Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 is set for a furthertheatrical lease of life as United International Pictures (UIP) has acquiredall remaining territories to the film, including six in Asia.
Territories covered by the deal, signed last week, includeMalaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Philippines, Indonesia, India and SouthAfrica.
UIP is aiming to give the documentary a theatrical releasein all seven territories by mid-October. "We're delighted to be handling thisfilm and hope to release it as soon as possible," said UIP's London-based headof international acquisitions Nuala O'Halloran who negotiated the deal.
As the film is scheduled to start its DVD roll-out in the USon October 5, the Asian bow could be hit by parallel imports if left muchlater. In addition, low-quality pirate copies have emerged in some Asianmarkets.
According to UIP vice president sales and marketing, Asia,Kurt Rieder, the film has raised a fair amount of interest across the region."We've been pleasantly surprised with the enthusiastic reaction from theatreowners and our offices in a number of territories," Rieder said.
The deal ends months of speculation in Hong Kong as to whowould release the film and when. Although Hong Kong is regarded as anapolitical territory, the film's Palme d'Or and strong worldwide box officehave stirred the interest of local audience and press.
Rieder expects the film will also perform well in India - anEnglish-speaking market which is geographically close to the Middle East. UIPplans to release it on around 12 prints in key Indian cities.