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Paulina Garcia-starring drama 'The Desert Bride' wins in Toulouse

18 minutes ago

Works in progress event crowns 2017 projects.

The Desert Bride, which stars Berlin best actress winner Paulina Garcia (Gloria) as a maid in Buenos Aires who is forced to take a job in a distant town, scooped the top two prizes at this year’s Films in Progress event in Toulouse, France.

The film, which marks the directing debut of Cecilia Atán and Valeria Pivato, won both the main Films in Progress Toulouse award, which comes with post-production services and help with promotion, and the Cine+ award, which guarantees purchase of the film from the French network for €15,000.

Atán and Pivato co-wrote the screenplay. Vanessa Ragone (The Secret In Their Eyes) is producing, Eva Lauria and Alejo Crisóstomo are executive producers.

A further prize went to Martín Rodríguez Redondo’s Marilyn, about a seventeen-year-old farm worker who discovers his sexuality in a hostile environment. The film will benefit from promotion by the Europa Distribution network and the Confédération »


- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater)

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Danny Cohen backs Bad Wolf

28 minutes ago

Tranter and Gardner strike deal with Access Entertainment.

Access Entertainment, the media investment firm run by former BBC boss Danny Cohen, has taken a 24.9% stake in Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner’s indie Bad Wolf.

Bad Wolf was launched in 2015 and is currently co-producing the BBC1 adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials in Wales, with New Line Cinema.

Bad Wolf also has Welsh government backing and is based in South Wales and Los Angeles.

The investment is intended to provide “further support to fast-track its already burgeoning scripted productions and grow its business globally”.

In addition to His Dark Materials, Bad Wolf’s slate includes an adaptation of Deborah Harkness’ A Discovery of Witches for Sky, and a project based on Warlord Chronicles by Bernard Cornwell. A broadcaster is yet to be announced for the latter.

Chief executive Tranter said: “This investment is a fantastic endorsement of our vision for Bad Wolf and the Welsh »


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Whitney Houston doc 'Can I Be Me' gets UK deal

1 hour ago

Exclusive: Dogwoof nabs Nick Broomfield feature set to premiere at Tribeca next month.

Whitney Houston documentary Whitney: Can I Be Me has been picked up by UK documentary specialists Dogwoof for release in early summer 2017.

Co-directed by Nick Broomfield and Rudi Dolezal, the film is set to have its world premiere at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival next month.

Featuring new footage and live recordings, the documentary chronicles the life of American pop princess Houston, one of the best-selling artists of all time, who died suddenly at the age of 48 in 2012.

Alongside her glittering music career, she also had roles in films including The Bodyguard and The Preacher’s Wife.

Dogwoof struck the deal with Us outfit Content Media, which is representing world sales.

Broomfield’s Lafayette Films produced the feature with Marc Hoeferlin. Executive producers were John Battsek, Shani Hinton, Charles Finch, Ben Silverman and Patrick Holland.

Us TV network Showtime holds North American distribution »


- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater)

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'Olli Maki' triumphs at Finnish film awards

1 hour ago

Boxing drama wins eight prizes including best film.

Period boxing drama The Happiest Day In The Life Of Olli Maki dominated the field at Friday’s Jussi Awards (Mar 24), Finland’s primary national film awards.

The film, which debuted at Cannes Film Festival 2016 in Un Certain Regard and was Finland’s submission in last year’s foreign language Oscar race, scooped half of the 16 awards on the night, including best picture.

It also took best director for Juho Kuosmanen, best actor for Jarkko Lahti, best supporting actress for Oona Airola, best editing for Jussi Rautaniemi, costume design for Sari Suominen, cinematography for J-p Passi, and make-up for Salla Yli-Luopa.

Elsewhere, drama The Mine won best screenplay for Pekko Pesonen and best supporting actor for Jani Volanen. Best actress went to Linnea Skog for Little Wing, and best documentary was presented to Katja Gauriloff’s Kaisa’s Enchanted Forest.

Best production design went to Santtu Toivola for Flowers »


- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater)

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'Gogglebox', 'Foyle's War' producers head to Séries Mania co-pro forum

2 hours ago

France TV event selects 16 projects from Keshet, Haut et Court and Studio Lambert.

Paris-based TV festival Séries Mania has unveiled the 16 projects that will participate in the 2017 edition of its co-production forum (April 18-21).

The selection includes Girl On A Wire from UK outfit Studio Lambert, creators of hit Channel4 series Gogglebox [pictured].

Another participating UK production will be Dead Meet from Eleventh Hour Films, the outfit behind recent series of period drama Foyle’s War.

Further companies bringing projects to the market include Endemol Shine Italy, Haut et Court TV, Lemming Film, and Keshet International.

Expanding from three to four days this year, the Séries Mania selection team received 300 projects from 39 countries.

Featuring conferences, presentations, panels and networking events, the pitching forum aims to help the project teams meet finance partners through co-production deals and presale agreements.

The five industry figures on this year’s jury are: Francesca Orsi, co-head of drama, HBO; [link »


- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater)

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Mexican crime drama 'Guachicolero' begins shoot

2 hours ago

Exclusive: Amp International handles sales on Edgar Nito co-production.

Shoot is underway in the outskirts of Irapuato, Mexico, on crime drama Guachicolero, the debut feature of shorts director Edgar Nito.

Nito and Alfredo Mendoza’s script tracks the corruption and downfall of a young man who teams up with local gangsters making a living extracting gasoline from government pipelines. 

Joshua Sobel (Are We Not Cats), Annick Mahnert (78/52) and Victor Léycegui (En La Sangre) will serve as producers on the co-production between Mexico, Us, UK and France.

The film is executive produced by Bob Portal, Sonia Lowe and Inderpal Singh of Alliance Media Partners who will handle world sales under the Amp International banner.

Eduardo Banda will star (pictured with Nito) supported by Fernando Becerril (The Mask of Zorro), Regina Reynoso (While the Wolf’s Away), Leonardo Alonso (Sin Nombre) and Pascacio Lopez (On Childhood).

“Nito is endowed with that rare formula of artistic flair, edge and talent »


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

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'My Life As A Courgette' wins top prize at Swiss Film Awards

4 hours ago

The Divine Order takes three awards; Cahier Africain wins two.

My My Life As A Courgette won best fiction film at the Swiss Film Awards, announced on Friday (24 March).

Claude Barras’ stop-motion animation also won best film score, for Sophie Hunter’s soundtrack, and a special Academy award for the casting and directing.

The film won the César for best animation this year, and was also nominated in the same category at the Oscars and Golden Globes.

The other big winner at the event was The Divine Order with three awards.

Petra Volpe’s film, which centres on the fight for equal rights for women in 1970s Switzerland, won best screenplay (Petra Volpe), best actress (Marie Leuenberger) and best performance in a supporting role (Rachel Braunschweig).

The film will receive its international premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 21, with Trust Nordisk handling world sales. 

Heidi Specogna’s documentary Cahier Africain received two awards, for best documentary »


- orlando.parfitt@screendaily.com (Orlando Parfitt)

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Tiger Aspect, Objective sign up for return-to-work scheme for parents

5 hours ago

Exclusive: Film London and Creative Skillset back paid placements and childcare scheme.

Film London has launched a pilot return-to-work scheme for parents looking to get back into the TV industry.

TV companies to sign up to the scheme include Peaky Blinders and Ripper Street indie Tiger Aspect, Peep Show producers Objective Media Group, Cuba Pictures, Molinare and Twickenham Studios.

The initiative, funded by Creative Skillset’s high end TV levy, will initially offer five tailored, paid, one-month ‘returnships’, which will run from April to June, 2017.

Applications are currently open for candidates with a track record in film or TV who have stopped work to raise a family but are looking to continue their careers.

In addition to a fixed freelance daily rate, Film London will contribute towards travel and childcare costs.

The placements will be augmented by training such as CV-building, education on the digital landscape, high-end TV tax reliefs and sustainability, and follow-up »


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

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