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7 April 2006

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  • Alien Autopsy

    Dir: Jonny Campbell UK.2006. 95minsFitfully entertaining, but undermined by its owninanity, Alien Autopsy is muddled anduneven fare which shows yet again how difficult it is for the best Britishcomic talent to make the transition to the big screen. Its stars Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, hugely popular TVpersonalities in the UK, should ensure a robust opening in the UK when WarnerBros rolls out the film natio
  • American Dreamz

    Dir: Paul Weitz. US. 2006. 107mins.A comedy attempting to have fun at the expense ofseveral contemporary US institutions - George Bush and reality TV among them - American Dreamzis a disappointingly lame follow-up by director Paul Weitzto the pleasantly understated In GoodCompany. Too broad and obvious to rate as satire, the film is finallyneither focused nor acidic enough to say anything meaningful about the sorrys
  • Banderas to play Cortes in Conquistador

    Antonio Banderas will portray Hernan Cortes in Hollywood Gang's upcoming$40m Spanish-language epic Conquistador to be directed by Andrucha Waddington.
  • BBC Films developing Andy McNab's Boy Soldier

    BBC Films has acquired the film rights to Andy McNab and Robert Rigby's thriller Boy Soldier and its sequel Payback.MacNab and Rigby are currently writing a screenplayadaptation of Boy Soldier, a thrillerthat is the first in a series of four books. The film is about Danny, an orphan who triesto join the army and learns that his grandfather is a disgraced former armyofficer now on the run. Danny runs into trouble when he tri
  • Box office makes sluggish start to 2006 in most territories

    Early first-quarter box office figures show little sign of a bounce-back in most territories - although local-language product has eased the pain. Nielsen EDI statistics show a marginal year-on-year dip in its first 12 weekly figures for North America (-2%), UK/Ireland (-8%), Spain (-2%) and Germany (-3%).France is proving the big exception with a 17.9% rise year-on-year in its first 12 weeks. Figures from Cinetel in Italy show admissions figures down 3.25%, while in Denmark
  • Box office meltdown as Ice Age opens top in 29 markets

    Ice Age: The Meltdown burned through the international marketplace this weekend,grossing an estimated $43.4m through Fox International on 4,571 screens in 29territories.
  • Buena Vista kicks off MIP with France Telecom VOD deal

    Highlighting the buzzwords of this year's MIP TV market - content, convergence and multiple distribution channels - Buena Vista Television International (BVITV) and France Telecom have announced a multi-year video-on-demand deal set to provide a selection of BVITV's film catalogue to subscribers of France Telecom's Wanadoo broadband and MaLigne IPTV services.The roster of films will include works from such sister companies Touchstone and Miramax with titles like Jodie Foster vehicle
  • Caiman, Crime Novel lead Donatello nominations

    Nanni Moretti's The Caiman and Michele Placido's Crime Novel scooped the lion's share of nominations for the David Di Donatellos, with 13 nods each.Placido's crime epic and Moretti's political expose-cum-marital drama both earned nominations in all the main categories for Italy's top film awards, including best film, best director, and best screenplay.Silvio Orlando and Kim Rossi Stuart also won best actor nominations for their roles The Caiman and Crime
  • Cannes selects Vincent Cassel as master of ceremonies

    French actorVincent Cassel will handle master of ceremoniesduties for the 59th Cannes Film Festival, organisers announced Wednesday.Cassel's responsibilities will include overseeing the opening andclosing ceremonies. It is uncommonfor the festival to choose a master, rather than a mistress, though Cassel's selection does keep things in thefamily. His wife, actress Monica Bellucci, held the same post in 2003.Cassel
  • Carlton, Screenvision create pan-Europe ad post

    London-based Carlton Screen Advertising and Paris-based Screenvision Europe have established a new post to work on Pan-European cinema advertising campaigns. Nathalie Mangin has taken on the new post of Pan European sales manager, working across both companies. She is based in Carlton's London office.France-born Mangin previously worked at Screenvision France, advertising agency Lowe, and broadcaster M6. She will report to Screenvision Europe CEO Jean Michel Gillibet and
  • Carnaby, Boda team for thriller starring Jaime Winstone

    First timefeature writer-director David Evans has started principal photography on Daddy's Girl, a psychological thriller.The film started shooting inand around Cardiff, Wales on March 27. Boda and Carnaby Internationalare co-producing, with Carnaby also handlinginternational sales.Daddy's Girlis co-financed by Carnaby and the Arts Council of Wales,which developed the script with Film Four. Nerys Lloyd is the lead producer, with Trudy Sargent co-produ
  • Carr promoted to vp of exhibitor marketing at Focus Features

    Eric Carr has been promoted from Focus Features' director ofexhibitor marketing to the unit's vice president.
  • Come Early Morning

    Dir: Joey Lauren Adams. US.2006. 97mins.Response was mixed at the Sundance Film Festival inJanuary to Joey Lauren Adams' directorial debut Come Early Morning, but away from the hot-house atmosphere of ParkCity, the film will surely get a favourable second look from critics anddistributors.A small, unpretentiouscharacter piece notable for an outstanding central performance by Ashley
  • Commonwealth festival to open with Life With My Father

    Manchester's fifth-annual Commonwealth Film Festival will open on April 28 with Sebastien Rose's Canadian drama Life With My Father. Sarah Watt's Australian hit Look Both Ways will close the festival on May 7.The festival, which promotes film production in the Commonwealth countries, will screen more than 200 features, documentaries, and shorts at 12 venues. Other gala screenings are Thom Fitzgerald's 3 Needles, Eric Khoo's Be With Me, Amnon Bu
  • Constantin receives $4.2m from German Federal Film Board

    Constantin Film has been named the most successful Germanproducer and distributor of 2005 after picking up a total of $4.2m (Euros 3.5m)retroactive "reference funding" from the German Federal Film Board (FFA) to invest in new filmprojects and distribution campaigns.Thiswas the second year running that Constantin hadreceived this double honour at the FFA's "IndustryTigers" event, the Munich
  • ContentFilm says revenue is up 72% over last year

    London-based film and TVsales company ContentFilm has announced that it expects to meet marketexpectations for the financial year that ended March 31. The company said that,subject to audit, it expects revenues for the year to be about $18.4m (£10.5m),up 72% from 2005. Earnings beforeinterest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) is likely to be abou
  • Czechs await Prague spring for production

    After a busy second half of 2005, Praguestudios are experiencing a slow period. No major international productions haveyet been announced to shoot in the Czech territory, which is not unusual. A similar production gap opened in mid-2005before Young Hannibal: Behind the Mask, Omen 666 and Casino Royale filled localstages. Rumours that Part 2 of The Chronicles ofNarnia would shoot in the Czech Republic could notbe confirmed. Rather 2006 is shaping up to be a c
  • Da Vinci Code cleared in copyright case

    A UK High Court judge hasrejected a copyright infringement claim filed over The Da Vinci Code. Michael Baigentand Richard Leigh, the authors of the 1982 non-fiction work The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, hadaccused US author Dan Brown and his publisher Random House of appropriatingcentral themes from their work for his wildly popular thriller. "The plaintiffs' case hasfailed. Dan Brown has not infringed copyright," the judge told the court. "No
  • Deighton, Becker join Kimmel in key production roles

    Joshua Deighton and Holly Becker are joining Sidney Kimmel Entertainment(SKE) as senior vice presidents of production.
  • Doug Lee to run MGM's new media division

    MGM has launched a new media division and named Douglas A Lee tooversee the unit as executive vice president.
  • Election 2 (Hak Sewui: Yi Wo Wai Gwai)

    Dir:Johnnie To. HK. 2006. 93mins.The second part of Johnnie To's contemporary gangster saga, Election 2 will be atreat for fans of last year's original, eager for more from its black-as-pitch Hong Kong triad family.But this exposition-heavy sequel is unlikely to draw in a new audience. Slow tobuild a head of steam, its last act payoff may come too late to satisfy thosenot alread
  • Fauveau to head Paramount Home Entertainment France

    Pascal Fauveauhas been named managing director of France for Paramount Home Entertainment International, tooversee all operations in France including sales and marketing. Fauveau most recently served as senior vice president andmanaging director of MGM Home Entertainment, France, a unit he createdstarting
  • Fewer sections and films planned for Locarno 2006

    This year's edition of the Locarno International Film Festival (August 2-12, 2006) will jettison two sections and show fewer films, the festival's annual meeting was told in Locarno on Monday evening. The new artistic director Frederic Maire announced that the Video and Human Rights sidebars would not be continued in the 59th edition, although films shot on video could be shown in the Official Competition and Filmmakers of the Present sections as well as the newly created Play Forward
  • Filmstiftung NRW puts $3.64m into six new films

    New projects by Rolf Schuebel, Fatih Akin, Ulla Wagner, and Tony Loeser are among six feature films awarded more than $3.64m (Euros 3m) by North Rhine-Westphalia's regional film fund Filmstiftung NRW at its latest funding session. The largest amount -- $969,719 (Euros 800,000) -- went to Rolf Schuebel's English-language drama Eleanor & Colette, scripted by Mark Bruce Rosin, which will star Susan Sarandon and Helena Bonham Carter opposite German actor Sebastian Koch. The f
  • Focus, Random House acquire Koontz's new novel

    FocusFeatures and Random House Films have acquired film rights to best sellingauthor Dean Koontz's upcoming thriller The Husband.
  • Fox Germany signs five-film deal with Claussen & Woebke

    TwentiethCentury Fox of Germany has signed a multi-picture deal with Munich-basedproduction house Claussen & Woebke Filmproduktion covering all film rightsfor five feature films in the next three years as well as further projects thatare yet to be developed.Thefirst joint project will an adaptation of Otfried Preussler's award-winningchildren's story Krabat, which willbe directed by Summer Storm's Marco Kreuzpaintner and co-produced with SevenPictures Film and a private i
  • French government appoints Maistre as film mediator

    France's Ministries of Culture and Communication and Finance and Economy have announced the appointment of Roch-Olivier Maistre to the position of film mediator. Maistre replaces Francis Lamy in the post.The role of film mediator was created in 1982 as a means to help regulate competition within the industry notably concerning exhibition. A primary function of the film mediator is to help films get into theaters and to help exhibitors gain access to films. Ensuring the widest distribut
  • French screenwriter files Syriana plagiarism suit

    A French screenwriter has filed a plagiarism complaint againstWarner Bros and Section Eight, the producers of Stephen Gaghan's Oscar winning Syriana.
  • Future Films invests up to $35m in seven new features

    UK-based production and film financing company Future Films has announced its involvement in seven feature films now in production. All of the films are shooting now to take advantage of the UK tax laws set to expire with productions starting April 1 and afterwards. Future said its total investment in the seven films is $26.2m-$34.9m (£15m-£20m). Two projects start shooting today to make the deadline. The first is Menno Meyjes's Manolete, starring Adrien Brody and Penelop
  • Goldcrest picks up international rights to 39 Pounds

    Goldcrest Films International has acquired all rights to DaniMenkin's documentary 39 Pounds Of Love excluding the US and Israel and will introduce to buyers atMIPTV.
  • Goldcrest picks up worldwide rights to Arctic Son

    Goldcrest Films International has picked up world sales rights toAndrew Walton's documentary Arctic Son, which explores the themes of family and self-reliance inthe Canadian Yukon region.
  • Golden prize night ends groundbreaking Guadalarajara

    The 21stGuadalajara International Film Festival handed out a record $525,000 in prizemoney on a glittering awards night.
  • Gooder gets new position between LA and Sydney at Icon

    Mark Gooder is moving to Los Angeles in the newly createdposition of president of film acquisitions and development at Icon Productions.Gooder will continue to serve as chief executive officer of IconFilm Distribution Australia and will divide his time between California and Sydn
  • Group tries to stop Korean release of The Da Vinci Code

    Fundamentalistgroup the Christian Council of Korea (CCK) has applied for aprovisional injunction to stop the local theatrical release of The Da Vinci Code.Korea's largest Christianorganization, the CCK filed its application againstdistributor Sony Pictures Releasing Korea to the Seoul Central District Courttoday (April 7).C
  • Hamburg Film Fund gives $3.1m to seven new projects

    The Hamburg Film Fund has awarded$3.1m (Euros 2.5m) in production support to seven projects including newfeature films by Fatih Akin, Peter Timm, Detlev Buck and Nicolette Krebitz.Akin's production company Corazon International receivedthe largest amount - $616,074 (Euros 500,000) - for his next feature Auf Der Anderen Seite Des Lebens, while Hamburg-based Relevant Film picked up $554,377(Euros 450,000) for the sequel to Peter Timm's racingpig comedy Rennschwein Rudi R
  • Hrebejk's Beauty In Trouble to premiere in Karlovy Vary

    Jan Hrebejk's newfilm Beauty InTrouble has been announced as the first competition film inthe Official Selection of the 41st Karlovy VaryInternational Film Festival. Thefilm is produced by Ondrej Trojan, who also produced Hrebejk's 2001 Oscar nominee, Divided We Fall. "Whenwe were writing the script for Beauty in Trouble, we were partlyinspired by the poem of the same name by Robert Graves," Czech director Hrebejk said. "It tells the story ofa beautiful girl
  • Ice Age 2 set to dominate international in weekend #2

    Fox International's Ice Age 2: The Meltdown is closing in on $100m as it prepares toopen in 20 territories heading into its second weekend.
  • Ice Age 2: The Meltdown

    Dir: Carlos Saldanha. US.2006. 91 mins.20th Century Foxlooks set to enjoy an early year worldwide smash with Ice Age 2: TheMeltdown (called just Ice Age:The Meltdown in North America), alikeable sequel to the spring 2002 original which was one of the firstnon-Pixar CGI films to make a mint - $373m to be precise, $197m of that frominternational territories. The DVD subsequently sold over 25 million unitsworldwide.With awareness of thecharacters from the fi
  • Ice Age sequel breaks box-office record in Argentina

    Ice Age: The Meltdown scored the best ever opening in Argentina with 544,158 admissions from 155 screens in its first four-day weekend (March 30-April 2). The animated sequel beat the previous record set by The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe with 460,489 admissions from 115 theatres in January 2006. It also beats the best mark for a five-day weekend set in 2004 by Shrek 2 with 528,617 admissions in 123 venues.The rest of Argentina
  • Ice Age sequel breaks March opening record with $70.5m

    Ice Age: The Meltdown produced the first sensational box office weekend of the year asit opened to a spectacular estimated $70.5m, while another sequel Sony/MGM's BasicInstinct 2 flopped intenth place on $3.2m.
  • Ice Age, Instinct sequels blanket the world

    Fox International top brass are unleashing Ice Age 2: TheMeltdown in 27territories day-and-date with North America, and they expect the animatedsequel to be a worthy commercial successor to the original.Ice Age launched in2002 and ended up taking more than $206m int
  • Icon acquires Hammer library for worldwide sales

    IconEntertainment International has boosted its library to more than 300 titleswith the acquisition of the Hammer film library for worldwide sales.
  • IDT closes broadcast, theatrical deals on second Horror series

    IDT Entertainment Sales has secured a raft of pre-sales on thesecond Masters Of Horror series that begins production in Vancouver this week.
  • James McAvoy on board for Joe Wright's Atonement

    James McAvoy has joined the cast of Working Title Films' production of Atonement, starring alongside Keira Knightley. Knightley will be reuniting with director Joe Wright, who previously cast her in his debut film Pride & Prejudice. Atonement, based on the Ian McEwan novel, is about a man who falls in love with the sister of a young woman who has accused him of rape. The project starts shooting on June 12 in the UK.McAvoy, the winner of this ye
  • Keri Moore gets senior vp stripes in Universal marketing dept

    Keri Moore has been promoted to senior vice president of creativeadvertising for Universal Pictures.
  • Kwak to adapt controversial Japanese novel

    Korean director KT Kwak,whose credits include Typhoon, Korea's most expensive film to date, is set to direct a film based on famousJapanese novelist Murakami Ryu's Hanto ODeyo (Get Out Of The Peninsula). The controversial noveldepicts a North Korean commando unit taking over the island of
  • LA home entertainment distributor Liberation opens in Europe

    LosAngeles-based distributor of home entertainment content LiberationEntertainment has established a London office and appointed Spencer Pollardmanaging director.
  • London's first East End Film Festival recruits industry experts

    London's East End Film Festival has announced the programme for its inaugural event, to be held April 27-May 4. The festival opens with Richard E. Grant introducing the London premiere of his directorial debut Wah-Wah.Grant will also be the festival's director in residence, with a discussion and a screening of Robert Altman's Nashville on April 28. Stephen Woolley has come on board as the festival's producer in residence, hosting a Q&A and screening of The Cryin
  • Markham Street to make doc on PolyGram Filmed Entertainment

    The rise and fall of PolyGram Filmed Entertainment is thesubject of a Canadian documentary called 100 Films And A Funeral, which has started principal photography.Produced by Toronto-based Markham Street Films, the $1.5mhigh-def documentary will take an in-depth look at th
  • MGM Channel pacts with Liberty for eastern Europe launch

    MGM Networks has signed a deal with broadband cable operatorLiberty Global's European division chellomedia to launch the MGM Channel andDTH (direct-to-home satellite) systems in local languages throughout centraland Eastern Europe.
  • MIP TV's new buzzword: convergence

    The MIP TV market began to wind down Thursday after four days thatfocused more on convergence than traditional television. Indeed, this year's market was subtitled "TV Reloaded," and thebuzzwords were convergence, community and content. Many attendees said this wasthe first MIP TV to substantially address the broadening scope ofmulti-platform distribution.Alongside TV sales people and buyers, technology companies, mobileoperators, internet providers and search engines were omnip
  • Mixed Doubles to close LA Indian Film Festival

    Rajat Kapoor's comedy MixedDoubles will close the 4th IndianFilm Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) on Apr 23.Mixed Doubles premiered recently at the Rotterdam InternationalFilm Festival and follows a man's desperate efforts to spice up his 10-year-oldmarriage.Festival Director ChristinaMarouda announced that the audience choice and the jury awards for bestfeature, best short, and best documentary will be presented at the closingnight ceremony.Mario Van Peebles
  • Moonstone to handle films from Allumination FilmWorks

    Etchie Stroh's Moonstone Entertainment has signed a deal to act asinternational distributor on select features from LA-based AlluminationFilmWorks including Checking Out starring Peter Falk, and Push starring Chazz Palminteri and MichaelRapaport.
  • Nashville-based Amity picks up Little Hippo for North America

    Nashville-based production, distribution and licensing companyAmity Entertainment has picked up North American rights to the Little Hippoanimation feature and series.
  • New Line takes on remake rights to Torrente

    New Line has acquired English-language remake rights to SantiagoSegura's Spanish hit comedy film series Torrente.
  • New movie fund FarFalla Films launches with The Good Life

    Production has begun in Winnipeg on Steve Berra's directorialdebut The Good Lifestarring Mark Webber, Chris Klein, Zooey Deschanel and Bill Paxton.
  • New UK documentary festival to launch in July

    The Channel 4 British Documentary Film Foundationis launching a new UK-based documentary festival, Britdoc, to be held at Keble College in Oxfordfrom July 26-28.The event seeks to bringan international scope to the UK documentary world. "We want to encourage UK
  • Nyon documentary festival adds pitching forum

    The Visions du Reel International Documentary Festival (April 24-29) inNyon, Switzerland, has joined forces with theEuropean Documentary Network to stage its first pitching forum aimed atcreative documentaries focusing on an artistic visual approach.Twelve projects have beenselected for the Pitching du Reel session on April 24and will be presented to a panel of 10-12 international financiers includingrepresentatives of film institutes and funds, distributors, and TVcommissioning editor
  • Odeon to show World Cup matches in UK cinemas

    UK exhibitor Odeon Cinemas has announced plans to show select 2006 World Cup Matches in High Definition Television on its cinema screens.The chain says it will show all England games as well as the quarter and semi-final matches, the third place play-offs, and the final. That will mean a total of at least 11 matches to be shown at 14 Odeon cinemas across the country. The venues will include the 1679-seat Odeon Leicester Square as well as other major cinemas including Manchester
  • Palm teams with Rockstar Games on Sunday Driver

    Palm Pictures and video game publisher Rockstar Games have teamedup to co-market and co-distribute the low-rider documentary Sunday Driver in the US.
  • Partnership not politics is key to co-productions - conference

    Co-productiontreaties between governments are not a catch-all solution to creatingcross-national films, delegates to Screen International's NewFrontiers conference in London were warned.Many nations have bilateral agreements which allow film-makers from partner countries to access local tax breaks. Many more are likely to be signed with the emerging film powers like Russia, China and India.But they do not automatically translate into major advantages to producers, warned S
  • Poseidon to have May 6 world premiere at Tribeca

    Tribeca Film Festivalorganisers have scored another coup by booking the world premiere of WolfgangPetersen's disaster movie Poseidon.Warner Bros and VirtualStudios' adventure story is the latest high-profile world premiere destined forthe New York event, which will open with Working Title/Universal's United 93and also screens DreamWorksAnimation's Over The Hedge.Poseidon tells of a group of passengers aboard a capsizedluxury cruise ship who must strug
  • Romantic comedy All Bar Love to start London shoot

    Romantic comedy All Bar Love will start shooting in London on April 3. Te Papa Films, founded by Aubs Tredget, is producing.James Derbyshire, who hasworked in fringe theatre, is directing from a script written by Julia Boggio with Kristen McGorry andDavid Hofmyer.The film follows Martin, afriendly man who is inept with women, and his suave best friend Liam as theylook for love in London
  • Senator upbeat after end of insolvency crisis

    SenatorEntertainment's CEO Christopher Borgmann has struck an upbeat note on the Berlin-based producer-distributor's future afterthe company was officially withdrawn from insolvency proceedings.According to Borgmann, the slimmed-down company will now work "atfull stretch" to build its activities again with a concentration onthe (co)production and distribution of German feature films as well as re-activatingthe acquisition of rights to international titles.The nexttheatrical rele
  • Sumitomo buys controlling share in Asmik Ace

    Japan's Sumitomo Corp has purchased a further 27.67% of production anddistribution company Asmik Ace Entertainment from Kadokawa Holdings. The deal gives Sumitomo a75.3% controlling share in Asmik Ace which becomes an official subsidiary ofSumitomo's media arm. The reported acquisition price was approximately Y500m($4.25m). The two companies previously held an equal 47.7% share.Sumitomo sees theacquisition as a way
  • Sundance Institute teams up with BAM in New York for entertainment programme

    Sundance Institute and BAM (Brooklyn Academy of Music) arelaunching the entertainment series Sundance Institute At BAM.
  • Superman to be converted to IMAX-3D

    Warner Bros' upcoming Superman Returns will become the first live-actionpicture to be converted into IMAX 3D as the corporate partners plan asimultaneous release on Jun 30.
  • Take The Lead

    Dir: Liz Friedlander. US.2006. 118mins.The cathartic joy of dance gets drained away by thepredictable rhythms of formulaic and obvious storytelling in Take The Lead. Basedon the true story of a teacher's quest to impart the respect and dignity offormal dance to delinquent high schoolers, the debutfeature from music video director Liz Friedlander makes for an achingly sincerebut rather boring tale.New Li
  • The Valet (La Doublure)

    Dir/scr: Francis Veber. Fr. 2006. 83mins.Francis Veberlacks a funny bone in The Valet,misjudging both his script and his cast in a romantic comedy about a lucklessyoung man obliged to feign cohabitation with a gorgeous top model.A curiously lifeless affairthat seems vaguely inspired by PrettyWoman, it raises some smiles but few of the guffaws one expects from thewriter-director, whose previous hit,
  • Theatrical drives big leap in Kinowelt profits

    Theresurrected Kinowelt Group trebled its year-on-year annual profits to $4.3m (Euros3.6m) on revenues of $95.1m (Euros 78.5m), up 41%
  • TWI to acquire UK's Darlow Smithson Productions

    Sports media company TWI has announced that it will acquire London-based DarlowSmithson Productions, best known in the film world for its first feature, Touching The Void. TWI
  • UK Film Council supports 19 new shorts

    TheUK Film Council has announced short film projects that will receive fundingthrough the New Cinema Fund's Digital Shorts Plus programme. Thescheme works with directors previously supported by the Digital Shorts Schemewho are now working on projects budgeted up to $35,039 (£20,000). The FilmCouncil's regional partners put up $17,519 (£10,000) for each film. Thesix shorts selected are Corinna Faith's Care, co-fundedby Film London; Sarah Trip's Skypark, suppo
  • UK gets more detail on new film tax system

    As the UK Government'slong-awaited Finance Bill was finally published on Friday, accountants andlawyers went into over-drive to analyse what implications the Bill holds forthe UK film industry. With 26 film-related pagesand 62 pages of explanatory memo in the 489-page Bill, this was not an easydocument to digest. Even some experts were admitting that the draft legislationis fiendishly complex. Nonetheless, there was widesp
  • UK pirate DVD raid results in five arrests

    The UK's Federation AgainstCopyright Theft (FACT) worked with London's Metropolitan Police and Waltham Forest TradingStandards to raid a major pirate DVD manufacturing facility in Leyton, northeast London.Five arrests were made andmore than 300 titles were seized incl
  • UK's Metrodome acquires three films from Sundance and Berlin

    UK distributor Metrodome has announced three new acquisitions on the heels of Sundance and Berlin. The company has struck deals for Wash Westmoreland and Richard Glatzer's Quinceanera, Lukas Moodysson's Container, and Xavier Palud and David Moreau's Them.Kate Falconer, Metrodome's acquisitions and development manager, negotiated all three deals. Quinceanera is a coming-of-age story about two Mexican-American teenagers in Los Angeles, starring Emily Ri
  • UK's Video Island and LoveFilm plan 50-50 merger

    The UK's top online DVD rental companies,LoveFilm and Video Island, have announcedplans for a 50-50 merger. Video Island' brand will be consolidated under the LoveFilmconsumer brand.LoveFilm and
  • Universal appoints new MDs for Scandinavia, Iberia

    Universal Pictures International (UPI) has appointed Ivor Viljoen as managing director of Universal Pictures Nordic (encompassing Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland) and Edgar Adelmund as managing director of Universal Pictures Iberia (Spain and Portugal). Viljoen's appointment was effective from April 3. He formerly served as senior VP, Europe for Paramount Home Entertainment International. He replaces the interim managing director, Anders Tullgren, who had run the Nordic unit
  • Warner Bros signs Dutch download-to-own deal

    Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group has struck a licensing deal with Dutch retailer Free Record Shop to offer 100 Warner Bros. films through Free Record Shop's new video-on-demand service. The deal will kick off by offering Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire as a download-to-own in the Netherlands and Dutch-speaking Belgium on April 4, the same day the DVD is released. The website ( will offer about 100 new and catalogue Warner Bros. titles, inclu
  • WBITD signs output deal with Bulgaria's Nova-TV

    WarnerBros International Television Distribution (WBITD) has signed a multi-yearoutput deal with Bulgarian broadcaster Nova TV.
  • Working Title teams with John Hamburg on Troubleshooter

    Universal Pictures and Working Title have acquired John Hamburg'scomedy thriller screenplay The Troubleshooter.The screenplay is based on a story by Hamburg and MarkShanahan, and Hamburg will direct and produce along with Working Title's TimBevan and Eric Fellner. Plot det