The distributor plans to release the controversial film in the US next year.

Invincible Pictures has swooped to take North American rights to A Serbian Film, one on the most controversial films in the market.

A Serbian Film (sold by Jinga) has already been pulled from two festivals because of its violence and extreme imagery. In the UK, where it will be released by Revolver, the film has provoked a fierce row about censorship. Invincible is planning on distributing A Serbian Film in US theatres next year.

“We are planning a release in early 2011 in theatres. We’re not sure how wide yet. We are going to take it out as wide as we can,” Invincible’s Thomas Ashley said.

The company has already been in talks with some independent exhibitors, who will be willing to show the film in its full uncut version. However, Ashley acknowledged that bigger chains will require an R-rated version. Further down the line, Invincible will release the full film in an unrated DVD version.

A Serbian Film has been eliciting extreme responses wherever it has been shown. One of Ashley’s colleagues fainted at a market screening of the film in Cannes.  However, Ashley fiercely defends the picture.

“Everybody likes to say it’s an exploitation film. I really don’t see that, especially after talking to the film-makers. Shocking and disturbing as it is, this is really a well-made film. Everything that happens in the movie happens for a purpose,” Ashley said. “I just thought it was a really good movie. It definitely sets itself apart from the Hostels and some of the other torture porn…I’ve never had a movie affect me in the way this film did. Whether you like it or you don’t like it, it has been a long time since I’ve sat and watched a movie and had that kind of an emotional reaction to it.”

Invincible Pictures has an exclusive deal with Showtime to show the R-rated version. They’re also going to be rolling the film out on video on demand and on mobile devices via a service called FlixFling.