Lions Gate Films has acquired US rights to Denys Arcand's Stardom, the closing night film at this year's Cannes Film Festival, from Alliance Atlantis Motion Picture Group and production company Serendipity Point Films. Stardom has also been selected to open the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept 7 this year.

The film - Arcand's first since the little seen Joyeux Calvaire in 1996 - is a comic look at the world of celebrity and features newcomer Jessica Pare as a young model who is catapulted to international fame after being discovered by a photographer. Among the ensemble cast are Dan Aykroyd, Frank Langella, Thomas Gibson, Robert Lepage and Charles Berling.

Alliance Atlantis Pictures International has virtually sold out on the film in the rest of the world with deals done including Arthaus in Germany, Rentrack in Japan and Pathe in the UK.

The film is produced by Robert Lantos and Denise Robert and written by Arcand and J Jacob Potashnik.

Stardom joins a rich lineup of titles on Lions Gate's 2000 slate including Ken Loach's Land And Freedom - also at Cannes but in competition, Patrice Leconte's The Widow Of St Pierre, Jamie Babbit's But I'm A Cheerleader and Shadow Of The Vampire featuring John Malkovich and Willem Dafoe. The company plans to release the film in the fall season.