Magnolia Pictures has secured North American rights towriter/director Cate Shortland's Somersault, which late last week broke all records with its clean sweep of theAFI (Australian Film Institute) Awards in Melbourne.

Sydney-based producer Anthony Anderson, principal of RedCarpet Productions, said he was very pleased it has gone to the New York-baseddistributor, which also handled Capturing The Friedmans and Control Room.

The terms of sale were negotiated at the American FilmMarket by Cinetic Media, the sub agent that sales agent Fortissimo engages fromtime to time for North America. Fortissimo has now sold Somersault to over 20 countries and the specialist title opensin France in January and in the UK in February. A mid-2005 release is plannedfor the US.

Local distributor Hopscotch nearly doubled the number ofscreens showing the film just before the AFIs and ticket sales rose 80% to$137,000 (A$181,283) in the week following the awards compared to the previousweek.

Hopscotch ramped up newspaper advertising to support the newscreens and if interest continues it may again run television commercials. Thismedium is often regarded as too expensive for specialist films although alimited amount of television ran at the beginning of this campaign.