Chris Blackwell's Palm Pictures has acquired worldwide rights toand will go into production on Larry Clark's upcoming Los Angeles youth drama WassupRockers.
Production is due to begin in Los Angeles this summer and Palmexpects to release the film theatrically in North America in 2005. WouterBarendrecht and Michael Werner's Fortissimo Films will handle foreign sales.
Based on a screenplay by Clark, who made a name for himself withhis stirring slice of New York street life Kids, the story turnsattention to Los Angeles, where a group of largely Hispanic teenagers fromSouth Central eschew cultural expectations by riding skateboards, listening topunk rock and wearing tight clothes.
Palm's in-house producer Richard Brown brought the project to thecompany and will produce with Clark. Palm's head of acquisitions and productionDavid Koh and Steven Lehrhoff will serve as executive producers.
Palm's business affairs head Mark Ragone and Clark'sattorney Irwin Rappaport negotiated the deal between Palm and Clark, while Kohand Fortissimo's Barendrecht, Werner and sales head Winnie Lau struck the dealbetween Palm and Fortissimo.
In another development Palm has picked up North American andCaribbean rights to Johnnie To's police thriller PTU, which screens inthe Cannes Market.
Koh and Sara Law of Mei Ah Entertainment negotiated the deal andTo's Milkyway Image served as producer. Palm plans an early 2005 release withDVD release to follow.
To's directing credits include Fulltime Killer, TheMission, Running Out Of Time and Turn Left, Turn Right.
PTU concerns a Hong Kong police tactical unit caught up in themiddle of an all-out gang war on the streets.
It received 10 nominations at this year's Hong Kong Film Awards,earning To best director Award, and won six awards in this year's GoldenBauhinia Film Awards organised by Hong Kong critics.
Palm Pictures upcoming releases include Ondi Timoner's SundanceGrand Jury Prize Documentary Winner, DiG!, Christoffer Boe'sCamera D'Or winner Reconstruction, Mark Moorman's festival favorite TomDowd And The Language Of Music, Michael Haneke's Time Of The Wolfand Lou Ye's Purple Butterfly.