Colin Farrell Margot Robbie

Source: Matt Petit / Michael Yada / A.M.P.A.S.

Colin Farrell, Margot Robbie

In the first major on-site deal at EFM, Sony has swooped on worldwide rights to the Margot Robbie and Colin Farrell fantasy romance A Big Bold Beautiful Journey.

Kogonada, who worked with Farrell on After Yang, will direct from a screenplay by Seth Reiss in California this spring. The deal reportedly closed in the $50m range.

Plot details remain under wraps beyond the logline issued by financier 30West and parent company and producer Imperative Entertainment referencing an “imaginative tale of two strangers and the extraordinary emotional journey that connects them”.

The hope is the transaction will trigger more sales on a cluster of high-profile packages in the market. Stars have attached themselves to big ticket projects in the wake of the Hollywood strikes, when they were unable to work for the best part of six months.

With anticipation soaring as the industry looks to make up ground and rev up production, sources here have reported sky-high asking prices on some packages as the studios and streamers scour Berlin for potential hits.

Where that will leave the independent buyers remains to be seen, but for now, Sony has one of the prize assets of the EFM.

A Big Bold Beautiful Journey will mark Robbie’s first since last year’s box office smash Barbie, which is nominated for eight Oscars at the 96th Academy Awards on March 10.

Imperative Entertainment’s Dan Friedkin, Bradley Thomas and Ryan Friedkin will produce alongside Reiss and Youree Henley. Executive producers include Kogonada, Ilene Feldman and Original Films’ Ori Eisen.

Tom Rothman, Sony motion pictures group chairman and CEO, was effusive, calling A Big Bold Beautiful Journey “a project from heaven”.

Joe Matukewicz, Sony’s president of worldwide acquisitions, and his team of Virginia Longmuir, EVP business affairs, Katie Anderson, VP worldwide acquisitions, Elan Kovo, VP business development, made the deal in Berlin with CAA Media Finance and 30West for the filmmakers.