Fernando Meirelles has begun principal photography on Blindness, a $25m multi-territory co-production adapted from the novel by Jose Saramago by Don McKellar. The film stars Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Danny Glover, Alice Braga, Yusuke Iseya, Yoshino Kimura, Maury Chaykin and Gael Garcia Bernal. McKellar is also a featured player.

The story takes place in a city ravaged by an epidemic of instant 'white blindness' and charts the disintegration of civilization. One woman, however, retains her sight and, keeping her good fortune a secret, guides seven strangers who have become a de facto family.

Blindness is produced by Niv Fichman of Toronto's Rhombus Media, Andrea Barata Ribero, Meirelles' producing partner in Sao Paulo-based O2 Filmes, and Sonoko Sakai of Tokyo-based Bee Vine Pictures (which also partnered with Rhombus on Francois Girard's Silk). The executive producers are Gail Egan and Simon Channing Williams, who worked with Meirelles on The Constant Gardener.

The co-producers are Sari Friedland and Bel Berlinck. Cesar Charlone repeats as DoP following his collaboration with Meirelles on The Constant Gardener and City Of God. Backers include Potboiler Productions and Mikado with the participation of Cinema Investment, Ancine, Telefilm Canada and Corus Entertainment.

Principal photography will run until October 15, 2007 in Toronto and Guelph, Montevideo, Uruguay and Sao Paulo, Brazil. Release is slated for the spring of 2008.

Blindness will be distributed in Canada by Alliance Atlantis' Motion Picture Distribution, in Japan by Gaga Communications and Asmik Ace Entertainment, Fox Brazil is distributing in Brazil, Pathe in France and the UK, Kinowelt in Germany and Mikado in Italy. Focus Features is distributing in the US and handling foreign sales.