Screen chats to director Roger Donaldson, who is in Cannes to promote his new film, Cities, which begins shooting in September.

“The underlying theme of the movie is money,” says Roger Donaldson, in Cannes to talk up Cities, which he will begin directing in September and connects three stories from London, New York and Mumbai in the heady days leading up to the stock market high.

“The theme is the globalisation,” he says. “Traffic was about drugs and this is one of those multi-layered stories and hopefully each part will be good enough to add up to a great whole.”

Clive Owen and Anil Kapoor are confirmed and Donaldson, an imposing New Zealander who recently shot The Hungry Rabbit Jumps with Nic Cage and counts among his credits No Way Out, Cocktail and The Bank Job, is out to casting.

“Pre-sales, equity investors, gap financing from banks and tax rebates,” says Donaldson as he outlines the key ingredients for preparing an independent film. “These elements need to be in place to make independent movies. It’s tough and everybody’s pulled their horns in after the financial crisis, but the market is encouraging.”

Parlay Films is handling international sales.