When he's not busy fielding a barrage of calls from distributorshoning in on Christian Carion's Merry Christmas - which is screening outof competition at Cannes - Films Distribution's Francois Yon and his team areputting together a mighty line up heading into the Cannes market.
The French sales outfits slate includes the next filmfrom Etre Et Avoir director Nicolas Philibert and the latest effortsfrom Lucas Belvaux and Robert Guediguian.
Back To Normandie is the next documentary from Philibert whose EtreEt Avoir was a huge hit in 2002. The film is based on an experience thatthe director had when he was a 25 year old assistant director on Rene Allio's MoiPierre Riviere, Ayant Egorge Ma Mere, Ma Soeur Et Mon Frere. That 1976 filmwas based on the true story of a man who had killed his family.
In the original film, Allio used only unknown actors.Philibert was charged at the time with finding someone to play the lead role,eventually settling on Claude Hebert. For this film, Philibert travels to theNormandy village where the film was shot in order to trace what became of theactors.
Back To Normandie, produced by Les Films d'Ici and Maya Films, willshoot in September and is set to be released in France by Les Films de Losange.Films Distribution will begin pre-sales at Cannes on the Euros 2m film.
Lucas Belvaux, whose 2002 trilogy Cavale, Un CoupleEpatant and Apres La Vie was a critics' darling, will shoot TheWeakest Is Always Right this summer. The Euros 4m film stars NatachaReigner, Eric Cavaca and the director in a story about a group of Belgianfactory workers who take revenge on their bosses - who have sold up and firedthem - by organising a break-in at the factory. Diaphana will distribute inFrance.
Pascal Ferran, whodirected Camera D'Or winner Petits Arrangements Avec Les Morts, iscurrently working on an adaptation of DH Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover entitledLady Chatterley primed to be ready for Cannes 2006. Yon says the film isa perfect mix between "a high end film and a sexy chic auteur piece." The filmstars Marina Hands, Jean-Louis Coulloc'h and Hippolyte Girardot.
Following his foray into a Parisian set story aboutFrancois Mitterand, Robert Guediguian returns to his traditional style with Armenia.Though the director will once again stray from his preferred shooting locationof Marseille, he will re-team with favored actress Ariane Ascaride for a storyabout a young woman who follows her dying father back to his native Armenia.With a Euros 3m budget, the film will be released by Diaphana in France.
Also on deck is Days Of Glory directed by LittleSenegal's Rachid Bouchareb. The film is budgeted at Euros 16m and starsSami Naceri, Jamel Debbouze and Roschdy Zem. Glory is based on a littleknown piece of history when the French army recruited Algerian soldiers tofight for them in World War II. The soldiers were given little rights and notpaid but were an integral part of the famed Battle for Monte Cassino.
Glory is currently in the editing stage and will be released by Mars Films inthe first half of 2006.
The latest film from Jean-Marc Barr and Pascal Arnoldalso appears in Films Distribution's line up. Chacun Dans Sa Nuit isadapted from a true story about a young man killed by his friends when it wasdiscovered he was a homosexual. CTV will release the Euros 1.5m film in France.
Films Distribution has also just signed Belzec,a documentary about a little know concentration camp - where 800,000 peopledied during the war. Directed by Guillaume Moscowitz, the film is a moving lookat a camp where only two people survived. Ad Vitam has French distribution.
The company is also handling Yves Caumon's Directors'Fortnight entry Peek A Boo.