Skouras Films has picked up US rights to two pictures - Pavel Lounguine's The Wedding (La Noce) from Flach Pyramide International and Clara Law's The Goddess Of 1967 from Fortissimo Film Sales.
La Noce, which was produced by Catherine Dussart and played in competition at Cannes last year, is the story of a marriage in contemporary rural Russia. The deal was negotiated by Eric Lagesse, managing director of Flach Pyramide, with Tom Skouras, president of Skouras Films, and Paul Gardner on behalf of Skouras.
The Goddess Of 1967, which played in the Venice Film Festival last year and won the Best Actress prize for Rose Byrne, is the story of a Japanese man who travels to Australia to buy his dream car and falls in with a 17 year-old blind girl. The deal was negotiated by Skouras and Gardner with Wouter Barendrecht and Michael Werner of Fortissimo.
Shochiku has pre-acquired all Japanese rights to Paris, Je T'Aime, a project by fledgling production company Novem Productions. Paris Je T'Aime is a series of 6-minute short films, each focusing on a different love story set in one of Paris' 20 districts.
The international film-makers who have already signed on include Woody Allen, Jean-Luc Godard, Tom Tykwer, Asia Argento, Walter Salles and Bertrand Tavernier, as well as actors Guillaume Canet and Fanny Ardant. The collaboration of Emir Kusturica, Sally Potter and Maggie Cheung is still being discussed.
The project, which carries a $3.5m price tag, will be a year in production, from August 2000 to August 2001 The 20 stories will be assembled as a 110 minutes feature for potential theatrical release.
Menemsha Entertainment has sold Oscar-nominated Czech film Divided We Fall to Daiei in Japan and Cineopen in Korea, continuing a streak on the film which is directed by Jan Hrebejk. Sony Classics is releasing the film domestically in June. Set during World War II in a small Czech town, the film tells the story of a childless couple who hide a Jewish neighbour in their pantry and then become over friendly with local collaborators in an effort to hide their secret.
Japan's ACcreate has bagged Spanish competition title Pau And His Brother (Pau I El Seu Germa), directed by Marc Recha. French sales house Films Distribution, which is handling worldwide sales, has already sold Italian rights to the Barcelona-set family drama to Italian producer Amedeo Pagani, who will be co-producing Recha's next film.
Japan's Nippon Herald has picked up Austrian director Michael Haneke's The Piano Teacher , his third film to screen in competition at Cannes following Funny Games (1997) and Code Unknown (2000). Starring Isabelle Huppert, Benoit Magimel and Annie Girardor, the study of mutual dependence and hate between a mother and daughter is being handled internationally by MK2.
Brussels-based distributor Paradiso has snapped up Benelux rights to The Quiet American, The Plague Season, Assumption Of The Virgin and Iris from Intermedia. From Pandora Cinema it has bought The White Oleander, Company Man, Welcome To Colinwood and A Walk To Remember. From Summit Entertainment it has snagged Brian De Palma's Femme Fatale and Servicing Sarah. From IAC it bought The Gold Coast and from Distant Horizon it has taken The Dish. From UGC International it bought Netherlands-only rights to Amelie From Montmartre.
Italian distributor Mikado has picked up local distribution rights from UGC International to French director Andre Techine's upcoming title Terminus Des Anges. The film, whose name has been bandied around for a Venice Film Festival slot, is about two poor young women in France who share a flat and struggle to earn a living. Recent pick-ups for Mikado also include two Cannes competition titles: Jacques Rivette's Va Savoir! and veteran Portuguese director Manoel de Oliveira's Vou Para Casa.