THINKFilm has acquired allNorth American rights to John Cameron Mitchell's sexual odyssey Shortbus following its out-of-competition screening atCannes, and plans an autumn release.

Shortbus, which overcame its sexually explicit nature tobecome one of the most hotly pursued titles at the festival, follows the livesof several characters in New York as they struggle to overcome problems oflove, sex and orgasms.

Mitchell, who produced withHoward Gertler and Tim Perell of Process, corralled an ensemble of previouslyunknown actors who responded to an online open casting call.

Sook-Yin Lee, Paul Dawson,Lindsay Beamish, PJ DeBoy, Raphael Barker, Jay Brannan, Peter Stickles, andJustin Bond star.

Michael J Werner and WouterBarendrecht of Fortissimo, who are handling all international sales for thepicture, served as executive producers. The Process production was presented byFortissimo in association with Q Television.

"We pursued Shortbus aggressively from the moment we saw it in Cannes andwitnessed the audience's overwhelming response," THINKFilm's president andchief executive officer Jeff Sackman said.

"Considering how manyoffers they received from such a wide variety of distributors, we are extremelypleased and proud that the filmmakers recognised our unique abilities as wellas our company-wide enthusiasm for their film."

"It was a difficultprocess assessing all of the excellent and aggressive offers we received, butTHINK's success with challenging material and their passion won us over,"the filmmakers said in a statement.

THINKFilm's executive vicepresident of acquisitions and business affairs Randy Manis negotiated the dealwith CAA on behalf of the filmmakers.