of experienced investment banking professionals located in North America and Europe. CEC already undertakes various investment and lending activities.'It is a natural fit for CEC to provide advisory se
  • Citigroup's CEC launches financial advisory services division

    New York, Los Angeles and Paris-based Citigroup merchant banking affiliate Continental Entertainment Capital (CEC) will begin offering financial advisory services to North American and European clients.CEC CEO Benjamin Waisbren will personally advise clients and lead a team of experienced investment banking professionals located in North America and Europe. CEC already undertakes various investment and lending activities.'It is a natural fit for CEC to provide advisory se
  • Clint Eastwood's Changeling changes name

    Clint Eastwood's Changeling has undergone a transformation of its own, with the director changing the film's title on the eve of its competition screening in Cannes.It will now be called The Exchange. The film, about a woman in 1920s Los Angeles whose son is kidnapped, has always been dubbed L'Echange in France and evidently Eastwood liked that title
  • Cloud 9 (Wolke 9)

    Dir. Andreas Dresen.Germany. 2008. 95 mins.
  • CMG takes on sales for $16m 3D animated feature Louis La Chance

    Edward Noeltner's LA-based sales company Cinema Management Group (CMG) has boarded the $16m 3D animated feature Louis La Chance.Currently in production, the adventure takes place against the backdrop of the 1934 Monaco Grand Prix as a driver and his brother strive to win the race and avenge the death of their race car driver father.3D specialists Hugues Sauvaire and Xavier Aliot of SHAX France developed the story and Aliot is co-di
  • Coffin Joe to get English-language update

    One Eyed Films is developing English-language horror feature based on the classic Coffin Joe character.The film is being planned as a Brazil/Canada/Spain co-production.The film has the working title of Santo Amaro The Bitter Garden and it would be the first Coffin Joe (Ze do Caixao) film in English. The cult character is the evil undertaker created by Brazil's horror master Mojica Marins.The pitch is that Coffin Joe wil
  • Columbia buys Goosebumps books for feature with Original

    Columbia Pictures has acquired from Scholastic Media the right to adapt Scholastic's bestselling Goosebumps series of books into a feature.Deborah Forte and Neal H Moritz of Original Films will produce the children's horror novellas. The first story was published in 1992 and the series has gone on to sell more than 300m copies worldwide.The studio will begin developing the first Goosebumps m
  • Content rides with Hugo Weaving Aussie drama

    ContentFilm International has come on for international sales on Glendyn Ivin's The Last Ride. Ivin won the Palme d'Or for his 2003 short Cracker Bag. The drama will star Hugo Weaving (The Matrix, Transformers) and will start shooting this summer in the Australian outback.The story follows an emotional road trip seen through the eyes of a
  • ContentFilm International lights up with Kid Cannabis

    ContentFilm International will handle international sales on Kid Cannabis, written and directed by John Stockwell. ICM will handle North American rights. Stockwell previously directed Into the Blue, Blue Crush and Crazy Beautiful. The film starts shooting July 2 in Vancouver.The film stars Chris Marquette and Aaron Yoo with more cast to be announced s
  • Coproduction Office takes on Cannes selections

    Philippe Bober's production and sales outfit Coproduction Office, which unveils Kornel Mundruczo's Delta in competition in Cannes this week, has taken on sales duties on a handful of other titles in official selection.The company is handling Ruben Östlund's Swedish tragicomedy Involuntary, screening in Un Certain Regard.All rights are available excluding Norway and Sweden. Coproduction Office has also picked up Afterschool by Antonio Campos.S
  • Co-productions - Wish you were here'

    The need to make international co-productions work is more compelling now than ever. Film-makers looking to work on a certain scale - and not just to make low-budget movies for local consumption - are rarely able to raise their budgets in their own countries.'As an independent producer without a billionaire backing our company, the way to get the medium-budget films we like to do is with partners,' says UK producer Chris Curling, a co-production veteran (Wah-Wah, The Last Leg
  • CP Productions signs first look deal with Tim Kwok's Convergence

    Michael Cerenzie and Christine Peters' ambitious Paramount-based CP Productions has signed a first-look deal with Tim Kwok's Convergence Entertainment.The alliance will focus on acquiring remake rights to Asian entertainment properties. Beyond that, CP is keen to expand its reach in the region and is scouting satellite offices in Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand and South Korea.Last week CP's genre chief Eric Thompson and Kwok secured remake rights to Five-Star Entertainment's
  • Cracks fills up with Temple, Poots, Valverde

    Juno Temple, Imogen Poots and Maria Valverde have joined Eva Green in Jordan Scott's Cracks.The film starts shooting in Ireland this week.HandMade Films International is handling worldwide sales. Garage producers Element Pictures and the IRish Film Board have now joined the project.Producers are Future Films' Kwesi Dickson, Industry Entertainment's Rosalie Swedlin, Killer Films' Christine Vachon and Scott Free's Julie Payne. Executive producers are Ridley Scott, Tony Scott,
  • Curzon Artificial Eye picks up four including Assayas' Summer Hours

    UK distributor Curzon Artificial Eye has acquired UK rights to four new films. Curzon Artificial Eye has taken on Andrea Arnold’s Fish Tank, Ari Folman’s Cannes competitor Waltz With Bashir, Olivier Assayas’ Summer Hours and David Volach’s My Father, My Lord.Arnold’s Red Road follow-up
  • Darabont to direct $40m crime thriller for The Film Department

    Frank Darabont will direct the thriller Law Abiding Citizen starring Gerard Butler for The Film Department, which is selling international rights here.Production is set to begin on August 18 in Detroit on the low-$40m range story of a criminal mastermind who controls a city from the confines of his prison cell. Butler will play the prosecutor who stands in his way.Darabont would appear to be well suited for the project given his ta
  • Davaa's Two Horses Of Dschingis Khan race to market

    The Two Horses of Dschingis Khan, the latest project from Oscar nominee Byambasuren Davaa (The Story Of The Weeping Camel, The Cage Of The Yellow Dog), is stirring up interest in the market. Splendid's documentary division Polyband has taken German and Austrian rights to the film, which is on Atrix's Cannes slate. The film, which begins shooting next month in June, is produced by Munich based Grasland F
  • Diffusion takes UK rights to Bacon's Arena

    Diffusion picks up Bacon's Arena for UKWendy MitchellWavelength Pictures has sold Bacon's Arena to Diffusion Pictures for the UK and Ireland. This follows on a French deal with Pretty Pictures. Diffusion's UK release will coincide with the forthcoming Francis Bacon centenary exhibition at London's Tate Britain, which opens Sept 8.This follows on soon after the conclusion of a deal for all French rights with
  • Dream team' Loach, the Dardennes and Cantona

    An intriguing team, led by Ken Loach, is working on a project that Screen sources say was originated by football legend Eric Cantona.The project, with the working title Looking For Eric is part of the Wild Bunch Cannes slate. (Click here for full slate story).The French company is closely guarding the details but Screen sources suggest that French star came up with the idea from which Paul Laverty has written the screenplay.
  • Duvall and Spacek Get Low with K5, Zanuck

    UK- and Germany-based K5 International has taken on world sales for Get Low, which the sales outfit is also co-financing.The Zanuck Company production will star Robert Duvall and Sissy Spacek. Oscar winner Aaron Schneider, who shot films including Titanic and Kiss The Girls, will direct and producers will be Richard D. Zanuck, Dean Zanuck and Harrison Zanuc
  • Ealing slate includes Oliver Parker, Amma Asante and new St Trinian's

    Ealing Studios' new productions will include Oliver Parker's next Oscar Wilde adaptation Dorian Gray -- about the man who tries to escape aging -- and a Holocaust love story directed by Amma Asante.Ealing's head of studio Barnaby Thompson will produce Dorian Gray. Ben Barnes, who plays Prince Caspian in the next Narnia movie and also appears in Ealing's
  • Echo Bridge takes on Kormakur thriller, Rusell Wong actioner

    Echo Bridge Entertainment has acquired two new films for worldwide sales at Cannes - Run For Her Life, an action thriller starring Dermot Mulroney and being directed by Iceland's Baltasar Kormakur, and martial arts thriller Unshakeable starring Russell Wong and Ving Rhames.Kormakur, whose thriller Jar City was the top award-winner at Karlovy Vary last year, makes
  • Ed Blum signs on for two $15m F&ME features

    Mike Downey and Sam Taylor's UK-based production company Film and Music Entertainment (F&ME) has signed on Scenes Of A Sexual Nature director Ed Blum for two new features, FAKE! and The Laughter Clinic.Blum's Tin Pan Films will co-produce the films, each budgeted around $15m.Previously announced art heist movie FAKE!
  • Elephant Eye takes on Frat Girl, Audience Of One

    New US producer/distributor/sales company Elephant Eye Films has taken on two new projects, one for production and one for sales.Elephant Eye will produce Frat Girl, which will be written and directed by Nate Meyer, the director/producer of festival favourite Pretty In The Face. Derrick Tseng (Palindromes, Snow Angels) will co-produce.For sales, Elephant Eye has taken on documentary
  • Elephant Eye takes on Thanks Maa; MTV lands on Planet B-Boy

    New York-based production/sales/distribution company Elephant Eye Films has taken on Irfan Kamal's Thanks Maa for international sales. The Quantum Films production is a Hindi-language independent film about a 12-year-old boy on the run from reformatory who finds an abandoned baby in Mumbai.Separately, MTV has confirmed their acquisition of Elephant Eye's breakdancing documentary Planet B-Boy directed
  • Elle Driver picks up Japanese title The Sky Crawlers

    Nascent French outfit Elle Driver has picked up the mandate to hot Japanese title The Sky Crawlers for European sales. Directed by Mamoru Oshii, the animated film is presented by Nippon Television Network and Production I.G. It will have its debut in Japan on August 2 when Warner Bros. releases it there.Billed as the Greatest Love Story Ever, The Sky Crawlers is the tale of Yuichi, a young f
  • Emmanuel Itier's The Invocation catches on with Lightning

    Santa Monica sales and distribution company Lightning Entertainment has invested in and will handle worldwide sales on documentary The Invocation.Emmanuel Itier produced and directed the film, which explores the notion of faith and god and shot in multiple locations around the world.Jim Carrey, Deepak Chopra are among a cast of dozens of celebrities, religious thinkers and academics who contribute.'[Lightning has] prove
  • Entertainment One's RCV bags hot titles for Benelux

    Entertainment One, the fast growing Canadian media group, has announced recently bought Benelux distributor RCV Entertainment has closed distribution deals on some of the most anticipated projects on this years market.RCV's managing directors Jan A. Kouwenhoven and Joke Wartenbergh confirmed a selection of the titles they have secured. Among them are Fame, the spoof Disaster Movie and the up
  • Epic finds deals for Amanda

    Patrick Ewald's Epic Pictures has closed multiple territory deals on Finding Amanda starring Matthew Broderick, Brittany Snow and Steve Coogan.Rights have gone to Australia (Eagle), CIS (Film Depot), Scandinavia (CCV), South Africa (Ster Kinekor), Middle East (Front Row) and Romania and the former-Yugoslavia (Programs 4 Media). Magnolia holds US rights.Epic has also closed deals on its comedy Expired with Samantha Morton and Jason
  • Epic Pictures closes multiple deals on Finding Amanda

    Patrick Ewald's Epic Pictures has closed multiple territory deals on Finding Amanda starring Matthew Broderick, Brittany Snow and Steve Coogan.Rights have gone to Australia (Eagle), CIS (Film Depot), Scandinavia (CCV), South Africa (Ster Kinekor), Middle East (Front Row) and Romania and the former-Yugoslavia (Programs 4 Media). Magnolia holds US rights.Epic has also closed deals on its comedy Expired with Samantha Morton and Jason
  • Ewald's Epic to sell Matthew Broderick comedy Finding Amanda

    Patrick Ewald's Epic Pictures Group has picked up international sales on the comedy Finding Amanda with Matthew Broderick, Brittany Snow and Steven Coogan.Screenwriter Peter Tolan directed the semi-autobiographical story of a drinking and gambling TV producer who tries to win back his family. Wayne Rice and Richie Heller produced and financed through their company Capacity Pictures.Epic CEO Ewald and vice president Shaked Berenson
  • F&ME goes fishing for English-language Icelandic horror film

    The Icelandic Film Company is working with UK-based producers Film And Music Entertainment (F&ME) for new English-language horror/thriller Reykjavik Whale Watching Massacre.The film will start shooting in August with director Julius Kemp. Financing was closed here in Cannes.The film is described as a splatter movie laden with black comedy. Ingvar Thordarson produces with Mike Downey and Sam Taylor as well as Solar Films
  • Fandango Portobello Sales makes sales on Gomorrah

    Fandango Portobello Sales has announced deals on Matteo Garrone's Gomorrah ahead of its competition debut. The UK's Optimum has acquired the film while Prokino has taken it for Germany and Austria.The film is also sold in Turkey (AFS), France (Le Pacte), Benelux (ABC Distribution), Switzerland (Filmcoopi) and Canada (Seville). It is based on the non-fiction bestseller of the same name by Roberto Saviano about the Naples mafia. Saviano has been
  • Fassbender signs on as Heathcliff for Wuthering Heights

    Michael Fassbender, star of Un Certain Regard opener Hunger, has been confirmed for the role of Heathcliff in Ecosse Films' new Wuthering Heights.HanWay films is handling internationals sales. John Maybury is directing the project, which is now searching for a new Cathy after Natalie Portman pulled out last week.Fassbender previously appeared in 300 and also in Joel Schumacher's forthcoming Creek. Ecosse's R
  • Film Farm to produce new works from Egoyan and De Palma

    Toronto-based production outfit The Film Farm is set to produce Atom Egoyan's untitled next picture, an original screenplay, and two films from Brian de Palma. Headed by producing partners Simone Urdl and Jennifer Weiss, Film Farm produced Egoyan's Cannes competition entry Adoration as well as de Palma's 2007 Venice title Redacted and Sarah Polley's Oscar-nominated Away
  • Film Library picks up Li Ying's Yasukuni

    Hong Kong-based Film Library has picked up Chinese filmmaker Li Ying's controversial documentary Yasukuni for international sales. It will be screened in Cannes market on May 15 and 20. The documentary, about the famous shrine in Tokyo to worship the war dead in modern Japan, caused turmoil in Japanese society last month.Four cinemas in Tokyo cancelled the release after receiving security threats from extremists. Several Japanese legislators demanded the Japanese distributor
  • Film4 reunites with Miranda July for Satisfaction

    Film4 has announced it will reunite with director Miranda July for her new film Satisfaction, which will begin shooting in Los Angeles in the autumn. Film Four and July previously collaborated on Me And You And Everyone We Know, which took 4 prizes at the Cannes Film Festival in 2005.Satisfaction, a triangular love story about the elusive quest for satisfaction,
  • Film4's slate includes Christopher Hampton adapting Post-Birthday World

    Film4 has unveiled a bulging development slate, boasting about 70 projects at various stages.Film4 has, as usual, a slew of literary adaptations in the works. Lionel Shriver's The Post-Birthday World will be adapted by Atonement Oscar nominee Christopher Hampton. Alison Owen of Ruby will produce and the film is at early script stage. The bestseller follows a woman's life when she chooses the safe, stead
  • First Look picks up North American rights to Stiletto

    First Look Studios has acquired North American rights from Strategic Film Partners to the thriller Stiletto starring Tom Berenger, Tom Sizemore, Kelly Hu and Amanda Brooks.Nick Vallelonga directed from Paul Sloan's screenplay and produced with Warren Ostergard.Strategic's Lawrence Silverstein and Alex Barder brokered the deal with Gary Hirsch on behalf of First Look Studios. Chris Perry of Fabrication Films is handling internationa
  • Focus Features International reports big sales on Milk, Serious Man

    Focus Features International sales chief Alison Thompson has reported multiple territory deals on a robust slate that includes Gus Van Sant's Milk starring Sean Penn as the assassinated gay rights campaigner Harvey Milk.Thompson has been screening a promo from Milk to great success and closed deals with Constantin in Germany, Bim in Italy, SND in France, Paradise in CIS, Serendipity in Taiwan and Svensk
  • Focus picks up Amenabar's Agora

    Focus Features International (FFI) has picked up international rightsexcluding Spain to Alejandro Amenabar's English-language historicalsaga Agora starring Rachel Weisz.Agora takes place in fourth century Egypt as the legendary femaleastronomer and philosopher Hypatia of Alexandria fights to preserve theLibrary of Alexandria's collection from civil unrest caused by the riseof Christianity.Sh
  • Focus takes on international rights to Amenabar's Agora

    Focus Features International (FFI) has picked up international rights excluding Spain to Alejandro Amenabar's English-language historical saga Agora starring Rachel Weisz.Agora takes place in fourth century Egypt as the legendary female astronomer and philosopher Hypatia of Alexandria fights to preserve the Library of Alexandria's collection from civil unrest caused by the rise of Christianity.
  • Footage from Moodysson's Mammoth set for Cannes screening

    Producer Lars Jönsson of Memfis Film has revealed further details of Swedish wunderkind Lukas Moodysson's $12m English-language debut Mammoth (on TrustNordisk's Cannes slate.) On Sunday, there will be a closed screening for selected distributors of the first footage from the film, which stars Gael Garcia Bernal and Michelle Williams. Veteran US distributor Bob Berney, one of a number of international buyers who have supported
  • Fortissimo climbs on board Magic Bus

    Fortissimo Films has acquired worldwide rights, excluding the US and UK, to Jigsaw Film's upcoming documentary Magic Bus. The film charts the LSD-fueled 1964 bus journey of author Ken Kesey and his cohorts, including Jack Kerouac's notorious sidekick Neal Cassady. Directed by Alex Gibney (Gonzo: The Life And Work Of Hunter S. Thompson), the film is currently in production and will be completed next year
  • Fortissimo Filmsacquires Killer, Epoch'sGigantic

    Fortissimo Films has picked up Gigantic, an off-beat comedy with a stellar cast headed by Zooey Deschanel, Paul Dano and John Goodman, from US production outfits Killer Films and Epoch Films.  The debut of Matt Aselton, the film revolves around a mattress store worker who falls for a potty-mouthed girl while in the process of adopting a Chinese baby.Fortissimo will begin pre-sales on the film, which is scheduled for completion by early 2009, here at Cannes.T
  • Fortissimo is big in France with ARP, La Fabrique de Films

    Fortissimo Films has sealed a raft of sales to various distributors in France, including ARP, which has acquired out-of-competition title Ashes Of Time Redux, and La Fabrique de Films, which has snapped up Madonna documentary I Am Because We Are.In addition, Films sans Frontieres has acquired Iranian director Majid Majidi's Berlin Silver Bear winner Song Of Sparrows
  • Four Nights With Anna (Cztery Noce Z Anna)

    Dir: Jerzy Skolimowski. France-Poland. 2008. 93mins.Veteran Polish auteur Jerzy Skolimowski crafts a delicate tragi-comic parable of love in his first film since 1991’s Ferdydurke. But though this story of a maladjusted misfit’s voyeuristic passion for a nurse has small moments of delight, this doesn’t stop it from dragging. There is about enough material here for a thirty-minute short, and it’s only Artur Steranko’s absorbing one-man act as a lovelorn village sim
  • Fox buys Che for Spain as two separate films

    Steven Soderbergh's competition title Che will be released by Fox in Spain as two separate films.The deal was done by Spanish company Telecinco with Fox directly. The remaining territories are being sold by Wild Bunch.'The first film [The Argentine] will be released by Fox in September, and the second [Guerrilla] will follow after that, although the date is yet
  • Fox uncorks Japanese remake of Sideways

    20th Century Fox is moving fast to bulk up local productions for its new Fox International Productions (FIP) unit, signing a production deal with Fuji TV in Japan to remake Alexander Payne's Oscar-winning Sideways.'There is a growing affection for wine and the art of savouring wine in Japan and they took an interest in the remake idea,' explained Fox co-chairman and co-CEO Jim Gianopulos, who was in town yesterday with the new president of FIP
  • Friedenson confirmed as svp of international marketing at Vantage

    Shyama Friedenson has been confirmed as senior vice president of international marketing at Paramount Vantage.Friedenson will report directly to studio president Nick Meyer, with whom she previously worked as head of international marketing at Lionsgate.She will oversee the growth of the international division with senior vice president of international sales Alex Walton.In addition to managing the development of international marketing campaigns, publicity in
  • Gaga's Cyborg She finds real-life home with Bogeydom

    Canada's Bogeydom Enterprises has picked up North American and European rights to action title Cyborg She, directed by Korea's Kwak Jae-young, from Japan's Gaga Films. Gaga has already sealed a raft of Asian deals on the film which has gone to Intercontinental for Hong Kong, Sahamongkol for Thailand, Serenity Entertainment for Taiwan and Scorpio East for Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei. The CGI-heavy film tells the story
  • Gellar replaces Bosworth in Veronika Decides To Die

    Sarah Michelle Gellar has replaced Kate Bosworth on Das Films, Velvet Steamroller Entertainment, Muse Productions and PalmStar Entertainment's Paulo Coehlo adaptation Veronika Decides To Die.Jonathan Tucker, David Thewlis, Melissa Leo and Erika Christensen also star in the story of a bored woman in her mid-twenties who discovers a new lease of life after a failed suicide attempt. Velvet Octopus is handling pre-sales in Cannes.Rober
  • Germany - Funding station

    Look, it's not Speed Racer. It's not Iron Man. But this is a quality film, it's really fun and it's an amazing cast," says Jens Meurer of Egoli Tossell, the German producer of Michael Hoffman's English-language The Last Station, now shooting in Cologne.Set in 1910, the film tells the story of the last days in the life of Russian War And Peace author Leo Tolstoy. It stars Helen Mirren (who is of Russian descent and was born Ilyena Mironov) as Tolstoy's wife S
  • Ghengis Khan conquers new territories

    Buyers are galloping after Oscar nominated Byambasuren Davaa's feature documentary The Two Horses Of Genghis Khan (on Atrix's Cannes slate). Spanish rights have now gone to Madrid-based Karma Films. Meanwhile, Benelux rights have gone to Contact Films.The film begins shooting in June in Mongolia and is set for a theatrical release in 2009. It will follow singer Urna as she travels to Mongolia in search of the origins of folk song,
  • Ghost House Underground picks up The Rise Of Reeker

    Ghost House Underground has picked up Dave Payne's horror title No Man's Land: The Rise Of Reeker, which Cinema Management Group (CMG) is selling here and screens in the market today [May 18].Lionsgate's home entertainment division will release the film in autumn as part of Ghost House Underground's inaugural October Horror slate.Produced by The Institution, the film follows a sheriff, his son and the criminals they are pursuing wh
  • Gilles Marchand finds Black Heaven with Celluloid Dreams

    Celluloid Dreams has acquired worldwide rights to Gilles Marchand's Black Heaven . This is the director's second feature following Who Killed Bambi' , a 2003 Cannes official selection which Celluloid also handled. Black Heaven is a coming-of-age story about a teenager seduced by the unlimited possibilities of the dark, virtual world of online gaming. The film was co-written by Marchand and Dominik Moll who have previously collaborated on Moll's Harry He's Here To
  • Goa festival boosts prize money for Peacock awards

    The International Film Festival of India (IFFI), to be held in Goafrom Nov 22 to Dec 2, has quadrupled its prize money to $175,000.The government-run festival's top honour in its competition section,the Golden Peacock, will have a cash purse of $100,000, while twoSilver Peacocks will have a combined $75,000. Last year,Taiwanese director Lin Chih Ju's The Wall was awarded the GoldenPeacock with a cash prize of $25,000. The fest opened wit
  • Gomorrah (Gomorra)

    Dir: Matteo Garrone.Italy. 2008. 135mins.
  • GreeneStreet Films International take on Long Time Gone

    GreeneStreet Films International (GSFI) president Amy Beecroft has picked up the drama Long Time Gone starring Christina Ricci, Anjelica Huston, Josh Lucas and Justin Bartha.Beecroft will commence sales here on the adaptation of April Steven's novel Angel, Angel about an enigmatic young woman who helps a family in crisis.ICM packaged the project and is handling domestic rights and cameras ar
  • H2O planning further international productions with Germany's MMC

    Andras Hamori's LA-based H2O Motion Pictures is planning two international productions with Germany's Magic Media Company (MMC).Principal photography on thriller Running Wild, with lead actor and co-producer Samuel L. Jackson, will shoot later this year in South Africa and at the MMC studios in Cologne. Kevin Kerslake will direct Running Wild from a screenplay written by David Leland as an a
  • Halcyon crowns Countess for UK

    Chris Coen's new UK distribution company Halcyon Pictures has taken UK rights to Julie Delpy's The Countess sold by Celluloid Dreams. The film stars Delpy, William Hurt, Daniel Bruhl and Anamaria Marinca in the story of Countess Bathroy. Halcyon have also bought David Auburn's The Girl In The Park, starring Sigourney Weaver, Kate Bosworth and Allesandro Nivola, from QED.Halcyon's
  • Halcyon crowns Delpy's Countess for UK

    Chris Coen's new UK distribution company Halcyon Pictures has taken UK rights to Julie Delpy's The Countess sold by Celluloid Dreams. The film stars Delpy, William Hurt, Daniel Bruhl and Anamaria Marinca in the story of Countess Bathroy. Halcyon have also bought David Auburn's The Girl In The Park, starring Sigourney Weaver, Kate Bosworth and Allesandro Nivola, from QED.Halcyon's forthcoming slate also includes The Visitor, Ano Una and The Lemon Tree. The comp
  • Halcyon gets Bass on board for Godmother adaptation

    Chris Coen's UK production and distribution company Halcyon Pictures has optioned Carrie Adams' novel The Godmother.Oscar winner Ron Bass (My Best Friend's Wedding) will adapt the script. The London-set comedy is about a godmother of four without children of her own who tries to help her friends with family problems and discovers a new side of herself. Halcyon's head of developme
  • HandMade pre-sells Eloise In Paris to UK's Entertainment

    HandMade Films has pre-sold UK rights to Eloise In Paris to Entertainment Film Distributors. HandMade chairman Guy Collins struck the deal with Entertainment's Nigel Green.The film will star Uma Thurman and newcomer Jordana Beatty. Collins said: 'Licensing the first of the major worldwide territories on the film to Entertainment sets the bar at a very high level. We are delighted to continue our relationship with Entert
  • Hans Christian Schmid prepares $9m political drama

    Hans Christian Schmid (the award-winning director of Requiem) is to start shooting a new, as-yet-untitled political drama in July. The $9m project starring Kerry Fox tells the story of Hannah Maynard, a prosecutor at The Tribunal in The Hague who manages to convince a young Bosnian woman to testify against an alleged war criminal.TrustNordisk is handling international sales on the film, which is produced by 23/5 Films (the company
  • HanWay sells Wenders' Palermo to UK's Axiom

    Axiom Films, has bought all UK rights to Wim Wenders Cannes Competition title Palermo Shooting from HanWay Films.The film has also been pre-sold in France (Ocean), Germany (Senator) and Italy (BIM).The film has its Cannes debut on Saturday and HanWay will host a private buyers screening mid-week.Axiom already acquired a significant proportion of Wenders' previous work, sold via HanWay's library, including all his early films. Axiom's director of acquisitions RocioFreire-B
  • Herzog to direct Nicolas Cage in Bad Lieutenant remake

    Werner Herzog is lining up to direct Nicolas Cage in a remake of Bad Lieutenant for Edward R Pressman and Nu Image/Millennium Films.The project is being fast-tracked for a July shoot and the producers are in talks to film in New Orleans.Nu Image/Millennium is financing and handling international sales on the project, which is styled as a post-9/11 update of Pressman Film Corp's 1992 tale of a self-destructive detective.
  • High Point scares up Splintered world rights

    High Point Films has picked up world rights (excluding UK) to Splintered, which marks Simeon Halligan's directorial debut. Rachel Richardson-Jones of Not A Number will produce, while Clive Parsons will serve as executive producer.The British horror film is about a teenage girl held captive by a man who claims to be protecting her from a killer. Stephen Martin Walters and Holly Weston star in the project. Weston recently appeared in
  • High Point takes on Shadows In The Sun with Jean Simmons

    London-based High Point Films has taken on world rights for David Rocksavage's Shadows In The Sun. Jean Simmons stars with James Wilby and Jamie Dornan.Nick O'Hagan (Daylight Robbery) produced for Giant Films.The film is set in England's Norfolk coast during a hazy summer in the late 1960s. A man visiting his elderly mother is disturbed by her friendship with a young loner.'
  • High Point takes sells Skin to Germany; picks up Sun and Summer

    High Point Films has sold Skin to Ascot Elite for Germany. The film is Hanro Smitsman's first feature; he won a Berlinale Golden Bear for short film Klaas.The 1979-set story is about a 17-year-old son of a Holocaust survivor who gets drawn into the skinhead movement. Marc Bary of IJsawter Films produced and the film has its European festival premiere in Munich.Also, London-based High Point Fil
  • Holland ready to finish historic outlaw story after five-year delay

    Agniezska Holland is set to resume filming on The True Story Of Janosik in July. The project is billed as an epic story of Juraj Janosik, a historical Slovak figure whose legend is often compared to that of Robin Hood. Production was halted in 2003 when financing ran into complications. Apple Film Production now holds all rights to the film, which Holland will resume filming on location in Poland with her daughter Kasia Adamik sharing directing responsibilities.
  • Home

    Dir: Ursula Meier. France-Switzerland-Belgium. 2008. 97min.
  • Hopkins, Knightley and Paltrow in talks for King Lear

    Anthony Hopkins, Keira Knightley and Gwyneth Paltrow are in talks to headline a $35m adaptation of Shakespeare's epic tragedy King Lear.Joshua Michael Stern, who made the upcoming Kevin Costner political comedy Swing Vote, which screens in the market here, adapted the screenplay and will direct and produce.It is understood Paltrow will play Regan, one of Lear's two treacherous eldest daughte
  • Hunger

    Dir:Steve McQueen. 2008. UK. 100mins
  • Hyde Park launches fund to back Singapore operations

    Ashok Amritraj's Hyde Park Entertainment is setting up a $55m-$72m (S$75m-S$100m) fund to back its new Singapore-based operation Hyde Park Asia. The fund will be structured with a combination of debt and equity, with support from Singapore 's Media Development Authority (MDA). Operational from 2008, it will be used to finance Hyde Park Asia productions. The Singapore outpost plans to finance three to four films a year, including Hollywood films and cross-cultural titles aimed a
  • IFC Films takes Brisseau's latest A L'Aventure to US

    IFC Films has pre-bought US rights to Jean-Claude Brisseau's drama A l'Aventure, which is expected to premiere at one of the major festivals this autumn.Brisseau wrote the story of a frustrated woman who explores hypnotism in search of the ultimate sexual satisfaction. Carole Brana, Arnaud Binard and Lise Bellynck star and Frederic Niedermayer is producing.'We're thrilled to be working with Jean-Claude again, as we had such great s
  • IFC Films takes US rights to South Korean smash The Chaser

    IFC Films has picked up US rights to Na Hong-Jin's South Korean box office hit The Chaser, which plays as a midnight film in official selection.The Chaser centres on a corrupt detective turned pimp who races against time to find a young woman kidnapped by a serial killer.IFC's director of acquisitions and production Elizabeth Nastro negotiated the deal with Finecut CEO Youngjoo Suh.
  • IFC takes North American rights on Mermaid

    IFC Entertainment has acquired North American rights to Anna Melikyan's award-winning Mermaid. She won best director in the World Cinema section at Sundance 2008 and the FIPRESCI prize at the Berlinale. The coming-of-age drama will screen in the Cannes market today.IFC plans to release Mermaid through its new Festival Direct offering, part of IFC Entertainment's multi-platform distribution model.'Part of the reason we created Festival
  • Image Entertainment finds its Chosen One

    Image Entertainment has taken on all US rights to The Chosen One starring Rob Schneider, one of the company's largest-ever acquisitions. The deal was signed here in Cannes by Image Entertainment UK managing director Wendy Rutland with Q Black Media. Image will release the film in early 2009 and it does plan to launch the film theatrically, potentially with a distribution partner. Schneider plays a used car salesman who is suddenly said to be a chosen prophet by a group of South
  • Indiana Jones And The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

    Dir: Steven Spielberg. US. 2008. 123mins.
  • India's Reliance becomes financier to Hollywood stars

    India's Reliance Big Entertainment has unveiled plans to provide development funds to the production vehicles of seven Hollywood stars, including Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment and Tom Hanks' Playtone Productions.The deals were brokered by Creative Artists Agency (CAA) which represents the seven stars.Reliance will create a development silo for each of the production entities and consider co-financing resulting projects.The deals also secure Indian rights for films that Re
  • India's Reliance Big Entertainment sets out $1bn ambitions

    Reliance BIG Entertainment, owned by India 's massive Reliance ADA Group, is poised to become one of the most aggressive players in the global film business. The upstart studio unveiled its debut slate of 69 pictures in nine languages at Cannes yesterday, along with plans to invest $1bn in its film business by the end of 2009. The slate features top Indian stars, including Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan, and multi-picture deals with filmmakers such as Vinod
  • India's Studio 18 signs five-film Acme deal

    The Indian Film Company-Studio18 is pushing Bollywood into new territories, including the Baltics, where the company has signed a five-picture deal with Acme Films. Titles covered by the deal include Awarapan, 1971, Kya Love Story Hai, Jab We Met and Welcome. Acme has acquired all rights for Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Studio18 has also sold home video and TV rights for
  • Infinity Film Completion Services launches financing and production arms

    Indian completion bond outfit Infinity Film Completion Services has launched a film financing and production company which is producing Colours Of Passion from The Rising director Ketan Mehta and a slate of martial arts movies.The new outfit, Infinity Filmed Entertainment, plans to produce four to five features a year for the next two years for the international market.Mehta's
  • Initialize producers sign two new co-producers; deal with SDI

    UK consultancy Initialize Films, which held its first Co-Production Meeting Day at Berlin, is now seeing its group of producers confirming deals in Cannes.Paul Largan of Bandigital is now working with Gia Muresan of Cinemarket Productions for Largan's $6m The Undefended. Also, Swiss producer Christophe Neracher of Hugo Films has come on board Bindu de Stoppani's Jump with Emily Man of Manmade Films.
  • Intandem sells first four territories for new Tommy Lee Jones film

    On the heels of Tommy Lee Jones's arrival in Cannes to talk about his his new film Islands in the Stream, Intandem Films has sold the first territory to Mars Films for France. Other territories sold are CIS (Luxor), Turkey (Chantier) and Portugal (Lusomundo).Today (Sunday) Jones will give his presentation to buyers and financiers for the $30m project. It is adapted from the Hemingway classic, and will star Jones and potentially Mor
  • Intandem, WMI swim down Stream with Tommy Lee Jones

    Intandem Films and William Morris Independent will be selling Tommy Lee Jones' new action drama Islands In The Stream. Intandem will handle international and WMI will represent domestic rights. The companies are in Cannes actively discussing the project, which is adapted from the Ernest Hemingway classic. Jones will star as well as directing. Morgan Freeman and John Goodman are also being attached to star.Jones will be i
  • International - Building up sticks

    The global summer season may have just kicked off with Iron Man, but one big film has been warming up the French box office since its release in February. Pathe's Welcome To The Sticks (Bienvenue Chez Les Ch'tis) took $40.2m on its first week on release on February 27, 465% higher than Iron Man's opening week in the territory ($8m) this month.The French comedy is the highest-grossing French film ever in France ($181.8m on nearly 20 million admissions
  • International - Iron man still rules

    Four new entries broke into the top 10 in this week's international chart with What Happens In Vegas and Speed Racer debuting in second and third position respectively.Cameron Diaz and Ashton Kutcher star in the romantic comedy What Happens In Vegas as strangers who wake up after a night of drunken debauchery in Las Vegas to discover not only have they got married, they have also won a huge jackpot - with one betting with the other's quarter. Mutual back-stabbing e
  • Iron Man strong, Caspian promising internationally

    Iron Man has maintained its grip on the international marketplace for a third straight weekend, grossing an estimated $25.6m for an international total to date of $206m.The comic book-based blockbuster's nearest challenger was The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, which started its international roll-out with a promising estimated $20.7m from 2,000 screens in 12 mostly smaller territories.
  • Italian production boosted by $1.5m Turin fund

    Production in Italy will be given a major boost by the launch in Cannes today of a $1.5m (1 million Euro) film fund aimed at first and second features. TorinoFilmLab, as the new venture is called, will invest in training, development and funding of feature films.Linked to the Torino Film Festival (held in November), the Fund will invest a minimum of $77,000 (50,000 Euros) and a maximum of $310,000 (200,000 Euros ) in selected projects. There will be no obligation to spend
  • It's Hard Being Loved By Jerks (C'est Dur D'etre Aime Par Des Cons)

    Dir. Daniel Leconte. 2008.France. 119 minsFreedom of speech and freedom of the press versus religious grievances are explored to edifying effect in It’s Hard Being Loved By Jerks. This lively, intelligently-structured documentary chronicles the suit brought by Muslim organisations against French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo after the irreverent paper, famed for its own stable of political cartoonists, published 12 allegedly-insulting Danish cartoon interp
  • Jaman launches 100 free ad-supported movie downloads

    US-based online film distribution portal has launched free ad-supported streamed downloads of 100 independent and international films in high definition quality. The films which include award-winners like Theo Van Gogh's Cool and Shake Hands With The Devil, classics like Charade and a slew of Bollywood titles, are free with advertisements. Alternatively
  • Jan de Bont to direct Point Break sequel in Indonesia

    Jan de Bont will direct Point Break: Indo for Singapore production and talent management firm RGM Entertainment and LA sales, development and production company Essential Entertainment.Essential is handling worldwide sales on the project, a closely guarded story set in Indonesia 20 years after the disappearance of Patrick Swayze's surfing bank robber Bodhi. Filming will take place in multiple Asian locations including Singapore.Tay
  • Japanese buyers take Antique, Love First

    Korean sales agent Fine Cut has pre-sold Min Kyu-dong's Antique to Showgate in Japan for a mid six-figure sum. In addition, Japan 's SPO Entertainment has snapped up romantic drama Love, First from Fine Cut, founded by former Cineclick Asia chief Youngjoo Suh. Currently in post-production, Antique is produced by SooFilm, Zip Cinema and United Pictures, a producti
  • Je Veux Voir (I Want To See)

    Dirs: Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige. Lebanon-France. 2008. 75mins.
  • Jean-Claude Van Damme sales pack punch

    The UK's Revolver has picked up rights to J.C.V.D. , the latest Jean-Claude Van Damme film being sold by Gaumont. The film has been generating a lot of buzz on the Internet and is a hot seller for the French studio. A mix of reality and fiction, the J.C.V.D. looks at what happens when a movie star is forced to turn into an ordinary guy. It is also a story of redemption. Other sales on the Euros 11mn picture include Koch Media in Germany, Spentzos in Greece, SPI in Eas
  • Jinga signs two-pic deal with Spain's Notro

    Jinga Films has closed all rights in Spain for two of its titles with NotroFilms. The deal includes Julian Richards' coming-of-age thriller Summer Scars and Craig Strachan's werewolf horror film Wild Country.Notro will release both through its Amazing label with Warner Bros.Jinga's sales slate also includes Penny Woolcock's Exodus an
  • Jonathan Miller takes 100% control of First Run/Icarus Films

    First Run Features has sold its interest in First Run/Icarus Films back to the company with the result that First Run/Icarus Films is now wholly owned by Jonathan Miller, who will continue as president of the company.First Run/Icarus Films will change its name to Icarus Films from June 1 and will unveil new titles shortly.Seymour Wishman's First Run Features will continue to distribute in the theatrical, home video, and television markets and will offer many of its non-th
  • Juppiter back in business at Cannes

    Italian production outfit Juppiter is back in business. Here in Cannes, the production outfit behind several classic Italian movies including key works by Ettore Scola and Tornatore has relaunched with a three film slate.Roberto Bessi, CEO of Juppiter Generale Cinematografica, is aiming to take advantage of new fiscal incentives likely to be available in Italy from the autumn onwards to drive Juppiter forward.The biggest project that Juppiter is pushing is
  • K5 takes on world sales for with Gillies' The Disposables

    UK- and Germany-based sales company K5 continues to build its sales slate with a world sales deal for The Disposables.Oscar nominee Ryan Gosling is executive producing. Daniel Gillies is directing and producing. Gillies also stars in the film with Rachael Leigh Cook and Seymour Cassel.Other producers are Darryn Welch from Instinctive Film and John Lyons Murphy for Holy Monster.K5 is pre-selling the film star
  • Karl Urban joins the cast of Horse for ContentFilm Intl

    Karl Urban has joined the cast of action thriller Horse, which ContentFilm International is selling worldwide.Urban previously appeared in Star Trek, The Lord Of the Rings, The Bourne Supremacy and forthcoming Black Water Transit.Laurence Malkin directs and producers are Paul Schiff, Tai Duncan and Roseanne Korenberg.
  • Katapult dives in for Ocean Flame

    Katapult Film Sales has picked up Chinese director Liu Fendou's Un Certain Regard title Ocean Flame, produced by Hong Kong 's Filmko Entertainment. Liu previously gained international acclaim for Green Hat, which won best film and best director at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2004. Based on Wang Shuo's novel Part Ocean, Part Flame, Liu's new film revolves around the troubled relationship between a
  • Ken Loach's son to take on UK/Australian co-production

    Camilla Bray, who works with Rebecca O'Brien and Ken Loach at Sixteen FIlms, has plans for her second film as a lead producer to be directed by Jim Loach, Ken's son who is a British TV veteran. The UK/Australia co-production is written by Rona Munro, who also wrote Ken Loach's 1994 Ladybird, Ladybird. The script was finished in April and Bray is meeting with potential Australian partners here in Cannes.'It's an Erin Brockovich-type
  • King Of Fighters lands at Inferno

    Inferno Entertainment has commenced pre-sales on the $12m English-language video game adaptation King Of Fighters.Gordon Chan (The Medallion) will direct the Matrix-like sci-fi action title and filming is scheduled to start in Taiwan on September 15.Taiwan's Double Edge Entertainment, LA-based Convergence Entertainment, US outfit Axis Entertainment an
  • Kinnear, Kruger, Mendes in talks for Omega's Little Green Men

    Omega Entertainment has taken on international rights to Little Green Men, which Whit Stillman will direct.The ensemble cast lining up now includes Greg Kinnear, Diane Kruger, Eva Mendes, John Malkovich, Peter Sarsgaard, Peter Dinklage and Zooey Deschanel. All are in talks but no deals are confirmed yet.The project is based on a bestseller by Christopher Buckley, who also wrote hit Thank You For Sm
  • Kuba resigns as head of Barrandov Studios

    Vladimir Kuba has stepped down from his position as general director of Barrandov Studios. The announcement came as a sudden surprise inside Barrandov Studios, a source inside told Screen International. 'My view of the situation was different from the owners,' Kuba told Screen International. 'I thought it was better to end our cooperation. 'Kuba said that from his point of view the studios w
  • Kung Fu Panda

    Dirs: Mark Osborne, John Stevenson. US. 2008. 95mins
  • Labadie's Le Pacte picks up Sundance favourite Young@Heart

    Jean Labadie's Le Pacte has picked up Stephen Walker's Young@Heart for international sales in a deal concluded ahead of Cannes.The documentary, about the Young@Heart chorus of senior citizens who sing rock songs to rapt audiences, traces the preparation of a new show boasting covers of Hendrix, Coldplay and The Clash. It premiered in Sundance. Deals Le Pacte has made include Spain (Alta), Benelux (ACB-Cinemien), Israel (Shoval), Greece (Artfree) and Korea (
  • Labadie's Le Pacte signs deal with UK's Corniche Pictures

    Jean Labadie's sales, distribution and production outfit Le Pacte has created a partnership with Hani Farsi's Corniche Pictures which will see the latter make an equity investment in the new French company. The London-based Corniche is a member of the Corniche Group and is currently co-producing the next film from Elia Suleiman. Le Pacte's upcoming titles include competition titles Waltz With Bashir and
  • Lakeshore boards Nia Vardalos' directorial debut

    Lakeshore Entertainment has boarded Nia Vardalos' directorial debut I Hate Valentine's Day, in which she will reunite on screen with her My Big Fat Greek Wedding co-star John Corbett.Production is set to begin on June 23 on the story of a carefree florist who charms a wary restaurateur into trying her theory of no-strings-attached dating.Blue Star Entertainment's William Sherak and Jason Shu
  • Latido sells key titles to UTV

    Latido Films has sold several of its films to major Indian distributor UTV, including veteran Spanish director Manuel Gutierrez Aragon's Basque terrorist drama Who's Next. The other films are Max Lemcke's comedy Casual Day, which Walt Disney Motion Pictures International released in Spain last week; Gerardo Olivares' drama 14 Kilometros, which premieres at the Edinburgh Film
  • Laura Hastings Smith to follow Hunger with Piggy, Satan, Charming Man

    Laura Hastings Smith, producer of Un Certain Regard opener Hunger, has a full slate of films in development. The London-based producer, participating in EFP's Producers on The Move, plans to re-team with Hunger collaborator Robin Gutch for the Warp X project This Little Piggy by Corinna Faith, described as 'a twisted take on consumerism set on a psychotic farm.' The horror film was developed by the Dark
  • Laurence Fishburne to direct The Alchemist for The Weinstein Company

    Laurence Fishburne will direct, star and produce in a $60m-plus adaptation of Paulo Coelho's international bestseller The Alchemist for The Weinstein Company (TWC). TWC International chief Glen Basner will commence pre-sales here on the acclaimed story of an Andalusian shepherd's search for truth that takes him across vast stretches of Africa. Harvey Weinstein is in talks with an Oscar winning writer to ad
  • Lightning picks up sales rights to Pierce-Williams thriller Shuttle

    Lightning Entertainment has added Pierce-Williams Entertainment's thriller Shuttle to its sales slate here.Mark Williams and Michael Pierce produced the story of two girls who board an airport shuttle bus that turns into a nightmare ride.Tony Curran, Peyton List, Cameron Goodman, James Snyder, Dave Power and Cullen Douglas star. Edward Anderson directed and Allan Jones, Todd Lemley and Mark Donadio also produced.Lightni
  • Linha De Passe

    Dir: Walter Salles, Daniela Thomas. Brazil-France. 2008. 108 mins.
  • Lion's Den (Leonera)

    Dir: Pablo Trapero. Argentina-South Korea. 2008. 113mins .
  • Lionsgate takes worldwide rights to The Perfect Game

    Lionsgate has acquired worldwide rights excluding Mexico from LA-based HighRoad Entertainment to William Dear's The Perfect Game.The true story centres on a lowly Mexican Little League team that became the first non-American team to win the league's World Series. Clifton Collins, Cheech Marin and Louis Gossett Jr star.W William Winokur wrote the screenplay and produced with David Salzberg, Christian Tureaud, Mark Koch, Daniel de Li
  • London's Production Finance Market sets up ties with Rome Film Fest

    The second Film London Production Finance Market (PFM) will be held Oct 20-21 as part of the Times BFI London Film Festival. This year's second-annual event is hoping to increase its European presence. UK and international producers and financiers can apply until July 25. More than 60 financiers will attend, meeting 70+ producers pitching single projects and slates. Also, Film London is also running the Emerging Producer Training Programme on July 24-25. Ten producers wil
  • Lotte Cinema enters Vietnamese exhibition market

    South Korea's Lotte Cinema, affiliate of major local distributor Lotte Entertainment, has announced that it has become the first major Korean multiplex owner to buy into the Vietnamese exhibition market. Part of the Lotte Group conglomerate, Lotte Cinema has acquired DMC, a smaller Korean exhibitor that has successfully been operating three screens in Ho Chi Minh City and three more in Danang.Lotte also announced plans for the end of the year to open a Lotte Mart superstore in Ho C
  • Madonna's Filth scores territorial deals in Japan, France, CIS

    LA's Katapult Films has closed key sales heading into the market on Madonna's directorial debut Filth And Wisdom.David Jourdan concluded deals with Hexagon in Japan, Surreal Films in CIS and Front Row in the Middle East.French rights have gone to La Fabrique du Film in a deal negotiated with CAA and Karen Gottlieb of New York firm Grubman Indursky & Shire.
  • Marcus Vigneron Coudroy joins Shyer's Eloise in Paris

    Young 11-year-old French actor Marcus Vigneron Coudroy has joined the cast of Charles Shyer's new live-action feature Eloise In Paris, based on Kay Thompson's classic Eloise books.As previously reported, the cast also includes Uma Thurman and Australian newcomer Jordana Beatty.Vigneron Coudroy was selected from an extensive casting process in London and Paris. He plays the role of Jean-Luc,
  • Mazodier and Oursel prepare $9.2m frightener Prey

    Two Days In Paris producer Christophe Mazodier and 13 Tzameti producer Olivier Oursel are teaming for an ambitious thriller from first-time director Antoine Blossier. The $9.2m (Euros 6m) project Prey is currently in pre-production. Mazodier describes it to Screen as ' Jaws meets Deliverance in the forest.' A family on the verge of imploding is led into a dark forest where mysterious creatures are out of control. Starring Berencie Bejo,
  • MD introduces Cannes buyers to Indonesian record-breaker

    Islamic love story Signs Of Love (Ayat Ayat Cinta), produced and sold by Jakarta-based MD Pictures, has become the highest-grossing film ever in Indonesia with four million admissions. The film, which MD Pictures released on Feb 28, touches on the sensitive subject of polygamy, but rather than courting controversy has been packing theatres in Indonesia. It also attracted the attention of Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudoyono who went to see th
  • Mehlitz's Lago, Jeffrod teaming for Szabo's English-language Half

    Berlin-based producer Marco Mehlitz, in Cannes with Jennifer Lynch's Surveillance which screens next Wednesday, is here assembling the financing for Istvan Szabo's next film A Half Of Two Lives, an English-language drama based on the 1982 novel by Alison Waley.Mehlitz whose Lago Film is co-producing with Jeffrod Entertainment in Australia says the $20m film will shoot in September in London with a high-
  • Metrodome strikes deal for MediaPro to become major investor

    Romanian powerhouse MediaPro has agreed to buy 50.1% of shares in UK distributor Metrodome.The deal was done with Germany's TV-Loonland, which was formerly Metrodome's parent company.'They want to move into Western Europe and the UK,' says Metrodome CEO Peter Urie told Screen about Metrodome's new backer.Each share was bought for 2.62 UK pence (the stock is listed on the UK's AIM). 'That was a 16.4% premium on yesterday
  • MGM acquires rights to children's book The Facttracker

    MGM has acquired rights to Jason Carter Eaton's children's book The Facttracker and attached Monsters, Inc co-director David Silverman to direct.Eaton and writing partner Ian Lendler will adapt the live-action film based on the story of a town that gathers all the facts in the world and comes under threat from a visiting salesman who peddles lies.Night At Th
  • MK2 sells Olivier Assayas' Summer Hours to US

    MK2 has sold Olivier Assayas' Summer Hours to US distributor IFC Filmsfor a 2009 release. The family drama stars Juliette Binoche, CharlesBerling and Jeremie Renier.Other sales include Artificial Eye (UK),A-Films (Benelux), HGC (China) and Filmware (Taiwan). MK2 handled theFrench release taking $4m. Summer Hours was produced by Marin and NathanielKarmitz of MK2 along with Charles
  • Myriad takes on international sales rights to Take

    Myriad Pictures has picked up Charles Oliver's directorial debut Take and is introducing the drama to buyers on the Croisette.Minnie Driver and Jeremy Renner star in the story of two apparent strangers who discover they actually crossed paths years ago with devastating results.Former DreamWorks executive Chet Thomas produced and Tyler Measom, Brady Whittingham, Ryan Oliver and David Ranes served as executive producers. Liberation F
  • Mythic International Entertainment kicks off with Ironclad

    Rick Benattar, Jonathan English and Andrew Curtis' Mythic International Entertainment has teamed with Zephyr Films and Picture Park for its first feature, the $30m medieval action film Ironclad directed by English.Set in 13th Century England, the film tells the story of a Templar Knight who defends Rochester Castle against the tyrant King John and his army. James Purefoy and Paul Giamatti are being lined up to star as the Templar and King John
  • Nancy Spungen doc now fully financed

    Double D Productions has come on board to invest in a new slate of feature documentaries, starting with Moxie Makers' Who Killed Nancy'.Moxie, the low-budget arm of UK's Ipso Facto, is now complete with financing for the documentary about the life and death of Sid Vicious' girlfriend Nancy Spungen. Alan G Parker writes and directs and the project starts shooting on Monday.Ian Davis and Susan Douglas of Double D struck the deal with
  • New Stephane Brize film joins official selections on Rezo slate

    Rezo Films is handling international sales on three official selection titles at Cannes while also Stephane Brize's latest effort, among others. Rezo has acquired Acne by director Frederico Velroj which is running in Directors' Fortnight. The film is a Spanish drama about a young man in search of the first kiss. Also in the Fortnight is Yin Lichuan's Knitting . The Chinese drama stars Zhang Yi. In Critics' Week, Rezo is handling Everybody Dies But Me by Valer
  • Nikkatsu unveils Miike's $20m Yatterman

    Japanese studio Nikkatsu is unveiling Takashi Miike's $20m manga adaptation Yatterman at Cannes, the cult director's biggest project.The live-action picture is in production at the Nikkatsu studios, scheduled for a wide Japanese release in spring 2009. Nikkatsu and Shochiku are co-distributing in Japan.Nikkatsu was acquired by Index Corp in 2005 and has since been ramping up its production and sales activities.
  • NonStop acquires Park Chan-wook's vampire film

    Sweden 's NonStop Entertainment has acquired two vampire features - Park Chan-wook's highly-anticipated Thirst and Not Like Others from Swedish director Peter Pontikis. Both films are still in production and will premiere later this year. Nonstop has acquired rights to both films for Scandinavia, Iceland and the Baltics. Thirst stars Song Kang-ho as a pastor who pursues his repressed desires when he comes back to life as a vampire after dying from a virus. The film, which is being sold by C
  • NonStop takes biteNonStop takes bite of Swedish vampire film

    Underlining its continuing appetite for genre fare.NonStop Sales hastaken on world sales for Swedish vampire movie Not Like Others.The film, billed as a 'sensitive relationship drama with vampireelements,' marks the feature debut of director Peter Pontikis.It is the story of two vampire sisters in contemporary Stockholm. The cast is headlined by Jenny Lampa and Ruth Fernandez Vega. Also in the cast is David Dencik (A Soap.)Not Like Others
  • NTV works manga magic with $60m 20th Century Boys trilogy

    Japanese trilogy 20th Century Boys is shaping up to be one of the hottest Asian projects in the market, with Nippon Television Network (NTV) closing a slew of sales to Asian territories in the run-up to Cannes. Key among the deals is the acquisition of all Korean rights by exhibitor-distributor Megabox. It represents Megabox's biggest purchase to date since expanding into film distribution early last year. The deal was negotiated by NTV's Fumik
  • Odin's Eye appoints Victoria Treole as head of acquisitions

    Victoria Treole, one-time Miramax representative in Australia, has been appointed head of acquisitions for Michael Favelle's start-up sales outfit Odin's Eye Entertainment, based in Sydney.
  • Of Time And The City

    Dir: Terence Davies.UK. 2008. 74mins.Over the decades many accomplished directors have created cinematic odes to cities dear to their hearts. Berlin (Walter Ruttmann, from the silent era); Paris (Je T’Aime, particularly Alexander Payne’s segment), and Rome (Fellini). But Liverpool’ You have to hand it to Terence Davies. Although he has not made a film since 2000’s The House Of Mirth, he has successfully constructed an outstanding work about the hometown h
  • Olivier Dahan back on song for StudioCanal slate

    StudioCanal and Alain Goldman's Legende are currently developing the next film from La Vie En Rose director Olivier Dahan entitled My Very Own Love Song .Forest Whitaker and Renee Zellweger are attached to the English-language project, StudioCanal confirmed. StudioCanal is also eyeing a summer production start on Escape From New York. The $80m remake is being developed with producer Neil Moritz and New Line but the start date would be contingent o
  • Opix plans Toy Soldiers with Kit Ryan

    Shepperton Studios-based Opix Films Ltd is again working with Irish director Kit Ryan on Toy Soldiers. The project, about child soldiers in Africa, will shoot in Cape Town starting October 2008.Ryan's last comedy thriller with Opix and Silver Pictures, Botched starring Stephen Dorff, went to Warner Bros in the US and Optimum for the UK. Opix is also developing Dementamania, a dark thriller with producers James Ryan and Anis Shlewet
  • Optimum kicks off Dark Castle deal with Whiteout

    UK-distributor Optimum Releasing, has struck a multi-picture deal with Joel Silver's Dark Castle (which already has a relationship with Optimum parent Studio Canal).The first title in the deal will be Dominic Sena's action thriller Whiteout. Based on the graphic novel, Kate Beckinsale stars in the story of a US marshall alone in Antarctica who has to investigate the continent's first murder.Optimum's previous pick-ups of Cannes tit
  • Osian's Cinefan festival to honour Sen, Lacaba

    Osian's-Cinefan Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema is presenting two lifetime achievement awards at this year's edition (July 10-20). The Osian's Lifetime Achievement Award for Contribution to Cinema will be awarded to filmmaker Mrinal Sen, while the Aruna Vasudev Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Cinema will go to Jose 'Pete' F. Lacaba.Calcutta-based Sen is one of India's most politically active filmmakers with credits including Kharij which won the special jury priz
  • Padilha signs on for untitled action thriller with Nunnari's Gang

    Gianni Nunnari's Warner Bros-based Hollywood Gang Productions and Management 360 have hired Elite Squad director Jose Padilha to direct an untitled action thriller.The story revolves around a US Federal agent who goes undercover in South America's dangerous tri-border area to dismantle a terrorist funding network.360 and Hollywood Gang plan to cast the film with a major US star and Latin star. Jason Keller, who most recently wrote Sleeper
  • Palm Tree readies three biopics; screens Seven Crosses in Cannes

    Robbie Moffat and Mairi Sutherland's UK-based production and sales company Palm Tree Entertainment has a slate of three historical biopics in development: the $10m Chopin, about the composer; $20m Secret Image about the hidden homosexual love life of Leonardo Da Vinci; and the $15m Voyage Of Dream about the Canadian explorer Alexander MacKenzie. The latter would be a Canadia
  • Paramount backs Carrera's Mexican drama Backyard

    Paramount has bought the rights to Carlos Carrera's Mexican drama Backyard from the film's co-producers Indigo Films.'The studio will help finance the project and then distribute it in the US and Mexico and other territories,' a Mexican Film Institute (IMCINE) spokesman told Screen. IMCINE is promoting the film at Cannes.A co-production between Mexican outfits Foprocine, Indigo Films and Eficine 226, the film, currently at script stage, te
  • Paramount Vantage, Overture to co-finance, distribute Moore's next

    Paramount Vantage and Overture Films will co-finance and distribute Michael Moore’s follow-up to his 2004 Palme d’Or winner and global smash Fahrenheit 9/11.Vantage will commence pre-sales here in what should become one of the hottest titles on the market and Overture will release in North America in a likely summer or autumn 2009 slot. Shooting in the US is expected to begin imminently.Referring to Moore’s global reputation and
  • Pat Shortt, Dap Kings sign up for Ipso Facto's Souled Out

    Pat Shortt, who starred in last year's Cannes Directors Fortnight hit Garage, has joined the cast of Shimmy Marcus' Souled Out for Ipso Facto Films. He joins Martin Compston and Jennifer Ellison in the coming-of-age love story set in the Northern Soul scene in 1974.The Dap Kings, the backing band of Sharon Jones who has worked with Amy Winehouse and Mark Ronson, will produce the soundtrack and create original music for the film. Paul Weller is also in discussions to contr
  • Pathe readies Chomet's $22m The Illusionist for 2009

    Pathe is now introducing buyers to The Illusionist, the new feature from The Triplets Of Belleville creator Sylvain Chomet. The company is showing first footage here of the $22m project, financed by Pathe and France 3 with Canal Plus.Django and CineB are co-producing; producers are Bob Last and Sally Chomet with Philippe Carcassonne and Jake Eberts executive producing.The film is based on an origin
  • Pathe strikes UK deal for Steve McQueen's Hunger

    Un Certain Regard opener Hunger has, as expected, struck deals with several territories. A North American deal was said to be in advanced negotiations.Icon Entertainment International has signed a UK and Ireland deal with Pathe, which beat out several other interested UK distributors. Sue Bruce Smith of Film4 also helped in those negotiations.Rights have also gone to France (MK2), Benelux (Paradiso), Portugal (Lusomundo), Greece (V
  • Penn's selection The Third Wave surges with Content, Cinetic

    Competition Jury president Sean Penn has selected The Third Wave as an unprecedented Special Presidential Jury Screening to be held Friday at 7:15 pm. ContentFilm International is now handling international sales, with Cinetic Media selling North America.Alison Thompson directs the documentary about four volunteers who go to Sri Lanka after the 2004 tsunami. Oscar Gubernati produced.‘The Third Wave is truly a must-see for oursel
  • Poisson Rouge puts on the Ritz

    Producer Christopher Granier-Deferre of London-based Poisson Rouge Pictures will work with Mrs Henderson Presents writing and producing team David and Kathy Rose to develop a feature based on the life of Cesar Ritz. Ritz was the flamboyant entrepreneur behind the success of the The Ritz Hotel.'He really changed the way we see luxury,' Granier-Deferre told Screen. 'It was his attention to detail
  • Prince Caspian begins roll-out, Iron Man nears $200m

    Disney's The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian starts its international roll-out this weekend, opening in one major market in Asia, one in Europe and one in Latin America. But the family adventure sequel is unlikely to break Iron Man's two-week grip on the marketplace as Paramount's comic book-based blockbuster approaches the $200m mark internationally. Simultaneous with its debut in Nort
  • Prince Caspian takes crown at North American box office

    Buena Vista's The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian dominated the North American box office over the weekend, though its estimated opening gross of $56.6m was short of most projections.Paramount's Iron Man and Fox's What Happens in Vegas held up well in their third and second weekends respectively, but Warner's Speed Racer
  • Protagonist takes on Bankside library sales

    Bankside Films has teamed with new sales outfit Protagonist Pictures to sell Bankside's catalogue titles to TV, video and ancillary markets. Nada Cirjanic, who is in charge of the Film4 library through Protagonist, will also be in charge of the Bankside library.Bankside will continue to acquire projects for first-run theatrical sales, of course, but once that cycle of sales is exhausted, a film will be passed to Protagonist. The deal kicks off with about 10 titles.
  • Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival launches market

    Korea's Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan) is launching a projects market specifically for genre films during its upcoming 12th edition (July 18 - 27).Dubbed the Network of Asian Fantastic Films (NAFF), Pifan's market is modeled on Rotterdam's Cinemart and Pusan's PPP and will run July 19 - 23.NAFF will comprise four parts: the It Project - a program for films in all stages of production to match up with co-producers and financiers. It will run July 20 -
  • Pyramide International to handle next Bruno Dumont

    Pyramide International will handle the next film from Palme d'Or winning director Bruno Dumont. Hadewijch stars Julie Sokolowski, Yassine Salime and Davis Dewaele in a story about Celine, a young woman dismissed from the convent for her shockingly blind, ecstatic faith. Returning to her life as the daughter of a diplomat, Celine's passionate love of God, her rage and an encounter with two men lead her down dangerous paths. The film is set for release in spring 2009.
  • Radical Comics sells 40,000 units of first two Hercules, Caliber comics

    Radical Publishing, which is partnered with film company Intandem, has had hits with its first two comic book releases through subsidiary Radical Comics: Hercules: The Thracian Wars and Caliber: First Canon Of Justice. Radical Comics sold out of 40,000 units of the two titles during its launch week starting April 30.Intandem has a 10% equity stake in Radical Publishing and will sell rights t
  • Real Holywood unveils first slate including Simon Callow's debut

    Belfast-based production company Real Holywood plans a June shoot for its first feature, Yankee King, starring Bill Campbell, Claire Forlani, Kelly Brook and Rosemary Harris.Gerry Lively (Dungeons & Dragons II) will direct for the new production company, which is backed by property developer Robert Whitton and Richard Attenborough's longtime producer Jo Gilbert.The love story will be shot on
  • RISE, Casarotto launch new talent initiative in UK

    UK production company RISE Films and agency Casarotto Ramsay & Associates are launching a new initiative for emerging screenwriters, also with support from Sight & Sound.The initiative will kick off with a competition starting early in June. Unrepresented writers will submit first drafts of feature film scripts and one will be selected to have a development deal with RISE and representation from Casarotto.The winner will be announc
  • Rome will go ahead after film fest head and Mayor

    Following a meeting between the President of the Rome Film Fest Goffredo Bettini and the new Mayor of Rome, Gianni Alemanno, it has been confirmed that the third edition of the Rome Film Fest will go ahead as planned from October 22-31.This meeting follows the outspoken criticisms of the festival made by Alemanno after his election in April.The talks between Alemanno and Bettini were reportedly positive and held in a spirit of collaboration. The Mayor's office
  • Rubin's First Independent acquires US rights to Sixty Six

    Gary Rubin's First Independent Pictures has acquired US rights from Working Title Films to the coming-of-age comedy Sixty Six.Paul Weiland's tale of a boy's bar mitzvah that coincides with the day England wins the football World Cup Final will open on August 1 in New York and stars Helena Bonham Carter, Eddie Marsan, Stephen Rea Catherine Tate and newcomer Gregg Sulkin.Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Elizabeth Karlsen produced and Rich
  • Rumba

    Dir: Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon, Bruno Romy. 2008. Belgium-France. 77mins
  • Salles in post on companion piece documentary to On The Road

    Walter Salles, who is preparing a film of Jack Kerouac's seminal beat novel On The Road, has finished principal photography on a companion piece documentary in which he follows the trip taken by Kerouac's alter-ego Sal Paradise through North America.'We met the several people who are still alive that he met in On The Road and interviewed some of the remaining beat poets like Gary Snyder, Lawrence Ferlin
  • Sally Hawkins to play Northern Irish civil rights campaigner

    Sally Hawkins, coming off her Berlinale Best Actress award for Happy-Go-Lucky, will star in Aisling Walsh's The Roaring Girl.Kate Gartside wrote the script and producers are Sophie Balhetchet for Cougar Films and Tristan Orpen Lynch for Subotica. The Irish Film Board and Northern Ireland Screen supported the film's development.The story follows the life of Northern Ireland civil rights campa
  • Salt Of This Sea (Milh Hadha Al-Bahr)

    Dir/scr. Annemarie Jacir. France-Palestine-Switz-Belgium-USA-UK-Neth-Spain. 2008. 89mins.
  • Sam Riley, Mads Mikkelsen in talks for Black Heart

    Christine Alderson's UK-based production company Ipso Facto Films is working with Italy's Orisa Produzioni and South Africa's Film Afrika to Produce political thriller Black Heart.The story is based on the real diaries of ex-mercenary Jean Vaudrec. Mads Mikkelsen and Sam Riley are in discussions to play estranged brothers who try to expose illegal ivory for arms trade.Cristiano Bortone, from Red Li
  • Samuel L Jackson blowsinto Fiennes thriller for Intandem

    Samuel L Jackson has taken a lead role in Martha Fiennes’ espionage thriller Blown. The previoiusly announced members of the cast include Thandie Newton and Guy Pearce.The story delves into the world of espionage, terrorism and big business through the eyes of a ruthless MI5 agent.Fiennes, who previously directed Chromophobia and Onegin, s
  • Sarde, Siritzky partner for $50m Emannuelle prequel

    Roman Polanksi's longtime producer Alain Sarde is lining up a $50m prequel to Emmanuelle with the erotic franchise's rights holder Alain Siritzky.What Else Emmanuelle' will be the first theatrical release in the series since Emmanuelle IV came out in 1984 and is scheduled to begin shooting at various exotic locations in September.The producers are out
  • Score draw ends Napoleonic wars

    The stand-off over the rival versions of Abel Gance's Napoleon (1927), long acknowledged as one of the towering achievements of the silent era, is over.In Cannes this week, it has been announced that an agreement has been struck between Zoetrope/Film Preserve and the BFI/Photoplay. Two primary versions of the film exist with different scores, one (BFI/Photoplay) in the UK with music composed by Carl Davis and the other (Zoetrope/Fi
  • Screen at Cannes: News, reviews and analysis

    Click to see moreFinal weekend: top storiesLaurent Cantet's The Class takes Palme D'Or Dvortesevoi's Tuplan triumphs in Un Certain Regard Number of countries represented at Cannes market tops 100Aida Begic's Snow takes Crit
  • Screen Capital International, WMA launch $100 production fund

    Screen Capital International (SCI) and William Morris Agency have launched Incentive Filmed Entertainment, a $100m production and financing vehicle that will fully fund up to ten features a year budgeted up to $15m.William Morris Independent's Cassian Elwes and Rena Ronson will represent worldwide sales on the slate on behalf of Incentive and the first title to go this summer will be Griffin Dunne's The Position, a
  • Screen opinion- The soft money catch

    There's a disconcerting calm underpinning Screen's annual guide to soft money this year.Over the last few years, analysis of subsidies has been a task for a war correspondent. Enormous upheavals in incentives turned the international business on its head around the world, most notably in the UK and Germany. So much of the film industry was financed by tax avoidance schemes that the collapse of some of the biggest posed serious questions about future funding.After the delu
  • Serbis (Service)

    Dir. Brillante Ma.Mendoza. Philippines/France. 2008. 94mins.
  • Seven Arts boards $60m William Gibson thriller Neuromancer

    Peter Hoffman's Seven Arts Pictures has boarded the $60m thriller Neuromancer, based on William Gibson's 1984 cyberpunk classic book.Joseph Kahn (Torque) will direct from Gibson's adapted screenplay about a computer hacker in a dystopian near-future whose brain is sabotaged after he is caught stealing from his employer.The production and sales company will also be talking up
  • Seven Days (Shiva)

    Dir: Ronit and Shlomi Elkabetz. Israel-France. 2008. 115mins
  • Sex And The City

    Dir: Michael Patrick King. US. 2008. 140mins.Four years after the series finale of HBO's iconic Sex And The City, the eagerly-awaited film version arrives with much of the spirit and humour intact, a juicily melodramatic plotline and more over-the-top fashion than is decent for one movie. Fans of the series, which ran for six seasons between 1998 and 2004, will not be disappointed by the film, which runs to 140 minutes and plays like a new season in itself.
  • Shanghai turns spotlight on co-production

    The Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) has announced the line-up of projects for its Co-production Film Pitch and Catch (Co-FPC) initiative, which aims to stimulate co-production with an emphasis on the Asian region. The three-day event (June 16-18), at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Shanghai, will bring together potential co-producers and investors with 32 projects from Chinese and overseas filmmakers. Overseas projects include Italian filmmaker Maurizio Sciarra's The Everl
  • Shin Rockenwagner takes top corporate comms role at Paramount

    Patricia Shin Rockenwagner has been named executive vice president of corporate communications at Paramount Pictures.Rockenwagner will assume her new role on May 19 and fills the gap left by Janet Hill, who departed last June.The new arrival most recently served as vice president of communications of the Southern California Region of Time Warner Cable. She will report to Paramount chairman and CEO Brad Grey.'Patti comes to Paramount with a proven record of suc
  • Shoreline sells The Adventures Of Power to Transformer in Japan

    Morris Ruskin's Shoreline Entertainment has sold Sundance title The Adventures Of Power to Transformer in Japan.Ari Gold directs and stars as a small town dreamer who aspires to become the world's greatest air drummer. Entourage's Adrian Grenier also stars alongside Michael McKean and Jane Lynch.Shoreline's Brian Sweet brokered the deal with Eisuke Ishige, Shin Kato and Junko Ando on behalf of Transformer. Shoreline previously sold
  • Shoreline signs five-picture deal with Gaga for Japan and South Korea

    Morris Ruskin's Shoreline Entertainment is reporting a strong market and has signed a five-picture deal with Gaga Communications for Japan and South Korea.The package includes zombie action film Automaton Transfusion, which Shoreline acquired from William Morris for international distribution and Dimension Films will release in the US.Writer-director Steven C Miller conceived the story of US military reanimation experiments as the
  • Showbox Mediaplex takes cut of $1.5m Jang Hun action film

    Korean sales company Showbox Mediaplex has picked up action film Rough Cut (working title) to be directed by latest Kim Ki-duk protege Jang Hun.Co-produced by Kim Ki-duk Film and Sponge Entertainment, the $1.5m film starts shooting this month. Release is set for late 2008.Assistant director on two of Kim's films, Time and The Bow, Jang also worked on the celebr
  • Singh named president of finance and administration, CFO at MGM

    Bedi A Singh has been named president of finance and administration and CFO of MGM.Singh, who most recently served as executive vice president and CFO of Gemstar-TV Guide International, will report directly to MGM's chairman and CEO Harry E Sloan.In the newly created position Singh assumes overall responsibility for the company's financial activities, including strategic financial planning and human resources departments, information systems functions and relationships wi
  • Soi Cowboy

    Dir/scr Thomas Clay. Thailand/UK. 2008. 117 mins.
  • Sony picks up Malice In Wonderland for the UK

    Spain's 6Sales has secured leading territories for Simon Fellows' Malice In Wonderland, which is set to go into production with Danny Dyer (Severance) and Mischa Barton in the lead roles.Marina Fuentes of 6Sales has sold the film to Sony UK for the United Kingdom, Quality for all of Latin America, Paradise for CIS, Shooting Stars for the Middle East and D Productions for Romania and Turkey.Described as a modern twist on the childre
  • South Australian Film Corporation upgrades to new home

    South Australian Premier Mike Rann formally announced today in Los Angeles that the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) will move to a site in Adelaide, best known for housing psychiatric patients. The site is in the south-east Adelaide suburb of Glenside and is being redeveloped for a range of uses including housing and retail services. It will continue to have a crucial role in the state's mental health services but the grand old buildings, dating back to the 1800s
  • Spain's Antena 3 boards Universal andWorking Title's Iraq thriller

    Antena 3 Films, the film production arm of Spain broadcaster Antena 3Television, has come aboard Universal Pictures and Working Title'suntitled Green Zone thriller as part financier.Paul Greengrass' film is filming in Spain, Morocco and the UK andstars Matt Damon, Greg Kinnear, Brendan Gleeson, Amy Ryan, KhalidAbdalla and Jason Isaacs.The story takes place in Baghdad's high security Green Zone as aforeign correspondent tracks a pair of CIA agents on
  • Star licenses 20 titles to Japan's Tsutaya Discas

    Pan-Asian broadcaster Star has signed a deal with Japanese online content provider Tsutaya Discas, which will distribute 20 movie titles from Star's Fortune Star library via internet in Japan. The titles include Bruce Lee's Fist Of Fury and Way Of The Dragon, Jackie Chan's Project A series and the popular A Chinese Ghost Story series.'This agreement marks the first time that our Fortune Star titles will be distributed online in Japan. We look forward to
  • Stars sign up for Future Films' Parasomnia

    Future Films signs Karolina Kurkova and Kevin McKidd to ParasomniaBritish star Kevin McKidd (The Last Legion, Trainspotting) and Victoria's Secret model Karolina Kurkova have signed as the leads in Future Films' and MilCoz Films' psychological horror Parasomnia.Written and directed by Modigliani director Mick Davis, Parasomnia tells the story of a woman who is haunted by constant nightmares following her father
  • Strand asks Bankside: How About You'

    UK-based sales company has struck a deal with LA-based Strand Releasing for all US rights to Anthony Byrne's comedy How About You. Strand plans a September launch.Hayley Atwell stars alongside Vanessa Redgrave, Imelda Staunton, Brenda Fricker, and Joss Ackland. The story is about a young woman who has to run an elderly home over the Christmas holiday. It is based on a short story by Maeve Binchy.Bankside's co-managing director Hila
  • StudioCanal sells Babylon AD starring Vin Diesel to Italy

    StudioCanal has sold rights to big-budget Mathieu Kassovitz' sci-fi project Babylon AD to Moviemax in Italy. Moviemax is looking to release the Vin Diesel-starrer on around 400 prints in the autumn. The company is considering a festival berth, possibly Venice or Rome.The new acquisition comes as Moviemax is enjoying hits in Italy including Nim's Island, and Step Up 2 The Streets.
  • Summit Entertainment rises above Cannes sales gloom

    Defying gloom on the Croisette about a dearth of big-ticket Hollywood product, Summit Entertainment has closed major deals on its Cannes slate just four days into the market. Among the deals was a five-territory sale to the newly assembled Alliance network, consisting of Momentum in the UK, Aurum in Spain, Eagle in Italy, Scanbox in Scandinavia and Alliance in Canada, of genre spoof Disaster Movie from the same team behind
  • Sunshine Barry worms his way into international markets

    3-D Animated family feature Sunshine Barry And The Disco Worms hasburrowed its way into new territories.On the eve of Cannes, Sola Media has confirmed deals in Brazil(Imagem), CIS (Atelje), Czech & Slovak Republics (Dimas), FormerYugoslavia (MFC & Continental), Poland (Kino Swiat), Middle East(Shooting Star) and Turkey (Tiglon.)Sunshine Barry will be released in Scandinavia in the late autumn by SF Film AB.The film will include co
  • Supermodel Julia Ordon to star in Seven Arts' thriller Catwalk

    US financing, production and sales company Seven Arts Pictures has signed international supermodel Julie Ordon to star in its horror film Catwalk.Ordon will be in Cannes to support the project, which is in pre-production, and will play an upstart model who enters the business at a time when a serial killer is stalking the fashion industry.Anthony Hickox will direct; he recently collaborated with Seven Arts on the thriller
  • TBSannounces details of sequel toMiike's Crows

    Japan's Tokyo Broadcast System (TBS) is preparing a sequel to its hit high school gang film Crows: Episode 0. Famed filmmaker Takashi Miike will again direct and popular star Shun Oguri will reprise his lead role as smart and brutal gang leader Genji Takaya. Oguri is currently in training with the film set to go before cameras in July. Comic relief Kyosuke Yabe is also set to return but other cast members are yet to be confirmed.The first installment was a box office smash l
  • TF1 and Jeunet reunite to seek Amelie magic

    The team behind Amelie and Delicatessan have reunited with TF1 International taking on sales on Jean-Pierre Jeunet's next film, Micmacs A Tire-Larigot. The $42m project starring Dany Boon, Jean-Pierre Marielle, Julie Ferrier, Andre Dussollier and Yolande Moreau, will begin shooting in August.TF1 International will handle international sales on Jean-Pi
  • TF1 picks up worldwide rights to Rosem's Wang Chao project Starting Over

    TF1 International has picked up worldwide rights to drama Starting Over from Chinese director Wang Chao, whose last film Luxury Car won the top prize in Un Certain Regard in 2006. Sylvain Bursztejn's Paris-based Rosem Films, which co-produced Luxury Car, is again working with Wang on his new project. Scheduled to start shooting in Hangzhou at the end of nex
  • Thai Studio GTH sells Body to Germany, Indonesia

    Thai studio GMM Thai Hub (GTH) has sold suspense thriller Body to Germany 's I-On New Media and Indonesian distributor PT Cakarwala Pesona Jaya Film. Meanwhile, horror portmanteau 4bia has been pre-sold to a string of Asian distributors including Panasia for Hong Kong and Taiwan, Golden Screen for Malaysia and Golden Village for Singapore. Teenage comedy Hormones, which is the highest-grossing loca
  • The Chaser (Chugyeogja)

    Dir: Na Hong-Jin.South Korea. 2008. 123mins.Already a major hit inKoreaand set for a remake with Warner Bros, this bloody, frenetic serial killer thriller should keep themidnightscreening crowd happy, especially inAsia. Na Hong-jin’s promising but over-long debut is reminiscent of Bong Joon-ho’s highly-regarded Memories Of Murder and may possibly achieve similar returns. What it lacks in subtlety, it makes up for with plenty of action and wild chases which propel
  • The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian

    Dir: Andrew Adamson. 2008. UK/US. 144mins.The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian takes the youthful characters of its predecessor, The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, and throws them into a breathtaking landscape, where they battle for power with a new cast of villains. If crossbows, strange creatures, and a squeaky-clean young cast are the right elements for a fantasy sequel, then this naive epic is your movie.Prince Caspian builds on a
  • The Silence Of Lorna (Le Silence De Lorna)

    Dirs: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne. Belg-Fr-Italy. 105mins.
  • The Warlords march into France, Germany

    Hong Kong 's Media Asia Distribution has sold Peter Ho-sun Chan's The Warlords, starring Jet Li, Andy Lau and Takeshi Kaneshiro, to KSM in Germany and ARP in France. The big-budget historical epic was the top-grossing local film at the Chinese box office last year, grossing around $29m (RMB200m). Metrodome previously acquired all UK rights. Media Asia is jointly selling the film with Hong Kong-based Arm Distribution and is screening a re-edited version aimed at non-Asian market
  • Three Monkeys (Uc Maymun)

    Dir. Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Turkey-France-Italy. 2008. 109 mins.
  • Tic Tac productions to tackle first Franco graves feature

    Galicia-based Tic Tac productions will be the first company to make a feature-length film about the mass graves of those killed by General Franco's rebel forces in Spain.Flores Tristes will be directed by respected local film-maker Teo Manuel Abad who has gained exclusive access to the graves and spoken to the families of those killed during the Franco's regime for the documentary.'We were given access to the graves, which were unbelievable to see. We spoke to people who had
  • Toei rules Japan's Golden Week box office period

    Toei Studios was the undisputed champion of this year's 'Golden Week' box office period in Japan, led by the success of big screen TV adaptation Partners: The Movie (Aibo - Gekijoban). The police detective thriller, directed by Seiji Izumi, has earned $20.38m (Y2.1bn) since its May 1 release on 300 screens. It earned $2.46m on its opening day alone and $18,700 per screen averages on its first weekend (May 3-4), the highest of the year. It also held onto the top spot this pas
  • Tokyo festival goes green to boost global profile

    The Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) is launching a new section and award around the theme of ecology as part of a push to reposition the festival as a more international event. Tentatively titled Natural TIFF, the section will screen 20 new and old films that focus on the co-existence of man and nature. This year's TIFF (Oct 18-26) will also feature a 'Green Carpet' and present an 'Earth Award' to an environmentally themed film. The section was introduced yesterday by TIFF's
  • Tokyo Sonata

    Dir: Kiyoshi Kurosawa. Japan/Netherlands-Hong Kong. 119min..Taking a break from his regular diet of fantasy and horror, Japan’s Kiyoshi Kurosawa delivers here a fierce indictment of modern-day Japan. Kurosawa has often hinted, in earlier pictures, that he smells something rotten in his homeland, and this time he tackles the issue front-on - by the time he has finished, there he is precious little hope left.Obviously representing Japan, the Sasaki family i
  • Tokyo!

    Dirs: Michel Gondry, Leos Carax, Bong Joon-ho. France-Japan-Korea-Germany. 2008. 110mins.
  • Tony Manero

    Dir: Pablo Larrain. Chile-Brazil. 2008. 98mins .
  • Transformer picks up Japanese rights to The Adventures Of Power

    Morris Ruskin's Shoreline Entertainment has sold Sundance title The Adventures Of Power to Transformer in Japan.Ari Gold directs and stars as a small town dreamer who aspires to become the world's greatest air drummer. Entourage's Adrian Grenier also stars alongside Michael McKean and Jane Lynch.Shoreline's Brian Sweet brokered the deal with Eisuke Ishige, Shin Kato and Junko Ando on behalf
  • Trevor Wright to head sales, North American operations at Omega

    Trevor Wright has been named president of North American operations at Omega Entertainment and will oversee international sales from Los Angeles.Wright is in Cannes to talk up the alien abduction satire Little Green Men based on Christopher Buckley's bestseller and the thriller Heartless starring Jim Sturgess and Clemence Poesy.The slate includes the upcoming horror thriller
  • Troubled German VIP fund back in business

    VIP Medienfonds, the financier of such hits as Monster, Black Book and Perfume, is back in the film production business, says Thierry Potok, who took over as CEO of the German private media fund at the beginning of this month.VIP has more than $31m (20m Euros) in funding from VIP Medienfonds 3 and VIP Medienfonds 4 still available, both of which are still running
  • TrustNordisk acquires $10m Norwegian war drama

    Scandinavian powerhouse TrustNordisk has picked up $10m Norwegian war drama Max Manus directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg.The duo was also behind Bandidas, starring Penelope Cruz and Salma Hayek and produced by Luc Besson.National release is December 19th. Nordisk Film will handle distribution in the Nordic Countries.Max Manus was central member of the so-called Oslo Gang - a Norwegian resistance group during World War II.His most
  • TrustNordisk elects for The Candidate

    Bolstering its Cannes slate, Scandinavian sales outfit TrustNordisk has picked up The Candidate. The film is produced by Miso Film. Kasper Barfoed (The Lost Treasure of the Knights Templar) directs. The cast is led by Scandinavian star Nicolai Lee Kaas (Open Hearts), Lee Kaas, Kim Bodnia, David Dencik and Swedish actor Tuva Novotny. The film is about
  • Tyson

    Dir. James Toback. US. 2008. 88mins
  • UK new media complex cleared by local government

    Outline planning permission has been granted for the new Centre for Creative Excellence at Seaham, County Durham in the northeast of England. The proposed centre would have a media business park, an educational campus, two hotels and an agricultural college. Backers predict it could contribute more than $100m to the local economy.After clearing this hurdle with the Government Office for the North East, the project could get the final go-ahead this summer. Tom
  • UK's Contender says hello to Mr Nice from Independent

    Increasingly active UK distributor Contender, backed by Entertainment One, has taken UK rights for Mr Nice, sold by UK-based sales company Independent.Another sister company owned by E1, Seville Pictures, has taken Canadian rights. Independent's Luc Roeg is producing the film with Independent also handling worldwide sales.Mr Nice is based on Howard Marks' autobiography, about his
  • UK's Molinare sells majority stake to Indian giant Century

    UK post-production house Molinare has struck a multi-million pound deal to sell a majority stake to Indian media giant Century Communications, parent to its post-production division Pixion.The deal was done May 2 and has now been announced by Molinare's chief executive Steve Milne and managing director Mark Foligno.Century's 'intensive investment programme' will fund Molinare's overhauled buildings, revamped infrastructure and increased capacity.Molinare was r
  • UMedia takes on sales for The Harimaya Bridge

    Paris-based UMedia has picked up sales on The Harimaya Bridge starring Danny Glover, Ben Guillory and Misa Shimizu.Filming will begin on June 3 in Kochi, Japan, and San Francisco on the story of a man who travels to Japan to collect the belongings of his estranged son who has been killed in a road accident. Ko Mori of Eleven Arts is producing.Glover was in town on Friday to introduce a market screening of
  • United Kingdom - Burning bright

    Poetry is a drug really, it goes into your head and it sticks," says the Oscar-winning writer-director Jane Campion. If that is her drug, Campion is getting plenty of buzz from her latest project Bright Star - the story of the unlikely love affair poet John Keats had with his neighbour Fanny Brawne.Rising talents Abbie Cornish and Ben Whishaw take the lead roles in the film, which started shooting on March 31 and wraps in the UK on May 31, before shooting for one day in Rome.
  • United Kingdom - Hard truths, soft money

    Earlier this spring, when the UK government clamped down on "sole trader" schemes, it seemed like the last hurrah for a gold rush era in UK film financing. The old Section 48 and Section 42 tax reliefs were no longer in place. A period in which hundreds of millions of pounds had been raised for UK production through tax funds supporting elaborately structured sale-and-leaseback deals was definitively over."Back in the Section 48 days, there was a lot of crazy money being raised. Basica
  • United States - High roller

    Barry Mendel is speaking from the set of Peacock in Iowa, an intense drama featuring Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page, Susan Sarandon, Bill Pullman and Josh Lucas, which is financed by Mandate Pictures. But Mendel is not on the phone to talk about that intriguing project but another Ellen Page-starrer with Mandate behind it called Whip It!, which will start shooting on July 14.And what is most intriguing about Whip It! is that it marks the directorial debut of A-list Hol
  • United States - Market essentials

    Jere Hausfater launched his Los Angeles-based development, production, worldwide sales and distribution company less than 18 months ago with the backing of chairman and sole investor Jim Kohlberg, the Palo Alto businessman, and the hiring of president John Fremes.Hausfater, a veteran if ever there was one, who was former executive vice-president of Miramax International, head of worldwide sales and acquisitions at Intermedia and longtime senior officer at Buena Vista International, imm
  • Vaca Films lines up Daniel Monzon for $5m prison drama

    Spanish production outfit Vaca Films has revealed that it will shoot the $5m prison drama Cell 211 from promising new director Daniel Monzon in August.A co-production between Vaca Films, Morena Films and Telecinco Cinema in Spain and La Fabrique 2 in France, the film tells the story of a young prison guard, played by Alberto Ammann, who has to cope with a massive riot among the prisoners, led by renowned actor Luis Tosar (
  • Val Kilmer on pole position for Arctic thriller

    Val Kilmer has signed to play the lead in the Arctic sci-fi thriller The Thaw, which Voltage Pictures will introduce to buyers here.Telefilm Canada is financing the story of an expedition that uncovers a prehistoric parasite capable of destroying mankind.Martha MacIsaac from last year's hit comedy Superbad will play Kilmer's daughter who accompanies him on the mission. Mark A Lewis will direct.Mary Anne Waterhouse, Tren
  • Valencia increases financial incentive

    Valencia has announced a new incentive for producers. The incentive is open to European and Spanish producers and offers between 16% and 20% of spend in Valencia. To get the full 20%, producers' local spend must be at least $12.5m or they can form a multi picture deal to shoot in the region (ie 4 films in 12 months).One of the chief aims of the incentive is to draw major productions to the Ciudad De La Luz studios in Alicante, which is currently putting the final touch
  • Velvet Octopus takes on sales for Intrepid's Prodigy

    UK-based sales company Velvet Octopus is on board for sales of Prodigy, the next film from Chuck Russell, the US director of The Mask and The Scorpion King. Los Angeles-based Intrepid Pictures is fully financing the $25m film as its first feature not to go through Universal or Rogue. Intrepid will keep North American rights while Velvet Octopus takes internationa
  • Vicky Cristina Barcelona

    Dir: Woody Allen. Sp. 2008. 97 mins .
  • Vinterberg comes home to Celluloid Dreams

    Celluloid Dreams has acquired world rights to Thomas Vinterberg's WhenA Man Comes Home and Baltasar Kormakur's White Night Wedding.The latter is a comedy-drama set in Iceland at the time of the midnight sun. The film is produced by Agnes Johansen and Kormakur and has already been a hit at home.Further, Celluloid Dreams is launching two animated projects in Cannes. Brendan, The Secret Of Kells by Tomm Moore joins the previously announced
  • Visit closes US deals on Moshe's Holly, Barron's Choking Man

    New York-based sales outfit Visit Films has sold US rights on Guy Moshe's Cambodia-set drama Holly to City Lights Pictures and North American rights on Steve Barron's psycho-drama Choking Man to Film Movement.Holly tells of an American card shark and dealer of stolen artefacts who tries to smuggle a 12-year-old prostitute out of Cambodia.Ron Livingsto
  • Visit Films sells Pleasure to France

    Ryan Kampe and Sylvain Tron's Visit Films has sold Josh Safdie's Directors' Fortnight closing film The Pleasure Of Being Robbed to Sophie Dulac Distribution in France.The deal closed prior to the market screening and was negotiated by Kampe and Tron with Josh Braun of Submarine Entertainment and Sophie Dulac's Michel Zana.IFC Films announced earlier in the week that it had picked up domestic rights.
  • Voltage picks up Brittany Murphy thriller Across The Hall

    Los Angeles sales company Voltage Pictures has picked up the upcoming Brittany Murphy thriller Across The Hall and supernatural action adventure Hybrid.Alex Merkin is directing Across The Hall from Jesse Mittelstadt's script about a love triangle involving two best friends that threatens to turn to murder. Mike Vogel from Cloverf
  • Voyage To The Pyranees (Le Voyage aux Pyrenees)

    Dir/scr. Arnaud & Jean-Marie Larrieu.France. 2008. 102 mins.A marital farce about misunderstandings, the great blue yonder and (apparently supernatural) gender-swapping, Journey To The Pyrenees is brisk, witty and often daft. This love letter to the film-makers’ native region is a gift for its two leads, Sabine Azema and Jean-Pierre Darroussin, and its humour will have some viewers in raptures, although more may head for the hills. At the very least, the film offe
  • Waltz With Bashir

    Dir: Ari Folman.Israel-Germany-France.2008. 87mins.
  • Warner Home Video buys Seville's doc Globe Metal

    Warner Home Video has acquired US, UK and Mexican rights from Seville International to Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn's documentary Globe Metal.The film follows metal fan and anthropologist Dunn as he trawls through the underbelly of the extreme music scene in Asia, South America and the Middle East. The film will open in Canada on June 20.Warner Home Video and Seville previously collaborated on the filmmakers' earlier film Metal: A He
  • Warner's Get Smart to receive charity screening at CineVegas

    The Tenth Annual CineVegas Film Festival has added a special charity screening of Warner Bros' action comedy Get Smart starring Steve Carrell and Anne Hathaway on June 15.Proceeds will go to The Rock Foundation and its school supply programme Project Knapsack founded by the film's Dwayne Johnson.Peter Segal directed the film, based on the 1960s television series, about an analyst who teams up with a veteran agent to crack an evil o
  • Weinstein Company buys North America on UK horror film Eden Lake

    The Weinstein Company has picked up North American rights from Pathe to the thriller Eden Lake from first-time director James Watkins.Eden Lake stars Kelly Reilly, Michael Fassbender, Thomas Turgoose and Bronson Webb in the story of a young couple on a romantic weekend break who get terrorised by a group of feral children.'One of the most exciting aspects about the Cannes Film Festival is th
  • Weinstein to produce Fishburne film of The Alchemist

    Laurence Fishburne will direct, star and produce in a $60m-plus adaptation of Paulo Coelho's international bestseller The Alchemist for The Weinstein Company (TWC).TWC International chief Glen Basner will commence pre-sales here on the acclaimed story of an Andalusian shepherd's search for truth that takes him across vast stretches of Africa.Harvey Weinstein is in talks with an Oscar winning writer to adapt the screenplay and said
  • Wenders to serve up Tokyo-set thriller

    Films Distribution has acquired the next film from Wim Wenders. Based on the book In The Miso Soup by Ryu Murakami, the film, entitled, Miso Soup , was developed by producer Philippe Carcassonne who brought the project to Wenders. Wenders will shoot the $8m film beginning in February. Willem Dafoe has accepted the lead role in principle with negotiations being finalized. A psychological thriller about a serial killer in the red-light district of Tokyo, the film
  • White Male Heart beats with THINKFilm International

    THINKFilm International is taking on international sales for White Male Heart, which will star Cillian Murphy and Eddie Redmayne.Both actors are riding high at the moment, with Redmayne's projects including The Other Boleyn Girl and Savage Grace and Murphy's The Dark Knight, Hippie Hippie Shake and
  • Wide Pictures takes Spanish rights for Two Lovers

    New Spanish indie outfit Wide Pictures has taken rights for Spain to James Gray's competition title Two Lovers, but will pass responsibility for distributing the film in Spain to Filmax. The film is being sold by Wild Bunch.Filmax announced yesterday that it has signed a deal with Wide Pictures to distribute its titles in Spain over the next two years, including the closing film at Cannes, Barry Levinson's What Just Happened, starring Robert D
  • Wild Bunch slate includes new work from Loach, Noe, Lou Ye, Mihaileanu, Makhmalbaf, Allen and Miyazaki.

    Wild Bunch has unveiled a wide ranging slate which includes work from Ken Loach, Gaspar Noe, Lou Ye, Radu Mihaileanu, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Woody Allen and Hayao Miyazaki.The company has already announced that it is handling four competition titles, four out of competition and two in Un Certain Regard.New films on the sales slate include an intriguing project with Ken Loach connected with football legend Eric Cantona that has been cloacked in secrecy.
  • Winstone, Curry join cast of Myriad Pictures' The Cup

    Ray Winstone and Stephen Curry have joined the cast of Silver Lion Films' true-life underdog story The Cup, which Myriad Pictures is pre-selling here.Winstone, who stars alongside Harrison Ford in Sunday's out of competition world premiere screening of Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull, will play renowned Irish horse trainer Dermot Weld.Weld inspires the young jockey Damien
  • Wonderful Town kicks off Bangkok Director's Screen project

    The local film community in Bangkok is launching a Director's Screen project as part of an initiative to promote independent cinema. Aditya Assarat's multiple award-winning Wonderful Town will kick-start the series when it opens on May 15, and will be followed by Pimpaka Towira's documentary Truth Be Told on May 29. Both releases will be played exclusively at SF Cinema City's flagship in CentralWorld en
  • Yari Film Group to finance and co-produce Kerosene Cowboys

    The Yari Film Group will finance and co-produce the action thriller Kerosene Cowboys to be produced by Dave Riggs and Nickolai Suslov through their Svarog-Afterburner Films banner and Bob Yari.David Glasser of Yari's sales arm Syndicate Films is talking to buyers here on the Top Gun-style story about hard-living Naval pilots at an elite attack squadron.Adam Prince adapted the story from Rand
  • Zhang Ziyi heads cast for Susanne Bier's Lost For Words

    Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi is set to star in romantic comedy Lost For Words, which Susanne Bier is directing for the UK's Working Title Films. Hugh Grant is also in talks to join the film. The film is scheduled to start shooting in September in London and possibly China. It shouldn't be a stretch for either Grant or Zhang as the story follows a movie star who falls in love with a Chinese actress. Zhang, who stars opposite Dennis Quaid in Jonas Akerlund's upcoming