Wellspring has picked up allUS rights to Thomas Vinterberg's jolting cautionary tale Dear Wendy, which was one of the most talked about pictures atSundance when it premiered in January.

Based on a screenplay byLars Von Trier, Dear Wendy starsJamie Bell and Bill Pullman and centres on a group of young misfits in a UStown who develop an ill-fated fascination for guns.

At Sundance, the film wastalked about as a risky buy for domestic distribution with its bold critique ofUS society, and in a statement Vinterberg called Wellspring "smart, courageousand modern in their way of handling other films of this kind".

He added: "The NorthAmerican territory is important for this film. I know that this film is morethan just a satire about American gun culture - there is a vital debate aboutthese matters in America nowadays, and hopefully this film will invite manymore interesting conversations about the human attraction to firearms."

"Thomas Vinterberg has madea bold, entertaining one-of-a-kind movie that will make a big splash upon itsrelease," Wellspring's head of acquisitions Marie Therese Guirgis added.

"The combination ofVinterberg and Von Trier will attract a lot of attention and will notdisappoint. It's an honour for us to work with two of the most exciting talentsin the world."

Guirgis negotiated the dealwith Peter Aalbaek Jensen of Trust Film Sales. Zentropa Entertainment andNimbus Film produced the picture.