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27 August 2008

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  • AMPAS to preserve archives from UA/MGM library

    MGM will present the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences' Margaret Herrick Library with the UA photo archives including original still photography, publicity materials and paper documents relating to MGM and UA releases called the MGM/United Artists Collection.The Academy will review, restore, catalogue and exhibit the collection as part of its Margaret Herrick Library. The UA library contains nearly 1,000 films such as The Apartment, In The
  • Babylon A.D.

    Dir: Mathieu Kassovitz. 2008. France. 101mins.An American mercenary stranded in Eastern Europe finds his ticket back home escorting a very special young lady the 6,000 treacherous miles from a convent in Kazakhstan to the Manhattan of the future in Babylon A.D. Mathieu Kassovitz's ambitious but flawed sci-fi action movie touches on themes from a woman's right to control her own body to the power of American copyright by way of a lot of explosions and fist figh
  • Beta Cinema handling sales on two Venice world premieres

    Beta Cinema is to handle international sales on two Italian films - Marco Pontecorvo's Pa-Ra-Da, the opening film of the Horizons sidebar, and Uberto Pasolini's Venice Days title Machan - which are having their world premieres at next week's Venice Film Festival.Pa-Ra-Da, DoP Pontecorvo's feature film debut, tells the true story of the Franco-Algerian clown Miloud Oukili who set up a circus in Bucharest for Romanian street children. The film will be released
  • Binder's Greentree Films boards sci-fi actioner Gaea

    Producer Jack Binder, whose credits include The Upside Of Anger and Reign Over Me, has boarded the sci-fi action title Gaea: Beyond The Son via his Greentrees Films label.The story centres on a father and son who seek to reunite despite being apart for more than 30 years across two solar systems. Greentrees is shepherding the project and plans a 2009 shoot.
  • Brian Owens named artistic director at Nashville Film Festival

    Brian Owens has been hired as artistic director of the Nashville Film Festival, which is gearing up for its 40th anniversary celebrations from April 16-23, 2009.Owens previously served as artistic director of the Indianapolis International Film Festival, which he founded in 2003.During his tenure he expanded the festival's programming to more than 130 films spread over 11 days and presided over an increase in attendance from 2,400 in 2003 to more than 9,000.'T
  • Buick Riviera

    Dir: Goran Rusinovic. Croatia-Bosnia-Herzegovina-UK-US-Ger. 2008. 85mins.The winner of Sarajevo best film, best actor and FIPRESCI prizes, Goran Rusinovic's Buick Riviera takes the war in Bosnia to the frozen plains of Minnesota in a film about racial hatred and personal animosity. A Serb and a Muslem, both from Bosnia, meet accidentally in the middle of a deserted highway and immediately launch into a spiteful verbal duel which continues until the film's fatal co
  • Buick Riviera wins prizes for best film, actor at Sarajevo Film Festival

    Goran Rusinovic’s Buick Riviera, a co-production between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, was the big winner in the competition section of the 14th annual Sarajevo Film Festival which closed on Saturday night.
  • Burn After Reading

    Dirs/scr: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen. US. 2008. 95mins.
  • Burn After Reading opens Venice Film Festival

    Venice kickedoff last nightwith the galapremiereof the Coen Brothers' Burn After Reading.George Clooney and Brad Bitt brought some A-list star power to the red carpet for the opening. To see Screen's review of the film click here.More big names are expected to arrive forthe traditionally glitzy opening weekend, which will include Guillermo Arriaga's The Burning Plain, starring Char
  • Cast lines up for Warner biopic Coco Before Chanel

    Production is set to begin on Sept 15 in Paris on Anne Fontaine's Coco Avant Chanel (Coco Before Chanel), a new film about the life of the legendary French fashion designer which is being produced by Warner Bros International in association with Haut Et Court, Cine-@, Warner Bros Entertainment and Films Distribution.Audrey Tautou stars in the film which focuses on Chanel's younger years. The supporting cast includes Benoit Poelvoorde, Marie Gil
  • Celluloid Dreams picks up two Venice titles

    Celluloid Dreams has added two Venice titles to its line up. Amir Naderi's Vegas: Based On A True Story and Matt Tyrnauer's Valentino: The Last Emperor now join Celluloid's slate, the company announced Tuesday. Valentino will have a gala screening at La Fenice and is also set to run in Toronto's Reel to Reel section. Celluloid will screen
  • CineLink announces best-pitch awards

    CineLink, the industry section of the Sarajevo Film Festival, announced its awards for the best projects pitched in the southeastern Europe co-production market. The EAVE scholarship went to Serkan Cakarer, producer of the Turkish project Broken Mussels, from director Seyeftin Tokmak. Broken Mussels received the ARTE Sarajevo Film Festival award. The Magic Box service award to Romanian proje
  • CMG sells Chemical Wedding to North America, France, Benelux

    Edward Noeltner's Cinema Management Group (CMG) has closed several major territorial deals throughout the summer on Chemical Wedding, an occult thriller written by Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson.Starz/Anchor Bay Entertainment has taken rights in North America and Universal Pictures Video (France) bought rights in France, Belgium and The Netherlands.Julian Doyle directed the film in which Simon Callow plays the reincarnation o
  • Dark Knight lords it over international box office

    The Dark Knight destroyed the competition at the weekend to consolidate its ranking as the second biggest overseas release of the year-to-date behind Indiana Jones thanks to an estimated $34m haul that boosted the running total to $381.2m.The Warner Bros Pictures International release was in action on more than 7,700 screens in 62 markets and led the way with a $9.2m German debut on 955 screens that soared to the top of the charts despite a fai
  • Death Race

    Dir. Paul WS Anderson. US. 2008. 105mins.Forget satire. British genre expert Paul WS Anderson goes mostly for metal- and bone-crunching action in his efficiently visceral but not very imaginative rethink of Roger Corman's tongue-in-cheek 1975 B movie Death Race 2000. With reliable action everyman Jason Statham in the lead, this R-rated thrill ride could work for the kind of audience that follows car racing and mixed martial arts fighting on TV. But worldwide distr
  • Deauville adds Chaos Theory, Sex And The USA, and Polanski doc

    The upcoming Deauville Festival of American Film has added a handful of films and a tribute to independent director Charles Burnett for its 34th edition. Further, it has announced the jury members for the Cartier Revelation Prize.Zoe Cassavetes, whose Broken English ran in competition last year, will head up the Cartier jury which awards a prize for most promising newcomer. Joining her are Lea Drucker, Jalil Lespert, Ara Starck and Disteme.Films added to the festival incl
  • Ealing Studios sells St Trinian's in three key territories

    Ealing Studios International has announced that it has concludedanother three key deals for the distribution of UK box-office hit St Trinian's.The deals, announced Aug 26, have Neo Classics taking United States, Alliance taking Canada and Filmax taking Spain.Making the announcement, Barnaby Thompson, Head of Studio, EalingStudios said: 'We've had lots of interest since Cannes, but obviouslythe United States in particular is a key m
  • Eden Lake

    Dir: James Watkins. UK . 2008. 90mins.More Funny Games than Donkey Punch, Eden Lake is a gruelling, grimly effective British chiller. The directorial debut of My Little Eye screenwriter James Watkins achieves a commendable balance of dramatic credibility and psychological intensity that makes his nightmare scenario all the more disturbing. The story of a young middle-class couple terrorised by wild teenagers can also be read as a bleak c
  • Eden to open Irish Film Festival Of Los Angeles on Oct 2

    The West Coast premiere of Liberation Entertainment's marriage drama Eden will open the first Irish Film Festival Of Los Angeles, set to run from October 2-5.Among the films in the programme are Tom Collins' drama Kings about six intertwined lives that stars Colm Meaney, Donal O'Kelly and Brendan Conroy, as well as Louis Lentin's Grandpa Speak To Me In Russian a
  • Elle Driver picks up titles in Venice, Toronto including Paper Soldier

    Nearing its first birthday, French sales company Elle Driver will head to its first Venice and Toronto Festivals with a handful of films across the various sections including some new titles.In Venice, Elle boasts the previously announced The Sky Crawlers by Mamoru Oshii which Warners released in Japan on August 2 to much fanfare. The Sky Crawlers is screening in competition in Venice and in Visions in To
  • Fictitious documentary on Tropic Thunder goes onto iTunes

    DreamWorks has uploaded a companion piece to Tropic Thunder on iTunes that chronicles the fictitious cast and crew's struggle to film the movie with the movie in Paramount-DreamWorks' recent action comedy release.The mockumentary Rain Of Madness stars Jay Baruchel, Jack Black, Steve Coogan, Robert Downey Jr, Bill Hader, Nick Nolte and Ben Stiller and was shot on location in Hawaii at the same locations
  • Fifty Dead Men to go ahead at Toronto in defiance of IRA mole

    The world premiere of Kari Skogland's Toronto International Film Festival gala Fifty Dead Men Walking will take place, say the film's co-producers, Future Films and HandMade Films International. The film has been the centre of row involving Martin McGartland, the former RUC Special Branch mole who infiltrated the IRA and whose eponymous autobiography inspired the work. McGartland told Screen International the version of
  • Flashback to 2007

    Lust, CautionAng Lee's Lust, Caution was the surprise toast of Venice last year, stealing the Golden Lion from under the nose of critical favourite, Abdellatif Kechiche's Couscous (aka The Secret Of The Grain). It went on to dominate at the Golden Horse Awards in Taiwan, with seven wins including best feature, director, actor and adapted screenplay, and was nominated for best foreign film at the Baftas and the Golden Globes. However, it co
  • Fortissimo adds Food, Inc. to its Toronto line-up

    Fortissimo Films has acquired documentary feature Food, Inc., which is set to receive its world premiere at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival. Produced and directed by Robert Kenner (PBS documentary series The American Experience), the film examines the American food industry and how conditions within the US borders affect the entire globe. The film draws upon the reportage of Eric Schlosse
  • Ginnane appointed president of Oz producers association

    Distributor and producer Antony Ginnane has been voted president of the Screen Producers Association of Australia (SPAA) in what is believed to be the first three-way contest in the organisation's history. Ginnane defeated the incumbent, Trish Lake (Gettin' Square), and Michael Bourchier (Lucky Miles). His one-year term starts from September 25.'I am pleased and excited, and a little struck by the immensity of it,' he told 'It is a privilege an
  • Goldcrest forms New York division to co-produce independent films

    The Goldcrest Group has formed a new New York-based division called Goldcrest Features which plans to integrate the production process for independent film-makers from pre-production through post-production and delivery all under one roof. The remit is to co-produce up to seven films a year with budgets up to $15m.Gretchen McGowan, who ran production at Mark Cuban's HDNet Films and most recently produced Jim Jarmusch's The Limits Of Control, w
  • Haugesund's Co-Production Forum welcomes 18 projects

    The third Nordic Co-Production Forum will host 18 feature film projects with budgets between Euros 1.6m-10m. The event opens today at the Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund.Total costs of the film which will be discussed by German, Canadian and Nordic producers amount to Euros 65m.110 participants have registered for the event, including 75 producers and 60 buyers, will be discussing the catalogue during the two-day forum which is part of New Nordic Films, the fe
  • Haugesund's New Nordic Films kicks off with record 325 attendees

    Opening on today with a record number of 325 participants, New Nordic Films - the three-day market section of the Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund - will this year present 23 recent Nordic features and 11 works-in-progress, adding 18 projectsat the Nordic Co-Production Forum.'The showcase is intended support
  • here! Films takes domestic on De Fleur's Queen Raquela

    here! Films has acquired North American rights to Icelandic film-maker Olaf De Fleur's The Amazing Truth About Queen Raquela.Sister company Regent Releasing will distribute the film in select cities this autumn starting with New York and Los Angeles on September 26.The Amazing Truth About Queen Raquela centres on a transsexual ladyboy from the Philippines who drea
  • In Focus: The awards season

    Between last September and December, studios and independents unleashed 42 prestige English-language films on domestic audiences. On paper it was a bumper Oscar-qualification season which featured titles from Tim Burton, David Cronenberg, Sidney Lumet, the Coen brothers, Paul Thomas Anderson, Ridley Scott, Robert Redford and Mike Nichols.But 2008 is a less crowded affair. In the same period, only 32 awards-qualifying pictures are scheduled to open and, although there are some heavyweig
  • Interview: Barbet Schroeder

    Now in his mid-60s, film-maker and self-proclaimed iconoclast Barbet Schroeder is busier than ever. His new feature, Inju, The Beast In The Shadow, will be in competition at Venice and will screen in Toronto, just a year after his documentary Terror's Advocate, about controversial lawyer Jacques Verges, screened in Cannes. And he is now preparing A Very Simple Crime, which reunites him with writer Nicholas Kazan, with whom he collaborated on 1990 Oscar winner Reversal
  • Italian sales agents announce deals on eve of Venice

    Italian sales agents have announced two pick-ups on the eve of the 65th Venice Film Festival, which kicks off Aug 27.Rai Trade has picked up Pupi Avati's competition title Il papa di Giovanna, about a man who has to put his daughter in a mental institution after she murders a schoolmate. The film stars Alba Rochwacher, Francesca Neri and Silvio Orlando and is produced by Duea Film with Medusa and Sky.Adrianna Chiesa has picked up wo
  • signs over 100 Lionsgate titles to its online service

    Online distribution service and film community has signed a deal with Lionsgate to make over 100 Lionsgate titles to Jaman's users.Under the terms of the deal, will showcase Lionsgate titles on its site, some of which will be available for free, ad-supported and instantly streamed in high-definition quality. Viewers can watch the films immediately in their web browser with one click and no need to download an additional client. Premium feature films fr
  • Joel B Michaels joins Halcyon as president of production

    Veteran producer Joel B Michaels has been named president of production at The Halcyon Company, it was announced today by co-CEOs Victor Kubicek and Derek AndersonMichaels, who is currently serving as executive producer on Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles for TV, joins the company immediately and will oversee Terminator Salvation which recently completed principal photography in New Mexico.
  • London animation fest to host UK premiere of Plympton's Idiots

    The fifth London International Animation Festival (LIAF) is taking place from Sept 1-7, with more than 220 animated films from 27 different countries being shown at various London venues.Films being screened at the festival include the UK premiere of Bill Plympton's graphic pencil-drawn style Idiots and Angels, the French animated Fear(s) Of The Dark, which was shown at the Edinburgh International Film Festival, and Estonian puppet animation studio Nukufilm's Kings Of
  • Maple Pictures takes Canadian rights to McDonald's Pontypool

    Toronto-based distributor Maple Pictures has acquired all Canadian rights in all media to Bruce McDonald's TIFF Vanguard title, Pontypool. Described as the veteran guerilla filmmaker's first foray into horror, the film explores the terrorizing effects of a strange virus in a small town. It's adapted from the novel Pontypool Changes Everything by Tony Burgess.The deal was negotiated by John B
  • Maximum picks up world sales to McGowan, Mehta Toronto titles

    Maximum Films International has picked up world sales rights on two major Canadian titles at TIFF: Michael McGowan's gala title, One Week, and Deepa Mehta's special presentation, Heaven On Earth.The One Week deal covers all rights except for Canada while the Heaven On Earth deal covers the world ex Canada and the US. ICM i
  • Pam Postrel named svp of creative services at Universal Pictures

    Pam Postrel has joined Universal Pictures as senior vice president of creative services, returning to the studio following a six-year stint as vice president and creative director of animation at Craig Murray Productions.In her new position Postrel will oversee all in-house creative audio-visual projects assigned by marketing executives within Universal's Motion Pictures Group (UMPG).Postrel will manage a team of 27 to oversee trailers, TV spots, sales reels and ancillary
  • Paramount relaunches made-for-home-entertainment division

    Paramount Pictures is relaunching its made-for-home entertainment production division under the banner Paramount Famous Productions (PFP).Since the division's launch in 2007, president Louis Feola has overseen operations and preparing the division for 2010, when it plans to release five or six titles based on a mix of sequels, prequels and remakes from the libraries of Paramount Pictures, Paramount Vantage, DreamWorks Pictures, MTV Films and Nickelodeon Movies.PFP will al
  • Paris 36 (Faubourg 36)

    Dir. Christophe Barratier. 2008. Fr/Ger/Czech Republic. 120 min.The proud sentimentality that made Christophe Barratier’s first film, Les Choristes, a runaway hit in France is back with a vengeance in Paris 36 (Fabourg 36) a retro musical with all the period trappings of 1936 France, from accordion music to the left-wing Popular Front alliance.A beloved cast with the added pep of newcomer Nora Arnezeder as the talented ingenue whose arrival
  • Peace Arch, ContentFilm take North American rights to JCVD

    Peace Arch Home Entertainment, the fledgling division owned by Peace Arch Entertainment Group and ContentFilm, has picked up all North American rights to JCVD starring Jean-Claude Van Damme.The action comedy is set to receive its North American premiere in the Midnight Madness programme at Toronto on September 4 and will open in theatres shortly afterwards.JCVD premiered at Cannes and stars Va
  • PIFF names Gulnara Sarsenova as Asian Filmmaker of the Year

    The 13th Pusan International Film Festival (PIFF) has announced that Gulnara Sarsenova from Kazakhstan will be the recipient of its Asian Filmmaker of the Year award. Sarsenova, the first woman to win the award, is currently festival chairman of the International Eurasia Film Festival and also a producer whose credits include director Sergei Bodrov's Mongol, which was nominated for an Academy Award earlier this year; Bertrand Tavernier's In The Electric Mist, and Sergei Dvor
  • Pre-Toronto buys: SPC takes Paris 36, THINKFilm buys Genova

    In two significant pre-Toronto acquisitions, Sony Pictures Classics has acquired US, Australasian and Scandinavian rights from Pathe International to Christophe Barratier's Paris 36 (Faubourg 36) while THINKFilm has acquired North American rights to Michael Winterbottom's Genova.Paris 36, follow-up to Barratier's feted 2004 release L
  • Preview: Venice film festival

    The 65th edition of the Venice film festival (August 27-September 6) may well be remembered as the year the world's oldest film festival greeted a bright new future.After a very successful four years as artistic director, Marco Mueller has been reconfirmed for a second mandate, working alongside Biennale president Paolo Baratta, who returns after holding the position in 1998.'We have very lofty goals,' Mueller says of their shared priority to upgrade Venice's screening facilitie
  • Religulous

    Dir: Larry Charles. US. 2008. 100mins.A blunt satiric object applied to delicate subject matter, Religulous is a consistently funny if one-sided putdown of society’s blind devotion to its many religious faiths. In the hands of Borat director Larry Charles and American political comedian Bill Maher, the documentary occasionally scores easy laughs by catering to its audience’s liberal prejudices, but there’s no disputing that this irreverent survey of weak-mi
  • Rothstein, Kier step up to run TWC International as Basner departs

    Harvey Weinstein has promoted Michael Rothstein and Jonathan Kier to fill the slot vacated by The Weinstein Company International chief Glen Basner, who as widely predicted has departed the company following a three-year tenure.Rothstein has worked with the Weinsteins for more than a decade and becomes executive vice president of international sales and distribution, while three-year veteran Kier is named senior vice president of international sales and distribution.Toget
  • Rushes' Sharon Hill named UK Screen Shining Star

    Trade group UK Screen has selected Sharon Hill as winner of its first Shining Star scheme.Hill is head of library services at Rushes.The new initiative seeks to recognise non-creative employees at UK Screen member companies.A new star will be named each month and all will be recognised at the Vision Charity Ball in DecemberHill was nominated by Rushes managing director Joce Capper, who said: 'Sharon knows how important it is to be organised in such a fast-paced and
  • San Sebastian announces Zabaltegi Pearls and Specials sections

    The San Sebastian film festival has announced the full line-ups for the Zabaltegi Pearls and Zabaltegi Specials sections, including titles from some of the biggest names in cinema at the moment.Zabaltegi Pearls showcases films that have already featured prominently on the international festival circuit but have not yet had their release in Spain. This year's line-up includes Woody Allen's Vicky Cristina Barcelona, the Coen brothers'
  • San Sebastian's Zabaltegi-New Directors names 14 selections

    The San Sebastian Film Festival has unveiled the 14 films in its Zabaltegi-New Directors section.The section, with a Euros 90,000 prize to be shared between the director and the Spanish distributor, is devoted to film-makers presenting first or second films not previously screened at any other international competition. (Official Selection films not in Zabaltegi are also eligible for the award if they meet the criteria.)Two directors are in the section for the second time: Gabri
  • Scott Parish promoted to COO at Alcon Entertainment

    Scott Parish has been promoted to COO at Warner Bros-based Alcon Entertainment.Parish joined Alcon Entertainment in 2000 as vice president of finance and was promoted to CFO in 2004. He will retain the title of CFO and oversee all finance and operations duties for the company.The former New Regency vice president of finance and operations played an integral role in securing $550m in new production financing, which was announced in May, as well as extending Alcon's overall
  • Scottish Screen increases slate funding to $2m over 2 years

    Scottish Screen has selected five production companies to receive substantial finance through the organisation's Slate Fund. Launched in March 2008, the Slate Fund was originally intend to offer a share of $741,325 (£400,000) to a maximum of four companies. The quantity and quality of the applications has led to the five successful companies securing additional finance and market interest in their development slates.The investment in project development over a two-ye
  • Screen opinion:Tuning into a new era

    Back in the 1970s, musician Benny Green wrote an essay on the demise of jazz. His lament was that every possible combination of notes had been explored, reworked, reversed and occasionally twisted into barely listenable shapes. 'We have to ask whether today's brilliant jazz musicians have left themselves any fresh fields to explore,' he suggested. And the answer has proved to be, well, not many.Now jazz is one of cinema's old pals from way back when, and there's an argument that arthou
  • Shochiku buys Japanese rights to Chorus Line doc Every Little Step

    Shochiku Co Ltd has taken Japanese rights to Endgame Entertainment's documentary Every Little Step which has its world premiere as a special presentation at the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept 6.The company plans to release the film, which charts the Broadway musical A Chorus Line from idea to global phenomenon, on Oct 25 in Japan.The deal was negotiated by William Morris Independe
  • Shroder to direct mythological movie for SCI FI in Romania

    Ricky Schroder is to direct Hellhounds, an original movie for the US SCI FI Channel which will shoot on location in Romania from Aug 31 to Sept 19.The film is an international co-production between Canada's Muse Entertainment and Romania's SC Studiourile Media Pro. Muse's Michael Prupas is executive producing alongside RHI Entertainment's Robert Halmi Sr and Robert Halmi Jr. RHI will handle worldwide distribution.The film is set in
  • Sony, MGM move US release of Quantum Of Solace to Nov 14

    Columbia and MGM have moved the release of Quantum Of Solace back by one week to November 14 to capitalise on the Thanksgiving Holiday and Warner Bros' decision last week to push back Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince from November 21 to July 2009.In the wake of Warner Bros' move, Summit Entertainment moved its highly anticipated vampire saga
  • Steve Friedlander named evp of theatrical distribution at CBS Films

    CBS Films took a big step forward with its domestic distribution plans today [Aug 20] as it announced that Steven Friedlander has been named executive vice president of theatrical distribution.Friedlander arrives from the defunct Warner Independent Pictures (WiP) and will oversee the domestic theatrical distribution for the studio's films and reports directly to film division president and CEO Amy Baer.Baer called the new hire a respected distribution executive who was 'h
  • Survival Song takes Red Chameleon award at CinDi fest

    The 2nd Cinema Digital Seoul Film Festival (CinDi) closed with a screening of Yu Guangyi's Survival Song, which won the International Directors Jury's Red Chameleon award yesterday (Aug 26). The jury, led by Korean Chinese director Zhang Lu, praised the film for 'continually shooting even in extremely limited light to show a side of the true China' and for showing 'how far documentaries can go with the two tools of simplicity and minimalism'. The film documented the last days of a
  • The Dark Knight sweeps into Germany for WBPI

    Warner Bros Pictures International's (WBPI) The Dark Knight will continue to rumble its way towards $400m this weekend as it launches in Germany on August 21 and Austria on August 22.The crime epic currently stands at $346.5m and can expect fierce challenge from Universal's Hellboy II: The Golden Army on $25.7m, which is set to open in eight territories through UPI including the UK, a major battleground t
  • The Very Best Film 2 wraps production in Moscow

    In Moscow, Russian director Oleg Fomin has concluded production on The Very Best Film 2, the sequel to the No. 2 box-office hit in Russia this year. Buena Vista Sony Pictures Releasing (BVSPR) will release the film Jan 22, according to Russian Film Business Today.The Very Best Film, directed by Kirill Kuzin, has grossed nearly $30m since its Jan 24 re
  • The Works takes on Belgian titles Unspoken and Loft

    Ahead of this year's Toronto film festival, London-based The Works International has picked up the world sales rights to a brace of Belgian films: Unspoken, written and directed by Fien Troch, and Erik Van Looy's Loft.Unspoken will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. It is scheduled for a Belgian release through Cineart in early 2009. (Troch's previous film Someone Else's Happiness also screened in T
  • Thunder holds onto top spot as domestic summer draws to a close

    DreamWorks-Paramount's action comedy Tropic Thunder held on to the number one spot in a typically lacklustre late August weekend and added an estimated $16.1m for a $65.7m total.Sony's comedy The House Bunny, which stars Anna Faris as a Playboy bunny cast out of the Mansion who helps a group of sorority girls, opened in second place on $15.1m, while Universal's prison action remake
  • Toronto's Filmport officially open for business

    Toronto's long-awaited mega-studio, Filmport Studios, was officially opened today. Filmmaker David Cronenberg was on hand for the event alongside Toronto mayor David Miller and Filmport president Ken Ferguson.The facility is the largest studio complex outside of Los Angeles and lays claim to the continent's largest purpose-built sound stage: 45,900 sq. ft with more than an acre of column-free space below a 6-storey high lighting grid. In all, its over 250,000 sq. ft of production spa
  • UPIE kicks off Blu-ray strategy with day-and-date launch of Hulk

    Universal Pictures International Entertainment (UPIE) kicks off its international Blu-ray strategy on October 13 with the day-and-date launch of The Incredible Hulk on the high definition format and DVD.The company's Blu-ray release platform will reach the UK, Australia, France, Germany, Russia, Japan, Spain, Mexico, Italy and Brazil this year.Up to 30 titles are scheduled to launch in 2008 including
  • Venice 2008: Buzz films

    BUZZ VENICE FILMSCOMPETITIONAchilles And The Tortoise (Akires To Kame) (Jap)Dir: Takeshi KitanoThe story: Follows a failed painter and the long-suffering family that supports him.The cast: Kitano takes the lead, alongside Kanako Higuchi and popular actress Kumiko Aso, whose credits include Dororo.The buzz:
  • Venice Horizons adds Iranian debut Tedium (Khastegi)

    Tedium (Khastegi), the debut film of Iranian director Bahman Motamedian, is the first of two surprise films to be added to Venice's Horizon's line-up, the Biennale announced today.The Tehran-set film follows the experience of seven transsexuals within the confines of Iran's conservative culture. The film's title underscores the public and personal estrangement these individuals feel as they work out their identities within Iran's restrictive and traditional social mores.
  • Visit Films acquires worldwide rights to Adolfo Alix Jr's Adela

    New York-based Visit Films has acquired worldwide rights to Adolfo Alix Jr's Filipino drama Adela ahead of its premiere in the Toronto International Film Festival's Contemporary World Cinema section next month.The film tells the story of a former radio personality celebrating her 80th birthday in the slums of Manila who reflects on her lonely life. Anita Linda stars and Arleen Cuevas produced Alix Jr's follow-up to the Philippine's 2007 foreign