Santa Monica-based Lightning Entertainment has acquired international sales rights excluding France heading into Cannes to US-French thriller The Chameleon.

The film recently premiered at Tribeca and is written and directed by Jean-Paul Salome and stars Marc-Andre Grondin, Ellen Barkin, Famke Janssen, Emilie de Ravin, Brian Geraghty and Nick Stahl.

The story centres on a missing youth case that seemingly resolves itself when the youngster reappears as a brooding teenager, much to the relief of the family. A suspcious FBI agent believes all is not as it seems.

Ram Bergman, Pierre Kubel, Marie-Castille Mention-Schaar, Bill Perkins and Cooper Richey produced.

Lightning will screen The Chameleon at the market. Gaumont will release the film theatrically in France on June 23, and ICM represents North American rights.

Lightning co-presidents Rich Goldberg and Richard Guardian and corporate counsel Megan Holstein negotiated the deal with Richey, ICM’s Bic Tran, and attorney Alan Sacks.

“The true story in and of itself makes for great cinema and when you factor in killer performances from such an accomplished cast, the finished product is an intense and gripping picture,” Guardian said. “The Chameleon is a very commercial crowd pleaser and we’re very pleased to have this on our slate.”

Lightning’s Cannes sales slate includes horror thriller Needle, Jonathan Hensleigh’s The Irishman starring Ray Stevenson, survival thriller The Reef, romantic comedy Coach, comedy Taking Chances, and supernatural thriller Road Train.