From starry commercial films to projects from world-renowned auteurs, Screen previews some of the hot North American projects in the market at Cannes. Click the sales company names below to navigate to the relevant websites.
Jeremy Kay in Los Angeles
Focus Features International is bringing the Coen brothers’ spy caper Burn After Reading starring Brad Pitt and George Clooney alongside Frances McDormand.
The Weinstein Companyarrives with Wayne Kramer’s immigrant drama Crossing Over,starring Harrison Ford, Sean Penn and Ray Liotta. Sales chief Glen Basner will also commence sales on another immigrant drama, the Sundance pick-up La Misma Luna, starring Ugly Betty’s America Ferrera.
2929 International is selling James Gray’s Mafia drama We Own The Night, which stars Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Wahlberg and plays in Competition.
Patrick Wachsberger’s Summit International arrives with a diverse slate that includes Roman Polanski’s upcoming epic Pompeii, fantasy adventure Nim’s Island produced by Walden Media and starring Jodie Foster and Abigail Breslin, and the Summit-Offspring Entertainment dance drama sequel Step Up 2.
New Line International is touting sci-fi romance The Time Traveler’s Wife starring Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams, as well as Gavin Hood’s CIA thriller Rendition with Reese Witherspoon and Jake Gyllenhaal. Executives will also show buyers 10 minutes of The Golden Compass.
Lakeshore Entertainment’s international sales team will start sales on Isabel Coixet’s untitled adaptation of Philip Roth’s novel Dying Animal, starring Penelope Cruz as a student who falls for her professor, played by Ben Kingsley, with devastating results.
Switzerland-based production and sales outfit Omega Entertainment is handling Baldwin Entertainment Group’s slate, which boasts the romance 1:30 Train with Joel Schumacher set to direct, and comic-book adaptation Mandrake, to be directed by Chuck Russell.
GreeneStreet Films International has acquired the Plum Pictures project Laws Of Motion starring Hilary Swank, and Cecilia Miniucchi’s Critics’ Week closing night film Expired. Plum Pictures’ Sylvia Plath adaptation The Bell Jar starring Julia Stiles will also be available, although no sales agent was attached at time of writing.
Intermedia Films’ international sales company IM Global arrives on the Croisette with the $50m high-octane Jan de Bont thriller Stopping Power starring John Cusack - which will start shooting this summer in Berlin and will climax with a 51-minute real-time chase - and The Frog King, a co-production with GreeneStreet Films, set in the New York publishing world, scripted by Bret Easton Ellis and starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
Bonne Pioche International will be selling Parvez Sharma’s long-in-the-works Islam, My Love, the first known documentary exploring Islam and homosexuality.
CAA is representing the concert film U2 3D, which plays out of competition in Cannes. Bill Block’s QED International is beginning sales on The Return, Neil Burger’s follow-up to The Illusionist, about a trio of road-tripping Iraq war veterans starring Tim Robbins, Rachel McAdams and Michael Pena. Lionsgate has US rights.
ThinkFilm’s international sales division is touting the recently completed romantic comedy The Last Word featuring Winona Ryder and Wes Bentley, as well as the in-production grifter tale Five Dollars A Day starring Christopher Walken and directed by Nigel Cole (Calendar Girls).
Peace Arch’s new theatrical sales chief Julie Sultan will be tempting buyers with two new titles. Winged Creatures, a drama about the survivors of a restaurant shooting, wrapped last month and stars Forest Whitaker, Kate Beckinsale, Dakota Fanning and Guy Pearce. Comedy The Deal stars Meg Ryan, William H Macy and Elliott Gould and is based on Peter Lefcourt’s account of Hollywood life.
Voltage Pictureshas the intricate crime thriller Tortured starring Laurence Fishburne, which sales chief Nicolas Chartier describes as The Departed meets The Usual Suspects. Production begins on May 14.
Yarek Danielak will commence sales on Tony Giglio’s horror tale Timber Falls under his Arsenal Pictures banner. Arnold Rifkin produces with Lucky Number Slevin producer Christopher Eberts, on the story of a couple kidnapped by a cult and forced to conceive a child.
Edward Noeltner’s Cinema Management Group, which handled animated hit Hoodwinked!, is launching sales on the $15m animated Inuit adventure Sarila. Element Films International has the romantic comedy Something Borrowed, with Anna Faris. Odd Lot International has Good, in which Viggo Mortensen plays a decent man caught up in the Nazis’ rise to power.
Inferno Distribution will sell Swept Under, a true story produced by Steve Shor about a 10-year-old Pakistani boy freed from servitude by a US reporter.
Media 8 has horror project The Wizard Of Gore, with Kip Pardue as a writer on urban subcultures and Crispin Glover as a sinister magician.
H20 arrives with Feel from U2 music-video director Matt Mahurin, about men whose lives are transformed in a massage parlour. William Baldwin stars.