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Berlin: ‘A Prophet’ Star Tahar Rahim Joins Harrison Ford in ‘Official Secrets’ (Exclusive)

3 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

French actor Tahar Rahim, who toplined “A Prophet,” is circling the star-studded espionage drama “Official Secrets,” Variety has learned.

Harrison Ford, Anthony Hopkins, Paul Bettany, Natalie Dormer and Martin Freeman have already joined the project, produced by Elizabeth Fowler. Justin Chadwick will direct from a screenplay by Sara and Gregory Bernstein based on the book “The Spy Who Tried to Stop a War: Katharine Gun and the Secret Plot to Sanction the Iraq Invasion.”

The Solution Entertainment Group’s Lisa Wilson and Myles Nestel are executive producing, and handling the financing and international sales at the European Film Market in Berlin. UTA Independent Film Group packaged the project and represents domestic rights.

The film is slated to begin shooting in May in the U.K. The story is set in 2003 in the months before the Iraq War with Dormer playing a British intelligence officer and Rahim in the role of her husband. »

- Dave McNary

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Margot Robbie Set To Headline Vaughn Stein’s Noir Thriller Terminal

16 hours ago | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

Adding to a slate that is already bursting at the seams, The Hollywood Reporter brings word that Suicide Squad actress Margot Robbie has sealed a deal to headline new noir thriller, Terminal.

News emerges from the ongoing Berlin Film Festival, revealing that Robbie joins the Vaughn Stein feature as Annie. Less a femme fatale and more a complex, morally ambiguous lead, the little details that were disclosed indicate that her character will cross paths with a pair of hitmen – or, rather, they cross paths with her.

Embarking on a suicide gig, the two hired guns are tasked with completing a mysterious mission, and the introduction of Robbie looks set to throw a spanner in the works, as she could be more involved in their employer’s devious plan than first thought.

Based on a script by Stein himself, Terminal will be produced by David Barron of BeaglePug and Molly Hassell, »

- Michael Briers

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‘Fifty Shades Darker’ Adds ‘The Knick’s’ Eric Johnson as Christian Grey’s Rival (Exclusive)

14 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Eric Johnson is in talks to play Jack Hyde, Christian Grey’s rival in Universal’s “Fifty Shades Darker,” the sequel to the global hit “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

Kim Basinger and Bella Heathcote have also recently joined the cast, with Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan returning to reprise their roles of Anastasia Steele and Grey, respectively. James Foley is taking over directing reins from Sam Taylor-Johnson.

In the book, Hyde plays Steele’s new boss, an assistant news editor who falls for her and begins pursuing her, much to Grey’s dislike. Hyde will appear in both “Fifty Shades Darker” and “Fifty Shades Freed.”

Luke Grimes, Eloise Mumford and Max Martini are also returning to the cast, with Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti producing along with author E.L. James and Marcus Viscidi. Niall Leonard and James are penning the script.

Universal is planning to shoot “Fifty Shades Darker” and the final pic, »

- Justin Kroll

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Record Breaker? Some Box Office Records 'Deadpool' May Be Hunting

11 February 2016 3:21 PM, PST | Box Office Mojo | See recent BoxOfficeMojo.com news »

Deadpool is the weekend's most anticipated new release and it will begin screening tonight, Thursday, at 7Pm in theaters across the country. As a result, talk of the film breaking records is one thing we didn't focus on in our weekend preview, but there could be a few up for grabs for the newest comic book adaptation. BoxOfficeMojo remained conservative in its opening weekend projection for the film, expecting something in the $62 million range for the three-day and $72 million for the four-day weekend. As impressive as those numbers are, there is a possibility Deadpool busts down the front-door and starts blowing away records right away. For starters, the record for the largest Thursday preshow in the month of February is currently held by Fifty Shades of Grey at $8.6 million from 2,830 theaters starting at 8 Pm. Deadpool will begin its run an hour earlier and is expected to play in 2,500+ theaters, some »

- Brad Brevet <mail@boxofficemojo.com>

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Michael Pena Adds Voice to Oscar Diversity Controversy

19 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Actor Michael Pena weighed in on the Oscar diversity controversy Friday at a press conference for John Michael McDonagh’s “War on Everyone,” which world premieres at the Berlin Film Festival today.

Asked if it would change anything, Pena said: “I think it’s going to make a difference because there’s a dialogue now and we are all talking about it. I think it’ll change.”

After Pena’s “War on Everyone” co-star Alexander Skarsgard said “those are like champagne problems,” Pena added: “There are 20 actors nominated and they are all white, so… I can’t point to one performance and say: that guy or that girl should have been nominated, but systemically, yeah, I think it is a problem that there is not more diversity, and that there are not more great characters in movies and television for people who aren’t white.”


- Leo Barraclough

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Baltasar Kormákur Directing And Starring In New Thriller The Oath

14 hours ago | WeAreMovieGeeks.com | See recent WeAreMovieGeeks.com news »

Filmmaker Baltasar Kormákur is in production on a new feature film in his native Iceland. The Oath is a psychological thriller, which he co-wrote with Olafur Egilsson and is directing, producing and starring, returning to acting after an eight year hiatus.

In The Oath Kormákur plays the part of a father who sets off on a mission to try to pull his daughter away from the world of drugs and petty crime, only to discover that danger can be found in unexpected places.

The film is produced under Kormákur’s Rvk Studios banner in partnership with Film4, UK with David Kosse as Executive Producer and Zdfe, Germany. World Sales are being handled by Xyz Films, who will be meeting with buyers about the project at this week’s European Film Market in Berlin.

Kormákur directed Everest which to date has grossed over $203 million worldwide since its launch in September.

Concurrently, »

- Michelle McCue

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Bafta chief hails British films despite none making best film category

2 hours ago | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Amanda Berry denies nominations for prestigious award – including The Revenant and Bridge of Spies – are American because Britain can’t compete

Some of the biggest names in British film, from Eddie Redmayne and Kate Winslet to Christian Bale and Michael Fassbender, will go head to head at the Baftas on Sunday evening.

However, this year none of the films nominated for outstanding British film – 45 Years, Amy, Brooklyn, The Danish Girl, Ex Machina and The Lobster – have made it into the best film category. Instead, all the nominees are American productions including The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Carol, The Revenant and Spotlight.

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- Hannah Ellis-Petersen

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Wizart sells 3D animation 'Urfin'

2 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Shooting Stars has taken the film for the Middle East, while BestFilm has taken it for the Baltic states.

Russia’s Wizart Distribution has closed its first deals at the Efm for the 3D animated feature film Urfin And His Wooden Soldiers for the Middle East (Shooting Stars) and the Baltic states (BestFilm), with the theatrical premiere set for autumn 2016.

Konstantin Bronzit, the creative producer of the Melnitsa Studio production, is one of this year’s nominees in the Academy Awards’ Short Film (Animated) category for his film We Can’t Live Without Cosmos. »

- screen.berlin@googlemail.com (Martin Blaney)

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Turkish animation 'Bad Cat' sells to Germany

2 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Animation based on Turkish comic strip.

Aussie sales outfit Odin’s Eye Entertainment (Oee) has signed an eye-catching deal with German distributor Kinostar, with the latter acquiring German-speaking rights to Anima Istanbul’s Bad Cat (aka Kötü Kedi Serafettin), based on the popular Turkish comic strip of the same name.

Bad Cat is billed as a “crudely funny action-packed animated motion picture for adults”.

The film opened in its native Turkey last weekend, doing brisk business and receiving enthusiastic reviews.

“Bad Cat is truly one of a kind. It is hilarious and outrageous, but also has a heart of gold. We are sure Kinostar will do a tremendous job in taking arguably Turkey’s most ambitious, but highly commercial, animated feature ever undertaken to German audiences,”  commented Odin’s Eye CEO Michael Favelle comments

Kinostar are planning a late March theatrical release.  »

- geoffrey@macnab.demon.co.uk (Geoffrey Macnab)

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Berlin: Lunchtime Talk With Mongrel Intl.’s Charlotte Mickie

2 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Sales agent Charlotte Mickie has been a regular at Efm since 1991. She first came with Alliance and has since worked with Celluloid Dreams, Maximum Films, eOne, and is now the president of Toronto-based Mongrel Intl. That shingle picks up some of the best of world independent cinema, including “Rams,” “Where to Invade Next,” “The Bronze” and “The Wave.”

Where do you like to go eat?

I like Storch (now called Renger-Patzsch) because it’s so idiosyncratic, and I love the Flammkuchen. Also Paris Moskau. It’s kind of expensive but it’s very intimate and the food is really, really excellent. The other thing worth mentioning is the sausage venders on the street at Potsdamer Platz. Those are amazing sausages!

Do you go to parties?

I do and I’ve been to some really cool ones. When I was at Celluloid Dreams we had a party for a Matthew Barney »

- Andrew Horn

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Universal acquries home ent on 'Modern Life Is Rubbish'

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: The Exchange and Serotonin Films strike deal for Daniel Jerome Gill’s debut feature.

The Exchange and Serotonin Films have struck a multi-territory deal with Universal Pictures Home Entertainment Group on Modern Life Is Rubbish.

The studio has picked up Europe, Asia and Latin America on Daniel Jerome Gill’s feature directorial debut starring Ian Hart and Freya Mavor.

Steven Mackintosh, Tom Riley, Josh Whitehouse, Jessie Cave, Matt Milne and Will Merrick round out the cast.

Modern Life Is Rubbish is styled as being in the vein of (500) Days Of Summer and centres on two people who relive the highlights of their ailing relationship as they divide their cherished record collection.

“We are very excited to have Universal as a partner on this winning movie,” said Brian O’Shea of The Exchange. “Universal’s commitment to this picture shows that Modern Life Is Rubbish is going to have commercial staying power.”

Piccadilly Pictures »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Sony acquires faith and football film 'Woodlawn'

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Distributor has taken international rights to American football drama.

Faith-based distributor and sales agent Pure Flix has licensed all international rights on Woodlawn to Sony.

The film, which grossed $14m in the Us, follows a high school American football player who embraces his talent and faith as he battles racial tensions on and off the field.

Vice-president of international sales and distribution Ron Gell is screening God’s Not Dead 2 in Berlin today (February 13) at 7pm. 

Melissa Joan Hart plays a public school teacher who gets caught up in a firestorm when she mentions Jesus in class.

Gell has struck day-and-date release deals since the Afm with California Filmes in Latin America, Revolutionary Releasing/Monolith in Eastern Europe/Poland, Sycomad in South Korea, Crossroads in Australia, and Tanweer in the Middle East.

Output partner Mongrel Media holds Canadian rights and deals in the UK, South Africa and Germany are imminent. »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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'El Americano 3D' deals fly to Mexico, S Korea

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: FilmSharks has brokered deals for the animated feature, featuring the voice of Friends star Lisa Kudrow, in Mexico and South Korea.

Ricardo Arnaiz and Mike Kunkel’s animated feature El Americano 3D has sold to Cinepolis partner Neverlanding Pictures in Mexico and Andamiro Films for South Korea in a pair of deals brokered by FilmSharks.

Guido Rud, head of the Buenos-Aires-based sales agency, previously closed deals in Middle East and Turkey (Tanweer), Cis and Eastern Europe (Top Film), Peru (Star Film) and central America (Palmera International).

Rud said a multi-territory deal with a Us major would be announced shortly on the story of a young Mexican parrot that embarks on an epic quest to persuade an American crime-fighting TV celebrity to defend his family from bullies.

Lisa Kudrow stars (and serves as executive producer) alongside Edward James Olmos, Rico Rodriguez, Cheech Marin, Kate del Castillo, and Erik Estrada. »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Taiwan's Albaze takes 'The Moulin' rights

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Huang Ya-li’s documentary screened at the recent International Film Festival Rotterdam.

Taiwan’s Ablaze Image has picked up international rights to Huang Ya-li’s documentary The Moulin, which recently screened in the Bright Future section of the recent International Film Festival Rotterdam.

The film explores the Le Moulin Poetry Society, which emerged in Taiwan in the 1930s when the country was under Japanese colonial rule. Influenced by France and the Surrealists, the group protested against the cultural imperialism of their colonial rulers.

Produced by Taipei-based Roots Films, the film won positive reviews at both Cph:dox last year and Rotterdam this year, highlighting the current strength of Taiwanese documentary filmmaking. Ablaze Image is also selling Singing Chen’s The Walkers about Taiwan’s Legend Lin Dance Theatre. »

- lizshackleton@gmail.com (Liz Shackleton)

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Fsc launches 'Modern Love' with 'American Pie' star

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Josh Tunick’s romantic drama stars American Pie’s Alyson Hannigan.

Andrew Herwitz’s The Film Sales Company has launched sales talks on Modern Love, a romantic drama starring Alyson Hannigan that is in post.

The Film Sales Company holds worldwide rights and Jason Ishikawa leads the negotiations on the story of two gay men who host a heart-to-heart with their friends on the eve of their wedding.

Josh Tunick wrote and directed Modern Love and the cast includes Anthony Rapp, Jonathan Bennett and Thomas Dekker.

Tunick produces with Eric Kops and Dave Perkal. »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Taiwan to get new distributor

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: A Really Happy Film Company is being launched by N&J Enterprises and Cmc Magnetics.

Nansun Shi and Jeffrey Chan’s N&J Enterprises is teaming with Taiwan’s Cmc Magnetics to launch a distribution company in Taiwan.

The new outfit, A Really Happy Film Company, will release Eric Khoo’s In The Room [pictured] in Taiwan on March 18. The erotic drama is a co-production between A Really Good Film Company, which is 100% owned by N&J Enterprises, and Singapore’s Zhao Wei Films.

N&J Enterprises also owns 60% of international sales company Distribution Workshop, with Bona Film Group holding the other 40%. 

“This Taiwan joint venture is part of an expansion and re-positioning strategy we have beyond the existing international sales business of Distribution Workshop,” Chan told Screen.  

“We hope there will be more international co-production and co-investment projects coming out of A Really Good Film Company for distribution through A Really Happy Film Company.”

The Taiwanese »

- lizshackleton@gmail.com (Liz Shackleton)

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'Night Of The Living Deb' marches to North America

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Jinga closes deal with Mpi/Dark Sky Films for comedy-horror.

Genre sales specialist Jinga Films has sold Kyle Rankins’ comedy-horror Night Of The Living Deb to Mpi/Dark Sky Films for North America.

The home entertainment release is due for September in 2016.

Maria Thayer (Forgetting Sarah Marshall), Michael Cassidy (Argo) and Ray Wise (Robocop) star in the rom-zom-com about a one night stand that evolves into a zombie apocalypse in which a mismatched couple discover that the only thing scarier than trusting someone with your life is trusting them with your heart.

Icon Films are distributing the film in the UK following its world premiere at FrightFest. Icon previously released Rankin’s debut feature Infestation in 2010.

Night Of The Living Deb is America’s answer to Shaun Of The Dead,” said Jinga’s Julian Richards, “and with recent titles such as Deathgasm and Southbound we are pleased to be in business again with Mpi/Dark Sky Films.”

Previous »

- andreas.wiseman@screendaily.com (Andreas Wiseman)

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Media Asia launches Jia Zhangke martial arts film

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Hong Kong outfit also introduces Jia Zhangke martial arts project to buyers.

Hong Kong’s Media Asia Films is launching sales on two high-profile action titles at the Efm – Gordon Chan’s God Of War [pictured] and the first martial arts project from Chinese auteur Jia Zhangke.

Jia’s as-yet-untitled project has Johnnie To on board as producer. Set at the end of the Qing Dynasty, it explores the turbulence amongst scholars, bandits and local officials following the abolition of the imperial examination system.

“The script touches on social and geopolitical issues, as Jia Zhangke’s films usually do, but he’s also a huge fan of Hong Kong-style action so this will be a martial arts genre title,” said Media Asia general manager and head of sales and international co-productions Fred Tsui.

Backed by Media Asia Films, the project is expected to start shooting in the second half of this year.

Meanwhile, [link »

- lizshackleton@gmail.com (Liz Shackleton)

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Berlin competition doc 'Fire At Sea' lights up sales

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Doc & Film has sold the documentary to Benelux and Switzerland.

Paris-based Doc & Film has announced a raft of pre-sales on Italian film-maker Gianfranco Rosi’s Fire At Sea ahead of its premiere in competition at Berlin today (Feb 13).

The feature-length documentary – capturing life on the Italian island of Lampedusa – has sold to Benelux (Cinéart) and Switzerland (Xenix).

Italy’s Istituto Luce – one of two Italian partners on the film alongside Rai Cinema – will distribute in Italy.

Météore Films – a new Paris-based distribution company created by former Films du Les Films du Losange programming manager Mathieu Berthon last year – has acquired rights for France.

The company also acquired Avi Mograbi’s Between Fences – about African asylum seekers being held in a detention centre in the Negev desert in Israel – which screens in the Forum.

Other Efm titles on Doc & Film’s slate include A Made For Each (Forum) and Jamais Contente (Generation). »

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Rai Com takes world rights for Kubrick doc

4 hours ago | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: S Is for Stanley chronicles the relationship between the director and his driver Emilio D’Alessandro.

Rai Com has secured world rights to Alex Infascelli’s S Is for Stanley revolving around the 30-year relationship between Stanley Kubrick and his faithful driver Emilio D’Alessandro.

The film was one of the buzz titles at the Rome International Film Festival last year.

RatPac Documentary Films previously acquired North American rights from Infascelli’s Rome-based Kinethica and Lock & Valentine. Rai Com has taken rights for the rest of the world.

“Any film that sheds light on Kubrick is required viewing for anybody who cares about cinema,” said Rai Com’s head of sales Mattia Oddone.

Alex Infascelli’s film gives us an unusual, personal glimpse of the man behind the myth. S Is For Stanley tells a deeply humanizing story. We are very glad that through RatPac it will be seen in Kubrick’s native country, and we hope »

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