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21 July 2006

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  • Adam's Apples takes top prize at Puchon

    The Puchon InternationalFantastic Film Festival (PiFan) held its closing ceremony yesterday with thetop Puchon Choice award going to Adam'sApples from Danish director Anders Thomas Jensen. Adam's Apples also won the best actor award, which was shared by Ulrich Thomsen andMads Mikkelsen, while best director went to Stormfrom Sweden's Mans Marland and Bjorn Stein. Hong Kong
  • AFM expands as record numbers expected

    Anticipating recordattendance at the upcoming American Film Market (AFM) in November, organisersIFTA have added a full floor of offices at Le Merigot Hotel in Santa Monica.The expansion supplements the offices added in 2004 and 2005, and marks themost exhibit space ever provided by the AFM in its 27-year history.The AFM's Le Merigot Hotel presence includes three full floors housing moret
  • Ang Lee casts Chinese newcomer opposite Leung

    Tony Leung andChinese newcomer Tang Wei will star in Focus Feature's second world warespionage thriller Lust, Caution,which Ang Lee will begin shooting later this year in China.As previously reported here, Bill Kong will produce with Lee. Focus Featureschief executive officer James Schamus will serve as executive producer. Focusholds worldwide rights excluding Asia.
  • Artificial Eye buys three more post-Cannes

    UK distributor Artificial Eye has announced several further acquisitionson the back of Cannes.The deals are for Douglas Gordon and Philippe Pareno's Zidane: A 21stCentury Portrait, Sydney Pollack's Sketchesof Frank Gehry and CorneliuPorumboiu's Camera d'Orwinner 12:08: East of Bucharest. Artificial Eye plans aSeptember 29 rel
  • Barbican to present season devoted to Jeremy Thomas

    UK producer Jeremy Thomas will be honoured with a season of films at London's Barbican. "Jeremy Thomas - 30 Years A Maverick" will run Sept 7-12 including screenings andtalks with Thomas and directors Nic Roeg and Stephen Frears. The retrospective opens witha gala presentation of Bernardo Bertolucci's 1987Oscar winner The Last Emperor,followed by a talk
  • BBC veterans plan feature based on Shoebox Zoo

    Drama veteransClaire Mundell and Justin Molotnikovhave set up a new production company, Synchronicity Films, to produce featurefilms and TV drama series. Mundell has worked for BBC television as a producer/director andhead of department. Molotnikov has a total of 11years TV experience, including three years of drama development at the BBC. The pair recently worked on the successfulfamily series
  • Bisset joins McDowell in cast of Vivaldi

    Jacqueline Bisset hasjoined the cast of Vivaldi, BorisDamast's biography of the celebrated composer of The Four Seasons.Bisset will play the Countess, a principled aristocrat whose patronage of Venice's poorest citizens harbours a secret.Mechaniks is producing the project and was launched in 2002 by Damast andpartner Andrea Kikot. Both are serving as producers.The story ta
  • Bond 22 to open on May 2, 2008

    Columbia Pictures willrelease Bond 22 on May 2, 2008,franchise producers Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli confirmed in a jointannouncement yesterday [20] with Sony and MGM.Daniel Craig will reprise his role as the British super-spy in an announcement that precedes his first outing as 007 in the highly anticipated Casino Royale, which is set to open in North America and the UK
  • Britdoc speakers include Broomfield and Maysles

    The firstBritdoc festival, in association with Nokia, has announced some top documentaryfilm-makers participating in masterclasses and panels. Thefestival (July 26-28) at Keble College in Oxford will welcome speakersincluding film-makers Albert Maysles, Alex Gibney, Kevin Macdonald, Pawel Pawlikowski, Mike Figgis, Nick Broomfield, and Penny Woolcock. Industryspeakers include Sundance's John Cooper, SXSW's Matt Dentler, Sandra Hebron ofthe London Film Festival, Orlando Bagwell of the Fo
  • Buscemi, Slater, Cleese add voice to Igor

    Christian Slater,Steve Buscemi and John Cleese will lend their voices to Exodus' CG-animatedcomedy Igor, which is beingdistributed by The Weinstein Company (TWC).TWC holds North American rights and completed international sales in most territoriesin Cannes.The story centres on a mad scientist's hunchbacked lab assistant who dreams ofwinning first place award a
  • Canadian production companies see 11% revenue jump

    Canada's film and televisionproduction community reported $2.55bn (C$2.9bn) in revenues in 2004, accordingto data released by Statistics Canada. It's an 11% increase since the lastnational snapshot of the sector in 2001. There were fewer companies tosurvey - 688 compared to 728 - but the profit margin for thesurvivors has improved dramatically: from 1.2% to 4.6%. The survey did notinclude foreign-financed service productions.StatsCan said the revenue increasewas the result of gr
  • Chinese newcomer cast opposite Leung in Ang Lee's Lust, Caution

    Tony Leung andChinese newcomer Tang Wei will star in Focus Feature's second world warespionage thriller Lust, Caution,which Ang Lee will begin shooting later this year in China.As previously reported here, Bill Kong will produce with Lee. Focus Featureschief executive officer James Schamus will serve as executive producer. Focusholds worldwide righ
  • Disney to cut 650 jobs in restructuring

    The WaltDisney Co. will cut 650 jobs worldwide as part of a major new restructuring.The studio will now focus on more Disney-branded family films, aiming to produceand distribute about 10 Disney live-action andanimated titles per year, but only two to three more adult Touchstone titles per year. Amongthos
  • Farr's The Gymnast shines at 12th Annual Outfest Awards

    Ned Farr's The Gymnast won the Grand Jury award for Outstanding AmericanNarrative Feature at Outfest's 12th Annual Competition Awards, while MalcolmIngram's Small Town Gay Bar andAmnon Buchbinder's Whole New Thingtook documentary and international narrative feature honours.Michael Carbonaro from Another Gay Movie and Diane Gaidry from Loving Annabelle won the actor and actress prizes, and Q Allen Brockaand Phillip Pierce took top honours in the scree
  • Film London revamps local film funds

    Film London has started the London Borough Film Fund Challenge to stimulate local film-makingacross the city. The aim is for every London resident to have access to a local film fund. Fivenew "cluster" funds are being created to represent 13 London boroughs. They are Eastern Edge Film Fund forBarking & Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge; Tri-Pod Film Fund fo
  • FilmFour moves from subscription to free channel

    Channel 4's film channel FilmFour will transition from a paid subscription serviceto a free channel with a relaunch on July 23.Satellite TV and Freeview customers will now be able to watch the channel,renamed Film4, without subscribing, making it the UK's biggest film channel. Advertising will be runduring the films, a change from the subscription channel.The programming for Film4will include a range of classic and
  • German co-producer required for tax scheme, says fund chief

    Non-German producers are likely to need a local partner if they want to benefit from the tax rebate to be introduced in Germany next year.Speaking at a film financing roundtable on the eve of this year's Munich Film Festival, Klaus Schaefer, chief executive of the Bavarian Film & Television Fund (FFF Bayern) said "foreign producers will be forced to have a German co-producer if they want to access the rebate scheme [for production costs incurred in Germany]. Schaefer, who is one of the mem
  • German co-producer required for tax scheme, says fund chief

    Non-German producers are likely to need a local partner if they want to benefit from the tax rebate to be introduced in Germany next year.Speaking at a film financing roundtable on the eve of this year's Munich Film Festival, Klaus Schaefer, chief executive of the Bavarian Film & Television Fund (FFF Bayern) said "foreign producers will be forced to have a German co-producer if they want to access the rebate scheme [for production costs incurred in Germany]. Schaefer, who is one of the mem
  • German co-producer required for tax scheme, says fund chief

    Non-German producers are likely to need a local partner if they want to benefit from the tax rebate to be introduced in Germany next year.Speaking at a film financing roundtable on the eve of this year's Munich Film Festival, Klaus Schaefer, chief executive of the Bavarian Film & Television Fund (FFF Bayern) said "foreign producers will be forced to have a German co-producer if they want to access the rebate scheme [for production costs incurred in Germany]. Schaefer, who is one of the mem
  • Gravehopping takes best film at European Film Festival

    Slovenian director JanCvitkovic's Gravehopping (Odgrobadogroba) took home the Golden TowerAward for best film in the main programme of the 13th European Film Festival inPalic (July 15-21).
  • Hadida signs Bassett to direct Solomon Kane adaptation

    As the COMIC-COM comic-book convention gets underway in San Diego,Paris-based producer Samuel Hadida has announced his Davis Films is movingahead on the epic adventure adaptation Solomon Kane.Based on the fantasy bestseller The Savage Tales Of SolomonKane by Robert E Howard,whose cre
  • Hanbando, Sinking Of Japan both score on home turf

    Korea and Japan came out of rainy three-day weekends with nationalistic blockbusters Hanbando and Sinking Of Japan topping their respective box office charts.As political tensionsbetween Japan and the rest of Asia heighten in the real world, Kang Woo-suk's acti
  • Hannah McGill tapped for Edinburgh post

    The Edinburgh International Film Festival(EIFF) has appointed Hannah McGill as its new artistic director. She replacesShane Danielsen, who will step down after nextmonth's festival as his five-year tenure comes to its scheduled end. McGill starts her post on Sept 1. She hasbeen working with EIFF since 2001 as
  • Heimat Fragments expected to premiere in Venice

    Veteran Germandirector Edgar Reitz's fourth Heimat film, Heimat Fragments (Heimat Fragmente), isexpected to have its world premiere at this year's Venice Film Festival.This willcontinue a tradition which saw Reitz's ground-breaking first Heimat premierein Venice in 1984, followed
  • here! climbs on board Mr Leather

    here! Films has picked upfirst-time filmmaker Jason Garrett's documentary Mr Leather, which chronicles nine men as they compete to becrowned Mr Los Angeles Leather.The picture was a sell-out at the recent Outfest in Los Angeles and alsoscreened at the Chicago Gay & Lesbian Film Festival and the PhiladelphiaInternational Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.The picture charts the aspirations of the contestants and also unzips thefetish sub-culture with interviews from sex experts
  • Hermann and Groenewold launch new producer-distributor

    Former Senator Filmexecutive Benjamin Herrmann and media fund manager David Groenewoldhave launched an as-yet-unnamed new theatrical distribution company andproduction house to handle primarily commercial German films.The distribution arm's firsttitles are:Philipp Stoelzl's Nordwand, starring Johanna Wokalek and Benno Fuermann in a drama about the failed first ascent of thenorth wall of the Eiger in 1936, to be produced by Medienkontor
  • Huntsberry named chief operating officer at Paramount

    Former president ofNBC Universal International Frederick Huntsberry has been named Paramount chiefoperating officer.Paramount chairman Brad Grey made the announcement on Sunday afternoon, addingthat worldwide marketing, distribution and business affairs chief Rob Moore hasadded oversight of Paramount Home Entertainment and Paramount Digital MediaGroup to his remit.Hu
  • India, UK start short documentary scheme

    Eight Indian film-makers will be given the chance to create athree-minute documentary film under the new Independence In3 Minutes scheme. The shorts programme is timed to the 60thanniversary of India'sindependence from the UK.Indian film-makers are invited to pitch proposals for a shortdocumentary about Indian independence and what it means to contemporary
  • India's Cinefan opens with Valley Of Flowers

    The 8th Osian'sCinefan (July 14-23) held its opening gala in Delhi on Saturday night, followedby the world premiere of France and India-based director Pan Nalin's Valley Of Flowers.A co-production between India, France, Japan and Germany
  • Jerusalem festival gives top prize to satire Dead End

    In a surprise decision, thejury of the 23rd Jerusalem Film Festival awarded the Wolginprize for best Israeli feature to DeadEnd, a black satire on TV reality shows directed by DrorSzabo. Szabo, who has beeninvolved in the production of reality shows, makes his feature directorialdebut with the project. The jury, headed
  • Lady In The Water

    Dir: M Night Shayamalan.US. 2006. 110 mins.An unusual setting,eccentric characters and a wry sense of humour partially compensate for asimplistic story and lack of mystery in M Night Shyamalan's Lady in theWater, a film that'sentertaining despite its shortcomings.Many fans of thewriter/director's past hits will find this modernist bedtime story/New Ageyempowerment parable not as suspenseful as his career-establishing hits, as wellas lacking in their s
  • Lenny Crooks to take over UK's New Cinema Fund

    TheUK Film Council has appointed Lenny Crooks as the new head of the New CinemaFund, effective Sept 18. His initial contract is for a two-year term, with theoption to extend by a further two years. Crookswill replace Paul Trijbits, whose six-year tenurewith the fund ends in September as expected. Crooks current serves asdirector of the Glasgow Film Office and he previously worked at Glasgow FilmFinance Ltd, the Glasgow Film Fund, and Inverclyde Productions. Duringhis 20-y
  • Locarno buyers grow to 150 from 28 countries

    Distributors from the UK, US, Russia, Spain and Romania are among theincreased numbers of internationalbuyers attending this year's Locarno Film Festival (August 2-12).Speaking exclusively to,Nadia Dresti, head of the festival's industry office, revealed that more than25 new companies will be coming to Locarno for the first time in 2006, bringingthe total number of buyers to over 150 from 28 countries. Since Dresti beganrunning the Industry Office in 2000, the nu
  • Locarno plans collaboration with Buenos Aires Lab

    Next month's Locarno International Film Festival hasforged a new collaboration with the Buenos Aires Lab (BAL), theLatin American co-production market for independent cinema within the frameworkof the Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival and TyPA (Teoria y Practica delas Artes), to allow selected filmmakers and producers from Latin America tomeet
  • Loewy, Theroux out at Alliance Atlantis' MDP

    Victor Loewy, the long-time head of Alliance AtlantisCommunication's distribution business, has resigned from his position ofchairman and director of Motion Picture Distribution LP (MPD). Also exiting thecompany is Patrice Theroux, another long-serving senior distribution executive,who leaves his post as president and CEO.MPD is the leading Canadian film distributor, with sub-distributiondeals with leading US mini-majors, including Miramax, Dimension, The WeinsteinCompany, Focus Featur
  • Magedman earns vp distribution stripes at WiP

    David Magedman has beenpromoted to vice president of distribution at Warner Independent Pictures,where his duties will include overseeing all sales and daily operations of thetheatrical distribution department for the upcoming releases The Science OfSleep, Infamous, For Your Consideration, and The Painted Veil.Magedman will continue to report to ex
  • Magic Box strikes Czech deal with Warner Bros

    Warner Home Video (WHV) hasstruck a deal with Czech independent home entertainment company Magic Box tolicense and distribute Warner Bros' new releases and library titles as ofOctober this year. In April, Warner Bros CzechRepublic managing director Ladislav Stastny told ScreenDaily.comthat falling revenues had lead to the decision to phase out the Czech affiliateoffice. In a statement, Philippe Cardon, WHV executive vice president and general managerfo
  • Miami fest names Ibero-American programmer

    Monika Wagenberg has been appointed senior programmer of Ibero-AmericanProgramming at the Miami International Film Festival (MIFF).
  • Miller to adapt The Spirit for Odd Lot

    Frank Miller will adapt anddirect Will Eisner's influential comic strip The Spirit for Los Angeles-based Odd Lot Entertainment.Miller, whose credits include Sin City and the upcoming graphic novel adaptation 300, will attend the comic book convention COMIC-Con onJul 22 to discuss the project.Odd Lot principals Deborah Del Prete and Gigi Pritzker will co-finance, and areproducing along with Batfilm Productions' Michael Uslan. Batfilm co-founderBenjamin Meln
  • My Super Ex-Girlfriend

    Dir: Ivan Reitman. US. 2006. 96mins.A tantalising comic premise about a beautifulsuperhero whose romantic frustration turns her into a vengeful stalker, Ivan Reitman's large budget action comedy My Super Ex-Girlfriend plays to diminished power that is all set-upand no pay-off. In particular, this flat, increasingly mannered work sabotagesa droll, inventive performance by Uma Thurman in the underwrittentitle role.Reitman's
  • NBR to name 2006 award winners on Dec 6

    The first eventscheduled thus far in the 2006 awards season calendar will take place when the National Board of Review names its winners on Dec 6.Members will screen close to 300 pictures for awards consideration in 2006. Theannual awards gala will take place at Cipriani in New York City onJan 9, 2007.The organistion, which comprises film aficionados and an elite cor
  • New Marbella festival to offer four competition sections

    Dancing For Oliver, a documentary about the making of the dancesequences in Oliver Stone's Alexander,is one of approximately 50 films to screen at the first International FilmFestival of Marbella, Spain this Sept 8-10.The festival, funded by thecharitable organization New World Trust, aims to promote new filmmakers fromaround the world. Organizers are still siftingthrough more than 500 features, short films, documentaries and animated moviessubmitted from more than
  • Perlman joins Classic as vp digital media

    Classic Media hashired Andrew Perlman to the new position of vice president of digital media.Perlman will be responsible for managing the mobile and online contentdistribution strategy for the company's 3,000-plus library, which includessubsidiary Big Idea's VeggieTalesbrand.Perlman will manage strategic partnerships with the likes of Google, Sprint,and MobiTV
  • Picture This! picks up A Love To Hide

    Picture This! Entertainmenthas picked up North American rights to Christian Faure's period drama A Love ToHide, which recently shared the OUTstanding narrativefeature award at Outfest.Jeremie Renier, Bruno Todeschini and Louise Monot star in the story setin German-occupied France of a gay couple's secret romance that is complicatedby the arrival in their midst of a Jewish woman.Picture This! Entertainment president Douglas Witkins negotiated the deal withDimitri Stephanides of
  • Pirates plunders $258.2m domestic 10-day haul

    The high seasadventures continued for Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest as it plundered an estimated $62.2m to raise the10-day tally to a staggering $258.2m.Buena Vista's adventure sequel mustered the third biggest second weekend inhistory behind Shrek 2's $72.2mand Spider-Man's $71.4m,and stayed top ahead of the new comedies Little Man a
  • Pirates sails past $125m international tally

    Pirates Of The Caribbean:Dead Man's Chest continued to rulethe waves as Buena Vista International's (BVI) adventure yarn cruised past$100m in its second weekend.The seventh title to cross $100m this year added an estimated $58m thanks to 18number one debuts that garnered $29.5m alone. Strong holds saw the pictureremain undefeated in the UK and Australia, among others.Opening in Russia, the picture plundered the biggest industry debut in historyon $10.4m from 530 screens
  • Pirates stays top, races past $250m after 20 days

    The high seasadventures continued for Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest as it plundered an estimated $62.2m to raise the10-day tally to a staggering $258.2m.Buena Vista's adventure sequel mustered the third biggest second weekend inhistory behind Shrek 2's $72.2mand Spider-Man's $71.4m,and stayed top ahead of the new comedies Little Man a
  • Plinyminor seals sales deal with Voltage

    Los Angeles andLouisiana-based production company Plinyminor has signed a deal with salesagency Voltage Pictures to handle foreign sales on six new titles.All pictures will get a US theatrical release through Omni Releasing and arelikely to air on the SCI-FI Channel. Plinyminor is in talks for a long-termhome entertainment deal.The titles include a sequel to the action horror title Mammoth, as well as five self-styled creature featurepopcorn movies i
  • Poland's Era New Horizons to open with Volver

    Thesixth Era New Horizons Film Festival (July 20-30) will open with Pedro Almodovar's Volver. The festival, based in Wroclaw, Poland, will close with Ken Loach's The Wind ThatShakes The Barley.Amongthe 18 features in competition are: Lukas Moodysson's Container, Julia Loktev's DayNight Day Night, ShinyaTsukamoto's Vital, Bruno Dumont's Flanders
  • Polley, Maddin premieres crown TIFF's Canadian line-up

    World premieres of SarahPolley's feature debut Away From Her andGuy Maddin's Brand Upon The Brain!will be among the Canadian offerings at this year's Toronto International FilmFestival. Starring Julie Christie andGordon Pinsent, Polley's highly-anticipated production has been given a covetedGala spot. The Maddin picture, screening as a Special Presentation, istypically idiosyncratic: a feature-length silent film, it will be screened withlive musical and foley accompanimen
  • Rosenfield joins Fifteen Minutes PR as entertainment chief

    Zachary Rosenfieldhas left Insignia PR and joined Fifteen Minutes PR as the head of its entertainment division.In his new capacity Rosenfield will handle a roster of corporate clients,producers, personalities and consumer product-entertainment crossover."Zach is a young man of immense skill and character and I know he will make agreat addition to our burgeoning team,
  • Salvador

    Dir: Manuel Huerga. Sp-UK. 2006. 138mins.Based on the true story of a dashing Spanish anarchistand his execution as General Franco's last political prisoner, Manuel Huerga's Salvadoris never an overtly bad film but does pantingly flirtwith disaster during its overlong running time.While well-mounted, withexcellent production values and convincing action, theatrical prospects forthis very particular piece of Spanish history
  • Scoop

    Dir: Woody Allen. UK/US. 2006. 96 mins. After a surge of sortswith last year's Oscar-nominated Match Point, Woody Allen's topsy-turvycareer slumps again with the featherweight Scoop. Having successfullypulled off a dark, Patricia Highsmith-esque thrillerset in London with Match Point, he applies the dizzy slapstick comedy ofThe Curse Of The Jade Scorpion and Manhattan Murder Mystery to aLondon setting in
  • Sheffield DocFest unveils early plans for autumn event

    The Sheffield DocFest 2006 (Oct 30-Nov 5) hasannounced several films in this year's programme. The 13th festival will include Paul Watson's Making a Documentary, MAD; Joe Angio's How To Eat YourWatermelon In White Company (And Enjoy It); Alan Berliner's Wide Awake; Anna Bucchetti'sDreaming By Numbers; and Sergei Loznitsa's Blockade.
  • Small Engine Repair takes first feature prize at Galway

    The 18th Galway Film Fleadh closed Sunday night with a preview presentation ofwriter/director David Gleeson's second feature The Frontline, a crime drama about vulnerable Congolese immigrantsin Dublin which will be released by BVI Ireland after itsofficial world premiere on August 25.The Front
  • Stephen Chow plans August start for A Hope

    Hong Kong actor anddirector Stephen Chow announced that he will shoot his new film A Hope (working title) in August in China's Southeastern city Ningbo. Budgeted at $20m,the film will be co-financed by Chow's Star Overseas Limited, China Film Groupand Beijing Polybona Film Publishing.Chow will star inthe sci-fi film with young Chinese actress
  • Stormbreaker (aka Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker)

    Dir: Geoffrey Sax. UK-US-Ger. 2006. 93mins.Geoffrey Sax's Stormbreaker, the first in whatthe producers are hoping will become a new British movie franchise to rival Spy Kids or Harry Potter, announces its intentions right at the outset. The audienceare treated to a frantic chase in which James Bond-style superspyIan Rider (Ewan McGregor) flees gun-toting enemies.It's an impressive sequence with pounding music, ultra-sli
  • Stormbreaker hopes to steal some Buena Vista bounty

    Buena Vista International top brass will be looking to extendtheir dominance of the last couple of weekends thanks to the one-two punch of PiratesOf The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and Cars.
  • Sway (Yureru)

    Dir: Miwa Nishikawa. Jap.2006. 119mins.Japanese film-maker Miwa Nishikawa may have beenmentored by acclaimed director's Hirokazu Kore-eda, but his latest feature, Sway, lacks the veteran's pacing and distinguished handling of drama.A supposed thriller thatuses a seemingly accidental death to deal with the malaise afflicting aJapanese family, and through it Japanese society, it isdull and overlong viewin
  • The Queen gets North American coronation at NYFF

    The 44th New York FilmFestival will open on Sept 29 with the North American premiere of StephenFrears' drama The Queen starringHelen Mirren as the current British monarch Elizabeth II (pictured) in the immediate aftermath of Princess Diana's death.The status and timing of the premiere suggests the picture is a shoo-in for a world premiere at Venice, which runs from Aug 30-Sept 9, however sources at international rightsholder Pathe were unreachable at time of writing. Miramax Fi
  • Toronto makes song-and-dance about Bollywood

    TheToronto International Film Festival will present world premieres from fourIndian filmmakers along with a Gala presentation of Karan Johar's New York City-set Bollywood-Hollywood romancer NeverSay Goodbye whose superstar cast thatincludes both Amitabh Bachchan and Shak Rukh Khan. The premieres include Kabir Khan's multiingual KabulExpress. Starring John Abraham, the film wasshot on locatio
  • TWC promotes Robinson to vp production and development

    Eric Robinson has beenpromoted to vice president of production and development at The WeinsteinCompany (TWC).Reporting to co-president of production Michel Cole and based in New York,Robinson will work on developing and producing projects for the studio,focusing mostly on animated material.As a vice president of production and development he currently oversees thedevelopment of all animated projects for the company including UnstableFables, Cricket In Times Square
  • TWC signs three-year deal with Akeelah's Atchison

    The Weinstein Company(TWC) has signed a three-picture, first-look deal with Akeelah And The Bee writer-director Doug Atchison.The first two titles under the deal are the romantic comedy Outspoken and the First World War romance The Last Caravan. Atchison's manager Lou Pitt will produce both projects.TWC co-president of production Michael Cole and
  • UK exhibitor Vue offers chapter with Stormbreaker tickets

    Vue Cinemas is working with UK distributor Entertainmentin a special promotion for the forthcoming release of Stormbreaker. Vue will give away a free copy of a bonus chapterof Stormbreakerwith every ticket to the film. The chapter, entitled RTI, is written byAnthony Horowitz, and "uncovers more secrets in the world of young spy AlexRider." The film
  • UK's Cinesite lands work on The Golden Compass

    UK post-production company Cinesite has been struck a major deal for visual effectswork on New Line's forthcoming The GoldenCompass. TheGolden Compass is New Line's first in a planned trilogy based on PhillipPullman's His Dark Materials books.Chris Weitz will direct the story of a young girl whotravels through parallel universes. TheUK sho
  • Unfinished Sky secures FFC backing

    Peter Duncan's romanticthriller Unfinished Sky, about afarmer and an Afghani illegal immigrant who fall in love, is one of threefeatures to receive production finance from Film Finance Corporation Australia this week. Australian actor WilliamMcInnes (Look Both Ways) will playthe farmer and Dutch actress Monic Hendrickx has been cast as the illegalimmigrant. Duncan's
  • Universal partners with Telefonica for Spain downloads

    Universal Pictures Iberia is partnering with Telefonicade Espana to launch the first legal download-to-own filmservice in Spain. The service, which launches today on Telefonica'snew Pixbox portal, will use Avartopeer-to-peer technology. The model will provide users with access to two digital files, one for aPC or laptop and one for a portable device. The initial selectoin of films will be 30 Universal feature
  • Universal rewards trio of senior executives

    Universal Pictures top brass have promoted three senior veterans aspart of an operational restructure.Rick Finkelsteinbecomes vice chairman of Universal Pictures and executive vice president ofUniversal Studios; Jimmy Horowitz has been named co-president of producti
  • Warner China Film unveils local release slate

    Following its success with thedistribution of Ning Hao's black comedy CrazyStone, Warner China Film HG Corporation has announced its release slate forthe rest of the year. Produced by Hong Kong star Andy Lau's Focus Films, CrazyStone opened in China on June 30 and has grossed more than $1.5m (RMB12m)to date, driven by strong word-of-mouth and positive media coverage. It heldthe number o

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