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5 May 2006

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  • Alliance Atlantis, Arclight team for US distribution joint venture

    Alliance Atlantis Motion Picture Distribution (MPD) and ArclightFilms are launching the US-based distribution joint venture Union Station Media.
  • American Pavilion goes green with Paramount, Participant in Cannes

    The American Pavilion in Cannes and Paramount's specialty divisionare teaming up to raise awareness over global warming.
  • Arclight already closing deals for Un Certain Regard's 2:37

    ArclightFilms will handle worldwide sales at the Cannes market for first-time Australian director Murali K Thalluri's drama 2:37, which was recently added to the Un Certain Regard line-up at Cannes.
  • Ascot Elite picks up German-language rights to thriller Unknown

    Onthe eve of this year's Cannes Film Market, Swiss independent distributor AscotElite has announced the acquisition from GreeneStreetFilms International of Simon Brand's high-concept thriller Unknown forGerman-language territories Germany, Austria and Switzerland.Thefilm stars
  • Barbakow takes over as president of board at Santa Barbara festival

    The 22nd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF)will take place in 2007 from Jan 25 to Feb 4.
  • Bavaria takes on sales for Norwegian Critics' Week feature The Bothersome Man

    BavariaFilm International has added International Critics' Week title The Bothersome Man (Den BrysommeMannen) by to its Cannes sales slate. Norwegianfilmmaker Jens Lien's second feature, which is described as 'a fantasticand bitingly funny fable that bears echoes of The Truman Show, will have its world premiere in Cannes and thenopen wide in Norway on May 26.Thecomic parable of modern society was produ
  • Beta Cinema to handle sales on Falorni feature debut

    Beta Cinema hastaken on international sales on Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Luigi Falorni's fiction feature debut Heart Of Fire based on SenaitMehari's international bestseller of the same name.Published in2004 as Feuerherz,Mehari's memoirs recount how she was given away byher despotic father to the Eritrean Liberation Front to become a child soldierat the age of six. The sharp-witted little Senaitlived through the horrors of a guerrilla war and challenged her le
  • Bille August starts South African shoot for Goodbye Bafana

    Production has started in South Africa on Bille August's NelsonMandela project Goodbye Bafana, with Dennis Haysbertof TV's 24 playing the former South African premier and Joseph Fiennes as hisprison guard for almost 20 years, James Gregory.Diane Kruger also stars asJames' wife, Gloria, in the Banana Films/ArsamInternational production adapted for the screen by Greg Latter and Bille August from Gregory's own memoirs,
  • Bubble set for multi-platform release in Korea

    Steven Soderbergh's Bubble is set to be the first film in Korea to receive a day-and-date multi-platform release onmobile phones as well as theatrical, cable TV, DVD and video-on-demand (VoD).The film is to open on May 11.The experimental thrilleroriginally saw a simultaneous release in the US this past January in theatres, DVD andhigh-definition cable
  • Buena Vista picks up Oz rights to Samoan Wedding

    Buena Vista Internationalhas picked up Australian rights to feel-good New Zealand comedy SamoanWedding (aka Sione's Wedding) andwill release it in mid-July.Director Chris Graham'sdebut film grossed $2m (NZ$3.14m) for Sony in its first five weeks on homesoil. Putting aside US-funded local blockbusters such as the Lord Of The Rings trilogy and King Kong, this result means it hasalready earned a pl
  • BVI partners with MegaStar for Vietnam distribution

    Buena Vista International (BVI) has formed a partnership withMegaStar Joint Venture Company to distribute pictures in Vietnam.
  • Cannes announces Directors Fortnight lineup

    Europe once again comes on strong amongst Cannes competitors with the Directors Fortnight sidebar boasting 11 films from the continent. In total, 22 titles were announced Tuesday morning in Paris with six films from France alone, not including co-productions in which the country is involved.The US makes the second biggest appearance with five titles, including Bug, the latest from veteran director William Friedkin who marks his first official trip to Cannes this year. The thrill
  • Cannes Classics to present restored Platoon

    The Cannes Film Festival has announced the lineup for this year'sedition of Cannes Classics. The initiative is a specially programmed sectionwhich screens new and restored copies of old films.Special invitees include Oliver Stone for a screening of a restoredversion of Platoon and 20 minutes of his forthcoming film World TradeCenter. Also on hand will be actress - and wife of Sidney Poitier - Joanna Shimkus who will present Roberto Enrico's 1967 film LesAventuri
  • Celluloid Dreams sets up shop in the UK

    French sales label CelluloidDreams is to open a London office, with JanineGold as vice president of acquisitions and sales overseeing UK material andmanaging the Paris-based sales team.The move follows Celluloid's markedexpansion into English-language fare and European co-productions. Currently thelabel is representing UK projects including Francois Ozon'sEnglish-language
  • China greenlights secure box office reporting system

    Auckland-based VistaEntertainment Solutions has been granted permission to sell its cinemamanagement software independently in China and has made its first sale to Hong Kong exhibitor MCL's new cinema in Shenzhen. Vista claims to be the first company offering globallyaccepted financial management and secure reporting systems to gain officialaccreditation from
  • Chinese film Father wins first feature award at San Francisco

    Ying Liang's Chinese picture Taking Father Home won the Skyy prize for first narrativefeature at the 49th San Francisco International Film Festival Golden GateAwards ceremony.
  • Cinema Expo to honour Warner Bros pair

    CinemaExpo International announced that it will award its 2006 internationalachievement in distribution and marketing award to Warner Bros PicturesInternational's Monique Esclavissat and Con Gornell.Escalvissat serves asexecutive VP of European distribution and Gornell asexecutive VP or European marketing. They have worked on recent hits includin
  • Confetti

    Dir: Debbie Isitt. UK.2006. 100mins.A good-natured but uneven farce, Debbie Isitt's Confettipokes fun at the marriage industry, using a mockumentarystructure borrowed from Christopher Guest's BestIn Show - but with engaged couples instead of dogsin the limelight. Meanwhile, the deadpan humour and low-key acting style aredistinctively British, with a cast that includes actors from several of theUK's most popular comedies (Al
  • Cotter joins Legendary Pictures as vp, creative affairs

    Alysia Cotter has joined Burbank-based Legendary Pictures in thenewly created role of vice president of creative affairs.
  • Danielak's Arsenal picks up Rosario Dawson thriller

    Yarek Danielak's fledgling international sales house ArsenalPictures has picked up international rights to the psycho-thriller Descent starring Rosario Dawson.City Lights Pictures' Danny Fisher, MEGA Films' Morris SLevy and Dawson's Trybe Films are prod
  • De Bont to direct Intermedia/QED actioner Stopping Power

    Jan De Bont will direct the action thriller Stopping Power for Intermedia, fledgling LA-basedproduction, finance and sales house QED International, and German production andphysical effects house action concept.
  • Fabrication holds Hoole's Court for Cannes

    Los Angeles-based distributor Fabrication Films has picked upworldwide rights to Rohan Michael Hoole's Australian thriller Court Of LonelyRoyals.
  • FFC Australia backs diverse slate of new projects

    Film Finance Corporation Australia has provisionallypromised funding to three features, including writer-director Christina Andreef's adaptation of the novel Shiver, one of 18 projects in Cannes' scriptdevelopment program L'Atelier.The other two dramas are Two Fists One Heart, to be directed by NewYork-based Australian John Polson (Swimfan, Hide and Seek),and
  • Fletcher promoted to distribution head at Pathe

    Pathe Entertainment has promoted John Fletcherto MD of distribution from his current post of creative director. He replaces IanGeorge, who announced last week that he was leaving Patheafter seven years to become managing director of Twentieth Century Fox UK. Also, Pathe has promoted Neil Marshall from director of sales todeputy MD of distribution. He will work jointly with Fletcher. The promotionswere announced by François Ivernel, managing directorof Pathe. "
  • Focus takes international rights on Gondry's Rewind

    FocusFeatures has acquired international rights to Michel Gondry's upcoming picture BeKind Rewind starring Jack Black.
  • Focus unveils powerhouse Cannes lineup

    Focus Features Internationalhas laid out its most ambitious sales slate to date for Cannes including aTouchstone Pictures production called Dan In The Real Life which Buena Vista will distribute domestically andkey territories on Sean Penn's Into the Wild which Paramount's specialty arm will distributedomestically."We really are trying to getthe message across that Focus International does have and will continue tocreate a very broad range of movies from a variety of sour
  • Fortissimo drawn to Sketches Of Frank Gehry

    Fortissimo Films hasacquired worldwide rights outside the US, France, Benelux and Italy to SydneyPollack's documentary Sketches Of FrankGehry, which screens in official selection, in an out-of-competition slot, atthis year's Cannes.Oscar-winning filmmaker Pollack- who is friends with acclaimed architect Frank O. Gehry and filmed thedocumentary over five years - will present the film when he hosts the CinemaMaster class at Cannes on May
  • Ganz joins cast of Irreverent's Canadian comedy Restaurant

    Bruno Ganz has singed to star in Vancouver-based IrreverentMedia's romantic comedy The Best Restaurant In The World. Ever.
  • German cinema admisions up 18% over last year

    Germanexhibitors are on the rebound as cinemas reported a 17.89% year-on-yearincrease in admissions and 18.08% rise in box-office takings for the first fourmonths of 2006.Accordingto Jan Oesterlin, managing director of Zukunft Kino Marketing (ZKM), cinema attendance andreceipts this year even surpassed the strong beginning of 2004, with admissionsup 5.92% and revenues increasing 6.61% over the same period two years ago.Oesterlein suggested that the upwards trend would continueth
  • Germans dominate at Austrian and Swiss festivals

    Germanfilms were the major winners at the Crossing Europe Film Festival, and the Visionsdu Reel Documentary Film Festival at the weekend.
  • Gold Circle recruits Samuell for My Sassy Girl remake

    BeverlyHills-based Gold Circle hashired Belgian filmmaker Yann Samuellto direct the remake of South Korean romantic comedy hit My Sassy Girl.Jae-Young Kwak's 2001 filmwas a huge success in
  • High Point adds four films to Cannes slate

    High Point Films hasadded four features to its sales slate ahead of Cannes. The London-based film and TV sales and production companyhas picked up world rights to Zoo RangersIn India, Hell in Tangier,Under The Ice, and Doomstown.
  • Hollywood Film Festival sets '06 dates as Oct 17-23

    The 10th annual Hollywood Film Festival will take place in LosAngeles from Oct 17-23, culminating in the Hollywood Awards on the final night.
  • Hoot

    Dir: Wil Shriner. US. 2006. 88mins.Parents craving wholesome children's entertainmentthat promotes environmental conservation might find Hoot acceptable summer fare for the little ones. But this blandfamily film, which is released in the US on May 5, never generates muchinterest in either its human or animal participants.Strategicallypositioned between the mid-April release date of Disney's The Wild
  • Hopes high for end to funding chaos

    Greek film production has undergone a financingcrisis during the last couple of years - but amid the chaos several projects havemanaged to move forward.The underlying uncertainty has been causedby the same debate that has echoed across Europe; whether public funds should financefeature production.
  • Hungarian distributor signs for Freedom's Fury

    BestHollywood has acquired distribution rights in Hungary to English-languagedocumentary Freedom's Fury, which had its world premiere last week at theTribeca Film Festival.Thefilm, which looks at the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 and the politicized waterpolo match between Hungary and the USSR at that year's Melbourne Olympics,will be released in Hungary on Sept 7 this year to coincide with the 50thanniversary of the revolution.Directorsof Freedom's Fury are Colin K
  • Hyde Park to start Death Sentence for Fox

    Ashok Amritraj's LosAngeles-based Hyde Park Entertainment will fully finance and produce thethriller Death Sentence under itsfive-year first-look deal with 20th Century Fox.Fox willdistribute domestically and Hyde Park International will commence overseassales at Cannes on thefirst project to be
  • Ice Age 2 still leads international with $25.3m weekend

    Fox International's Ice Age 2: The Meltdown is bearing down on $400m followinganother dominant weekend that generated an estimated $25.3m.
  • Indian government plans Pakistani film festival

    TheIndian government is to organise a Pakistani Film Festival in Mumbai thisyear. TheIndian Minister f
  • Italian distributor pioneers straight-to-newsstand distribution

    AnItalian distributor is launching today an alternative distribution model forAlex Infascelli's new thriller, H2Odio, which will be released straight-to-DVD and soldwith national daily La Repubblica.Releasedby 52, the distribution company set up by Infascelli,Claudio Mieli and the Espresso publishi
  • Kent Jusick installed as executive director and curator of MIX NYC festival

    MIX NYC, the media arts organisation behind the New York Lesbian& Gay Experimental Film Festival, has installed a new team of directors.
  • Klooss joins Constantin Film's production team

    Reinhard Klooss has joined Constantin Film's production team with a brief to developprojects in the area of family entertainment with a focus on CGI animated feature films.Klooss comes to Constantinfrom Bavaria Pictures where he had most recently produced the animated feature Urmel Aus Dem Eis, whichwill be released by Falcom in August.Klooss' track record as producer includes such filmsas Asterix & Oberlix Vs. Caesar, C
  • Lonely Hearts

    Dir/scr: Todd Robinson. US. 2006. 100mins.Martha Beck and Raymond Martinez, otherwise known asthe "Lonely Hearts Killers", return foranother adaptation of their sex, murder and mayhem saga, which delighted theAmerican tabloids during the late 1940s before their eventual executions in1951. Neither as shocking nor as decadent and perverse as its two famousantecedents, Leonard Kastle's cult feature Honeymoon Killers (1970) and Arturo Ri
  • Mark Gill is out at Warner Independent Pictures

    Ina surprise announcement released last night (Tuesday), Warner Bros Picturesannounced that Mark Gill is leaving his post as president of Warner IndependentPictures (WIP).
  • Mission III goes global on 9,500 screens

    The spectre of Tom Cruise looms over the world this weekend as Paramountlaunches Mission: Impossible III in its biggest ever day-and-date release.The third instalment in the action franchise is set toopen through UIP in 55 territories on approximately 9,500 prints.
  • Mission: Impossible III

    Dir: JJ Abrams. US. 2005. 125mins.The Mission:Impossible franchise comes full circle and returns to its TV origins withthe frenetic third film directed by small-screen icon JJ Abrams,whose series like Lost and Alias have resuscitated longform drama on the US networks. Like a souped-up $150m episode of Alias, the film is fast, furious and engaging - and incidentallybereft of the cinematic grand
  • Molter promoted to senior vp of distribution at WBPI

    Thomas Molter has been promoted to senior vice president of distributionat Warner Bros Pictures International (WBPI).
  • MonteCristo brings two Singaporean titles to Cannes

    MonteCristo International has added two Singaporeanfilms, Graham Streeter's Cages andKelvin Tong's 1942, to its salesline-up for Cannes this year.The US-basedsales company, which focuses on Asian and Eastern European cinema, will startsales for Cages at Cannes. The film, which premiered at Pusan last year, tells a story of threegenerat
  • Munich to honour Makhmalbafs, Figgis and Levinson

    Thisyear's Munich Film Festival will be dedicating its retrospective to the Makhmalbaf family and a tribute to UK filmmaker Mike Figgis, while the 2006 CineMeritAward for his services to cinema will be presented to veteran US director BarryLevinson.Accordingto the festival organisers, this will be the first time that the films of Mohsen Makhmalbaf, his wife Ma
  • New York Waiting

    Dir: Joachim Heden. Swe. 2006.96mins.There is little new or of interest in New York Waiting, a modest romanticcomedy from newcomer Jonathan Heden - save that despiteits Stateside location, everyone behind the camera isSwedish.The English-language story mostlytakes place in Manhattan during one summer day and night, and shares theenthusiasm of all bright eyed visitors for the sight and sounds of the BigApple.But N
  • Optimum deal marks shift in UK distribution

    Studio Canal's acquisition of Optimum, just a few months after Lionsgate's takeover of Redbus,marks a major shift for the UK indie distributionbusiness.
  • Pathe and Vertigo set to start Nick Love's Outlaw

    Pathe Productions and Vertigo Films are planning a May 12start date for Nick Love's Outlaw.Sean Bean, Danny Dyer,Rupert Friend, Lennie James, Sean Harris and BobHoskins star in five interwoven stories about victims of crime taking law intotheir own hands. The feature will shoot inthe Southwest of England and London. Vertigo's Allan Niblo and James Richardson are producing. Pathe and Vertigo are also collaborating on anoth
  • Peckos exits Tartan, sets up niche US distributor

    Distribution executive M J Peckos has left Tartan Films USA aftertwo years to launch the niche distributor Mitropoulos Films.
  • Pope joins UK's NPA as CEO

    The UK's New Producers Alliance (NPA) has named David Popeas its new CEO. Pope had been director of education at New York Film Academy UK.He also directed the shortfilm Skulls, Angels Mom and Dad andfeature film Miles FromNowhere. Pope is also an associatetutor for the British Film Institute and is
  • Posey, Poupaud take leads in Cassavates drama

    Production is set to begin in New York on May 5 on HD Net Films'romance Broken Englishstarring Parker Posey and Melvil Poupaud.
  • Ralph Alexander promoted to executive vp at SPRI

    RalphAlexander has been named executive vice president of distribution at SonyPictures Releasing International (SPRI).
  • Rezo Films takes on sales for Uro

    Heading into Cannes, France'sRezo Films International has boarded Un CertainRegard title Uro by Norway'sStefan Faldbakken.The film is a thriller about a member of an elitepolice unit who works undercover to expose a criminal drug network and ends uptorn between following the law and straying to the dark side.Urois Fald
  • Riklin sets up foreign remake company Bridge Films

    Former Showtime executive Matt Riklin has launched Bridge Films, acompany devoted to acquiring remake rights to non-English language pictures andsetting them up with US studios and financiers.
  • Rotterdam festival to curate film programme at Holland Festival

    The International FilmFestival Rotterdam (IFFR) is collaborating for the first time with performingarts festival the Holland Festival.The organisations willpresent a programme of 20 films in Amsterdam from June 8-11, duringthe 59th Holland Festival (June 2-25). IFFR will curate the new film section,whic
  • Saw III to start on Monday in Toronto for Lionsgate, Twisted

    Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures will start production on Saw IIIwill in Toronto on May 8and are expected to wrap in June.
  • Sony's RV tops domestic box office with $16.4m

    Sony's comedy RVpulled up to the number one spot on an estimated $16.4m as the top 12 picturesgrossed $90.7m to surpass the same weekend of 2005 by 12%.Universal's9/11 docudrama United 93 openedto a wave of exceptional reviews in provisional second place on $11.6m,
  • Stahman gets top domestic marketing job at re-energised MGM

    Perry Stahman has been appointed to the new position of presidentof domestic theatrical marketing at MGM, reporting directly to chief operatingofficer Rick Sands.Stahman (pictured) arrives from 20th Century Fox where he served assenior vice president of creative advertising since
  • Strangers to open New York's NewFest on June 1

    Paul Dinello's Strangers With Candy will open the 18th Annual NewFest, NewYork's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender film festival that runs from Jun1 to 11.
  • StudioCanal deal will help Optimum become bigger

    Furtherdetails have emerged of how UK distributorOptimum Releasing is going to expand following its acquisition by French major,StudioCanal. Optimum'smanaging director Will Clarke refused to say how much StudioCanalpaid for the company he founded in 1999, but rival distributors weres
  • StudioCanal to acquire UK distributor Optimum Releasing

    Confirming rumours that had been buildingfor weeks, French distributor StudioCanal announcedtoday that it will acquire UK distributor OptimumReleasing.The companies said, "The deal will helpOptimum grow by combining its resources with those of StudioCanal.This will give Optimum access to one of the largest film catalogues in theworld and
  • Swipe takes worldwide sales on thriller Flourish

    London-basedSwipe Films has picked up worldwide sales rights on Flourish, a feature that will have its debut at the Cannes Market. Thethriller stars Jennifer Morrison as a babysitter who helps investigate a younggirl's mysterious disappearance. Morrison,who stars
  • Thai exhibitor says political chaos is bad for business

    Thailand's largest exhibitor Major Cineplex kickedoff the official opening of its latest 16-screen multiplex at upscale SiamParagon shopping centre with the premiere of Mission Impossible III - amid political and business uncertainty."The political chaostogether with high oil prices has been creating a big negative impact on thegroup's business,' says Kittsanan Ngamphathipong,who assumed
  • The Bridge

    Dir: Eric Steel. US. 2006.93mins.Somewhere between a painful human issue piece and acalculated gamble as regards its potential to touch a large audience, EricSteel's debut documentary The Bridgetreads dangerous ground.Inspired by an article in The NewYorker about the pull of the Golden Gate Bridge for would-be suicides,Steel stationed two cameras for a year at San Francisco's iconic site - wherestatistically
  • The Groomsmen

    Dir/scr: Edward Burns. US. 2006. 93minsEdward Burns delivers anotherbitter-sweet romantic comedy with TheGroomsmen - but whatever freshness marked him out as a promising newcomerin The Brothers McCullen(1995) seems to have pretty much evaporated by now.What's left is anotherroutine job relying on well-established formulae, with Burns again taking leadrole and embarking on yet another light-hearted affair. Again the the
  • The Night Of The White Pants

    Dir: Amy Talkington. US. 2006. 90mins.Dallas native Amy Talkingtonmakes a largely entertaining feature debut with The Night Of The White Pants, a frenetic dysfunctionalfamily comedy whose best shot at attracting commercial attention is through itslikeable cast.Set during one night inDallas, it does not cohere as tightly as this brand of multi-strand comedyshould in order to work and relies too he
  • The TV Set

    Dir: Jake Kasdan. US. 2006. 87mins.One of the early highlights of the Tribeca Film Festival, Jake Kasdan'sThe TV Set is a short, sharpinsider's view of US network television. Boasting a fine cast led by David Duchovny and Sigourney Weaver, the latter giving a tastyturn as the atrociously manipulative network president, the film is a pithilyalarming satire on the sanitisation of US popular culture and the tendencytowards blandness in
  • The Works to handle sales for Falardeau's Congorama

    UK-based sales company The Works International has takenrights to Philippe Falardeau's Congorama, premiering as theclosing-night film in Directors Fortnight at Cannes. The film stars previous Cannes bestactor winner Olivier Gourmet alongside Paul Ahmarani. Congorama followsa Belgian man (Gourmet) who discovers he was adopted and stumbles intomisadventures when he goes to
  • Tim Burton joines Cannes Cinefondation jury

    Director Tim Burton has been added to the jury for the Cinefondation, Cannes Film Festival organizers announcedTuesday morning.Burton joins jurypresident Andrei Konchalovsky along with Sandrine Bonnaire, Souleymane Cisse, Daniel Bruhl and Zbigniew Preisner.The Cinefondation will hand out three prizeson May 26 during the festival and will also award the short film Palme d'Or at the festival'sclosing ceremony on Sunday, May 28.
  • Times And Winds (Bes Vakit)

    Dir/scr: Reha Erdem. Turk.2006. 110mins.Looking every inch the festival warhorse, Times And Winds,Reha Erdem's contemplativeobservation on life in a remote Anatolian village, is the kind of picture criticswill adore and film events queue for.Subdued, low key andpractically plotless - it is reminiscent of both Ki-duk'sSpring, Summer, Fall, Winter' And Spring,if without the metaphysical pretensions
  • Times And Winds (Bes Vakit)

    Dir/scr: Reha Erdem. Turk.2006. 110mins.Looking every inch the festival warhorse, Times And Winds,Reha Erdem's contemplativeobservation on life in a remote Anatolian village, is the kind of picture criticswill adore and film events queue for.Subdued, low key andpractically plotless - it is reminiscent of both Ki-duk'sSpring, Summer, Fall, Winter' And Spring,if without the metaphysical pretensions
  • Transylvania festival to open with A Fost, Sau N-A Fost'

    Cannes Directors Fortnighttitle Corneliu Porumboiu's A Fost, Sau N-A Fost' will open the fifth Transylvania International Film Festival(TIFF) on June 2.The film is one of twoRomanian titles which will rush home from Cannes to compete for the grand prize at the ten-dayfestival in Cluj Napoca, Romania.Catalin Mitulescu's debut film Cum Mi-Am Pe
  • TWC takes international rights to crossword doc Wordplay

    The Weinstein Company (TWC) has acquired all international rightsto Patrick Creadon's crossword documentary and Sundance hit Wordplay and will commence sales at Cannes.
  • Two segments dropped from Cannes film Paris Je T'aime

    ProducerClaudie Ossard from Victoires International has restructured the portmanteau Un Certain Regard opening title Paris Je t'Aime, with the contributionsfromDanish director Christoffer Boe and French-Israeli director RafaelNadjari left on the cutting-room floor.
  • UIP CEO Stewart Till named chairman of football club

    Stewart Till, the CEO ofUnited International Pictures, has been appointed as the new chairman of UK football club Millwall.Till told that the role was non-executive and non-paid and wouldn't change his duties at UIP. "It's a dream come true for me, but obviously UIP pay my salary and they get the first and last call of my workdays," he said. Till said he expected the Millwall gig would mostly involve
  • UK's Jan Dunn recruits Bob Hoskins for Ruby Red Chequer

    Writer/directorJan Dunn and producer Elaine Wickham of Medb Films are following up their British Dogme film Gypo with a second feature, Ruby Red Chequer. Ruby Red Chequer will star Bob Hoskins,French actress Josiane Balasko,and film newcomer Jody Latham (TV's Shameless)in the story of a widower who falls for his foreign neighbour. The Kent-basedshoot will run May 10-June 1.Thefeature marks the first film project for
  • UK's Northern Film and Media funds three local documentaries

    UK regional fund Northern Film & Media, working with digital TVstation Community Channel, has commissioned three local filmmakers to makedocumentaries about the North East. The documentaries now goinginto production are Emily Barber's Sing YourHearts Out, Louise Rea's The ChevyChase, and ReubenJacob Abraham's The Grass Never Goes.TheCommunity Channel plans to air the films in
  • Van Damme thriller Til Death wraps in Bulgaria

    Director Simon Fellows hasconcluded principal photography on thriller Til Death in Sofia, Bulgaria. After 33 days on location on the outskirts of Sofia, the $15m project now moves to New Orleans for five days of shooting. The thriller stars Jean ClaudeVan Damme as a dirty cop who is nearly killed in ag
  • Vertigo, Pathe gear up for cop thriller WAZ

    Pathe Pictures International and Vertigo Films will startprincipal photography May 8 for New York-set thriller WAZ. Tom Shankland, who previouslydirected Bafta-nominated shorts Bait and Going Down,makes his feature directorial debut. Vertigo's James Richardsonand Allan Niblo are producing. Stellan Skarsgard, Melissa George,Selma Blair and Ashley Walters star.Clive Bradley wrote thescript about a veteran detective (Skarsgard) and hisrookie partner (George) who find
  • Voltage takes back sales rights on Flyboys

    Dean Devlin and Nicolas Chartier's sales agency Voltage Pictureshas taken back from Lionsgate International the first world war epic Flyboys produced by Devlin's ElectricEntertainment.
  • Walker Payne

    Dir: Matt Williams. US. 2006. 113mins.Like a lovingly-crafted curio from another era, Walker Payne is a leisurely-paced perioddrama which defies current storytelling trends to remain resolutely classicalin style and form. Coming off like a cross between Hallmark Hall Of Fame and Amores Perros, if that can be imagined, it faces an uphillbattle finding distribution in today's brutal and impatien
  • Weinstein Co buys rights on Shephard's Bosnia

    TheWeinstein Company (TWC) has picked up North American, Australian and NewZealand rights to Richard Shepard's Spring Break In Bosnia, the director's second film after The Matador.
  • Weinstein Co buys rights on Shephard's Bosnia

    TheWeinstein Company (TWC) has picked up North American, Australian and NewZealand rights to Richard Shepard's Spring Break In Bosnia, the director's second film after The Matador.
  • White knight rides in to save Taiwan's oldest studio

    Taiwanese businessman GouTai-chiang is acquiring a majority stake in Taiwan's oldest film studio, the Central Motion PictureCorporation (CMPC), which was facing closure following its sale to the ChinaTimes Group at the end of last year. Gou is chairman of localelectronics subcontractor Foxlink, whose clients include Apple, Microsoft andNokia, although it's understood the acquisition is being made separately tothat company.
  • Wild Bunch gets on board L'Amico di Famiglia

    WildBunch has taken international distribution rights to Paolo Sorrentino'sCannescompetition title L'Amico di Famiglia (Friend Of The Family).The $4.3m(Euros 3.4m) comedy-drama focuses on the odd attraction between a 60-year-oldphysically repellent loan shark (Giacomo Rizzo) and apretty yo
  • Zeta Jones nears deal to star in Death Defying Acts

    Catherine Zeta Jones in final talks to join Guy Pearce in theAustralia-UK co-production Death Defying Acts, a drama about Harry Houdini.