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Count Natalie Portman’s turn in “Léon: The Professional” as one of the greatest young breakout performances in Hollywood history. Co-starring Jean Reno and Gary Oldman, the 1994 drama featured Portman in her feature film debut as Mathilda, a troubled girl who becomes the unlikely apprentice of a hitman (Reno) following the murder of her family. Intense and preternaturally focused, the actor gave the kind of wise-beyond-her-years performance that assured a prosperous film career; her Oscar win 16 years later for “Black Swan” was an inevitability. In her audition for writer-director Luc Besson, we catch glimpses of Portman’s budding skill. She can pull off nonchalance while maintaining naiveté, and something about the way she answers a question about seeing animals—a pause, then, “Dogs...all my life”—hints at some deeper mystery to her take on the character. Plus, is there anything more captivating than Portman’s sly smile? Child actors »
Headlining the eclectic slate of Paris-based Snd, the Omar-Sy starrer “Two is a Family” directed by Hugo Gelin (“Comme des freres”) has already lured major European buyers on the lookout for the next French hit.
A London-set feelgood dramedy produced by Mars Films and Vendome Pictures, “Two is a Family” toplines Sy (“Intouchables”) as Samuel, a man whose carefree life on the French Riviera is turned upside down when a former fling (Clemence Poesy) suddenly reappears and introduces him to his baby girl before taking off.
Snd, whose Afm roster also includes Tommy Wirkola’s “What Happened to Monday,” has pre-sold “Two is a Family” to Tobis for Germany/Australia, Lucky Red for Italy, A Contracorriente Films for Spain, Belga for Benelux, Odeon for Greece and Impuls for Switzerland.
Alexis Cassanet, Snd’s head of international sales, said the the movie
Gelin is a scribe-turned-helmed who made his directorial »
- Elsa Keslassy
Headlining the eclectic slate of Paris-based Snd, the Omar Sy starrer “Two Is a Family,” directed by Hugo Gelin (“Comme des freres”), has already lured major European buyers on the lookout for the next French hit.
A London-set feelgood dramedy produced by Mars Films and Vendome Pictures, “Two Is a Family” toplines Sy (“The Intouchables”) as Samuel, a man whose carefree life on the French Riviera is turned upside down when a former fling (Clemence Poesy) suddenly reappears and introduces him to his baby daughter before taking off.
Snd, whose Afm roster also includes Tommy Wirkola’s “What Happened to Monday,” has pre-sold “Two Is a Family” to Tobis for Germany/Australia, Lucky Red for Italy, A Contracorriente Films for Spain, Belga for Benelux, Odeon for Greece and Impuls for Switzerland.
Gelin is a scribe-turned-helmed who made his directorial debut with “Comme des freres” and has penned the popular laffer “La cage doree, »
- Elsa Keslassy
Pathe Intl. has boarded vet Gallic scribe/helmer Daniele Thompson’s “Cezanne et moi,” a 19th-century period drama toppling Guillaume Canet, pictured, and Guillaume Gallienne as two French culture’s legends, the novelist Emile Zola and post-impressionist painter Paul Cezanne.
The ambitious drama chronicles the complex, decade-long friendship between Cezanne, who was born into a wealthy family but struggled to make a living as a painter, and Zola, who came from a poor background but achieved fame and prosperity as a politically-engaged novelist.
Exploring the pair’s fears and ambitions, the movie charts their relationship through the early days in Aix-en-Provence, their arrival in Paris’ absinthe-soaked cultural scene and their diverging professional and sentimental experiences.
Pathe has taken international sales and will start shopping the pic at Afm, where it will unveil the first images of the movie.
“The friendship between Cezanne and Zola makes for amazingly compelling material — two »
- Elsa Keslassy
Desmarais, who joins Atlantique Productions from Haut et Court TV, will serve as co-ceo with Olivier Bibas. The arrival of Desmarais at Atlantique Prods. signals the company’s ambition to ramp up the production of international series to two shows per year and firm up its position as a leading player in European coproduction, explained Lagardere Studios’ president Takis Candillis. “(Desmarais) has an outstanding track record with director-driven series ‘The Returned’ and ‘Panthers’ that have a broad appeal, and he has developed a vast network in Europe and in the U.S. — together with (Bibas) they form a strong duo,” added Candillis. Patrick Nebout complete Altantique Prods.’s team.
- Elsa Keslassy
Terry George (“Hotel Rwanda”) is directing from a script he wrote with Robin Swicord, centering on a love triangle in 1922 with a medical student, an American journalist based in Paris and a beautiful and sophisticated woman, portrayed by Charlotte Le Bon. Bale will play the reporter, and Isaac will portray the student, conflicted by old-world traditions.
Cromwell will play an American ambassador who becomes heroic when challenged, while Reno will play a French admiral deeply conflicted in the face of life-threatening danger. The story is set amid the final days of the Ottoman Empire.
Shohreh Aghdashloo and Daniel Gimenez Cacho also star.
- Dave McNary
Christian Bale, Oscar Isaac and The Walk’s Charlotte Le Bon are already all in the cast, but director Terry George isn’t finished filling roles for his new historical drama The Promise. He’s now adding Jean Reno and James Cromwell. The Hotel Rwanda/ Reservation Road director is calling the shots on this one, based on the script he wrote with Robin Swicord. The Promise is set in the dying days of the Ottoman Empire (the 1920s) and explores the relationships between three people: Michael (Isaac), a gifted medical student; Chris (Bale), a renowned American journalist working in Paris; and the beautiful and sophisticated Ana (Le Bon).Reno is aboard to play a French admiral who faces life-threatening danger and finds himself unable to act, while Cromwell will be an American ambassador who shows a heroic side when challenged. The cameras are rolling now in Spain and Portugal with George shooting through December. »
I'm sure they meant well. And by "they," I mean director Roland Emmerich, screenwriter Jon Robin Baitz, and the sprawling ensemble cast who all worked to make a movie that commemorates the Stonewall riots in New York, one of the flashpoints of the gay rights movement in America. The idea of making a film that captures not only the community that found its activist voice that day but that also articulates the tensions and the atmosphere that made the riots feel so urgent and necessary in the first place is a good idea, and perhaps one day, someone will make that movie. Unfortunately, "Stonewall" is the anti-"Selma," a movie that not only fails to fully capture the energy and importance of a true event but that fails so completely as a film that it is almost impressive. Danny (Jeremy Irvine) is a small-town kid who had to leave home »
- Drew McWeeny
To mark the release of deep sea thriller Pressure, out now on DVD/download starring Danny Huston, Matthew Goode, Joe Cole, Alan McKenna and Daisy Lowe, we take a look at the best deep sea thrillers of all time.
The Hunt For Red October (1990)
Director: John McTiernan
Das Boot (1981)
Director: Wolfgang Petersen
20,000 Leagues Under The Sea (1954)
Director: Richard Fleischer
Director: Steven Spielberg
The Abyss (1989)
Director: James Cameron
The Big Blue (1988)
Director: Luc Besson
Director: Ron Scalpello
Director: Barry Levinson »
- Phil Wheat
The police outnumber the bad guys seven-to-three in “The Squad,” a suspense-challenged genre programmer whose original French title (“Antigang,” derived from the division tasked with combatting organized crime) suggests a much more exciting dynamic, had the odds been stacked in the villains’ favor. Instead, this old-school American-style cop movie — a loose remake of “The Sweeney” featuring Gallic action-movie icon Jean Reno as the unit’s all-but-bulletproof leader — demonstrates how the aggressors might be steamrolled if, say, Luxembourg suddenly declared war on the United States. Though nothing special, there’s enough police brutality here to drive audience interest in French-speaking markets.
Considering that “The Sweeney” earned a modest $7 million in 2012 — and less than $27,000 in the U.S. — it’s not quite clear why anyone would want a French remake that adds little, unless you count all the cigarettes (even the pregnant lady smokes). Director Benjamin Rocher clearly saw the project as »
- Peter Debruge
These two latest editions join previously announced Bram Stoker's Dracula (now available for pre-order) to comprise the first three Supreme Cinema Series Blu-ray titles, each of which features new 4K restorations and Dolby Atmos 7.1 audio mixes, limited edition "clear case" packaging, and a 24-page booklet. Additional titles will be announced at a later date.
For Leon: The Professional starring Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman and Danny Aiello, the Supreme Cinema Series edition will include the theatrical and extended versions, each fully remastered. Bonus features include the following:
Cast and Crew Look Back
Original Theatrical Trailer
Who needs a stunt man anyway? In the 19 years since Tom Cruise debuted as Ethan Hunt in the first Mission: Impossible, he's made a name for himself as one of Hollywood's biggest in-real-life daredevils.
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to re-live these incredible Mission: Impossible stunt moments performed by Cruise himself.
1. The Langley break-in - Mission: Impossible (1996)
Brian De Palma brought his customary directorial flair to the inaugural Mission, and the film's stand-out sequence saw Hunt and co infiltrate CIA headquarters via a precariously dangling wire.
Cruise did all this himself, even dropping coins into his shoes to level out his body. You can cut the tension with a knife.
Mission's climax saw Hunt climb atop a train careening through the Channel Tunnel then taking down »
The French drama is the latest show to take inspiration from Scandi noir, and this promising opening episode gave us plenty to get our teeth into
France has reinterpreted an assortment of police drama genres from the Us. Slow-burning takedowns such as Spiral bore the influence of The Wire. There were shades of The Shield in the morally murky Braquo. And Jean Reno’s Jo was surely a ludicrous, high-camp spoof in the mould of Police Academy.
Now it appears French television isn’t immune from the chill winds blowing from Scandinavia, either. Witnesses is clearly influenced by Nordic noir – from its determined, complex female lead to the blue-grey colour palette – but, as with the shows mentioned in the glib comparisons above, it’s entirely its own animal. It’s also rather promising. It bodes well for Channel 4’s imminent on-demand service, 4World Drama, and rather less well for »
- Gabriel Tate
Director John Frankenheimer.
I'm often asked which, out of the over 600 interviews I've logged with Hollywood's finest, is my favorite. It's not a tough answer: John Frankenheimer.
We instantly clicked the day we met at his home in Benedict Canyon, and spent most of the afternoon talking in his den. A friendship of sorts developed over the years, with visits to his office for screenings of the old Kinescopes he directed for shows like "Playhouse 90" during his salad days in live television during the 1950s.
We hadn't spoken for nearly a year in mid-2002 when the phone rang. It was John, who spoke in what can only be described as a "stentorian bark," like a general. "Alex!" he exclaimed. "John Frankenheimer." He could sense something was amiss with me. It was. My screenwriting career had stalled. My marriage was progressing to divorce. I had hit bottom. John knew that »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
Throughout his long career, iconic French star Jean Reno's films have tended to fall into one of two camps. On the one side - the side that tends to export the most and be most seen by foreign audiences - there are his serious action pieces, films that capitalize on the success of Luc Besson's Leon: The Professional with Reno as an often violent antihero. And on the other side - the side that really pays the bills back in France - Reno is a highly sought after comedic lead. The two sides of Reno seldom meet but director Benjamin Rocher looks to be delivering the comedic and the action oriented Reno in equal measure with the upcoming Antigang.The formula here looks familiar enough with...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
France’s Lionel Uzan, a former Summit board member and architect of the build of the Snd-M6 Group in France, is joining Pascal Breton’s TV production-distribution house, the Paris and L.A.-based Federation Entertainment Group, in the newly created position of its managing director.
Reporting to Breton, and a partner in Federation Ent.,Uzan, the former acquisitions, productions and intl. distribution director at the Snd-M6 Group, the movie label of French broadcaster M6, takes up a central position overseeing the studio’s full production and distribution activities for France, Europe and the U.S.
Uzan’s appointment becomes effective June 1 at Federation Ent. a company which leapt to fame in August when it was commissioned to produce Netflix’s first French series “Marseille.” Federation Ent. Group officially launched in September with Ashley Stern heading up the L.A. office, and writer-director Eric Rochant on board to »
- John Hopewell
The biggest deals of this year’s Cannes Marché du Film and how the Competition titles sold throughout the festival.
Behind the glamour of this year’s Cannes Film Festival, business was booming at the Marché du Film (May 13-22), with representatives from 120 countries in attendance - up four on 2014.
A total 3,300 films were on offer this year, around 1,000 at the project stage, with an estimated 11,000 film professionals in attendance, in line with last year.
In the opening days, Marché chief Jérôme Paillard told Screen: “Acquisition agents are telling me that it’s the first time in a number of years that there are so many big projects. I’ve been told there are around 50 high profile projects on offer.”
North AmericaHOT Projects
Open Road paid »
The film, which is in post-production, has sold to Benelux (Paradiso Filmed Entertainment), Spain (A Contracorriente Films), Switzerland (Jmh Distributions), Cis (Luxor Entertainment), Greece (Odeon), Turkey (Ozen Film), China (H.G.C. Entertainment), Middle East (Four Star), Portugal (Outsider Films) and Gaumont has done a pan-European deal with Monolith/Freeman.
The cast of the film, led by Reno and Clavier as comic time travellers Godefroy the Hardy and Jacquasse the Crass, will hit the Croisette today (May 15) to meet buyers.
Directed by franchise creator Jean-Marie Poire, The Visitors: »
Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai at the Oscars Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai on the Academy Awards' Red Carpet Pictured above are Bollywood stars Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan arriving at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony, which took place on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Two years ago, an Anglo-Indian-American co-production, Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire became not only one of the season's biggest sleeper hits, but also the eventual Best Picture Oscar winner. Dev Patel and Freida Pinto starred. Curiously, some have complained that Slumdog Millionaire was just a less interesting rehash of higher-quality Bollywood musicals and dramas that have received relatively little play outside South Asian communities around the globe. Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai movies The son of Indian cinema legend Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan has been featured in nearly 50 films. Among them are: Dhoom (2004). Director: Sanjay Gadhvi. Cast: Abhishek Bachchan. Uday Chopra. John Abraham. Esha Deol. »
- D. Zhea
Exclusive: Company to also market premiere First Growth [pictured], a family drama set in the vineyards of Burgundy.
It is a debut feature for Rappeneau, who is best known as a writer, his credits including father Jean-Paul Rappeneau’s upcoming Families (Belles familles), pop icon Claude Francois bio-pic My Way and Jérôme Salle’s The Burma Conspiracy and Zulu.
An adaptation of popular graphic novel Rosalie Blum, the film revolves around a lonely, thirty-something hairdresser who starts to secretly investigate a 50-year-old woman who seems vaguely familiar.
His clumsy detective work makes her suspicious and she in turn asks her niece to investigate him – a game of hide-and-seek begins with unexpected results.
“It’s a little jewel which we fell in love with straight away,” says Snd sales »
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