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18 February 2007

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  • 2 Days In Paris

    Dir: Julie Delpy. France/Germany 2006. 96 mins.Yes, it's another film in which Julie Delpy walks around Paris with an American guy talking about relationships. But despite the surface similarities, the French actress-singer-scriptwriter's first commercial film as director (she herself has described her first feature, the no-budget Looking For Jimmy,
  • 300

    Dir: Zack Snyder. US. 2007. 115mins.
  • Aachi & Ssipak sold to Studio Canal for France

    Studio2.0 has sold comic animation Aachi & Ssipak to StudioCanal for France.Studio2.0's head of sales Choi Eun-young signed the deal with StudioCanal's Laurent Campagne. The animation is set in a futuristic world which is powered by human faeces and the government regulates its citizens by keeping them addicted to popsicles.The film was previously pre-sold to Italy's AB Film, Russia's Alpha Motion, and Israel's Dream En
  • AAM strikes VOD deal with Emap magazines including Empire

    Arts Alliance Media's video on demand network Vizumi has struck a deal with Emap for branded consumer websites.AAM will launch VOD websites tomorrow with three of Emap Performance's consumer brands, film magazine Empire, Motorcycle News and Today's Golfer. This marks AAM's first VOD distribution partnership after sister company LoveFilm and AOL UK.
  • Analysis - Museum revels in its encore call

    Fox's Night At The Museum refuses to be beaten as it climbs back up to the top spot, generating over $14m in its eighth week despite being dropped from four territories. Oscar contender Blood Diamond did not trail far behind, raking in $13.1m in its sixth week as it opens in an additional 11 territories. New entry Hannibal Rising fared well internationally, despite its absence of notable stars - the fourth instalment grossed $11m from 12 territories. And romantic comedy
  • Angel

    Dir: François Ozon. Fr-UK-Bel. 2007. 137mins They don't make 'em like this any more - but just try telling that to François Ozon, whose Angel is a determinedly old-fashioned English costume melodrama of the sort that once would have been a cast-iron vehicle for the likes of Bette Davis. Based on Elizabeth Taylor's 1957 novel, Angel is a rags-to-riches-to-sorrows story of a spirited young girl who strikes it lucky as a romantic author, but who finds
  • Artificial Eye strikes UK deal for Lady Chatterley

    Artificial Eye has acquired the UK rights to Lady Chatterley, which is playing in Berlinale Panorama.Films Distribution is handling international sales.Pascale Ferran directed the France-Belgium co-production, an adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's story John Thomas and Lady Jane. Ferran recently won best director at the Lumiere Awards, with actress Marina Hands winning best actress. T
  • Banderas and Perez to back new Spanish talent

    Antonio Banderas' Malaga-based Green Moon Productions and Antonio Perez's Seville-based Maestranza Films have signed a new film-per-year co-production agreement. Signed in Berlin, where Banderas was on hand to present new features as both director (Panorama title Summer Rain) and actor (competition contender Bordertown), the agreement will focus on backing new directors and other emerging behind- and on-camera talent from the southern Spanish region of Andalusia.
  • Banderas' Summer Rain wins Europa Cinemas prize in Berlin

    Antonio Banderas' Summer Rain (El Camino de los Ingleses) won the Europa Cinemas Label prize for Best European film in Berlinale Panorama. The award comes with theatrical exposure and additional promotion from the Europa Cinemas network of 690 cinemas. The jury for the Europa Cinemas prize was comprised of four European exhibitors: Slovenia's Stas Ravter, Italy's Georgette Ranucci, the Slovak Republic's Michal Drobny and Germany's Christian Schmalz. The jury said o
  • Bavaria seals deals on Competition films and market titles

    Bavaria Film International has closed a slew of deals on Jiri Menzel's I Served The King Of England ahead of its international premiere in the Berlinale competition this afternoon. The adaptation of Bohumil Hrabal's novel starring Ivan Barnev, Oldrich Kaiser, and Julia Jentsch was sold to Distribution Company (Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay), Constellation Pictures (Mexico), Art Films (Brazil), Cine Colombia (Colombia), Blanco & Travieso (Venezuela), Ama Films (Greece and
  • Beaufort

    Dir: Joseph Cedar. Is. 2007. 120mins Based on an award-winning, best selling documentary book by journalist Ron Leshem about the last stand of an Israeli unit in Southern Lebanon before their retreat in 2000, Joseph Cedar's painful and highly relevant film adaptation, while not addressing directly last summer's renewed outbreak of hostilities on the same front and its disastrous outcome, inevitably invites the refer
  • Berlin - the critical verdict

    IN COMPETITIONReviewed films appear in blue - click to go to review.Screen Jury results appear in red5=excellent, 4=Good 3=Average
  • 'Berlinale of the actors' breaks attendance records

    Now in his sixth year as festival director, Dieter Kosslick has pronounced the 2007 'a Berlinale of the actors: we had never had so many actors' films, big stars and cinema legends in the Berlinale's history as was the case this year'. Speaking to, Kosslick said that 'technically speaking, it was the biggest Berlinale of all time, everything has gotten bigger, including the size of the festival audience.'Ahead of the a
  • Berlinale to show Lost In Beijing in uncensored version

    China's Li Yu's Lost In Beijing will have its world premiere tonight (Friday) in the Berlinale's official competition at the Berlinale Palast in the uncensored version after all. Speaking to exclusively, festival director Dieter Kosslick announced: 'We are showing the film tonight in the version which the producer is sending us himself.' The Berlinale's head of press Frauke Greiner added that film's producer 'had sent us a fax on Friday morning to i
  • Bordertown

    Dir/scr: Gregory Nava. US. 2007. 112mins.In Bordertown, directed by Gregory Nava, Jennifer Lopez plays a Chicago reporter who speaks no Spanish, but goes undercover as a Mexican worker in a Juarez sweatshop to investigate the brutal murders of hundreds of women. If you can believe this, you can believe much that is improbable in this violent earnest potboiler. The US-Mexican border and illegal immigration are hot media issues right now, so an awkward
  • Bridge To Terabithia

    Dir: Gabor Csupo. US. 2007. 95mins. Walden Media's latest take on a children's literature classic, Bridge To Terabithia is an understated, touching and largely faithful version of Katherine Paterson's pre-teen novel. With animation artist Gabor Csupo making his live-action directing debut, the fantasy-adventure nicely captures the spirit of Paterson's boy-girl story about friendship, courage, imagination and loss. Good theatrical runs followed by strong video perfo
  • Bruges, Doomsday, Road fly out of Focus at EFM

    Focus Features International (FFI) has finalised key territory sales at EFM led by new titles In Bruges, Doomsday, and Reservation Road.SND bought rights for all three in France, while Concorde took German rights for Doomsday, and Mikado took Italian and Sun acquired all Latin American rights for In Bruges. Scanbox acquired Scandinavian rights to all three.Movie Eye picked up Japanese rights
  • Buyers go gaga for Estonian Lotte From Gadgetville

    Buyers are going gaga for Estonian animated feature Lotte From Gadgetville. Midway through the EFM, the film - aimed at pre-school kids in the 3-to-8 age range - Lotte has now sold to 15 territories for theatrical. Lotte, on Sola Media/Atrix Film's EFM slate, has gone to Finland (Filmkempaniet), Poland (Solopan), India (Ashok Honda) and is in final negotiations with Brazil.Telepool has taken
  • Buyers line up to scale Red Cliff with Summit

    Summit Entertainment is close to completing its patchwork of deals for John Woo's upcoming Chinese military epic The Battle Of Red Cliff - which, at a reported $75m, is the most expensive Asian film in history.The film, which will start shooting in March with a cast led by Chow Yun-Fat and TonyLeung Chiu-wai, was sold toNordisk in Scandinavia, Jaguar in the Middle East, PT Amero in Indonesia, Acme in the Baltic States, Forum in Hungary, and Bon
  • Cavalier lined up for Visions Du Reel

    Visions Du Reel, the Swiss documentary festival running this year in Nyon from 20-26 April, has confirmed its first competition title - the latest feature from Alain Cavalier. This is a documentary with a difference - it's about toilets. It comes billed as a 'meditation in pictures and words on very common spaces rarely seen in films.' Details of this year's masterclasses in Nyon have also been confirmed. Dutch-Indonesian director Leonard Retel Helmrich (whose credits include S
  • Chinese film takes Golden Bear

    Chinese director Wang Quan'an had an ideal start for the Chinese New Year by winning this year's Golden Bear for his third feature Tuya's Marriage (Tu ya de hun shi) on the eve of the Year of the Pig.The tale of a practical woman searching for a reliable man in a remote part of China was described by Screen's David D'Arcy as 'funny, tender and vividly shot, this delightful comedy is more satisfying as bot
  • Cineclick Asia finds sales for Tuya's Marriage

    Cineclick Asia has sold Berlinale competition title Tuya's Marriage toGolem for Spain, Frenetic Film for Switzerland, and Discovery Film forthe former Yugoslav territories. Golem has also bought Kim Ki-duk's yet-to-be-released Breath, starring Chang Chen (Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon).Cineclick has made additional sales of less recent titles, sci-fim
  • Cinema China premieres new Zhang Yimou in the UK

    Cinema China, a celebration of the past and present of Chinese film-making, will launch on March 9 in Edinburgh and unfold across 20 cities until March 18. The line-up brings together over 20 significant films, from the three Chinas of the People's Republic, Hong Kong and Taiwan, going back to the Shanghai movies of the 30s to a current highlight, the premiere of Riding Alone For Thousands Of Miles, directed by Zhang Yimou. Zhang Yimou and Xie Fei will be the focus of the p
  • Colin Salmon takes lead in Games Men Play

    Colin Salmon has signed on to star John Akomfrah's UK drama Games Men Play.Lincia Daniel will produce the film, about the story of a basketball coach who discovers he has a son and has to grapple with a gangster to save his life.Screen West Midlands is backing and the film will shoot in August 2007.Salmon is currently starring in D-Notice as American author Hakim Jamal.
  • Cyborg sold to Tokyo Theaters in Japan by CJ Entertainment

    CJ Entertainment has sold Berlinale competition title I'm a Cyborg but That's Okay to Tokyo Theaters for Japan, and Generation title Like a Virgin to Amuse for Japan. 'Japan's become difficult - not like 2004 or 2005 - but we're still doing steady business,' says Tom Oh, senior vice president, head of international sales at CJ. The company also pre-sold Soo
  • Cyborg to open Hong Kong International Film Festival

    Park Chan-wook's I'm A Cyborg, But That's OK, which is screening in competition at Berlin this year, has been selected as the opening film of the 31st Hong Kong International Film Festival. Director Park and the film's stars, Rain (Jung Ji-hoon) and Lim Soo-jung, will attend the official opening gala on March 19 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. The festival runs March 20 - April 11, 2007. The film has also been nominated for two awards at the inaugural Asi
  • Daydream believers

    Blood Diamond and The Pursuit Of Happyness significantly expanded into the international marketplace earlier this month. About six months ago, the marketing and distribution staffs of the films' respective studios sat down and weighed different release scenarios. Based on available materials and the timing of the domestic debuts, they had to give significant attention to an awards campaign.The two films could always fall back on the strength of a bona fide movie star ab
  • Dayton & Faris, Lin, Maggenti make 'made for mobile' shorts

    Sundance Institute and GSM Association (GSMA) have unveiled the five original 'made for mobile' short films commissioned as part of the Sundance Film Festival Global Short Film Project.In one of the first collaborations of its kind, six new and established independent film-makers created short films designed to be viewed on a mobile platform.The five films are being shown exclusively at the GSMA's Congress in Barcelona this week with wide distribution to mobile audiences
  • Delpy's latest sparks sales boom for Rezo

    The Works UK Distribution has taken UK rights on Julie Delpy's Two Days In Paris, one of the buzz titles in this year's Berlinale. The film, which screened as a Panorama special, stars Delpy, Adam Goldberg and Daniel Bruhl. It's about a New York-based couple on holiday in Europe, trying to put the romance back in their relationship. Two Days is handled by Paris-based Rezo International. Two Days In Paris wasn't the only title on Rezo's slate attracting buyer
  • Desert Dream (Hyazgar)

    Dir. Zhang Lu. Kor-Fr. 2007. 123mins. The joint efforts of a Chinese director, a Franco-Korean production team and Mongolian locations results in Desert Dream, a kindly, well intentioned but over-extended allegory which spreads itself thinly over slightly more than two hours. Zhang Lu's follow-up to his festival hit Grain In The Ear deals once again with displaced nationals but in a different context. There are also several ecological and poli
  • Digital focus for Beverly Hills conference

    Industry newsletter Digital Media Wire will launch the Future Of Film Conference on March 21 at the Writers' Guild of America's Theater in Beverly Hills. The one-day forum will bring together leaders in content creation, distribution and digital technologies to debate how critical changes in film are transforming the business. Among the topics on the agenda will be: release windows, optical disc life expectancy; content piracy; multi-platform distribution; the democrati
  • Digital rights issue causes buyer/seller strife in Berlin

    The European Film Market is struggling to cope with the arrival of an important new factor in the film sales world - digital rights.Buyers are desperately trying to acquire rights for downloads, video-on-demand and online distribution but many content owners are simply refusing to sell.Digital media is now a mainstream issue with most studios offering download-to-own services and VOD and online distribution ramping up even as broadcast money and DVD revenues begin to rece
  • Don't Touch The Axe (Ne Touchez Pas La Hache)

    Dir: Jacques Rivette. Fr-It. 2007. 137mins Elegance, austerity, high seriousness, barbed wit: this heady combination might not be to everyone's taste, but anyone susceptible to literary costume drama at its most intellectually substantial will be bowled over by Don't Touch The Axe, Jacques Rivette's surprisingly faithful adaptation of Balzac's novel La Duchesse De Langeais. Moving between boudoir comedy of manners and dark Gothic romance, this unash
  • EastWest strikes deals for three comedies

    UK- and Austria-based sales company EastWest Filmdistribution has announced several sales on its trio of English-language comedies. HBO Central Europe took rights to UK comedy 12 In A Box by John McKenzie. The black comedy stars Brian Mitchell, Anjella Mackintosh, Kenneth Collard, Katy Wix, Paul Williamson and Clare Welch.Alexander Hahn's Latvia-set Midsummer Madness sold to Constantin to Au
  • Edinburgh plans screenwriting focus for 61st festival

    The Edinburgh International Film Festival will for the first time have a theme for its retrospectives and key events. In its 61st year (August 15-26), the festival will have a screenwriting focus: Cinema and the Written Word. The theme was selected by Hannah McGill, who recently took over as Artistic Director of the EIFF. Screenwriting-related offerings will include panels, masterclasses, and discussions with film-makers and writers. 'The screenwriting theme extends our e
  • Editorial - The future is now

    An undercurrent at this year's Berlin International Film Festival was an uneasy feeling of a business in flux. It did not stop strong sales being made nor did it undermine the expansion of the European Film Market (EFM). Indeed, Wild Bunch, which had shunned the refurbished Martin Gropius Bau for its own makeshift HQ, boasted record sales.It is more that there is a sense that the rules of the game are being rewritten but we are not yet playing by them. There is widespread acceptance, f
  • Englund to direct The Vij in Hungary for ReDark

    Freddy Kreuger is back - but this time he is behind the camera. At the EFM this week, ReDark's Loris Curici has announced two new projects including one that will be directed by Robert Englund, the star of the legendary Nightmare On Elm Street films.Production is due to begin in Hungary next month on The Vij, an adaptation of a Nikolai Gogol story that will be helmed by Englund. This will be Englund's f
  • Eros enters French VOD and Egyptian theatrical markets

    Eros International, the UK-based sales company that concentrates on Bollywood projects, will enter the French VOD market later this month. Eros is the only Bollywood provider for CanalPlus' CanalPlay, which will launch with 12 Eros offerings on February 22.Eros is also making headway into Egypt, which had in recent years shunned Bollywood releases in an effort to promote local films. Eros has sold The Royal Guard (Eklavya) to Good News Group, w
  • Eros signs three-year deal with Bollywood producer Venus

    Eros International has signed a three-year output deal with Bollywood production company Venus. All Venus films for the next three year will be co-produced with Eros.Eros will keep copyrights for distribution across all formats. Two films are already in development with directors Abbas Mastan (Humraaz) and Priyadarshan (Garam Masala).Venus
  • Europe and the slate-finance boom

    The idea that there might be another big wave of funding around the corner remains one of the big hopes for the European film industry. Those dreams have until recently revolved around the idea of the discovery of a new tax loophole, which might allow a return to the sale-and-leaseback boom that has come to a halt over the last two years. It looks like an increasingly forlorn hope.So there was an unmissable irony in the mixed reaction to a plan floated in Berlin by German bankers Dresd
  • European stars: France

    In France, movie-goers will eagerly line up for the latest from revered auteurs or even more mainstream directors - think Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Luc Besson or Francis Veber. But the old-guard of French actors like Gerard Depardieu and Catherine Deneuve are no longer guarantees of box office.Many of the personalities driving today's box-office are former TV actors who have a big national following: since French broadcast regulations prohibit film ads on TV, the public is far more familiar
  • European stars: Germany

    Berlinale director Dieter Kosslick highlights the increasing global appeal of Germany's talent base when he points out that more than 10 German actors and actresses had roles in international productions at this year's festival. These range from Julia Jentsch in Jiri Menzel's I Served The King Of England through Moritz Bleibtreu's appearances in Paul Schrader's The Walker and the Taviani brothers' The Lark Farm to Peter Ketnath's lead role in Brazilian film-maker Paulo Ca
  • European stars: Italy

    A host of Italian actors have been making headway in large international productions recently. Giovanna Mezzogiorno (The Last Kiss, Facing Windows) stars alongside Javier Bardem in the upcoming adaptation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Love In The Time Of Cholera; Pierfrancesco Favino (Crime Novel) played Christopher Columbus in Night At The Museum; while Claudio Santamaria (The Last Kiss, Crime Novel) and Caterina Murino both appeared in Casin
  • European stars: Spain

    The lack of a star system in Spain has long been lamented by the local industry, but the tide appears to be changing. It is no longer just the one-off Hollywood success of actors like Antonio Banderas, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem, or other actors with cachet in specific territories, like Maribel Verdu in Mexico (Y Tu Mama Tambien, Pan's Labyrinth) or Sergi Lopez in France (Harry, He's Here To Help). Now a second line of talents is also making headway abroad: names lik
  • Faroutfilms teams with Talabani on Iraqi love story

    Rome-based production outfit Faroutfilms is partnering with Iraqi politician and producer Hero Talabani, the wife of Iraq's President Jala Talabani, on Italian/Iraqi co-production, Kirkuk. The film is a love story set in Iraq during the late 1980s during the 1986-87 Anfal campaign - when chemical attacks were ordered by Saddam to cleanse northern Iraq of Kurds Talabani's company Suli Films has already raised 50% of the budget for the film. Far
  • Film London, LFF partner on UK's new Production Finance Market

    Here in Berlin, Film London announced plans for the UK capital's first Production Finance Market, which will run October 22-23 in association with The Times BFI London Film Festival (Oct 17-Nov 1).The two-day event in central London will bring together more than 100 film producers, and financiers from the UK, Europe and other international territories. 'There has been an emphasis on film finance out of the UK and this is a fantastic opportunity,' said Film London CEO Adri
  • Fortissimo enjoys documentary sales

    Fortissimo Films has seen a healthy first market for its documentary Annie Leibovitz: Life Through a Lens. The film sold to Haut et Court for France and Lucky Red for Italy, with deals to Germany, Japan, Australia and Benelux pending. 'Berlin is always a good market for us. We've done well with new films and have cleaned up others from Venice, Toronto, and AFM,' says Wouter Barendrecht, co-chief of Fortissimo. Panorama title
  • Fortissimo sells Lost Children to Zeitgeist, Red Envelope for US

    Fortissimo Films has sold US rights for award-winning documentary Buddha's Lost Children to Zeitgeist Films for theatrical and Red Envelope Entertainment for DVD. Catherine Le Clef, newly appointed senior vice president, TV and ancillary, brokered the deal with both companies. Directed by Mark Verkerk, Buddha's Lost Children has won multiple awards including the Grand Jury Award for International Docume
  • French Film Festival UK releases programme line-up

    This year's French Film Festival UK will span London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee from April 20 - May 4 with a varied and unique programme of films. The Discovery section of the line-up consists of new French films that are seeking a UK distributor. There will be screenings of Backstage, directed by Emmanuelle Bercoti, Change Of Address, directed by Emmanuel Carrere, OSS117: Nest Of Spies, from Michel Hazanavicius, and Philippe Faucon's
  • Fu to head Fox Home Entertainment China

    Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment (TCFHE) has appointed Alvin Fu as managing director of its China operations, effective immediately. Fu will be based in Guangzhou, in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, alongside Zoke Culture Group which is TCFHE's exclusive distribution partner in mainland China. 'The appointment of Alvin marks the next step in our ongoing commitment to China 's dynamic home entertainment market and furthering Twentieth Century Fox's global busine
  • Future and Capri team for Bille August's Burden Of Desire

    Bille August, whose Goodbye Bafana made its world premiere in competition here, is in pre-production for his next film Burden Of Desire, which will shoot in January 2008 based on Robert MacNeil's novel of the same name.The film will be a production of Capri Films in Toronto and London-based Future Films. Burden Of Desire is set in 1917 Halifax, in a small town wh
  • Future Shorts moves into distribution

    UK-based short film outfit Future Shorts is launching a distribution division, and partnering with LoveFilm for digital downloads. The new DVD division will launch its first titles in May 2007, available at Future Shorts events, the company's website and traditional retail stores. DVDs will cover multiple genres, including fiction, documentary, animation, music videos and experimental films. The Future Shorts library includes several winners the recent Clermont-Ferrand competition.
  • Gail Lyon appointed president of production at Initial

    Gail Lyon has been hired as president of production at Graham King's Initial Entertainment Group, effective immediately.Lyon, who most recently produced Disney/Spyglass' comedy Stick It starring Jeff Bridges, will report directly to King while working closely with vice president of development Grey Rembert and production executive Denis O'Sullivan.'Gail elegantly combines the skills of hands
  • German-Indian film agreement signed in Berlin

    Germany's Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, India's Minister for Information, Broadcasting and Parliamentary Affairs Shri Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi, and Germany's Minister of State for Culture and the Media Bernd Nuemann signed a German-Indian film agreement in Berlin on Friday afternoon providing a legal framework for cooperation between producers from Germany and India. Under the agreement, films co-produced by German and Indian filmmakers will receive the same treatment as
  • Getting Home (Luo Ye Gui Gen)

    Dir. Khang Yang. China, 2007. 97 min.A road movie is by definition a mixed bag of goods. It can be funny one minute and trite the next, alternately brilliant and awkward, changing nature and tone as it goes along. Zhang Yang's new film may not be an exception to this rule, but there is so much humanity and feeling all through it, that even the unusual premise it uses and a couple of sentimental pitfalls he stumbl
  • Ghost Rider

    Dir/scr: Mark Steven Johnson. US. 2007. 108mins. Another lesser-known Marvel superhero gets his big-screen break in Ghost Rider, a silly but serviceable comic book adaptation with Nicolas Cage starring for Daredevil writer-director Mark Steven Johnson. The Columbia/Crystal Sky project could work well as a stopgap for those hardcore comic fans yearning for this May's big Marvel offering, Spider-Man 3. It may not have much traction with mainstream audiences,
  • Ghost Rider, Fuzz lead the pack at international weekend

    Sony's comic book adaptation Ghost Rider rode straight to the head of the international pack this weekend with an estimated gross of $15.5m from 24 territories. But Universal's British comedy Hot Fuzz made the biggest single-territory mark, opening with an impressive $11.6m in the UK. Ghost Rider, produced by Columbia Pictures, Crystal Sky Pictures and Marvel Studio
  • Goodbye Bafana

    Dir: Bille August. France/Germany/Belgium/Italy/South Africa 2007. 117 mins Denmark's double Palme d'Or laureate Bille August takes on one of modern historical cinema's holy grails, after a fashion: in its indirect way, GoodbyeBafana
  • Goya's Ghosts finds domestic home with Samuel Goldwyn Films

    Samuel Goldwyn Films has acquired North American rights for Milos Forman's Goya's Ghosts starring Javier Bardem, Natalie Portman and Stellan Skarsgard.The story is told through the eyes of the celebrated Spanish painter, played by Skarsgard, and focuses on events that unfold when a powerful clergyman falls for Goya's muse.Saul Zaentz produced the film and Samuel Goldwyn Films plans a summer release. Forman co-wrote the screenplay w
  • Grandville teams with Bender and Bartkowiak for 818

    Producers Dan Shepherd and Justin Williams of UK-based Grandville Pictures are teaming with Lawrence Bender (An Inconvenient Truth, Kill Bill) and his producing partner Karen Barber for Los Angeles-set action comedy 818 (working title). Andrzej Bartkowiak, the Polish-born cinematographer on Speed and The Devil's Advocate who has directed Doom and Cradle 2 The Grave, will direct. The project's budget will be about $20m-$25m depending on casting.
  • Grandville teams with Lawrence Bender for 818

    Producers Dan Shepherd and Justin Williams of UK-based Grandville Pictures are teaming with Lawrence Bender (An Inconvenient Truth, Kill Bill) and his producing partner Karen Barber for Los Angeles-set action comedy 818 (working title).Andrzej Bartkowiak, the Polish-born cinematographer on Speed and The Devil's Advocate wh
  • GreeneStreet first to The Nines

    GreeneStreet Films International (GSFI) has picked up internationalrights to John August's trippy directorial debut The Nines fresh fromits world premiere at Sundance.GSFI president Ariel Veneziano sealed the deal early on Saturdaymorning and by last night was already poised to close deals in twomajor territories.August's first turn in the director's chair after writing Go
  • GreeneStreet scores UK deal on The Nines, Germany deal on Bill

    Greenestreet Films International (GSFI) continued a busy EFM here as it sold Sundance pick-up The Nines to Optimum for the UK. Sales chief Ariel Veneziano did the deal with Optimum's Will Clarke on the three-part story starring Ryan Reynolds, Hope David and Melissa McCarthy.GSFI also closed deals on the Aaron Eckhart comedy Bill with Telepool in Germany, Lizard in Russia, Sandrew Metronome in Scandinavia, Village Roadshow in Greece, and Blue Sky Media in Eastern
  • Hallam Foe

    Dir: David Mackenzie. UK. 2007. 96mins. In Hallam Foe, Jamie Bell continues to slough off the shadow of Billy Elliot, while director David Mackenzie (Young Adam) gets back on confident form after his unsteady psychodrama Asylum. But while it has panache to spare, this very Scottish coming-of-age story suffers from its insistence that audiences meet it on its own bizarre and never entirely plausible grounds. An uneasy mix of dark
  • Han named new festival director at PiFan in Korea

    The Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan), Korea's second-largest, has announced former head programmer Han Sang-joon as the new festival director.Han was also previously a programmer at the Pusan International Film Festival, professor of film at Chung-Ang University, and a journalist at the JoongAng Ilbo newspaper.His predecessor PiFan director Lee Jang-Ho has been elected to Vice Chairman of the festival, while award-winning actress Kang Soo-yeon (
  • Hart splits with Sharp and launches Evamere

    After more than ten years in business together, the founding partners of New York based Hart Sharp Entertainment - John Hart and Jeffrey Sharp - have decided to pursue different opportunities. For his part, Hart has now launched a new venture called Evamere Entertainment that will focus on feature film and Broadway theatrical productions. As part of his new operation, Hart will also oversee the management of Hart Sharp's library of films andthe company's existing private equity fun
  • HBO launches VOD offering in UK through BT, Tiscali and Virgin

    Home Box Office has announced plans for an HBO-branded subscription video on demand service in the UK, the company's first major move into the territory.The HBO SVOD service will be distributed by BT Vision, Tiscali TV and Virgin Media, with launch dates to be determined by each partner. Other partners may be added in coming months. The service will offer at least 50 hours of HBO original programming including series, miniseries, documentaries and comedy specials. Programmes will be
  • High Point Films closes three deals on The Front Line

    UK-based sales company High Point Films has sold David Gleeson's thriller The Front Line to Film Entertainment Group for Benelux, Alberto Bitelli International Films for Brazil (planning a summer release), and Falcon Films for The Middle East. High Point's Elisar Cabrera is in final negotiations for deals covering France and Germany on the Dublin-set thriller. Eriq Ebouaney, James Frain and Hakeem Kae-Kazim star in the story about a Congolese asyl
  • Hopper set to star in King horror

    Dennis Hopper is in final talks to join Film Bridge International's Stephen King adaptation Dolan's Cadillac. Hopper will play a crime boss who kills a woman to prevent her from testifying against him in a murder trial and is subsequently pursued by the woman's vengeful young husband. Production is set to begin in April, with Ellen Wander's Los Angeles-based Film Bridge financing and handling worldwide sales. More casting is expected to be announced shortly. Kevin Ba
  • Hot Fuzz

    Dir: Edgar Wright. UK/USAt its best, Hot Fuzz, Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg's follow-up to Shaun Of The Dead, is wildly funny and very inventive. The film-makers take the conventions of the British cop drama and subvert them entirely. They relish com
  • Hot Fuzz rocks UK box office with preview figures

    Universal's cop comedy Hot Fuzz has generated over $2.9m (£1.5m) in its first two days in the UK box office, hinting at the film's potential weekend success. British lovers preferred the spoof to romantic rival Music And Lyrics as it generated $1.8m (£946,448) on Valentine's Day - its opening day - 27% more than the Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant romantic comedy, which took $1.4m (£738,885) on the day. The film just missed Thursday's (February 15) top spot to family f
  • Hula Girls takes top prize at Japanese Oscars

    Lee Sang-il's Hula Girls was named best picture of 2006 at the 30th Japan Academy Awards, which took place on Friday night (Feb 16).The film picked up a total of four major prizes from 13 nominations, including best director for Lee Sang-il, best supporting actress for Yu Aoi and best screenplay for Lee and Daisuke Habara. The film also won the Audience Award. Produced by Cine Qua Non, Hula Girls tells the true story of a group of women who learned hula to attract to
  • Hyde Park unveil EFM deals on Spottiswoode, Ivory films

    Hyde Park International has closed a slew of deals here on its EFM slate, headed by Roger Spottiswoode's drama The Children Of Huang Shi starring Chow Yun-Fat.Rights have gone to: Metropolitan (France); MGM (CIS); Paris Films (Brazil); Gussi (all remaining Latin American rights); Village Roadshow (Greece); RCV (Benelux); Lusomundo (Portugal); Eastern Europe (Modus Vivendi); Aqua Pinema (Turkey); and Phars (Middle East).Sales chief L
  • I Have Never Forgotten You ' The Life And Legacy Of Simon Wiesenthal

    Dir: Richard Trank. US. 2007. 103mins.A worthy memorial to Simon Wiesenthal, a man who had become a legend in his own lifetime, the documentary I Have Never Forgotten You... displays all the admiration, affection and love be expected from a film produced by the centre bearing his name. Some revered him as the conscie
  • I Served The King Of England (Obsluhoval Jsem Anglickeho Krale)

    Dir: Jiri Menzel. Czech Rep-Slovak. 2007. 119mins. A likeable comic underdog saga that follows the life and loves of a Chaplinesque waiter in pre- and post-war Czechoslovakia, I Served the King of England represents veteran Czech director Jiri Menzel's most marketable feature for some time. The film's little-big-man protagonist and its playful take on seismic upheavals like Hitler's annexation of the Sudetenland or the Communist takeover in Czechoslovakia will promp
  • iHQ sells Daisy to Germany

    iHQ has sold Jeon Ji-hyun-starrer Daisy to Splendid Film for Germany. Featuring Jeon with other pan-Asian stars Jung Woo-sung and Lee Sung-jae in a love triangle, the film is a police thriller directed by Andrew Lau in a solo flight - apart from Infernal Affairs co-director Alan Mak.Jenny Kim, iHQ sales team manager, did the deal with Splendid's head of distribution Andrea Klein.Daisy is also to see a US remake by Gold Circle, which is also involved with Unive
  • I'm A Cyborg to open 31st Hong Kong Film Festival

    Jacob Wong, curator of the Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF) has announced Park Chan-wook's Berlinale competition title I'm a Cyborg, but That's Okay is to open the 31st HKIFF March 19. The festival runs March 20 - April 11.The film is nominated for two Asian Film Awards (AFA) - pan-Asian pop star Rain for Best Actor and Lim Soo-jung for Best Actress. The AFAs, honoring the best of Asian cinema from the past year, will be held March
  • In Memory of Myself (In Memoria di Me)

    Dir: Saverio Costanzo. Italy. 2007. 116 mins.Slow-paced and austerely beautiful, the second feature by Italian auteur Saverio Costanzo takes on a subject that seems inherently uncinematic: the crisis of faith of a young man who is studying to become a priest in a Jesuit seminary in Venice. And yet Costanzo manages to turn Furio Monicelli's 1961 novel The Imperfect Jesuit
  • Independent strikes Hallam Foe German deal with Prokino

    UK-based sales company Independent has sold Berlinale Competition title Hallam Foe to Prokino for Germany and Austria. The film has also sold to Nordisk for Scandinavia, Rosebud for Greece, Monopole Pathe for Switzerland and VTI/Karantanija Cinemas for the former Yugoslavia. Independent said negotiations are ongoing for a US sale.David Mackenzie's film starring Jamie Bell has its world premiere on Friday night. Buena Vista has UK r
  • Indian drama Parzania faces unofficial ban in Gujarat

    Rahul Dholakia's controversial drama Parzania has been unofficially banned in the state of Gujarat, where cinema owners have opted not to screen the film for fear of a political backlash from the ruling party. The English-language film, starring Naseeruddin Shah and Sarika, is based on a true incident of the disappearance of the teenaged son of a Parsi family during the riots in Gujarat in 2002. The film was initially banned in India, and then cleared for release two years
  • India's BR Films sets March 9 release date for Water

    Indian distributor BR Films has scheduled the local release of Deepa Mehta's Oscar-nominated Water on 100 prints nationwide, with a focus on multiplexes, on March 9. 'We decided to shift the release as we were not ready before. Now we have enough time to get to the consumer and the Oscar buzz will also help,' said BR Films' Ravi Chopra. The company has assigned a budget of almost $300,000 (Rs12.5m) towards marketing the film in India. Hindu fundamentalists disrupted
  • Industry moves

    Wolf to leave Peace ArchPenny Wolf is leaving her post as managing director of Peace Arch Films in London, effective March 16. Wolf is attending the European Film Market in Berlin to meet buyers as a company employee, before going on to pursue new opportunities.New Kofic US office headSun-young Moon will be in charge of the new LA office to be launched by the Korean Film Commission (Kofic). The office will open later in 2007 to support Korean films and film-makers in the
  • Intercinema lands deal for The Island

    Aki Kaurismaki is Russia-bound. The Finnish director's work is rarely seen in the country, but thanks to Raisa Fomina' sales and distribution outfits Intercinema, Russian audiences will soon be able to lap up almost every movie Kaurismaki has ever made.First, Intercinema released A Man Without A Past and Lights In The Dusk theatrically. Now, it has acquired Kaurismaki back catalogue from Match Factory.'I decided I had to introduce the whole library of this fantastic direc
  • Irina Palm

    Dir: Sam Garbarski Bel-Ger-Lux-UK-Fr. 2007. 103mins It may be the work of a German-born, Belgian-based director, but Euro co-production Irina Palm is a thoroughly British film at heart - the latest in that 'naughty-but-nice' vein of stories that delight in placing genteel Englis
  • Italian box-office up massive 79.1% year-on-year; other regions struggle

    Global box office takings of nine major territories collectively fell 9.7% year-on-year this week, pushed by dips in the French, Korean and North American markets, according to Screen International's Screen Index. France dropped by 32.6% co
  • Joe Dante gets Sayles, Scorsese on board for Corman feature

    Gremlins and The Burbs director Joe Dante is in Berlin's Co-Production Market with his next film, The Man With Kaleidoscope Eyes.The $7m project is being produced by Dante with Los Angeles-based Elizabeth Stanley and UK-based Mia Bays. A chunk of the budget has already been raised through a Japanese pre-sale.The film is a fictional feature based on th
  • Just draw it

    Dale Wahl is used to Laika Entertainment, the fledgling feature animation operation owned by Nike chairman and co-founder Phil Knight, being viewed sceptically by the Hollywood establishment."It's kind of expected," says Wahl, who 18 months ago became president and CEO of Laika Inc after a 16-year stint with Knight's giant sportswear company. "We got the same response at Nike. He started Nike with a bunch of lawyers and accountants and people said, 'What are you guys doing in the shoe
  • Kino takes US rights to North Korea documentary Crossing The Line

    Panorama documentary title Crossing the Line, about the last US defector to North Korea, has sold to Kino in the US and Madman in Australia.Narrated by Christian Slater, the film was directed and produced by Dan Gordon, and co-produced by Nick Bonner - the latter two documentarians have focused on the isolationist North with other projects such as The Game of Their Lives and State of Mind.Th
  • La Vie En Rose woos the box office

    Following its lauded opening at the Berlin Film Festival last week, Olivier Dahan's La Vie En Rose debuted in Paris on Wednesday February 14. The Valentine's Day release was met with much local love as the film took 230,370 admissions on 675 screens on its first day. By way of comparison, another highly-anticipated film, Jean-Pierre Jeunet's 2004 release A Very Long Engagement, sold 220,821 on 707 screens when it debuted in October of that year. This year's heavily-Cesar nominat
  • Leslie Unger named new communications director at AMPAS

    Leslie Unger will succeed the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences' longtime communications director John Pavlik after the 79th Academy Awards on February 25.Pavlik is stepping down after 15 years of service, in which time he has been the only communications chief in the Academy's history.He had earlier served stints as the Academy's executive administrator from 1979 to 1982, and as director of the five-year endowment campaign for the Academy's Margaret Herrick Libra
  • Levinson comedy books major territory sales for 2929

    2929 International has closed a raft of sales on Barry Levinson's upcoming comedy What Just Happened'Rights have gone to Telemunchen (Germany), Medusa (Italy), TF1 (France), and Manga (Spain).Shooting is scheduled to begin on Mar 22 with Robert De Niro in the lead as a desperate producer in the throes of his second marriage break-up who tries to salvage the last vestiges of dignity.Sean Penn,
  • Lightning takes on Open Sky's Cougar Club

    Los Angeles-based sales and distribution company Lightning Entertainment has acquired international rights from Open Sky Entertainment to The Cougar Club. Christopher Duddy directed the comedy from a screenplay he co-wrote with Glenn Garland and Cris Mancuso about college graduates who establish a club of young men who pursue sexually desirable older women. Jason Jurman and Warran Kole star with Faye Dunaway, Izabella Scorupco, Carrie Fisher, Loretta Devine, and Joe Mantegn
  • Lilly The Witch prepares to fly with Ruzowitzky

    Austrian director Stefan Ruzowitzky, whose latest feature The Counterfeiter had its world premiere in the Berlinale's Competition this weekend, is changing genres again with his next project, the children's film Lilly The Witch (Hexe Lilli).The $11.7m (Euros 9m) co-production between Munich-based blue eyes fiction, animation and VFX specialist Trixter, Studio Babelsberg and Austria's DOR-Film, will be a
  • Lionsgate strikes US, UK and Australia deal for BBC's Earth

    Lionsgate has acquired the US, UK and Australian distribution rights for BBC Worldwide's documentary feature Earth.The 90-minute documentary project, shot in 35mm and HD, has been in the works for five years and is due for an autumn 2007 release. The film looks at the influence of the sun on life on earth by following the journeys of three animal families around the world. Alastair Fothergill directed and Alix Tidmarsh and Sophokle
  • Lischak named COO at Odd Lot Entertainment

    Former First Look Studios chief operating officer Bill Lischak has resurfaced at Odd Lot Entertainment in the same capacity.As the company relocates to its new Culver City headquarters, principals Gigi Pritzker and Deborah Del Prete also announced several other appointments.Linda McDonough has been promoted to executive vice president of production and development; Natalya Petrosova has joined as vice president of finance; Eryl Woodlief as vice president of development an
  • Lives Of Others wins four German Film Critics Awards

    FlorianHenckel von Donnersmarck's Oscar-nominated The Lives Of Others hasadded to its impressive list of distinctions by picking up four of thisyear's German Film Critics Awards: for Best Feature Film Debut, BestActor (Ulrich Muehe), Best Editing (Patricia Rommel) and BestCinematography (Hagen Bogdanski).Lastyear's Berlinale Competition entry
  • Locarno opens doors to Middle East

    The Middle East will be the regional focus for the Open Doors platform at this year's Locarno International Film Festival (August 1-11).Filmmakers will be invited from Syria, Lebanon, the Palestinian territories, Israel, Iraq and Jordan to present projects to potential co-producers.Meanwhile, an innovation at the festival's 60th anniversary edition will be the introduction of a new international competition for fiction films by young directors who have not yet made featur
  • London and Rome Film Festivals face off over dates clash

    The London and Rome Film Festivals are on collision course. Both events have now confirmed their slots - and they overlap almost exactly. Rome's second edition runs from Oct 18 to 27 October. London, meanwhile, runs from Oct 17 to Nov 1. What's more, the clash in dates comes as both festivals are planning co-production markets and ramping up their industry activities.'For industry folk it is irritating and inconvenient,' London's artistic director Sandra Hebron commented. She acknowl
  • Lost In Beijing (Ping Guo)

    Dir. Li Yu. China. 2007. 112mins. A social satire with strong sexual undertones in its early reels, which switches as it progresses into a darker melodrama, Li Yu's new film offers another variant on the surrogate mother dilemma. Despite some hesitancies in the second half, it pulls through thanks to a strong cast headed by respected veterans Tony Leung Ka-Fai and Elaine Jin. Notwithstanding irritating, unstable handheld camera work which draws attention to
  • Lucky Red buys two from Trust including Trier horror

    Lucky Red has pre-bought the Italian distribution rights to Lars Von Trier's first horror film Antichrist as well another film from Trust Film Sales - How To Get Rid Of The Others by Anders Rønnow Klarlund. Trier is enjoying something of a renaissance in Italy. His last film The Boss of it All has notched up around 200.000 admissions and still going strong t
  • M&FC takes Woo/Chang production Brothers for Korea

    Korean producer/distributor M&FC has bought the John Woo and Terence Chang produced Blood Brothers for Korea.B.K. Cha, head of M&FC's film division, signed with CMC Entertainment production marketing manager Joseph Liao.Fortissimo Films hold worldwide rights for Blood Brothers outside of Asia.M&FC, originally a music rights company - whose president Sungwoo Cho is also a film sco
  • Madman signs on for In The Shadow Of The Moon

    Channel 4 International has signed an Australia/New Zealand deal with Madman for documentary In The Shadow Of The Moon. David Sington's documentary about the US space programme sold to THINKFilm for North America during Sundance, where it won the world documentary audience award. The film, originally commissioned by Channel4's Hamish Mykura and Louisa Bolch, and produced by Duncan Copp at Dox Productions in association with John Bat
  • Mandate takes Passengers overseas at EFM

    Los Angeles-based production and sales company Mandate Pictures has reported brisk business on the drama Passengers starring Anne Hathaway and Patrick Wilson, which started production in Vancouver three weeks ago.Rights have gone to RTL Universum (Germany), Toshiba (Japan), Cinevideo (Mexico), Dea Planeta (Spain), I Vision (South Korea), West (CIS), Conquest (Brazil), Long Shong (Taiwan) and Cathay (Singapore).Deals also closed in
  • Mango Films takes on Jean Charles de Menezes drama

    After a recent BBC television project about Jean Charles de Menezes was abruptly scrapped after four weeks of pre-production, UK-based Mango Films has picked up the exclusive rights to the story of the innocent Brazilian electrician shot and killed by London police in a tube station in the days following the July 2005 bombings.Brazilian-born director Henrique Goldman, who lives in London, will direct the project, which goes into production this summer. His partner in Mango, Luke Schi
  • Mannheim-Heidelberg moves to October

    The International Film Festival Mannheim-Heidelberg is being brought forward from November to new dates in October - 9th to 21st - for the 2007 edition, which will bring it up against other international festivals with industry components. The Pusan International Film Festival with the Pusan Promotion Plan co-production gathering runs from October 4-12, while the Rome Festival's Business Street has now been scheduled for October 18-21 (the actual festival runs October 18-27). Apar
  • Market focus - Does size really matter'

    A Dutch study suggests that in order to influence early box-office takings, film studios and distributors of arthouse films should focus energy on persuading critics to write about their movie instead of merely adopting strategies to avoid negative criticism.In a recently conducted study dubbed The Impact Of Film Reviews On The Box Office Performance Of Arthouse Versus Mainstream Motion Pictures, researchers at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands found that it is not
  • Martial arts duck flies for Golden Network Asia

    Hong Kong-based Golden Network Asia has sold the comic Thai martial arts animation Duck Fight to three territories - Global Motion Picture's Luxor brand for Eastern Europe including Russia, Golden Films for Brazil, and Gulf Film for the Middle East.Billed 'the ultimate under-duck movie,' the animated film is set during a time when the world is in the grips of bird flu and cock-fighting is suffering. The Crazy Hero duck disguises hi
  • Megabox targets women with new acquisitions label

    Major Korean exhibitor Megabox Mediaplex debuts a new acquisitions label in EFM. The Megabox label will acquire foreign films for theatrical release in its multiplexes, then to go to cable on sister company On*Media's new film channel Movie OnStyle.Megabox owns 10 theaters with a total of 91 screens nationwide, and operates with 9 partner 'Megaline' theaters which comprise a total of 62 additional screens in the provinces.On*Media currently has 10 channels which include f
  • Mein Fuhrer: The Truly Truest Truth About Adolf Hitler (Mein Fuhrer - Die Wirklich Wahrste Wahrheit Uber Adolf Hitler)

    It's not quite The Great Dictator, nor Lubitsch's To Be Or Not To Be (nor even Mel Brooks's remake of it). But for audacity and good intentions at least, Dani Levy's Hitler comedy
  • Mendes buys Winslet passion project Mabel Stark

    Sam Mendes' Neal Street Productions has optioned the film rights to The Final Confession of Mabel Stark, a novel which has long been a passion project of his wife Kate Winslet.The book, by Canadian author Robert Hough, is set in the the world of a tiger trainer during the 1920s heyday of the Ringling Brothers Circus. The option was previously held by another London-based production company, Tailor-Made Films, with the working title
  • Meserve promoted to president of Wind Dancer

    Dete Meserve has been promoted to president of Wind Dancer Films and will be based in the company's new Beverly Hills office.As president, she will oversee production, financing and distribution of Wind Dancer's film slate, continuing to manage the company's development fund and working with financiers to put films into production. The fund was established late last year to develop high concept, commercial theatrical comedies in the $15-$30m range.Meserve has
  • Monaco's Emerging Talent Festival unveils plans for first event

    The first International Emerging Talent Film Festival, slated for Monte-Carlo, Monaco from May 12-15 (just before Cannes), has partnered with the Natural Resources Defense Council to become one of the few 'green' film events. Marco Orsini, executive director of the IETFF, was in Berlin to spread the word about the new festival and its two programmes, The Global Film Forum, to encourage film professionals to work with developing countries, and The Global Film Expression, about film-ma
  • Moretti's first Turin sets dates as Nov 23 to Dec 1

    The first details of the 25th edition Turin Film Festival, led by Italian art house director Nanni Moretti, were disclosed in Berlin despite Moretti's absence due to a bout with the flu.The festival will run November 23 to December 1 and continue to boost new talent, focus on cutting edge cinema and aim to foster 'meetings between new film makers and their would be audiences in an increasingly limited market,' Moretti's opening news statement read.Sections will include:
  • Mundrunczo recasts, to restart Delta in spring

    Hungarian auteur Kornel Mundrunczo, the award-winning director of Pleasant Days (Szep Napok) and Johanna, is set to re-start shooting his new feature Delta in the late spring. The film is being produced by Viktoria Petranyi through Proton Cinema, the company sheco-founded with Mundrucz.. The film is a revenge drama set in the Danube Delta in the future. It is abo
  • Museum back on top at international box office

  • New award pays tribute to Robert Altman

    Film Independent will inaugurate the Robert Altman Award for the best ensemble cast and director at the 2008 Spirit Awards to commemorate the late director. Meanwhile next weekend's Spirit Awards [24] on Santa Monica Beach will pay tribute to Altman with the presentation of a posthumous honorary Spirit Award.Collaborators including Elliott Gould, Robert Downey Jr, Christopher Guest, Sally Kellerman, Andie MacDowell, and John C Reilly will app
  • New Brizzi film sets Italy Wednesday opening record

    Italian director Fausto Brizzi's second feature Night Before Finals: Today (Notte prima degli esami - oggi) broke records for an Italian film released on a Wednesday earning $1.18m (Euros 900,000) on its Valentine's Day opener. The picture is the sequel to last year's local sleeper hit Night Before Finals. Today's opening is notable since Wednesday's tickets are sold at a reduced price (Euros 5 compared to the normal Euro 7.50). Managing director of 01 distribution Filipp
  • Night At The Museum returns to top of international charts

    Night At The Museum returned to the top of the international box office ranking this weekend. The sturdy Ben Stiller comedy grossed an estimated $13.7m from 4,800 screens in 43 markets, bringing its running international total to an impressive $230.8m. It opened at number one in France with an estimated $4.3m from 676 screens; and it held onto the top spot for a second weekend in Italy, where the gross was down a modest 30% to
  • NonStop sells Mikkelsen-starrer Exit to France, Germany

    Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen's performance as Le Chiffre in Casino Royale, and his role in Danish director Susanne Bier's Oscar-nominated After the Wedding, have certainly added to his international bankability, per ceo of Stockholm-based NonStop Sales, Michael Werner.Swedish director Peter Lindmark's Mikkelsen starrer, Exit, has now sold German-speaking countries
  • Norbit rules at US box office

    The resurgent star power of Oscar-nominee Eddie Murphy droveParamount's Norbit straight to the top of the North American box officechart this weekend with a plus-size estimated gross of $33.7m. TheDreamWorks-produced comedy more than doubled the take of the weekend'sother new wide release, MGM/Weinstein prequel
  • Norwegian Culture Minister pledges extra funds for local films

    In Berlin this week, Norwegian culture minister Trond Giske has promised increased Government support of the local film industry.Since coming to power in late 2005, Norway's left-centre alliance has pumped an extra 6.2 million Euros into the Norwegian Film Fund, taking the overall spending to 32 million Euros per annum. Asked if he planned to find further money, Giske commented:'Yes, definitely. It's one of the areas within the culture budget that we are increasing the mo
  • Opus Dei to consult on Lux Vide feature film

    Opus Dei - the controversial Catholic religious order exposed in Dan Brown's runaway bestseller The Da Vinci Code - announced they will act as consultants on an upcoming feature film on the life of their founder, Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer. The announcement was made at a Friday press conference held at the Opus Dei headquarters near Vatican City. The project is one in a pipeline of 'communications initiatives' the group is taking on in hopes of polishing their image, whi
  • Outsider's view

    Fans of David Mackenzie's earlier films The Last Great Wilderness, Young Adam and Asylum will not be too surprised by his new feature Hallam Foe, he predicts. "I thought it was an opportunity to do something that goes with the general flow of my work," he says of the project, which has its world premiere on February 16 in Berlin.The film is based on the eponymous novel by Mackenzie's friend Peter Jinks, which was optioned by Mackenzie and his Sigma Films pro
  • Picturehouse and TWC pick up The Orphanage

    Picturehouse has taken US rights from Wild Bunch to theSpanish-language horror tale The Orphanage (El Ofanato), with TheWeinstein Company reportedly taking the UK, Australia and Italy.J A Bayona is directing the Rodar Y Rodar and Estudios Picassoco-production about a woman who returns with her husband and boy tore-open the abandoned orphanage where she spent a happy youth andestablish a home for disabled childr
  • Pirates 2 is big winner at Visual Effects Society Awards

    Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest dominated the theatrical category at the Visual Effects Society's (VES) fifth annual gala in Los Angeles.The film won Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects Driven Motion Picture, Best Single Visual Effect of the Year, and Outstanding Animated Character in a Live Action Motion Picture for the character of Davy Jones.The Disney release's effe
  • Pirates dominates visual effects awards

    Pirates Of The Caribbean dominated the theatrical category at the Visual Effects Society's (VES) fifth annual gala in Los Angeles.The film won Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects Driven Motion Picture, Best Single Visual Effect of the Year, and Outstanding Animated Character in a Live Action Motion Picture for the character of Davy Jones.The Disney release's effects team also won Outstanding Created Environment in a Live
  • Prasad to direct Cohn's remake of Yellow Handkerchief

    Indian-born filmmaker Udayan Prasad will direct and William Hurt and Maria Bello star in producer Arthur Cohn's remake of Japanese classic The Yellow Handkerchief, it was announced today at a press conference in Tokyo. The $15.5m remake moves the story's locale from Hokkaido to Louisiana in the late 1940s. Production is scheduled to start on March 22 for an eight-week shoot on location in Louisiana. Post-production is expected to wrap in October, with a tentative spring 2009 world
  • Prime and ImaginAsian take A Bloody Aria to US

    Korea's Prime Entertainment has pacted with New York-based ImaginAsian Entertainment to co-distribute comic thriller A Bloody Aria in the US.Dylan Marchetti, director of theatrical productions and acquisitions for ImaginAsian, signed with Juyoung Park, senior manager of international sales and acquisitions for Prime Entertainment at EFM.'ImaginAsian is about bringing top-quality Asian films uncut and uncensored to the US,' says Mar
  • Revamped Rendez-vous to hit London March 29

    London will host a revamped Rendez-vous With French Cinema at the Curzon Mayfiar from March 29-April 1.The showcase will offer 12 new French films, with UK distributors hosting gala screenings before their theatrical releases.French directors and actors will be on hand for Q&As. Other events will include masterclasses, meetings and screenings of short films. Unifrance is organizing the Rendez-Vous with the French Embassy in London and the Curzon Mayfair. Other
  • Roadside picks up zen cooking doc

    Roadside Attractions has acquired North American rights from Atrix Films to Doris Doerrie's documentary How To Cook Your Life.The film will open in the US this summer and profiles the SanFrancisco-based zen priest and master chef Edward Espe Brown as heoutlines zen and the art of culinary sustenance.Franz Xaver Gernstl and Fidelis Mager produced through their Megaherz Films.'Food is life, and this film asks how we can w
  • Robson Entertainment plans Chile, supercentarians films

    Sybil Robson Orr, who produced Blindsight in Panorama Dokumente, has travelled to the southernmost region of Chile, the Tierra del Fuego, to shoot her next project (as a director this time). The project is about an 80-year-old woman who is the last living purebred member of the Yagan tribe. 'She's extraordinary, we want to bring her voice and her experience to light,' Robson Orr said. The indigenous tribe's population has dwindled after exploration by Eur
  • Russian film - Eastern promise

    While Europe may include a number of mature markets working at around their effective capacity, in the east there are opportunities for exponential growth. Most obviously there is Russia.But for all its explosive box-office growth, Russia remains a problematic market where DVD revenues are minimal and an impending law reducing the amount of allowable TV advertising threatens to undercut film pre-sales by broadcast networks.This sober assessment was provided by a panel discussion
  • Schafer's gay and lesbian film doc finds buyers

    Andre Schafer's Here's Looking At You, Boy is tickling the fancy of buyers worldwide. Schafer's documentary, telling the story of the coming-out of gay and lesbian cinema, has sold worldwide in advance of its premiere in Panorama later this week.Amsterdam-based sales agent Sydney Neter of SND Films has closed deals with SBS (Australia), Finland (YLE), Denmark (DRTV), The Sundance Channel (US), Italy (GANA) and several other territories.
  • Screenwriters festival launches script market

    This year's international Screen Writers Festival is to launch a speculative script market.scriptMARKET offers writers the chance to send in a script for consideration by a panel of agents, producers, commissioners, developersand/or sales agents.The panel will meeet the top 30 at the festival in the UK town of Cheltenham on July 3-6.Entries must be no more than 120 pages. Applicants will get a comprehensive report produced by professional readers, including a 150 word s
  • Senator boards Falorni's Heart

    Germany 's Senator Film has boarded Luigi Falorni's fiction feature debut Heart Of Fire as co-producer and acquired German distribution rights. Based on Senait Mehari's bestselling autobiography Heart Of Fire, the film follows her experiences serving in the Eritrean Liberation Front and witnessing the horrors of a guerrilla war. The project, which was pitched at this year's Berlinale Co-Production Market, is being produced by BurkertBareiss Development and TV60 Filmp
  • Shochiku sells over 50 territories on Genghis Khan at EFM

    Shochiku has sold epic drama Genghis Khan - To The Ends of the Earth and Sea to over 50 countries at EFM including a multi-territory sale for Germany, Austria and Benelux to Splendid Film.The $30m Japan-Mongolian co-production, directed by Shinichiro Sawai (W's Tragedy), commemorates the 800th anniversary of the founding of the Mongol Empire. The film shot for four months on location in Mongolia with batt
  • Shooting from the hip

    The name Canana, which translates as "cartridge belt", has an almost revolutionary ring to it. That fits with the goals of the Mexican production house's founders Diego Luna, Gael Garcia Bernal and Pablo Cruz. "We want productions that give the world an insight into our reality," says Cruz, who runs the company. "We were worried about (Mexico's) situation, and fed up with the cliched vision of our country as a violent, impoverished place," adds Canana's head of development, Kyzza Terrazas. "W
  • Shorts International launches ShortsTV channel

    Shorts International has turned on its ShortsTV cable channel airing an extensive catalogue of short films 24 hours a day to audiences in France, Belgium and Luxembourg. As well as Oscar-winning works and commended films from around the world, there will be up to 1,800 new films screened this year. The programme for the channel will be divided into themes, including animation, experimental and the choices of critics and festivals. The channel will be receiving creative guidance fr
  • Solid sales business boosts growing EFM

    The EFM was winding down yesterday with many buyers already on their way home and complaints that new product was underwhelming, especially when the hottest titles here were documentaries - Morgan Spurlock Untitled which Wild Bunch sold throughout the world, First Look International's Larry Charles Project and Fortissimo's Rolling Stones documentary.'It was a quiet market,' said Lionsgate's Zygi Kamasa who pointed to the lack of alluring fare at script stage.Still the big
  • Sony Classics gets North American rights for The Children Of Huang Shi

    Sony Pictures Classics has taken North American rights to Roger Spottiswoode's The Children Of Huang Shi. The epic tale is set in war-ravaged China in 1938. Production on the project ends today in Shanghai, with a cast including Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Radha Mitchell, Chow Yun-Fat and Michelle Yeoh. Arthur Cohn and Wieland Schulz-Keil are producing. The film is a Chinese-Australian-German co-production with Peter Loehr of Beijing's Ming Productions, Jonathan Shteinman of Sydney's
  • Sony grabs multi-platform rights to Afterworld

    Sony Pictures Television International has signed a deal to acquire all international television, Internet, digital sell-through, gaming and mobile rights to Afterworld.The futuristic '2.5D' animated project is produced by Stan Rogow and written by video game expert Brent Friedman.This mark SPTI's first acquisition of across all these platforms. The deal covers episodic installments for distribution on TV, Internet and m
  • Sony launches web promotion for Spider-Man 3

    Sony is launching a competition to find two online correspondents to report on breaking news about Spider-Man 3 in the run-up to the May 4 release. Two fans of the franchise - one male and one female - will be charged with creating videos presenting news, information and special promotions. Aspiring Spider-Man 3 webcasters can find everything they need to enter the contest at /face
  • Sony sells Japanese anime to France

    Rezo Films has acquired French rights from Sony Pictures ReleasingInternational (SPRI) to the Japanese anime title Tekkonkinkreet, whichreceived its world premiere in Berlin's Generation 14Plus strand.Rezo has set an April 25 theatrical release date for the Studio 4°C andAniplex co-production, which will be renamed Amer Beton for the Frenchmarket.
  • Spain's film-makers call for a Spanish Unifrance

    Spanish film-makers and industry representatives are calling on their government to help better promote Spanish cinema abroad by following the model of Unifrance. The call came as one of a series of conclusions out of a landmark two-day industry-wide conference held this week in Cordoba (Feb 12-14) to analyse key issues facing the Spanish film sector. 'The case of Unifrance constitutes a basic reference for how the different institutions of a country unite their efforts f
  • Stannard joins DDA as CFO and partner

    John Stannard has joined London-based DDA Public Relations as a partner with DDA founder/chairman Dennis Davidson and Lawrence Atkinson and Chris Paton. He also becomes chief financial officer for DDA Event Management, reporting to MD Caroline Warburton.For the past 10 years, Stannard had been finance director at media group TVF Media and previously worked at accountancy firm Moore Stephens, Braveworld and Manga Entertainment.Davidson said: 'I am hoping that John, with hi
  • Stansfield and Crook join Quest For A Heart

    UK singer Lisa Stansfield and actor Mackenzie Crook will lend their voices to Quest For A Heart, a $7.7m (Euros 6m) fully-animated feature shortly to wrap a five-year production schedule for Finland's MRP Matila Rohr Productions. Stansfield will also perform the theme song.'It will be the jewel of the crown,' said Finnish producer Marko Röhr, who bought the rights for Finnish actor Allu Tuppurainen's Rolli character in 1989. Rolli was
  • Starfield, Maybe team on Lebanon drama

    Paul Raphael's London-based Starfield Productions is working on After The Summer Rain, a new drama that was partly shot in Lebanon during the war last year. The project, which is already in post-production and will be vying for a slot in Cannes, is directed by Philippe Aractingi, whose Bosta was the high-grossing Lebanese film last year.Aractingi was living in Beirut during the Israeli attac
  • Studiocanal sends out The Signal to France

    Studiocanal has picked up French-speaking Europe from Shoreline Entertainment to the recent Sundance world premiere The Signal.David Bruckner, Dan Bush and Jacob Gentry's high-def horror film follows a man's efforts to save his lover after a mysterious transmission turns the citizens of a fictitious town into violent killers.AJ Bowen, Chad McKnight and Cheri Christian star and Gentry produced with Alexander Motlagh. Shoreline chief
  • Studios offer triple punch of Ghost Rider, Good Shepherd and Hot Fuzz

    A diverse trio of studio-distributed films make their international debuts this weekend, with Sony launching comic book-based action outing Ghost Rider and Universal opening spy drama The Good Shepherd and British comedy Hot Fuzz. Ghost Rider, with Nicolas Cage as the Marvel Comics title character, opens through Sony Pictures
  • Sundance Institute announces fellowships and grants

    Sundance Institute has announced this year's annual Feature Film Program fellowships and grants for emerging independent film-makers.'We are thrilled to offer additional support to these uniquely talented and visionary artists,' Michelle Satter, director of the Feature Film Program, said.'We are committed to a year-round programme that provides our film-makers with financial support in the form of mini-grants and fellowships and continued creative and strategic guidance f
  • Sunshine, Departed win top prizes from US Writers Guild

    Michael Arndt and William Monahan have won top honours at the Writers Guild of America's (WGA) simultaneous annual awards nights in Los Angeles and New York on Sunday night.Arndt took the original screenplay prize for the comedy Little Miss Sunshine, while Monahan won the adapted screenplay category for crime thriller The Departed, based on Alan Mak and Felix Chong's Hong Kong hit
  • SXSW adds Disturbia and new feature docs to mix

    The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival has announced new additions to its feature film schedule, as well as its complete lineup of panels, short films and retrospectives.The new features include:Eric Chaikin's documentary, A Lawyer Walks Into a BarKris Carr's documentary, Crazy Sex
  • Tartan, Legend take on Ex Drummer

    Tartan Films has taken North American and UK rights for controversial Belgian feature Ex Drummer, while German rights have been sold to Legend Home Entertainment.Loic Magneron at Wide Management struck the Tartan deal with head of acquisitions Jane Giles. Magneron said other major territory deals will close in the next few days. Giles told Screen International: 'It's a brand new director who
  • Tenderness sells for GreeneStreet to Italy, Russia, Scandinavia

    Greenestreet Films International (GSFI) has almost sold out the Russell Crowe thriller Tenderness after closing four more key territories.Rights went to Mediafilm (Italy), 21st Century (Russia), Nordisk (Scandinavia), and Alfa (Argentina).GSFI chief Ariel Veneziano is in active negotiations on Germany and France, while Japanese rights are still available. Jon Foster and Laura Dern also star in John Polson's thriller.Mea
  • Thandie Newton launches Film Club for UK schoolchildren

    Chancellor Gordon Brown, Thandie Newton and film directors Kevin Macdonald (Last King of Scotland) and Beeban Kidron (Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason) today launched Film Club, which aims to expose 10,000 primary and secondary schoolchildren in the UK to the joys of film. Funded and supported by the UK Film Council, the BFI, LOVEFiLM, Film Education, All Industry Marketing (AIM), Film Bank / PVSL and Film Distributors Association, Film Club is the first national initiativ
  • The BAFTAs 2007 - Awards countdown - King and Queen crowned at BAFTAs

    The signs may have pointed towards an outburst of flag-waving patriotic fervour at the Orange British Academy Film Awards last Sunday (February 11), but the Baftas failed to conform. Nine ground-breaking nominations for James Bond blockbuster Casino Royale resulted in just one win in the sound category and the compensation of the Rising Star Award for Eva Green. The Queen may have won best film and best actress for Helen Mirren, but it did not sweep the board - with the award of
  • The BAFTAs 2007 - Campaign watch

    Both The Queen and The Last King Of Scotland ran expensive, committed campaigns and both reveal the importance of the autumn festival circuit in building towards Bafta success, also a factor for previous winners such as Brokeback Mountain (2005) and Vera Drake (2004).Helen Mirren's best actress prize at Venice in September established her as a Bafta and Oscar front-runner. The film's UK theatrical release in September reinforced that impression and sustained
  • The BAFTAs 2007 - The parties ..

    The champagne flowed freely over Bafta weekend as the industry and nominees hit the parties held around town. On Friday night, the Weinstein Co party - co-hosted by Tamara Mellon - saw guests including Al Gore, Keira Knightley and Sienna Miller.A Bafta nominees party, held on the eve of the awards in London's Natural History Museum, attracted guests including Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and Michael Sheen. The event was sponsored by Sky.E! Entertainment sponsored the official pos
  • The BAFTAs 2007 - The winners in full

    FILMWinner: The QueenBabelThe DepartedThe Last King Of ScotlandLittle Miss SunshineTHE ALEXANDER KORDA AWARD for the Outstanding British Film of the YearWinner: The Last King Of ScotlandCasino RoyaleNotes On A ScandalThe QueenUnited 93THE DAVID LEAN AWARD for achievement in directionWinner: Paul Greengrass - United 93Jon
  • The casting cash

    Stars can be important elements when it comes to packaging elaborate European co-productions. Obviously, casting a German lead may help sell the film in German-speaking territories or raise funding in those territories. The Weinstein Company's Colin Vaines acknowledges that with lower-budget European films, directors are often what sell the work internationally. 'But if you're going out seeking funding with a patchwork of money from different countries, it can be enormously helpful to have ma
  • The European name game

    Even the most cursory list of Europe's best-known actors reveals a continent stocked with starry talent: Ewan McGregor, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, Judi Dench and Helen Mirren from the UK; Eva Green, Isabelle Huppert, Daniel Auteuil and Juliette Binoche from France; Monica Bellucci and Roberto Benigni from Italy; Franka Potente from Germany; and from Spain, Antonio Banderas, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz.But the international renown of these actors belies a perennial problem for European
  • The Match Factory to handle new Hamer feature

    Michael Weber's The Match Factory has picked up worldwide rights, excluding Scandinavia and German-speaking territories, to Bent Hamer's latest project O'Horten which began shooting in Norway on January 29. The film, which follows locomotive driver Odd Horten on a fatefully absurd odyssey on his first days of retirement, has actor Bard Owe, internationally known from Lars von Trier's Europa (1991) and
  • The Other (El Otro)

    Dir: Ariel Rotter. Argentina/France/Germany. 84 mins.A city lawyer's mid-life crisis becomes an existential odyssey in Ariel Rotter's second feature. Politely received at its Berlinale press showing, this competition entry is intriguing and thought-provoking without ever being truly involving. There is much to admire in the formal devices that the film employs to track the gradual unravelling of its unremarkab
  • The Rocket wins nine Genies, but Bon Cop is best picture

    Charles Biname's The Rocket, a bio-pic of a French Canadian hockey legend won nine Genie Awards for its 13 nominations but failed to grab the crown. Bon Cop, Bad Cop, the bilingual buddy cop film that conquered the national box office, was dubbed Best Picture at the 27th Genie Awards in Toronto last night. Quebecois cinema dominated the evening, with several English-language nominees shut out entirely,
  • The showman

    The omission of Bill Condon from the list of directing Oscar nominees was a shock to the growing legions of Dreamgirls fans across North America. Condon's DreamWorks and Paramount-backed production, which won the best picture (musical or comedy) Golden Globe, also faced a crushing shutout in the best picture Oscar category. Although the film took eight Academy Award nominations, more than any other this year, and has now grossed in excess of $100m at the box office, Condon's achievemen
  • The Third Day scoops Fajr International Film Festival

    Tehran 's annual Fajr International Film Festival came to a close on February 11 with a national awards ceremony that saw the main gongs go to Mohammad Hossein's war drama The Third Day. Despite multiple nominations, critics' favourite The Night Bus, an original take on the war theme by first-time director Kioumars Pourahmad, was largely overlooked. As expected, the best actress award went to Baran Kosari, for her tour-de-force as a bride-to-be struggling with heroin addict
  • The Walker

    Dir. Paul Schrader, USA, 2007, English, 107 minutes, colour.Writer/director Paul Schrader has built The Walker around a gay man of style and superficiality (Woody Harrelson) who escorts rich Washington women to lunch and to the cultural events that their powerful husbands scorn. When a friend's lobbyist lover ends up
  • Three Dots closes key Asian territories on Spider Lillies

    Taiwan's Three Dots Entertainment has sold Panorama title Spider Lilies to CNS Entertainment for Korea, Sahamongkol for Thailand, and Passion Entertainment for Singapore. The sole Taiwanese feature in this year's Berlinale official selection, the film is Zero Chou's second feature drama. Her debut Splendid Float won Best Taiwan Film at the Golden Horse Awards in 2004.
  • TLA takes UK home rights to Sorry, Haters

    TLA Releasing has acquired the UK home entertainment distribution rights to US feature Sorry, Haters. TLA partner and director of acquisitions Richard Wolff negotiated the deal with Silke Wolz of Dream Entertainment, on behalf of the film-makers. The film is about a New Jersey woman who becomes involved with an Arab taxi driver in New York after 9/11. Robin Wright Penn, Abdel Kechiche and Sandra Oh.Jeff Stanzler w
  • Top Italian directors demand say in appointment of RAI cinema chief

    Italy's top directors, including Bernardo Bertolucci, Gabriele Muccino, Dario Argento, Gianni Amelio, Ferzan Ozpetek, Paolo Virzi, Paolo Sorrentino and 116 others have written an open letter to RAI Cinema's board of directors asking to be taken into consideration in the naming of a new RAI Cinema director.The request follows the resignation two weeks ago of RAI Cinema and 01 Distribution's previous chief Carlo Macchitella, who stepped down to facilitate an investigation into allegati
  • Trapped Ashes picked up by horror-hungry Lionsgate

    Lionsgate has picked up North American rights from Darclight Films to the horror anthology Trapped Ashes. The four-part tale tells of seven strangers on a Hollywood studio tour stranded inside a House of Horrors exhibit. The protagonists are forced to share their most terrifying personal stories in order to get out alive. Joe Dante, Ken Russell, Sean Cunningham, Monte Hellman, and John Gaeta directed. Dennis Bartok wrote the screenplay and produced with Yoshifumi Hosoya and
  • TWC seals Berlin deals on Spurlock doc, Inside

    Continuing a ferocious buying spree that began at Sundance, The Weinstein Company (TWC) has swooped in Berlin on North American rights to Morgan Spurlock's Osama Bin Laden documentary and all English-speaking territories on Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo's thriller Inside.Harvey Weinstein reportedly flew into town on Saturday to see footage of Spurlock's upcoming film, which buyers had to agree to watch under pain of death if they breache
  • UK Film Council Development Fund backs BBC Films trio

    The UK Film Council's Development Fund is backing several new projects with BBC Films.They include Coram Boy,adapted from the novel by Jamila Gavin, with Alison Owen and ScottRudin producing and the project out to directors now. The story isabout two orphans in 18th-century England. The funding is for $135,145(£69,291). The fund is giving $147,136 (£75,475) to Bomber,adapted by Stuart Beatti
  • UK's executive programme Inside Pictures names 15 participants

    The UK's prestigious Inside Pictures programme, now run through the Film Business Academy at Cass Business School, has selected 15 applicants for its 2006-2007 programme. The new participants are:Darren Bender, head of development/producer, Bigger PicturesEd Clarke, head of development & acquisitions, Capitol FilmsChris Collins, producer, Home Movies LtdPeter Ettedgui, producer, Vivo PicturesSara Frain, general manager - theatrical & broadcast, Metrodome
  • Unifrance opens NY event with La Vie En Rose

    The 12th edition of the Unifrance Rendez-Vous with French Cinema will open in New York on February 28 with recent Berlin opener La Vie En Rose by Olivier Dahan. The event runs through March 11 and takes place at Lincoln Center, where 16 recent French films will have their US premieres. Among the selected films are Les Ambitieux by Catherine Corsini, Chacun Sa Nuit
  • United Kingdom - Filmworks' ethic

    When broadcaster Sky and UK exhibitor Odeon joined forces in a 50-50 venture to create new distribution company, Odeon and Sky Filmworks, some eyebrows were raised. Why, observers asked, did the two companies want to venture into an overcrowded and overly competitive field such as theatrical distribution'Six months after its creation, the practical running of the new outfit is becoming clearer. Odeon and Sky contribute in equal shares to the overhead of the new company, the acquisition
  • Viva! Film Festival to premiere Salvador

    The 13th annual Viva! Spanish and Latin American Film Festival returns to Manchester from March 15-25 and will host the UK premiere of Goya Award winning Salvador on its opening night. The festival, which will showcase up to 100 Hispanic films including features, shorts and documentaries from Spanish and Latin American cinemas, will also present the first UK showing of Aguistin Diaz-Yanes' big-budget box office hit Alatriste on March 23. Manuel Huerga, director of
  • Voltage initiates buyers into The Tribe

    Voltage Pictures has taken international rights to Jorg Ihle's action horror movie The Tribe. Sales chief Nicolas Chartier described the project as a cross between Predator and Lost and already closed deals ahead of the market with Flashstar in Brazil and Prosieben.Sat for German TV. The Tribe centres on a group of maritime disaster survivors who find themselves at the mercy of cannibals after being stranded on an uncharted island. The project is
  • When A Man Falls In The Forest

    Dir. Ryan Eslinger, USA, English, 90 minutes, colour.When a Man Falls In The Forest stars Sharon Stone and Timothy Hutton as middle-aged victims of monotony in their marriage and their work. Yet the real victim of monotony in Ryan Eslinger's second feature is the audience. The dull drama, developed at Sundance Institute labs, will face a challenge diff
  • Wild Bunch continues a prosperous Berlin with TWC, SPC

    The Wild Bunch selling spree continued in Berlin Tuesday with sales of Michel Ocelot's Azur And Asmar to The Weinstein Company and Laurent Tirard's Moliere to Sony Pictures Classics in the US. Azur And Asmar also sold to Japan's Studio Ghibli.Further sales were also completed on Morgan Spurlock's hunt-for-Bin-Laden documentary with Spain's Alta, Brazil's Europa and Mexico's Quality all taking the film.Quality also picked up D. Jud Jones'
  • Wild Bunch seals deals with Picturehouse, Magnolia, Goldwyn

    Wild Bunch may have broken off official relations with the Berlinale and set up shop in a jerry-built cabin, but the French sales powerhouse has had its best EFM ever, including three US deals.Morgan Spurlock's untitled documentary has been an especially hot seller. UK rights have now gone to Optimum, Australia to Dendy, France to Diaphana, Germany to Kinowelt and Scandinavia to Scanbox. These deals follow on from the North American deal with The Weinstein Co which closed on
  • Witnesses (Les Temoins)

    Dir: Andre Techine. France. 2007. 115minsTechine powerfully reasserts his status as one of European cinema's most adult film-makers in Witnesses, a complex, assured evocation of the mid-80s, when French society was first confronted with
  • Wolfe takes Shelter for US from Wide

    Loic Magneron's Wide Manaagement has closed a slew of deals as the EFMwinds down, including a US deal on Marco Simon Puccioni's Italian Panorama entry, Shelter.The film, about two young Italian women who find a Moroccan immigrant hiding in their car, has sold to Wolfe Releasing. The film stars Portuguese siren Maria De Medeiros (Henry and June, Pulp Fiction) and Antonia Liskova.Meanwhile
  • World Cinema Fund casts its net wider

    As of this summer, the Berlinale's World Cinema Fund (WCF) will be open to projects by film-makers from South East Asia and the Caucasus in addition to the existing focus regions of Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and Central Asia. 'After the positive development of the WCF in the last two years, the new focus regions are an important step for the future success of the initiative,' commented Hortensia Voelckers, artisitic director of the German Federal Cultural Foundation whic
  • Yella

    Dir/writer: Christian Petzold. Germany 2007.89 minsFor some, existential business-world drama Yella will be the proverbial mystery wrapped within a riddle wrapped within an enigma. But for audiences with a taste for intellectual stimulation