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2 October 2006

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  • $12.9 million package Norway's biggest budget yet

    Norwegian director Ulrik Imtiaz Rolfsenstarts principal photography on BitterFlowers (Bitre blomster) onOctober 10.Bitter Flowers is the first film in a $12.9 million package of two features and four TVmovies about Norwegian hardboiled private investigator VargVeum. It the largest budget so far realised in Norway.Norwegian actor Trond Espen Seimwill play the lead in al
  • 17th Dinard British Film Festival announces jury line-up

    The Festival du Film Britannique de Dinard (Oct 5-8) hasannounced its final jury line-up. Irish actress Bronagh Gallagher joins British actor/directorCharles Dance and actor Stephen Mangan to make up the UKcontingent of the 2006 Dinard British Film Festival jury. Other jury members are French actor Francois Berleand,actress Chantal Lauby, producer Dominique Besnehard, director Radu Mihaileanu,Korean actress Yun Chun
  • AFI launches first DC French Film Festival in Silver Spring

    The American Film Institute (AFI), The French-American CulturalFoundation, La Maison Francaise and the National Gallery of Art have launchedthe First Annual DC French Film Festival C'est Chic: New Films From France.
  • AFI launches international cultural exchange programme

    The AmericanFilm Institute (AFI) has launched the international cultural exchange andcollaboration programme AFI Project 20/20.
  • After The Wedding (Efter Bryllupet)

    Dir: Susanne Bier. Den. 2006.122mins.The desperate conflict between individual actions andcollective responsibility is explored to devastating effect in After The Wedding.The latest feature from director Susanne Bier, it shows a powerful command ofcraft and narrative as it unfolds an emotionally complex and gripping saga ofmoral dilemmas and the way good intentions can create impossible situations.Satis
  • Alliance Atlantis MPD renews with New Line, retains Loewy

    Alliance Atlantis' Motion Picture Distribution announced ithas reached an agreement with New Line Cinema to continue its Canadian outputdeal through December 31, 2008. The company has also settled the legal wrangle with formerchairman Victor Loewy, former CEO Patrice Theroux and former senior counselPaul Laberge. Today's announcements lay to rest months of conflict andspeculation in Canada's largest distribution company sparked by the abruptdeparture of the three executives on July 19,
  • Argentina goes for Family Law as Oscar hopeful

    The Argentinian Academy of Film Arts and Science hasselected Daniel Burman's fifth feature Family Law as its submission for the foreign language filmcategory at next year's Academy Awards.The E1.7 million Argentinian-French-Spanish-Italianco-production follows a justice department official (Daniel He
  • Astronaut Farmer to close Hamptons Film Festival

    Michael Polish's drama The Astronaut Farmer starring Billy Bob Thornton will closethe 14th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival, which runs from Oct18-22. As previously announced,Philip Haas' The Situation will open the festival.
  • Bavaria takes on rights to Miguel & William

    BavariaFilm International has picked up world sales rights outside ofSpain for Spanish director Ines Paris' Miguel & William, about a fictitiousencounter between Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare and their rivalryin love of a beautiful woman.Featuring Spain's European Shooting Star 2004 ElenaAnaya, the UK
  • Belfast shoot starts for Collins' Kings

    Prinicipal photography hasstarted in Belfast on Kings, an adaptation of Jimmy Murphy's play The Kings of the Kilburn High Road about a group of Irish emigrantswho reunite for the funeral of one of their friends.Leading Irish actor ColmMeaney features in an ensemble cast
  • Bertram named president of business operations for PHEW

    SteveBertram has been appointed president of business operations for Paramount HomeEntertainment Worldwide.
  • Bocco leaves Gersh for key acquisitions post at IFC

    Arianna Bocco has joined IFC Entertainment as vice president of acquisitionsand production as the company expands its game-plan to accommodate largercommercial releases.
  • Bunny Chow

    Dir:John Barker. South Africa. 2006. 90mins. Ahopeful signal of change in the new South Africa, Bunny Chow is an exuberant hop in the hay, a bonk in the back seatand a flamboyant middle finger to the nation's apartheid past. The title is a referenceto a South African fast-food specialty, a hollowed out loaf of bread filledwith a rich, many flavoured stew, and a metaphor for the racial and culturalsalad of contemporary Johanesbu
  • Canal Plus signs French VOD agreement with Fox

    France's Canal+ Active has signed a VOD agreement with Fox, it was announced Friday.The deal means new Fox releases, as well as catalogue films, will be available on Canal Plus' CanalPlay, the company's one-year old VOD service.Canal Plus' Bruno Thibaudeau said, "We are very proud of this partnership with this legendary studio. Since its creation, CanalPlay has continuously enhanced its offer and we are pleased to provide our customers with blockbusters as well as the best library films fr
  • Cars speeds past $200m for BVI

    Pixar Animation Studio's Cars has become only the sixth film released in 2006 to pass$200m at the international box office this week.
  • Center, Prada launch in key territories

    Summit Entertainment/Constantin's murder drama Perfume will look to continue its international leadthis weekend through strong holds.
  • China confirms Golden Flower as Oscar entry

    As anticipated, China has selected Zhang Yimou's Curse Of The Golden Flower as its submission for the best foreign-languagefilm category at next year's Academy Awards.Beijing New Picture Film Co,which produced the film, confirmed the decision made by a selection committee organisedby the Film Bureau under China's State Administration of Radio, Film and
  • Copenhagen gives top award to 12.08 East Of Bucharest

    As the CopenhagenInternational Film Festival wrapped, Romanian feature 12.08 East Of Bucharest won the Golden Swans for best film and bestscript. Corneliu Porumbiou's darkly comic project about Romania just before thefall of the Ceausescu dictatorship previously won the Camera d'Or and theEuropa Cinemas Label in Cannes. The Copenhagen jury,which judged the 10 European films in competition, was comprised of Danishactress Ghita Norby, dutch cinematographer Robb
  • Cork Film Festival gets Death Of A President

    The 51st Cork Film Festivalwill open on Oct 8 with Toronto Fipresci Critics Award winner Death Of A President, the Channel 4-financed drama which imaginesthe assasination of George W Bush."We are delighted to havesecured the European premiere of Death Of A President,' said Cork Film Festival DirectorMick Hannigan. 'This is urgent, important cinema, raising vital questionsabout politics and the mass media, about liberty and democracy. It confirms theimportance
  • Cornwall recruits agency for film and TV push

    South West Screen andCornwall Film have appoined Cornish company Location Solutions South West tomarket the region to film and TV production companies. Location Solutions willmarket the UK's western-most county overthe next six months to national and international
  • Cruz gets tribute at AFI FEST before Volver gala

    Penelope Cruz will receive AFI Fest's annual Tribute in Hollywoodon Nov 2 immediately prior to the centerpiece gala screening of PedroAlmodovar's Spanish foreign language Oscar entry Volver.
  • Czechs back Lunacy in Oscar race

    The Czech Film andTelevision Academy (CFTA) has selected Jan Svankmajer'sLunacy as the Czech Republic's contender for the foreign-language category of theAcademy Awards. The film stars Pavel Liskaand Anna Geislerova as semi-willing residents of a madhouse run by a sadisticdoctor, played by Jan Triska. Svankmajer wrote the script in 1970 inspired bythe writings of Edgar Allan
  • De Niro to be feted at Rome Film Festival, screen 20 mins of Shepherd

    Robert De Niro will screen 20 minutes from his upcoming CIAthriller The Good Shepherd at the Rome Festival, where he will receive the festival'sinaugural Steps And Stars Award.
  • Dead Girl awarded Netherlands Production Platform Prize

    This year's Kodak NPPDevelopment Prize was awarded to writer/director/producer Elbert van Strien and producer Claudia Brandt for their feature film Dead Girl. The Netherlands ProductionPlatform (NPP) is in its eight year and is awarded at the Holland Film Meeting(Sept 28 - Oct 2), a sidebar to the Netherlands Film Festival. Kodak sponsorsthe prize for $6339 (5000 Euros) in an effort to facilitate further financialdevelopment for feature films.Dead Girl (Accento Films) is about a
  • Dead Girl awarded Netherlands Production Platform Prize

    This year's Kodak NPPDevelopment Prize was awarded to writer/director/producer Elbert van Strien and producer Claudia Brandt for their feature filmProject Dead Girl. The Netherlands ProductionPlatform (NPP) is in its eight year and is awarded at the Holland Film Meeting(Sept 28 - Oct 2), a sidebar to the Netherlands Film Festival. Kodak sponsorsthe prize for $6339 (5000 Euros) in an effort to facilitate further financialdevelopment for feature films.Dead Girl (Accento Films) is
  • Death Of A President to hit US theatres on Oct 27

    Newmarket Films will release its Toronto acquisition Death Of APresident in the US onOct 27 and will launch the trailer in theatres on Sept 29.
  • Demme to make doc about Carter's book on Middle East

    Jonathan Demme is preparing a documentary about Jimmy Carter'sbook Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, thedirector said at the Donostia-San Sebastian International Film Festival (Sept21-30) this week."I'm going to do a documentary film starting in aboutsix weeks with the former United States president Ji
  • Digital future depends on single standard, says Fox d-cinema chief

    If the international film business doesn't adopt the single digital DCI standard agreed by the studios, it risks derailing the whole d-cinema revolution.That was the stark warning offered by Julian Levin, Twentieth Century Fox executive vice president in charge of digital exhibition, in his keynote address at the Screen International's European Digital Cinema conference at Bafta in London.These are critical times in the development of d-cinema, he said, when the business is in a per
  • Dimension signs two-year deal with Stoopid Monkey

    Dimension Films has signed a two-picture deal with Seth Green andMatthew Senreich's Stoopid Monkey Productions.
  • Emerging to stage 14-city US tour of nine Latin films on digital network

    Emerging Pictures, the New York-based digital cinema network, hascurated a 14-city US tour of nine pictures from the Film Society of LincolnCenter's LatinBeat 2006 film festival.
  • Employee Of The Month

    Dir: Greg Coolidge. US.2006. 103mins.Neitheroutrageously funny nor sweetly romantic enough to generate much interest, EmployeeOf The Month is anegligible work-place comedy that struggles to establish its personality. Inhis first leading role, standup comedian Dane Cook does what he can withthreadbare material but, more critically, lacks the sort of undeniable screencharisma a movie star requires.Opening EmployeeOf The Month on October6, almost a year
  • Equinoxe, Milagro in Montreal sign on for Saura's Secrets

    Montreal-based productioncompanies Equinoxe Films and Milagro Films have signed on as coproducers ofCarlos Saura Medrano's upcoming psychological thriller Secrets alongside Madrid-based Zebra Producciones, theproduction outfit of Antonio Saura. Saura, who wrote the screenplay, and SauraMedrano are sons of veteran Spanish auteur Carlos Saura. The Euros 3mEnglish-language project is set to shoot in Quebec and Spain next year.Equinoxe senior vice president and COO Michael Mosca and
  • Eros branches out from Bollywood with Provoked

    High-profileBollywood conglomerate Eros International has acquired the rights to the dramafeature Provoked.Directedby Jagmohan Mundhra, the film is a departure from Eros' usual Bollywood fare,foregoing song and dance to tell the true story of Punjabi housewife KiranjitAhluwa
  • Fay Grim

    Dir/scr: Hal Hartley. US. 2006. 118mins.Hal Hartley's droll sense of humourand slightly off-kilter cinematic technique has never been to everyone's taste,but hardcore fans will enjoy Fay Grim,a sequel of sorts to his breakout 1998 hit HenryFool. Others, however, may find what Hartley calls an 'internationalespionage farce' more than a bit slow in spots, something not helped by itsself-indulgent two-hour r
  • Films In Progress champions Latin America's emerging talent

    Celebrating its 10th anniversary,San Sebastian's Films InProgress initiative is this year backing some of the lesser lights in LatinAmerican cinema who hope to make a name for themselves on the international circuit,including controversial Chilean director Luis Vera.Films InProgress has already launched several Latin American and Spanish films,including Tristan Bauer's Falkland War drama Blessed By Fire (Iluminados Por El Fuego) in 2004, which went on to win the special jury pri
  • First Rome Film Fest adds more studio premieres

    The Rome Film Fest hasannounced the line-up for its first edition, which runs from Oct 13-21. With atotal of 12 world premieres in its two main sections, the festival line-up hasgone some way towards disproving predictions that the newborn event would becrushed in the autumn festival logjam.In addition to opening titleFur - which had a sneak preview atthe Telluride Film Festival earlier this month - two major studio films will bepremiering in Rome: Lasse Hallstrom's TheHoax
  • First symposium on animation and FX to take place in New Zealand

    Theinaugural international symposium on animation and visual effects AnimfxNZ isset to take place In Wellington, New Zealand, from Nov 4-5.
  • France rules over San Sebastian

    French film My Son (Mon Fils A Moi) has won top honours at the San Sebastian International Film Festival sharing the Golden Shell for Best Film with Half Moon and taking the Best Actress award for Nathalie Baye.My Son is the first feature film from director Martial Fougeron about a young boy trapped by his mother's overbearing love. Fellow winner Half Moon (Niwemang) from director Bahman Ghobadi is a France-Iran-Iraq-Austria co-production about a group of
  • Free film screenings mark Pinewood's 70th birthday

    Pinewood Studios is hosting a week of free film screenings tocelebrate its 70th birthday.The celebratory screenings are to be held in conjunction withThe Times and Vue West End, London, andwill feature one film from each of the seven decades that Pinewood has beenworking in UK film.The screenings run from Oct 1-7 and feature Pyg
  • Gardens In Autumn (Jardins En Automne)

    Dir/scr: Otar Iosseliani. Fr-It-Russ. 2006. 117mins.The then-Soviet republic of Georgia lost one of itsmajor cultural assets when it allowed non-conformist film-maker Otar Iosseliani to 'emigrate' professionally to France in 1984. Since then,he has regularly regaled audiences with his wry, deadpan, post-modern comedies(though arguably none has equalled the poetic films he made in his nativeland). Gardens InAutumn
  • Germany's e-m-s to coproduce Lolafilms' Manolete

    Spanish producer Lolafilmshas recruited Germany's e-m-s new media as aco-producer on Manolete, starringAdrien Brody and Penelope Cruz, as well as for Io Don Giovanni. The film finishedprincipal photography this summer.
  • Ghosts Of Cite Soleil

    Dir.Asger Leth. Denmark/US. 2006. 88min. Although it will prove a maddeningexperience for anyone seeking a traditional documentary approach to the enduring and vexing humanitarian crisis thatis Haiti, Ghosts Of Cite Soleil is anincredibly visceral journey into the meaning of the phrase "life is cheap". Avital melding of hip hop sensibility and existential urgency, it's aone-of-a-kind instance of a film crew being in the wrong place at
  • Ghosts Of Cite Soleil

    Dir.Asger Leth. Denmark/US. 2006. 88min. Although it will prove a maddeningexperience for anyone seeking a traditional documentary approach to the enduring and vexing humanitarian crisis thatis Haiti, Ghosts Of Cite Soleil is anincredibly visceral journey into the meaning of the phrase "life is cheap". Avital melding of hip hop sensibility and existential urgency, it's aone-of-a-kind instance of a film crew being in the wrong place at
  • Half Moon (Niwemang)

    Dir: Bahman Ghobadi. Iran-Iraq-Austria-France. 2006. 107minsMore ambitious than his previous films, BahmanGhobadi's Half Moon about a famous musician travelling from Iran to Iraq for aswansong p
  • Hong Kong selects Banquet; Taiwan chooses Cha Cha

    Hong Kong has selected period epic The Banquet as its entry for the best foreign-language filmcategory of next year's Academy Awards.The film, directed by China's Feng Xiaogang, is a co-production between Hong Kong's Media Asia and Beijing-based Huayi Brothers. It recently premiered atVenice and has grossed $13m across Chinese-
  • Hot Docs expands 2007 festival to 11 days, adding 25 screening slots

    Hot Docs CanadianInternational Documentary Festival will expand its 2007 edition to eleven days,adding approximately 25 slots to its screening slate. The Toronto-based festivaldates will run April 19 to 29, 2007. Film submissions for the event are now open,with an early entry deadline of December 15, 2006 and a late entry deadline ofJanuary 15, 2007. The festival expects to present more than 100 titles in itsprogramme line-up, including International Showcase, Canad
  • Icon and Lionsgate projects backed in latest FFC round

    A vampire filmbacked by Lionsgate, a drama marking Icon's biggest commitment to an Australianfilm, and the first co-production with China are among five Australian films that havesecured financing in the latest round from Film Finance Corporation Australia.Twinwriter-directors Michael and Peter Spierig, who sold their low-budgetself-financed horror film Und
  • Imax taps Peter Eiff as GM for EMEA

    Imax Corp. has appointed PeterEiff to general manager, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Eiffwill relocate from Los Angeles to Berlin before the end of 2006. Eiff joins Imax from consultingfirm International Film Finance Services. He has previously worked atLucasfilm, Paramount, New
  • Indo-American Film Festival in New York to screen 60 films

    Sixty features,documentaries and shorts including the New York premiere of Mira Nair's TheNamesake will screen during theIndo-American Arts Council's Sixth IAAC (Indo-American Arts Festival) FilmFestival in New York from Nov 1- 5.Screenings include AdityaBhattacharya's adaptation of King Lear called Dubai Return,Suman Gosh's Podokkhep Footstepswith Nandita Das, Rehana Mirza's Hiding Divya starring Madhur Jaffrey, Rajiv Virani's MyBollywood Bride
  • Israel chooses Sweet Mud as Oscar submission

    Dror Shaul's drama Sweet Mud has been named as the official Israeli submission for thisyear's foreign-language Oscar category. The film, set in a kibbutz in the1970s, follows a 12 year-old boy and his attempts to navigate the needs of hisemotionally fragile mother.Sweet Mud was given four Ophir awards in Sept from the Isreali FilmAcademy including best picture, which it shared with Aviva, My Love. It wasdeveloped at the Sundance Institute's Screenwriters' & Directors' Lab
  • Italy announces Oscar bid hopeful

    Italy has announced its entry into the best foreign film category of the 2006Academy Awards as Nuovomondo (TheGolden Door). Written and directed by Emanuele Crialese, the $11 million movie is a period epic about Italianemigration, set in the early 20th Century. It follows a family as they headfrom Sicily to America
  • Jackson & Walsh team up with Microsoft for games

    Peter Jackson and screenwriting partner Fran Walsh have partneredup with Microsoft Game Studios to create two interactive entertainment seriesexclusively for Xbox 360 and the online games series Xbox Live.
  • Jaman strikes 30-film deal with Venevision

    New US-based internet filmdistributor Jaman has closed a deal for rights to 30 feature films fromVenevision in a move announced at the Donostia-San Sebastian International FilmFestival.The agreement encompassesnon-exclusive rights for broadband distribution and an option to pick upanother 50 titles. The original 30 films include 22 Latin American and eightSpanish features.The Venevision deal is oneof the first pick-ups made by new Internet world cinema platfo
  • Japanese actor Tetsuro Tamba dies aged 84

    Tetsuro Tamba, one of Japan's most famous and prolific actors, died of pneumonialate September 24 at the age of 84. Born in Tokyo in 1922, Tamba became a translator for alliedoccupation forces after Japan was defeated in WWII. He made his film debut in 1952,going on to appear in over 300 features and scores of TV dra
  • LA post facility to give $125,000 in grants to new film-makers

    Los Angeles-based post production facility Filmworks/FX hasannounced a programme offering $125,000 in post-production grants to aspiringfilmmakers in 2007.
  • Lars von Trier to shoot horror project next summer

    Only hours after the worldpremiere of Lars von Trier's The Boss Of It All at the Copenhagen International Film Festivallast Thursday, the maverick director has announced his next film. Moving fromthe comedy of The Boss OfIt All, he will next tackle horror in Antichrist.The project was announced forthe first time two years ago b
  • Lionsgate gets worldwide to Fox's Beyond The Sky

    Lionsgatehas picked up worldwide rights excluding Mexico to Javier Patron Fox'sdirectorial debut Beyond The Sky (FueraDel Cielo).
  • LoveFilm sets up German operation

    LoveFilmis continuing its European expansion. The online DVD rental company,headquartered in London, haslaunched LoveFilm Deutschland in Germany. Inestablishing the German business, LoveFilm has struck a strategic partnershipwith postal and logistics company Deut
  • Luxembourg has Oscar hopes for Justine

    As Monday's submissiondeadline looms, yet another film has entered the foreign-language Oscar race. Luxembourg's National Selection Commission for the Oscars has putforward Your Name Is Justine (Ton Nom est Justine) for potential Oscar nomination. The Luxembourg-Polish film isdirected by Franco de Pena. The film has garnered prizes in Montreal,
  • Macedonia submits Kontakt for Oscar race

    Sergei Stanojkovksi'sfeature debut Kontakt has beensubmitted by Macedonia as its national entry for the Academy Awards' Best ForeignLanguage Film category.Starring Labina Mitevska and Nikola Kojo, the Macedonian-German co-productionbetween Skopje Film Studio and Busse & Halberschmidt Filmproduktion had itsworld premiere at last year's Manaki Brothers International CinematographersFilm Festival in
  • Maguire named president of international at PHE

    Dennis Maguire has been appointed president of international forParamount Home Entertainment.Maguire will
  • Meek to replace Ikin at Film Finance Corp

    Producer Scott Meek, whorelocated from the UK to Australia in 2004 to join ABC TV, is to replace Bridget Ikinat Film Finance Corporation Australia (FFC). Ikin and Tait Brady were thefirst people employed to choose which films seeking FFC finance through theevaluation door should get the go-ahead. Both of them were employed for twoyears but Tait Brady is stayin
  • Metrodome raises $3.8m for new company strategy

    The UK's Metrodome Distribution has announced that it hasraised $3.8m (£2m) by way of a placing and the conversion of a loan from parentcompany TV-Loonland.As discussed in recentweeks, the company's new CEO Peter Urie is implementing a new growth strategyfor Metrodome. The new approach is a shift from the high-risk short-termapproach of the company's past into a "a longer termmore balanced portfolio ori
  • Mexico and Belgium announce their Oscar entries

    Pan's Labyrinth has been announced as Mexico's entry into the Oscars' foreign-language film category.Directed by Guillermo DelToro, whose previous films include Hell Boy, Cronosand The Devil's Backbone, Pan's Labyrinth is a dark fairytale set in post-civil war Spain. In the movie, a young girl's fantasy world overlapswith real-life Fascist Spain.Pan's Labyrinth was aMexican-Spa
  • Mon Colonel

    Dir: Laurent Herbiet. Fr-Belg-Alg. 2006. 110mins.With a pedigree that includes Costa Gavras as a script writer and Michele Ray Gavras and the Dardenne brothersin the production team, Laurent Herbiet's featuredebut is bound to draw international attention, notwithstanding his ownanonymity. Mon Colonel reads verymuch like a Costa Gavras project, a political case pulledfrom the past whose theme - conventional army me
  • Monaco's Zimand opens office in Los Angeles to develop feature slate

    HenriZimand's Monaco-based international production company Zimand Entertainment hasopened a second office in Los Angeles top focus on a slate of feature films.
  • My Son (Mon Fils A Moi)

    Dir: Martial Fougeron. France. 2006. 90mins Martial Fougeron's modest family drama went almostunnoticed during the San Sebastian film festival but certainly ended the eventcausing a storm of controversy when it was declared the ex aequo winner of theGolden Shell, a decision that was greeted by boos by some critics. An intimatefamily drama focusing on a domineering mother, played with a vengeance byNatha
  • Myriad closes sales on Beethoven with Hopscotch, Nexo

    Myriad Pictures has closed further sales on Agnieszka Holland'sdrama Copying Beethoven starring Ed Harris following its world premiere at Toronto.
  • New Line takes worldwide on Hood's thriller Rendition

    New Line has picked up worldwide rights to the political thriller Rendition, Gavin Hood's Tsotsi follow-up that will star Jake Gyllenhaaland Reese Witherspoon.
  • Nominations announced for third Hollywood World Award

    ScreenInternational and The Hollywood Film Festival have named the ten nominationsfor this year's Hollywood World Award.
  • NonStop Sales picks up Paid

    International sales agent NonStop Sales has picked up the English-language Dutch featurePaid. A gangster thriller in thefilm noir style, Paid is directed by first-time director Laurence Lamers and stars Tom Conti, MuriloBenicio, Corbin Bernsen andGuy Marchand.Paid is a Dutch production,produced by Slavenburg Films. The film will have itsmarket premiere at the American Film Market in November but it will also bescreened at the Netherlands Film Festival (Sept
  • Norway backs Reprise in Oscar race

    Norway has submitted Joachim Trier's feature debut, Reprise, for consideration in the foreign-language Oscar race. "We have great confidence inthis year's candidate - it is unusual, poetic and exciting, and gets to theaudience from the very first moment" said chairman of the selection committee, JanErik Holst of the Norwegian Film Institute.With its premiere at theKarlovy Vary International Film Festival,
  • NZFC announces new short film manager

    The New Zealand FilmCommission has announced that Juliette Veber will take on their newly created role of Short FilmSales and Marketing Manager. Veber, whose post begins on Oct 2, has worked in thefilm industry for 10 years. She produced the feature film Toy Love, directed byHarry Sinclair, and associate produced The Price OfMilk. She has spent the last two years making her own feature documentary abouta high school in South Auckland. Veber s
  • Odeon purchases two new cinema sites

    The UK'slargest cinema chain, Odeon, has announced that they will be opening two new cinemas. Anew site in Medway, Kentand the acquisition of the Vue cinema in Basingstoke,Hampshire, sees Odeon now owning a total of 110 cinemas and 843 screensnationwide.The Odeon cinema in Kent
  • Oliver Stone continues political talk in San Sebastian

    Speaking at the San Sebastian film festival, Oliver Stone revealed he wants tomake a film about the current war on terror, and is searching for the rightkind of story.He was at pains to stress,however, that he didn't want to go down the journalistic route, favoured bydirectors like Michael Moore. "Film-makers are not journalists," he stressed."Too many film-makers are chasing news stories, but not coming out with thetruth.
  • Om Puri signs for role opposite Hanks in Nichols' War

    Veteran Indian actor Om Puri has signed for a lead role in MikeNichols' Charlie Wilson's War opposite Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts and Phillip Seymour Hoffman.
  • On Set With French Cinema 2006 directors announced

    French export body Unifrance has announced the fourth edition of On Set With French Cinema, to take place in the US from Oct 2006 - Jan 2007.First held in 2003, theprogram sees France's best film directors teach masterclasses tobudding US film-makers.This year's On Set directorsare Anne Fontaine, Jacques Audiard, Costa-Gavras, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Gaspar
  • Open Season

    Dirs: Jill Culton, Roger Allers, Anthony Stacchi. US. 2006. 86mins.
  • Paramount seals $300m fund with Dresdner Kleinwort

    Paramount Motion Picture Group (PMPG) has set up a $300m filmfinancing fund called Melrose Investors 2 (Melrose 2) with Dresdner Kleinwort.
  • Pathe UK Distribution recruits Woodward from Icon

    Pathe hasappointed David Woodward as sales director, UK Distribution. He takes up his new post late 2006 afterleaving his current job as head of sales at Icon Film Distribution. In the Patherole, he replaces Neil Marshall who is departing Pathe after six years to becomedirector of sales for Warner Bros Pictures International UK. "David has theideal blend of
  • Peace Arch Films finalising US rights for Delirious

    Peach Arch Films is in final talks with US buyers for the rights to distribute Tom DiCillo's film Delirious in North America after its successful world premiere at San Sebastian. A final deal is expected to be made early next week. "Several US buyers attended the first screening of the film (Monday 25 September) at the festival and were impressed by what they saw and the positive reaction to the film afterwards," says Penny Wolf of Peace Arch Films, which is handling sales of th
  • Perfume sees off Pirates to lead international weekend

    Perfume:The Story Of A Murderer was the topinternational picture of the weekend as box office results released on Monday[Sept 25] revealed a comprehensive picture of overseas business. It had been reported that Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest was the weekend winner with a $7.6m t
  • Pieter Jan Brugge recruited for Netherlands talk

    Producer/director Pieter JanBrugge will be the new guest of honour at this year's Binger - Screen International Interview at theNetherlands Film Festival on Friday. Jasmila Zbanic, who won Berlin's Golden Bear for Grbavica, had to cancel her plans to attend on doctors' orders. Dutch-born Brugge has workedin Hollywood on The Pelican Brief,Heat, The Insider,
  • Post-war Beirut festival welcomes 40 international guests

    AyamBeirut Al Cinema'iya, the first festivalto take place in Lebanon since the war, wrapped Sept 23 after a nine-dayfestival that opened with the world premiere of Michel Kammoun's Falafel, and screened 40 features,shorts and documentaries, mainly from or about the Arab world.Now in its fourth year, thefestival has gained a following among Arab cinephiles, thanks in part to itsgrassroots approach and support for regional cinema. This year, even though
  • Raindance premieres films made on phones

    London-based festival Raindance hasbecome the first in the UKto screen movies made entirely on mobile phones. The festival, which runs at Cineworld Shaftesbury Avenuefrom until Oct 8, will be presenting the finalists in this year'sNokia Shorts competition, which had film-makers submit 15-second shorts shot ontheir handsets. The five finalists in the Nokia Shorts Handset d
  • Rang De Basanti is India's Oscar submission

    Rakeysh Mehra's Rang De Basanti has been selected by the Film Federation Of India asIndia's official entry to the foreign language category of the Academy Awards.A jury member said they voted on Mehra's film about youthawakening because "we felt that Rang De Basanti is more Indian and talks ab
  • Ray Winstone and Tilda Swinton back the BIFAs

    Actors Ray Winstone andTilda Swinton have become patrons of The British Independent Film Awards.The other patrons already onboard for the Awards include Mike Figgis, Adrian Lester, Ken Loach, SamanthaMorton, Michael Winterbottom and Meera Syal.The BIFAs are now in theirninth year, honouring independent films that are majority financed by UK companies. This year's nominations will be
  • Rescue Dawn

    Dir/scr: Werner Herzog. US. 2006. 120mins.With the escape drama Rescue Dawn, Werner Herzog has finally managed to make a pure commercialHollywood thriller, as if to prove that he always could - if he really wanted. Anopening title informs us that his new feature is "inspired by true events inthe life of Dieter Dengler", a German-born US Navypilot involved in surreptitious bombings of Laos during the 1960s who wasc
  • Reykjavik festival tries to grow industry presence

    The third ReykjavikInternational Film Festival, which opened last night (Sept 28) with a totalblack-out in the Icelandic capital, is mainly devoted to audiences, but it isgradually extending its industry side."The festival is still verynew, so for a start we have organised a seminar for producers and filmmakers,in collaboration with the European Documentary Network, as well as a NordicTalent Campus," explained festival founder and director Hronn Marinosdottir. "Next year we hope to fur
  • Robbins gets Cassavetes honour at Denver Film Festival

    Tim Robbins, who will next be seen starring opposite Derek Luke inthe South African political drama Catch A Fire, will receive the John Cassavetes Awardat the 29th Starz Denver Film Festival.
  • Rome unveils lineup for inaugural festival

    Premiere Section Alatriste,Agustin Diaz Yanes (Spain)The Stone Council (Le Concile De Pierre), Guillaume Nicloux (France/Italy/Germany)Fur: An Imaginary Portrait OfDiane Arbus, Steven Shainberg (US)The Hoax,Lasse Hallstrom (US)N, PaoloVirzi (Italy/France/Spain)The Namesak
  • Rome unveils lineup for inaugural festival

    Premiere SectionAlatriste,Agustin Diaz Yanes (Spain)The Stone Council (Le Concile De Pierre),Guillaume Nicloux (France/Italy/Germany)Fur: An Imaginary Portrait Of Diane Arbus,Steven Shainberg (US)The Hoax, Lasse Hallstrom (US)N, Paolo Virzi (Italy/France/Spain)The Namesake, Mira Nair (US)The Prestige, Christopher Nolan (US)The Unknown (La Sconosciuta),Giuseppe
  • Scandinavia sweeps Greece's Opening Night awards

    Scandinavian productionstook top honours at Sunday's closing gala of the 12th Athens International FilmFestival-Opening Nights Conn-X, obtaining all three major awards.The Swedish/Danishco-production Farval Falkenberg(Falkenberg Farewell), directed by first timer Jesper Ganslandt was named BestFilm. The director was present to receive the Golden Athena Award of $9,560(7,500 Euros). The Best Direction awardwent to the Norwegian production DenBrysomme Mannen (The Bot
  • Serbians add Tomorrow Morning to Oscar pool

    The Serbian Academy ofFilm Arts and Science has selected Oleg Novkovic's Tomorrow Morning for its submission for consideration for the BestForeign Language Film at the Academy Awards.The drama tells the story of a generation of30-somethings who grew up in the nightmare of the war in former Yugoslavia andconfront their past when one friend comes back to Serbia after 12 years o
  • Silver takes senior international role at Focus Feature

    Allison Silver has been promoted to senior vice president ofinternational physical production at Focus Feature, effectiveimmediately.Silver previously served as vice president of international physicalproduction and joined the company as a production executive in autumn2002.Reporting to president of international sales and distribution AlisonThompson, she will remain in the company's Manhattan offices overseeingall aspects of physical production and post-production, as well asdistributor s
  • Smith hired at NBC Universal for international on-demand licensing

    Warren Smith has been named director of sales, internationalon-demand licensing for NBC Universal Television International Distribution.
  • Sony Animation's Season tops North America with $23m

    Sony scored its 11thdomestic number one release of the year as the animated feature Open Season stormed to the top on an estimated $23m. Thepicture, which features the vocal talents of Martin Lawrence and Ashton Kutcher, opened tomixed-to-favourable reviews.It was a great weekend forKutcher, who also stars alongside Kevin Costner in Buena Vista's coast guard rescuedrama The Guardian, which openedto mediocre reviews in second p
  • Sony strikes VOD deal with Telecom Italia

    Following on a similar UK deal with Arts Alliance Media, Sony PicturesTelevision International has struck a video-on-demand agreement with TelecomItalia.Telecom Italia will offer Sonyfilms on its Alice Home TV internet service and its ASDL portal Rosso Alice. The VOD offerings will include recent releases and catalogue titles. Some ofthe films on offer include
  • Soros/Sundance Documentary Fund launches tenth anniversary film series in NYC

    The Open Society Institute and Sundance Institute have curated a seriesof 19 international documentaries that will screen at New York's Film Forumfrom Oct 26-29.
  • Spain backs Almodovar's Volver in Oscar race

    Spain has selected Pedro Almodovar's Volver as its submission for the foreign language Academy Award.Almodovar is clearly astrong contender: Volver has alreadyearned rave reviews internationally and picked up the best script and bestactress prizes in Cannes for i
  • Spanish partners establish new consortium 6 Sales

    A group of partners havejoined to establish new Spain-based international sales consortium 6 Sales, thepartners announced at the Donostia-San Sebastian International Film Festival. Enrique Posner, formergeneral manager of Warner Bros Pictures International Espana who is now in theprocess of acquiring a non-entertainment company with assets to properties forfilm and TV, will oversee marketing and international distribution, whileMarina Fuentes of producer Galba Produ
  • Sweden submits Falkenberg Farewell for Oscar race

    Sweden has submitted Jesper Ganslandt's Falkenberg Farewell (Farval Falkenberg)as its official candidate for the Oscar nomination as Best Foreign-LanguageFeature. The film opened domesticallylast week and is already showing appeal for international buyers after itsfestival screenings. The film was shown in Venice Days at the VeniceInternational Film Festival, and in Toronto
  • Thailand selects Invisible Waves as Oscar entry

    Thailand has chosen Pen-ek Ratanaruang's noir thriller Invisible Waves as its official entryfor the best foreign-language film category of the 2007 Academy Awards.The meeting of the selectioncommittee was postponed from last Wednesday as a result of the military coupthat put Thailand under martial law the night before. The selection committee ish
  • The Departed

    Dir: Martin Scorsese. US.2006. 119 mins.
  • The Dog Pound (La Perrera)

    Dir: Manuel Nieto Zas. Urug-Arg-Can-Sp.2006. 109mins.Ahyper-naturalistic portrait of a city slacker living amongst uneducatedlabourers in a sleepy resort town on the Uruguayan coast, La Perrera (The Dog Pound) is a deceptively simple film which,underneath its placid surface, is unsettling and finally shocking. With itslanguid pace and detached point of view, the film will not set the box officealight but it has already been
  • The Guardian

    Dir: Andrew Davis. US. 2006.139mins.A square-jawed, water-set tale of tutelage andtrumped personal adversity that takes place against the backdrop of a varietyof rescues in dangerously stormy weather, Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher's TheGuardian is a sincere and capably executed film, if ultimately also adispensable one.Despite copious exclamationsof "hoo-rah!" and the like, the sort of machismo ondis
  • The Half Life Of Timofey Berezin

    Dir/scr: Scott Z Burns US.2006. 107mins.An uneasy mix of ecological warning, hyped-up Russianaccents and touching family drama, one can only leave The Half Life Of TimofeyBerezin in sadness that it squanders itspotential.The directorial debut fromScott Z Burns - co-producer of Al Gore documentary An Inconvenient Truth - has some bits and pieces which are strong.But its commercial prospects are we
  • The Tiger's Tail

    Dir/scr: John Boorman. Ire-UK. 2006. 106mins.John Boorman's admirers,uneasily awaiting his latest feature after the disappointment of Country Of My Skull,can rest easy. Back on familiar ground - Dublin - and reunited with a sterlingBrendan Gleeson, The Tiger's Tail isan alternately funny and thoughtful doppelganger story that may well see theveteran Irish director enjoy a good profile at box-offices worldwi
  • The Yacoubian Building selected as Egyptian Oscar entry

    Marwan Hamed's The Yacoubian Building has been selected by Egypt to represent it in the race for a foreign language Oscar nomination this year.The film, which has enjoyed great success in its home territory, has been the subject of controversy given its themes of Islamic fundamentalism, police brutality and homosexuality.Released in June in Egypt, Yacoubian took more than $2m at the local box office and with a $4m budget, is the most expensive locally-produced film in the cou
  • Tokyo Filmex unveils nine competition titles

    Tokyo Filmex hasannounced the line-up for its seventh edition. Festivaldirectors and programmers Kanako Hayashi and Shozo Ichiyama have selected ninefilms to compete for a Grand Prize of $8,500 (Y1m). The titles include Close To Home by debut directors DaliaHager and Vidi Bilu, Half Moon from Iraniandirector Bahman Ghobadi, Mani Haghighi's MenAt Work (based on a story by Abbas Kiarostami), Bayram Fazli's action film Have You Another Apple', DjamshedUsmonov's
  • Transmedia gets rights to Short Order

    New UK distributor Transmedia has announced theacquisition of the film Short Order,which will be released in early 2007 under the title Life Is A Buffet. The feature film was written by young Irishdirector Anthony Byrne and stars French actress Emma de Caunes, with VanessaRedgrave and John Hurt. The film takes place in one night, looking into thelives and philosophies of employees in the sho
  • TWC signs output deal with ARD Degeto in Germany

    The Weinstein Company (TWC) has signed a multi-year output dealwith leading German broadcaster ARD Degeto for free TV rights to current andupcoming TWC and Dimension Films pictures.
  • Two Maghreb projects near completion with Cinema In Motion

    San Sebastian'sCinema in Motion event has given production funding and technical support to fourfilms from the Maghreb region in Northern Africa and Portuguese-speakingAfrican countries.Cinema in Motion, a spinoff from thefestival's Films in Progress (Cine en Construccion) programme for Spanish andLatin American films, is now in its second year. Two of the four filmssel
  • UK Film Council delegation headed to Pusan

    The UK Film Council isworking with UK Trade and Investment to bring a delegation from the UK film industry from Oct 12-20 to Korea to attend the Pusan International Film Festival,Pusan Promotion Plan and Asian Film Market.The UK companies represented are Capitol Films, CelsiusE
  • Wenders joins Bardem's The Invisibles project

    Director Wim Wenders has come on board for the new portmanteau film TheInvisibles (Los Invisibles), produced by Spanish actor Javier Bardem. In October, Wenders will travel to Congoto shoot a short film about the sexual abuse of women in that country. His isthe last of five 15-20 minute projects to be shot for the film, which Bardem isproducing through his company Pinguin with help from Patricia
  • Whitaker, Luke, Lohan join honours roll at Hollywood Film Awards

    Forest Whitaker, Derek Lukeand Lindsay Lohan have been added to the roster of Hollywood Film Awardsrecipients at this year's upcoming ceremony on Oct 23.Whitaker receives theHollywood Actor of the Year Award for his role as former Ugandan dictator IdiAmin in Fox Searchlight's The Last King Of Scotland.His other upcoming releasesare children's tale Where The Wild Things Are for Spike Jonze, and the crime drama The Air IBreathe. Whitaker's
  • Wild Bunch takes on Death Of A President

    WildBunch has taken on sales for Toronto buzz title Death Of APresident by Gabriel Range.BeforeWild Bunch came on board, deals had already been struck for Newmarket for the US;Maple for Canada; the Indie Circle cooperative (representing A-Flm, Lucky Red,Haut Et Court, Frenetic Films and Cineart) for France, Italy, Switzerland andBen
  • World Trade Center takes international lead for Paramount

    Paramount's World TradeCenter ruled the international roostas it grossed an estimated $12.3m from 2,690 screens across 20 territoriesthrough UIP and raised the overseas total to $22m.The carefully plannedrelease benefited from Oliver Stone's extensive publicity tour that took inLondon, Berlin, Venice, Moscow, Tokyo and Seoul.The 9/11 drama opened insecond place in the UK on $3m from 409 sites, and opened top in Spain on $2.3mfrom 324.In other notableperformances,