Going into the Toronto International Film Festival, UK-based Bankside Films has acquired Roger Spottiswoode's Shake Hands With The Devil. The film screens as a Special Presentation in Toronto.
Michael Donovan (Bowling for Columbine) produces with Laszlo Barna.
Shake Hands With The Devil is based on the autobiography of Lieutenant General Romeo Dallaire, based on his personal experiences with the Rwandan genocide. Roy Dupuis, James Gallanders, Jean Hugues Anglade, Odile Katesi Gakire and Deborah Kara Unger star.
Seville Pictures has Canadian rights and will release theatrically in October.
Bankside has also added three new projects in pre-production. They are Accidents Happen, a black comedy about a wisecracking mother (Geena Davis) dealing with her 15-year-old son's misadventures. It marks the feature debut of Andrew Lancaster, who previously directed music videos and shorts including Sundance selection In Search Of Mike.
Anthony Anderson of Australia's Red Carpet Productions will produce, while Heather Ogilvie of Nice Pictures will executive produce. Financiers include the Film Finance Corporation (Australia), the New South Wales Film and Television Office (Australia) and the Abacus Film Fund. Production is set to start in April 2008.
Also Bankside has taken on sales for Bille August's Burden Of Desire, about a love triangle during WWI-era Nova Scotia. The film will be a co-production between the UK's Future Films, Canada's Capri Films, Sweden's Moviola and Denmark's Nordisk Film. Production is set to start in January 2008, with 'high-level' casting to be announced soon.
The third project in pre-production is Seed, produced by David Lightfoot of Australia's Ultrafilms, who produced hit Wolf Creek. Short film-maker Ruper Glasson will make his feature directorial debut, writing and directing the psychological thriller about a woman who becomes pregnant by a young tranger who turns psychotic in his drive to prove his paternity. Ayisha Davies of Lightfoot will also produce, and the UK's Piers Tempest is executive producing.
Bankside's Toronto slate also includes Carl Bessai's Normal, in the World Cinema Section. That film stars Carrie-Anne Moss, Kevin Zegers, Cameron Bright and Callum Keith Rennie in the story of three strangers searching for closure after a tragic accident. Andrew Boutilier of Vancouver-based Submission Films and Carl Bessai of Raven West Films produced. Mongrel Media has Canadian rights to Normal.
Bankside was established in January 2007, co-founded by Phil Hunt of Head Gear Films with former Beyond Films executives Hilary Davis and Stephen Kelliher. Its recent slate includes Neil Hunter and Tom Hunsinger's Sparkle, Anthony Byrne's How About You, Nick Broomfield's Ghosts and Gareth Lewis' The Baker.