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9 March 2006

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  • 78th Annual Academy Awards winners

    Best PictureCrash - Paul Haggis, Cathy SchulmanBrokeback MountainCapoteGood Night, And Good LuckMunichBest DirectorAng Lee - Brokeback MountainBennett Miller - CapotePaul Haggis - CrashGeorge Clooney - Good Night, And Good
  • Academy Awards

    Best PictureCrash - Paul Haggis, Cathy SchulmanBrokeback MountainCapoteGood Night, And Good LuckMunichBest DirectorAng Lee - Brokeback MountainBennett Miller - CapotePaul Haggis - CrashGeorge Clooney - Good Night, And Good
  • Anderson, Fraser, Levy, Goulet inducted into Canada's Walk Of Fame

    Four Canada-born screenstars, Pamela Anderson, Brendan Fraser, Eugene Levy and Robert Goulet are amongthe 2006 inductees to Canada's Walk of Fame, a celebration of Canadiancontributions to the world of music, arts and entertainment. The ceremony, which includesa star-shaped dedication and the casting of the recipients' impressions inconcrete, will take place June 3, 2006 in Toronto. Most famous as a baritone,Goulet made his mark as Lancelot in the 1960 film adaptation of the sta
  • Arctic saga to break the ice at Toronto festival

    The Journals Of Knud Rasmussen, Zacharias Kunuk's and Norman Cohn's follow-up to 2001 Camerad'Or-winning sensation Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner, will have its world premiere at the TorontoInternational Film Festival, as its opening night gala on September 7. Set in the Canadian Arctic in 1922 against the backdrop ofan expedition of Greenlandic-Danish ethnographer Rasmussen, the story tells ofa conflict between two aboriginal shamen, one who has accepted Christianity,the ot
  • Ask The Dust

    Dir/scr Robert Towne. US. 2005. 117mins.Robert Towne returns with an evocative, nuancedadaptation of John Fante's Depression-era novel Ask The Dust, avisually lustrous and imaginatively staged film that is given piercing depth offeeling from leads Colin Farrell and Salma Hayek.Fante's autobiographical 1939 work was a dominant literaryinfluence on Towne's greatest achievement, his script for Roman Polanski's China
  • Bafta elevates video games industry on par with TV and film

    The British Academy of Film andTelevision Arts (Bafta) has boosted its recognitionof the video games industry. Bafta has now made videogames equal to film and television, and will put increased emphasis on theBritish Academy Video Games Awards. The gamesawards wi
  • Bauer Martinez's Crash Bandits delays Thailand shoot

    Bauer Martinez's Crash Bandits has pushed back filming in Thailand to January 2007 to allow for longer pre-production time, according to government agency Thailand Film Office. The John McTiernan-directed big-budget action adventure feature was originally scheduled for a three-month shoot in southern Thailand from mid-February through local fixer Kantana.Th
  • Brandon promoted in anti-piracy department at Warner Bros

    Marc Brandon has been promoted to vice president of anti-piracy internetoperations at Warner Bros Entertainment.
  • Brisk sales continue for Golden Bear winner Grbavica

    Michael Weber's salesoutfit The Match Factory has closed a raft of deals for Jasmila Zbanic's GoldenBear winning Bosnian drama Grbavica in addition to previous sales to Germany, Switzerland and Italy.TheAustrian-Bosnian-German-Croatian co-production has now been picked up by Golem(Spain), C
  • Brokeback takes feature, director prizes at Spirit Awards

    BrokebackMountain continued its virtual sweepof best picture awards at the 2006 Independent Spirit Awards which took placein a tent on the beach at Santa Monica this afternoon (Saturday). The event, which isstaged by Film Independent (formerly IFP/West), acted as a mirror to tomorrow'sAcademy Awar
  • BVI's Narnia lands in its final major market of Japan

    Buena Vista International (BVI) executives expect to dominate theweekend as they launch The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And TheWardrobe in its finalmajor market of Japan on Mar 4.
  • California's Method Fest opens with Matzner's Dreamland

    Jason Matzner's directorial debut Dreamland starring Agnes Bruckner and Gina Gershonwill open the 8th annual Method Fest festival on Mar 31 in Calabasas,California.
  • Cast lines up for Vaughn's Stardust

    Robert De Niro,Michelle Pfeiffer, Claire Danes, Charlie Cox, and Sienna Miller have joined the cast of Matthew Vaughn's Stardust. The fantasy love story is about a young man(Cox) travelling into a magical world to win the heart of his beloved (Miller).Vaughn wrote the scrip
  • Channel 4 wins UK bidding war for Fox films

    Channel 4 has won a bidding war to secure a five year moviesupply deal with USstudio 20th Century Fox, understood to be worth as much as $260m (£150m).The deal gives C4 immediate access to the extensive Fox backcatalogue of over 1,500 films and upcoming slate of big budget theatricalreleases.Titles include US blockbusters like Cheaper by the Dozen, Dodgeball, Garfield,I-Robot, The Day
  • Chan's Perhaps Love to open San Francisco Film Festival

    Peter Chan's China-set musical Perhaps Love and Robert Altman's A Prairie HomeCompanion bookend the49th San Francisco International Film Festival, which runs from Apr 20 to May4.
  • Constantin subsidiary acquires rights to children's book

    Just aweek after acquiring the film rights to Michael Ende'sJim Button children's classic for anEnglish language screen adaptation German producer Christian Becker has nowbought the rights to the late Max von der Gruen's 1976 children's book, The Suburban Crocodiles (Die Vorstadtkrokodile).The storyof a paraplegic boy being integrated into a children's gang, the "SuburbanCrocodiles" (so named because of a figure of a crocodile sown on theirtrousers)will be produced in Ger
  • Conversations On A Sunday Afternoon

    Dir/scr: Khalo Matabane. S Afr. 2005. 80minsFalling somewhere between a tentative documentary anda piece of home movie improvisation, Khalo Matabane's first fictional feature allows him to againexplore the many faces resident in South Africa today.The set-up is the accidentalencounter between a tormented poet Keniloe (Kgoroge) and a Somali refugee, Fatima (Hersi),whose father and brother were butchered in the
  • Crash goes back on the road

    Surprise Oscar-winner Crashis to be re-released in cinemas across the UKand Irelandthis weekend on approximately 70 screens.The film has already been released on DVD in the territories but Ian George, head of distribution at the film's distributor Pathe, said the best-film win justifies the move. "We thought it's worth giving people the chance to
  • Crash takes best picture Oscar, shares spoils with Brokeback Mountain

    Crash turned the tables on popular wisdom when it was named best picture at the 78th annualAcademy Awards last night as it took three Oscars, while the pre-ceremonyfavourite Brokeback Mountain alsotook home three awards including best director for Ang Lee.Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Reese Witherspoon won the lead actor and actressprizes for Capote and Walk TheLine respectively, while GeorgeClooney and Rachel Weisz won their supporting actor categories for
  • Dardenne brothers' The Child to open Sofia Film Festival

    The Dardenne brothers' Golden Palm winner The Child will open the 10th anniversary edition of the SofiaInternational Film Festival (SIFF) on March 9.Among theinternational filmmakers expected in the Bulgarian capital between March 9-19are Bent Hamer (Factotum),Craig Lucas (The Dying Gaul) Alexey Fedorchenko (First On The Moon), Volker Schloendorff (The TinDrum), Jan Cvitkovic(Gravehopping),Isabelle Stever (Gisela)and Karen Shakhnazarov (
  • Director Samantha Lang's project accepted into Aurora

    Director Samantha Lang'sfourth feature may well be The RosevilleStory, following its acceptance into Aurora, a high-profile script hothouse run by the NewSouth Wales Film and Television Office (FTO). Lang made Cannes competition title The Well and the Monkey's Mask in Australia, and The Idol
  • Endore-Kaiser joins Paramount specialty arm as senior vp, creative advertising

    Paramount's new-look specialty division has hired GuyEndore-Kaiser as senior vice president of creative advertising.
  • Endore-Kaiser joins Paramount specialty arm as senior vp, creative advertising

    Paramount's new-look specialty division has hired GuyEndore-Kaiser as senior vice president of creative advertising.
  • FACT adds more information to website

    The UK's Federation Against CopyrightTheft (FACT) has re-launched its website with more emphasis on newsand information for the media as well as updates on currentlegislation related to film piracy and a web-based form for consumers to reportpirate activities."Thenew FACT website addresses consumers, journalists and law enforcement and wesee it as a critic
  • Failure To Launch

    Dir: Tom Dey. US. 2006. 92mins.Verging on the preposterous, Tom Dey'sFailure ToLaunch relies on attractive stars to overcome its lacklustreexecution. Opening on March10 in the US - and later in the month throughout Europe - it seeks to capitalise on the success of other recent date movies that useda lover-with-a-hidden-agenda plotline such as Hitch (which brought i
  • Familia wins Claude Jutra Award, C.R.A.Z.Y. gets Golden Reel in Canada

    LouiseArchambault's Famillahas been named the winner of the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television'sannual Claude Jutra Award for first-time filmmakers. The prize,sponsored by the National Film Board of Canada, will be presented at the 26thGenie Awards held on March 13 in Toronto. Written by Archambault and producedby Luc Dery, Familiais a production of Montreal-based production company micro_scope anddistributed by Christal Films.The Academy alsoconfirmed that
  • Film Independent names lineup of fellows, advisors for Directors Lab

    Film Independent has chosen seven fellows for its annual DirectorsLab, which will begin its seven-week run on Mar 7.
  • Finnish films enjoying record admissions for 2006

    Figures released last weekby The Finnish Film Foundation. Local titles recorded 942,795 admissions duringJanuary and February, the best opening months of the year ever in Finland forlocal product, and have already surpassed the ticket sales of all local filmsthroughout 2005 (940,000). The top release of the yearso far was Aleksi Makela's Matti - HellIs For Heroes, a fictional film based on the lifeof ski-jumper Matti Nykanen,which sold 432,000 tickets. Romantic com
  • Flood of Australian film shoot without FFC funds

    Film-maker Alkinos Tsilimidos is soon tolock on his fourth feature, the crime thriller Em 4 Jay. In keeping with his focus on social realist cinema - andhis disinterest in "safe, middle-class" stories - it follows two people whoturn to armed robbery to sustain their smack habit.Keeping budgets low allowshim to make this sort of material: funding came from the state agency FilmVictoria as well as private investors."My interest is inmarginalised people," explains Mel
  • Four Stars (Quatre Etoiles)

    Dir: Christian Vincent. Fr. 2006.100mins.A mildly entertaining French boulevard farce, Four Stars is much better suited to aswift home release than the spotlight of a festival like Berlin where itpremiered.Very much in the traditionof light Gallic comedies sustained by gags and assembly line jokes, ChristianVincent's new feature matches a pretty English teacher who spends all hermodest inheritance on a Riviera binge with a
  • Gloomy MPAA data shows US 2005 admissions fell 8.7%

    The Motion PictureAssociation Of America (MPAA) has announced its annual data on the year 2005.US box office, as widely reported,fell 6% and admissions were down 8.7% to 1.4 billion tickets generating $8.99billion in revenue.Worldwide box office,however, was down 7.9% to just under $23 billion, reflecting the slump ininternational theatrical performance.Meanwhile the average costto make and market a studio film fell slightly (0.6%) to $96.2m reflecting a 4%drop in product
  • Hanneman, Jegeus named co-presidents of Fox International Theatrical

    PaulHanneman and Tomas Jegeus have been named co-presidents of Twentieth CenturyFox International Theatrical.
  • Horgan to take MD role at UIP following restructure

    John Horgan will serve as managing director of UIP following its restructuring at the end of the year, the company announced. Horgan, who is currently the senior VP of operations based in UIP's London headquarters, will take his new post from January 1, 2007. He has worked at UIP since its founding in 1981."We are fortunate to have someone of John's calibre to continue to build the strengths of the organization," said UIP chairman and CEO Stewart Till. "His vast knowledge of our
  • Intel, Cinequest strike distribution, content alliance

    California-based technologyoutfit Intel Corp and Northern California-based film institute Cinequest havestruck a content and distribution alliance.Users of Intel's Viivintegrated home entertainment platform will be able to access independent andinternational content gathered by San Jose-based Cinequest.Cinequest will providetitles that have not been released in North America but have played at its annualfestival or appeared on its online DVD and download serv
  • Intertainment founder resigns from supervisory board

    Ruediger "Barry" Baeres,the founder of beleaguered German licence trader/producer Intertainment,has stepped down from his position as chairman of the company's supervisoryboard "for personal reasons" "with immediate effect."Baeres founded Intertainmentin 1993 and took the company to the Neuer Markt stock exchange in 1999 as the Chairman of the Boardof Management.
  • James Hewison to head up the Australian Film Institute

    James Hewison will move on to be chiefexecutive of the Australian Film Institute (AFI) in August once he wraps hisfifth Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF). He will be the third AFI chief in just over a year and replaces GeoffreyWilliams who left in January despite revitalising the 2005 AFI Awards with hostRussell Crowe. Differences with the new board, headed by new chair, publisherand property developer Morry Schwartz were cited asthe reason.Hewison announced last year
  • Korean film King and the Clown rules the box office

    Sleeperhit King and the Clown became Korea's biggesthit of all time with a tally of 11.8 million admissions yesterday (March 5), toppingprevious record-holder Taegukgiwith 11.7 million. Afterhaving its premiere at the Berlin market, internationalsales agent CJ Entertainment has decided to co-distribute the film directly in Japan
  • Krisztina Goda begins shooting Children of Glory

    Hungariandirector Krisztina Goda beganprincipal photography March 5 on Childrenof Glory, a Hungarian-UK co-production based on a script by Joe Eszterhas and produced by Andy Vajna."Thisis an epic movie portraying the heroic efforts of the Hungarian people to tryto break the chains of their Communist occupiers and thereby influence thehistory of Europe," Vajnasaid in statement released to the press. The filmtakes place in 1956. As Soviet tanks invade
  • Lionsgate UK acquires Richard E. Grant's Wah-Wah

    Lionsgate UKhas acquired Richard E. Grant's Wah-Wah for UKdistribution. Grant, who has acted in films including Withnail & I and Gosford Park, made hisdirectorial debut with the drama, a semi-autobiographical portrait of hischildhood in Swaziland.Gabriel Byrne, Emily Watson, Julie Wa
  • Lucy

    Dir\scr: Henner Winckler. Ger. 2006.92mins.The second feature from German director Henner Winckler, Lucy is a psychologically lucid,beguiling portrait of teenage restriction given a startling jolt of recognitionand star-making turn by German actress Kim Schnitzer.The story examines theemotional and personal consequences of the title character, eight-month-old Lucy(Hauschild), on her emotionally ill-equi
  • Madea continues to top North American box office

    Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion consolidated its number one ranking aheadof four top 10 openers in a typically quiet Oscar weekend at the box office.The Lionsgate release - which is written, directed,produced by and stars Perry in a big screen version of his hit stage
  • Massis, Film Source to executive produce Brazilian gay love story Copacabana

    Roberto Jabor will make his feature directorial debut on theBrazilian gay romance Copacabana, Of Love And Shadows from his own screenplay.Alex Massis of Florida-based production and sales companyThe Film Source will serve as executive producer on the $5
  • MGM unveils revitalised domestic distribution operation

    MGMhas confirmed its return to the North American theatrical distribution businessand unveiled an initial slate of 14 films from independent production companiesfor domestic release over the next year.
  • Narnia enjoys spectacular $9.2m opening in Japan for BVI

    The Chronicles of Narnia returned to the top of the international rankings thisweekend courtesy of a superb number one launch in Japan.
  • New Zealand to keep production rebates in place

    New Zealand's economic development minister Trevor Mallard hasannounced that a review of the "Large Budget Screen Production Grant"initiative has been concluded and the scheme will remain in place. Mallard also announced thatthe New Zealandgovernment has paid expenditure rebates of $16.8m (NZ$25.2m) to King Kong and $10.6m (NZ$15.9m) to The Lion, Th
  • News From Home/News From House

    Dir/scr: Amos Gitai. Is. 2006. 96mins.Israelis, Palestinians and others who follow MiddleEast politics closely will find little new, either conceptually or historicallyspeaking, in News From Home/News From House,the third instalment in Amos Gitai's documentarytrilogy about the Arab-Israeli conflict. But audiences around the world,especially at festivals, will appreciate the powerful feelings and personalvoices he
  • Notro Films picks up Spanish rights to On Probation

    Spanish distributor NotroFilms has picked up local rights to Argentinean feature On Probation ahead of its European premiere at the 9th annualSpanish Film Festival of Malaga (March 17-25).The film (Tiempo De Valientes) will inaugurate Malaga's newly created Latin American cinema com
  • Oscar win for Inside Pictures alumni

    Two alumni of the Skillset's training programme Inside Pictures have won an Oscar. Producers Kenton Allen and Mia Bays, who met on the 2002 Inside Pictures programme, won for the Academy Award for short film Six Shooter, directed by Martin McDonagh. "Congratulations to Mia and Kenton for a fantastic and well deserved Oscar win," said Stewart Till, deputy chair of Skillset and CEO of United International Pictures. "As they met and undoubtedly developed their knowledge on Skillse
  • Oscar winner Hoffman joins Linney in Searchlight's Savages

    Freshfrom his best actor Oscar triumph for Capote, Philip Seymour Hoffman has signedto star opposite Laura Linney in Fox Searchlight's comedy The Savages.
  • Palm picks up US rights to Babluani's 13 (Tzameti)

    Palm Pictures has acquiredall US and Caribbean rights to 13 (Tzameti), the critically acclaimed French thriller directedby Georgian first-time film-maker Gela Babluani.The black-and-white film hadits world premiere in the Venice Film Festival last September where it won theDe Laurentiis Award for best first film, recently won the World Cinema grandjury prize for best dramatic feature at the Sundance Film Festival and will bescreened in the forthcoming New Directors/New Fi
  • Palm picks up worldwide rights to Sun Dogs

    PalmPictures has acquired worldwide rights to Andrea Stewart's documentary SunDogs, about the Jamaican dog sledteam that enters the 2006 UK Dog Sledding Championships in Scotland.
  • Papal biopic grosses more than $1m in Poland

    A biopic of Pope John Paul II has become a smash hit in Poland - the place of his birth - one month ahead of the firstanniversary of his death. The film, Pope John Paul II (Jan PawelII), opened top of the Polish chart last weekend (March 3-5) grossing over$1m in its first three days. Selling 217,731 tickets fora weekend gross of $1.02m (Zloty 3.24m) PopeJohn Paul II was released by Interfilm in theterritory on 140 prints. The film stars Jon Voight asthe late Pope, K
  • Papandrea moves to LA to head London's Groundswell Productions

    Bruna Papandrea has joinedMichael London's new financing company Groundswell Productions as president.Papandrea (pictured) moves to LosAngeles from New York City where she was previously at GreeneStreet Films; shepreviously worked in London as a creative executive for Anthony Minghella andSydney Pollack in their Mirage Enterprises.The Australian-born Papandreawill oversee creative operations for the new company, which already has twofilms scheduled to start production in the sum
  • Parisian shorts to open Un Certain Regard at Cannes

    TheCannes Film Festival has announced it will open the Un Certain Regard sidebar with the collection of shorts entitled ParisJe T'Aime.Paris Je T'Aime, produced by Claudie Ossard (of Amelie fame) and Emmanuel Benbihy,is a series of 20 short films shot by renowned international directors in eachof the capital city's 20 arrondissements ordistricts.Each story, about finding love, is told in fiveminutes by direct
  • Per Fly's Manslaughter wins best film at Bodil Awards

    Per Fly's last instalment of his class trilogy,Manslaughter, cleaned up on Sundaynight at the Bodil Awards in Copenhagen. The Danish Association of Film Critics Awardsare amongst the most prestigious along with the RobertAwards. Manslaughter won Best Film, Best Actor and Best femalesupporting actress. Jesper Christensen, who is alsoknown for the first of Per Flys' trilogy,
  • Prosperous IMAX goes back on the block

    IMAX Corporation, thepioneer of large-format filmmaking and exhibition, has announced it isexploring "strategic alternatives" that include a possible sale or merger. Thecompany has retained Allen & Company and UBS Investment Bank as itsfinancial advisors in the strategy. The announcement coincides with the company's2005 financial results.It's not the first time IMAXhas sought a buyer. In July 2000, the company hired Goldman Sachs andWasserstein, Perella & Co., then the company's larges
  • Rampage

    Dir/scr: George Gittoes. Aus. 2005. 118mins.Though it needs to be cut drastically, Rampage is a power-packed documentarywith lots of potential. Set mostly in one of the worst black ghettoes in Miami,the film, which was shot over the course of several years by Australianfilm-maker George Gittoes, is lively, insightful andeven shocking.Festival programmers andbuyers of docs for television, who may think t
  • Sandrew Metronome picks up rights to Goodbye Bafana

    Sandrew Metronome has bought the rights and closed the deal, which coversall the Nordic countries Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Icel
  • Scheffer steps into consultancy role at HBO

    One of HBO's mostsenior executives Steve Scheffer is seguing into a consultancy role from hiscurrent position as president, Film Programming, Video and Enterprises.Scheffer, who hasbeen at the US cable giant since 1980 when he joined as vice president, filmprogramming, was instrumental in developing the company's film acquisition anddistribution structures. He was promoted to executive vice president, filmprogramming and home video, in 1983 and to his current position in 1995 when hewa
  • Scorpio East launches IPO

    Singapore's leading home video distributor ScorpioEast has launched an IPO for a listing on the SESDAQ of the Singapore Exchangein a bid to raise approximately $2.5m (S$4.1m). Formerly known asGolden Mandarin Video, the company is a licensee of Hong Kong's TVB, China's CCTV and Singapore
  • Senator Films looks set to pull cannibal film

    German distributor Senator Film looks set to pull its March 9 release of Butterfly -A Grimm Love Story (Rohtenburg), after a court in Kassel granted Armin Meiwes a temporary injunction on Friday preventing the film being shown on German screens.
  • Senator offers digital cinema copies of new films to exhibitors

    German independent distributor Senator is to offer digital cinema copies of its new films to allcinemas equipped with DLP Cinema Projectors."Senator is thereby the first German film distributor to offer its completeslate of movies for digital projection," declared Managing Director BenjaminHerrmann. The announcement heralds a new era for the company,which last year was declared insolvent, but was saved in October 2005 by a German-USgroup of investo
  • Shoreline picks up worldwide rights to kung fu comedy Babes

    Shoreline Entertainment has picked up worldwide rights to HighCotton Films' kung-fu comedy All Babes Want to Kill Me from first-time filmmakers Colin Millerand Alex Cain.
  • Sony Classics goes for American Hardcore

    Sony Pictures Classics has picked up North American, Mexican,Australian, New Zealand and German rights to Paul Rachman's punk documentary AmericanHardcore.
  • Sony Classics wins PG-13 rating for Oscar nominated Noel

    Sony Pictures Classics has won its appeal to overrule the R ratingon Christian Carion's Oscar nominated Joyeux Noel (Merry Christmas) and will release the picture in the USwith a PG-13 rating in March.
  • Stefan Ruzowitzky's new feature to shoot at Babelsberg

    Another film about eventsfrom the Second World War will use sound stages at Studio Babelsbergonly three months after shooting wrapped on Paul Verhoevens Black Book just before Christmas.The production centre nearPotsdam willbe host to part of the shoot for Austrian director Stefan Ruzowitzky's TheCounterfeiter(Der Faelscher)which is based on the true story of Adolf Burger - The Devils Workshop - about a Nazischeme to wreak havoc in the British economy during the wa
  • The Hills Have Eyes

    Dir: Alexandre Aja. US. 2006. 107mins.Whether it's ironic or just emblematic of a generallack of imagination is open to debate, but everything old is new again inHollywood - or at least as it applies to the current trend of updated andrefashioned horror properties. The latest is The Hills Have Eyes, a remake of Wes Craven's low-budget 1977 16mmfilm of the same name. Intense, effectively streamlined and stylishly d
  • The Peter Pan Formula (Peterpan-eui Gongsik)

    Dir/scr: Cho Chang-ho. S Kor. 2005.108mins.Teenage angst has rarely felt seemed more decorous ormore downbeat than in the hands of South Korean director ChoChong-ho in his debut The Peter Pan Formula. A moody, atmospheric coming-of-age film witha perverse streak of eroticism, it explores the emotional links betweenmourning and sexuality in a narrative that becomes increasingly more confusedand symbolically overloa
  • The Shaggy Dog

    Dir: Brian Robbins. US.2006. 92mins.Disney's latest update of one of its vintagelive-action family comedies pairs SantaClause star Tim Allen with that reliably popular screen character, thecutely anthropomorphised canine. It's predictable and only mildly amusingstuff; but it's also the kind of innocuous entertainment that sometimes lures asizeable family audience, if not in cinemas then certainly in the videomarke
  • Tough Enough (Knallhart)

    Dir: Detlev Buck. Ger.2005. 98mins.Mixing references from early Ken Loach to La Haine to Mean Streets, Tough Enough is German actor-director DetlevBuck's hard man act after a string of dry, slightly surreal comedies - thelast, Bundle Of Joy, dating back to2000.It's a powerful and oftenviolent film, uncritically but movingly wrapped up in the emotional turmoil ofits main character, a
  • TriPictures helps Gaul to the Games

    Spain'sTriPictures has boarded the $93m (Euros 78m) French-language Asterix At TheOlympic Games, set to shoot entirely in Spain beginning nextJune.The film will shoot in high definition for20 weeks at the new Alicante-based City of Light studio complex.
  • TWC picks up Bessons's Arthur And The Minimoys

    The Weinstein Company has picked up North America and all English-speakingterritories on Luc Besson's CGI-live-action adaptation of his 2003 children'sbook Arthur And The Minimoys.
  • UK distributors spend more than $523m on P&A

    UK distributors spent more than $523m (£300m) on prints and advertising last year, according to figures released by the UK-based Film Distributors’ Association (FDA).The FDA Yearbook, using research from Nielsen Media Research, shows film prints and trailers in2005 cost UK distributors $221.5m, up 2% from 2004, while media advertising spend rose 4.6% to 290.7m. Other promotional activity pushed the cumulative cost past $523m (£300m).With total theatrical revenue of $1.44bn (£840
  • UK to recognise film societies on March 11

    TheBritish Federation of Film Societies (BFFS) will hold its national Film Societyof the Year Awards ceremony at the National Film Theatre in Londonon March 11. AnthonyMinghella will present the awards, now in their 60thyear.
  • Universal promotes four key publicity strategists

    UniversalPictures has promoted four key publicity strategists, with Los Angeles-basedAlissa Grayson and New York's Amy Thomases rising from vice president to seniorvice president, and Teresa Johnson and Amanda Scholer in Los Angeles jumpingfrom director to vice president.Grayson, Johnsonand Scholer will head up the three national publicity departments whileThomases will oversee New York publicity outreach for all Universal films andwill continue to oversee the New Y
  • Warner, Weinsteins divvy up distribution rights on Ninja Turtles

    Warner Bros will overseedomestic distribution and The Weinstein Company (TWC) will handle internationalon Imagi Services' upcoming CGI-animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles feature.The companies jointlyacquired the project and have announced a Mar 30 2007 North American releasedate.Imagi's Kevin Munroe willdirect from his own screenplay that was developed in consultation with Turtlesco-creator Peter Laird.Thomas K Gray and GalenWalker will produ
  • Warp Films kicks off low-budget arm Warp X

    UK production company WarpFilms has opened its new low-budget division Warp X, part of the new low-budgetfilm scheme started by the UK Film Council's New Cinema Fund and FilmFour, with funding from regional screen agencies EMMedia and Screen Yorkshire, and support from distributor Optimum Releasing.(Michael Kuhn's Qwerty Films is also working with the scheme and will establishits own low-budget arm independently of Warp.)W
  • Weisbein's Green Room strikes sales deal on Orchestra Seats

    Pierre Weisbeinand his LA-based company Green Room has struck a deal with producer ChristineGozlan and financier StudioCanal to handle all English- and Italian-speakingrights of Daniele Thompson's French hit Orchestra Seats (Fauteuils d'Orchestre) which has scored over one millionadmissions in France in its first two weeks of release.The film,released in France by MARS Distribution on Feb 15, stars Cecile de France,Valerie Lemericier, Albert Dupontel, Claude Brasseur and
  • Wild Bunch enjoys brisk business for its Berlin slate

    Following the recent EFM at the Berlin Film Festival, French sales, finance and distribution outfit Wild Bunch has announced a slew of sales on its varied slate. Oscar-winner Luc Jacquet's follow up to March Of The Penguins, TheFox And The Child, which Wild Bunch announced in Sundance, sold in nearly30 territories during the market including the UK (Pathe),Germany (Kinowelt/Telepool), Canada (Crystal), Italy(Lucky Red), Israel (Shani), the Middle East (FrontRow), Brazil (Imag
  • Wim Wenders closes Belgrade Film Festival (FEST)

    The BelgradeInternational Film Festival, this year subtitled FEST Forward, was closed on March 5 by special guest Wim Wenders with a screening of his Don't Come Knocking. A retrospective of Wenders'films was shown at the festival and he also opened an exhibition of hisphotographs entitled, Pictures from theSurface of the Earth. The festival was judged to be one of the mostsuccessful in the past five years with around 100,000 spectators visiting the10-day festival and 75 films
  • Woody Allen to shoot his next film in Paris

    Woody Allenwill begin production on his latest film in Paris this summer. Titled The Woody Allen Summer Project 2006, the film marks the thirdconsecutive time the director has chosen to shoot in Europe following his two latest outings inLondon, Match Point and Scoop. Continuing his love affair with Europe, in 2007 Woody Allen is planning to shoot in Spain.
  • You And Me (Toi Et Moi)

    Dir. Ma Liwen. China. 2005.85mins.You And Me is one of thoseheartwarming, inter-generational dramas that the Chinesedo so well that is, alas, not one of the more accomplished examples of the genre.Opening the Kinderfilmfest Plus 14 section at theBerlinale, it seemed to play well enough to its targetaudience, young teens and their parents, presumably looking for wholesomeente