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Focus acquires worldwide rights to 'The Little Stranger'

just now

Production scheduled for this summer in the UK.

Focus Features has picked up worldwide rights to Lenny Abrahamson’s upcoming The Little Stranger, starring Charlotte Rampling, Domhnall Gleeson, Ruth Wilson and Will Poulter.

The deal excludes the UK, France and Switzerland, where Pathé will distribute.

Abrahamson, who earned a best directing Oscar nomination for Room, will direct the ghost story this summer in the UK in time for a 2018 release.

The Little Stranger takes place in a remote English village after the end of the Second World War as a doctor attends to an ailing parlourmaid at a family estate haunted by a malevolent ghost.

Lucinda Coxon, who adapted The Danish Girl for Focus, adapted The Little Stranger from Sarah Waters’ novel of the same name.

The Little Stranger is a Focus Features, Pathé, and Film4 presentation in association with Ingenious Media and the Irish Film Board of a Potboiler production in association with Element Pictures.

[link »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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'James Bond' star Roger Moore dies aged 89

27 minutes ago

Actor passes away in Switzerland.

James Bond actor Roger Moore has died aged 89, after a battle with cancer, according to a statement released by his official Twitter account.

The statement reads:

“It is with a heavy heart that we must announce our loving father, Sir Roger Moore, has passed away today in Switzerland after a short but brave battle with cancer. The love with which he was surrounded in his final days was so great it cannot be quantified with words alone.

“We know our own love and admiration will be magnified many times over, across the world, by people who knew him for his films, his television shows and his passionate work for Unicef which he considered his greatest achievement.  

“The affection our father felt whenever he walked on to a stage or in front of a camera buoyed him hugely and kept him busy working into his 90th year, through to his »


- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater) orlando.parfitt@screendaily.com (Orlando Parfitt)

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eOne to merge film & TV divisions

51 minutes ago

The company is “evolving to underpin future growth”, as revenues hit £1bn.

Peppa Pig producer-distributor Entertainment One (eOne) is to merge its film and television divisions into a single studio operation within the next 12 months (reports Broadcast).

In its full-year results, the business revealed that the company was “evolving to underpin future growth” with an integrated studio model.

An eOne spokesman told Broadcast that a merged studio will allow the company to “service both parts of [its] film and TV business more efficiently”.

“It makes it easier for us to sell content. Once you get through the film cinema window, you’re actually selling to the same people across film and TV,” he said.

“Because buyers have become much more global, we are moving content around the group on a more global basis, so it makes sense to restructure and reshape the business.”

The merger, which is expected to take place within the next year, is also designed »


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'The Killing Of A Sacred Deer' polarises Screen's Cannes jury grid

1 hour ago

Michael Haneke’s Happy End also makes its bow.

Yorgos LanthimosThe Killing Of A Sacred Deer split Screen’s jury of critics on day five of the 2017 Cannes jury grid, which compiles ratings for all of the film’s in competition at the festival.

The Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman-starrer scored two maximum four-star ratings, from the UK’s Tim Robey and Robbie Collin and from Russia’s Anton Dolin, as well as two no-star X ratings, from the Us’s Stephanie Zacharek and France’s Julien Gester and Didier Peron.

Hampered by a further two one-star ratings, the film’s overall score of 1.9 places it low down the total list but still ahead of Michel Hazanavicius’s Redoubtable and Kornel Mundruczo’s Jupiter’s Moon.

The day’s other new entrant was two-time Palme d’Or winner Michael Haneke’s Happy End, which garnered five three-star ratings on the way to a 2.2 score overall »


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

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IFC Midnight acquires 'Devil's Gate' with Milo Ventimiglia

3 hours ago

Exclusive: Premiere Entertainment Group selling international rights to sci-fi in Cannes.

IFC Midnight has tied up a North American deal on Devil’s Gate (known as Abduction internationally) following the film’s premiere at Tribeca.

Premiere Entertainment Group handles international rights and has been in talks with buyers on the Croisette.

Milo Ventimiglia, riding high on NBC hit This is Us, stars alongside Amanda Schull and Shawn Ashmore in the sci-fi thriller.

Devil’s Gate centres on the story centres on an FBI investigation into the case of a missing woman and her son. The husband is the chief suspect, although nothing is as it at first seems.

Clay Staub, who served as second unit director on the likes of 300 and Dawn Of The Dead, makes his feature directorial debut and wrote the screenplay.

Scott Mednick produces with Valérie d’Auteuil and André Rouleau of Caramel Film, and Ian Dimerman and Brendon Sawatzky of Inferno Pictures.

[link »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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IFC Films closing on 'Devil’s Gate' with Milo Ventimiglia

3 hours ago

Exclusive: Premiere Entertainment Group selling international rights to sci-fi in Cannes.

IFC is understood to be tying up a North American deal on Devil’s Gate (known as Abduction outside the Us) following the film’s premiere at Tribeca.

Premiere Entertainment Group handles international rights and has been in talks with buyers on the Croisette.

Milo Ventimiglia, riding high on NBC hit This is Us, stars alongside Amanda Schull and Shawn Ashmore in the sci-fi thriller.

Devil’s Gate centres on the story centres on an FBI investigation into the case of a missing woman and her son. The husband is the chief suspect, although nothing is as it at first seems.

Clay Staub, who served as second unit director on the likes of 300 and Dawn Of The Dead, makes his feature directorial debut and wrote the screenplay.

Scott Mednick produces with Valérie d’Auteuil and André Rouleau of Caramel Film, and [link=nm »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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IFC Films closing on 'Devil’s Gate'

3 hours ago

Exclusive: Premiere Entertainment Group selling international rights to sci-fi in Cannes.

IFC is understood to be tying up a North American deal on Devil’s Gate (known as Abduction outside the Us) following the film’s premiere at Tribeca.

Premiere Entertainment Group handles international rights and has been in talks with buyers on the Croisette.

Milo Ventimiglia, riding high on NBC hit This is Us, stars alongside Amanda Schull and Shawn Ashmore in the sci-fi thriller.

Devil’s Gate centres on the story centres on an FBI investigation into the case of a missing woman and her son. The husband is the chief suspect, although nothing is as it at first seems.

Clay Staub, who served as second unit director on the likes of 300 and Dawn Of The Dead, makes his feature directorial debut and wrote the screenplay.

Scott Mednick produces with Valérie d’Auteuil and André Rouleau of Caramel Film, and [link=nm »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Cannes reacts to Manchester terror attack

3 hours ago

Film festival to hold minute’s silence, cancels fireworks.

There was a minute’s silence today (23 May) at the Cannes Film Festival in tribute to the victims of the Manchester terror attack.

Twenty-two people were killed in a suicide attack at Manchester Arena during a pop concert.

During this morning’s screening of director Abbas Kiarostami’s 24 Frames, Cannes Festival director Thierry Fremaux announced the minute’s silence, and that planned fireworks would be cancelled.

According to Afp, he said: “Solidarity with the city of Manchester. We have to show that we won’t take it, and life goes on”.

The festival released a statement on Twitter, which said: “The Festival de Cannes would like to express its horror, anger and immense sadness following the attack on the public and the city of Manchester last night.

“This is yet another attack on culture, youth and joyfulness, on our freedom, generosity and tolerance, all things »


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

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Samuel Goldwyn acquires Israeli comedy 'Holy Air'

4 hours ago

Tribeca premiere sells to North America.

Samuel Goldwyn Films has taken North American rights to Shady Srour’s Israeli comedy Holy Air.

The film had its world premiere at the Tribeca Festival in April. It was produced by Ilan Moscovitch.

Strour also stars, alongside Samuel Calderon, Tarik Copti, Dalia Okal and Bryan Anteer, in the story of a Christian Arab living in Nazareth who has the ingenious idea of bottling air from the Holy Land.

The deal was negotiated by Ben Feingold on behalf of Samuel Goldwyn Films and Jan Naszewski of New Europe Film Sales, on behalf of the filmmakers.

Ben Feingold of Samuel Goldwyn Films said, “Holy Air is a contemporary comedy that not only transcends barriers of religion, gender, and culture, but is also intelligent and funny. I was reminded of The Band’s Visit, which is one of my favourite films of all time. We look forward to working with Shady and releasing »


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

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Mathieu Amalric, Cédric Klapisch films on MK2 | Mile End slate

5 hours ago

Fledgling Canadian distributor indulges in French passion.

Montreal-based upstart MK2 | Mile End has snapped up rights to a number of French auteur-driven titles led by Mathieu Amalric’s Un Certain Regard opener Barbara (pictured).

The distributor, recently launched by Paris-based MK2 and Metropole Films co-founding MD Charles Tremblay, struck a deal with Gaumont also yielded Guillaume Gallienne’s Maryline.

MK2 | Mile End acquired two from Pathé – Abdellatif Kechiche’s Mektoub Is Mektoub and Xavier Beauvois’ The Guardians, both of which are in post.

The distributor has signed three from Memento, taking Berlinale premiere The Midwife by Martin Provost, Xavier Giannoli’s in-production The Apparition, and Claire Darling by Julie Bertuccelli, which will star Catherine Deneuve and her daughter Chiara Mastroianni.

Rounding out the spree are Cédric Klapisch’s Back To Burgundy from StudioCanal, and Jean-Stephane Bron’s The Paris Opera from Les Films du Losange.

As part of its exclusive output deal with MK2 Films, MK2 l [link »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Mathieu Amalric, Cédric Klapisch on MK2 | Mile End slate

5 hours ago

Fledgling Canadian distributor indulges in French passion.

Montreal-based upstart MK2 | Mile End has snapped up rights to a number of French auteur-driven titles led by Mathieu Amalric’s Un Certain Regard opener Barbara (pictured).

The distributor, recently launched by Paris-based MK2 and Metropole Films co-founding MD Charles Tremblay, struck a deal with Gaumont also yielded Guillaume Gallienne’s Maryline.

MK2 | Mile End acquired two from Pathé – Abdellatif Kechiche’s Mektoub Is Mektoub and Xavier Beauvois’ The Guardians, both of which are in post.

The distributor has signed three from Memento, taking Berlinale premiere The Midwife by Martin Provost, Xavier Giannoli’s in-production The Apparition, and Claire Darling by Julie Bertuccelli, which will star Catherine Deneuve and her daughter Chiara Mastroianni.

Rounding out the spree are Cédric Klapisch’s Back To Burgundy from StudioCanal, and Jean-Stephane Bron’s The Paris Opera from Les Films du Losange.

As part of its exclusive output deal with MK2 Films, MK2 l [link »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Cannes Critics' Week title 'Ava' clocks deals for Bac

8 hours ago

Exclusive: French outfit also scores sales on The Teacher and The Third Wave.

French sales company Bac Films is reporting strong interest for French director Léa Mysius’s debut feature Ava [pictured], which premiered to packed theatres in Critics’ Week at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

The title has sold to Australia and New Zealand (Madman Entertainment), China (Lemon Tree), Taiwan (Catchplay), Switzerland (Praesens), and Turkey (Filmarti).

Bac sales chief Gilles Sousa said there was strong interest from several other territories, notably Benelux, Germany and the Us.

The picture, which is in the running for Cannes Caméra d’Or as a first-time feature, stars rising French actress Laure Calamy as a teenager who is losing her sight and embarks on a momentous summer and steals a big black dog.

Other new Bac titles drawing buyers include Olivier Ayache-Vidal’s feel-good tale The Teacher starring Denis Podalydès as a teacher seconded to a tough school who strikes-up an unlikely »


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Annemarie Jacir, Mohamed Ben Attia clinch Dfi funding

8 hours ago

Doha Film Institute unveils spring 2017 grants.

Palestinian film-maker Annemarie Jacir’s upcoming dark comedy Wajib and Tunisian director Mohamed Ben Attia’s [pictured] new film Weldi have won funding in the latest round of grants from the Doha Film Institute (Dfi).

Unveiling its spring 2017 grants round during Cannes, the Qatari institution said it had supported 29 projects from 16 countries, with 80% of the selected projects hailing from the Arab world.Dfi CEO Fatma Al Remaihi highlighted the fact that 19 out of the 29 projects were directed by female film-makers.

“This year’s grants projects are even more special for the large representation of women directors as well as themes that focus on coming-of-age stories of central female characters,” she said.

“Stories of hope, self-discovery, women empowerment, tales of family life and of life in conflict zones are highlighted in the selections this Spring,” she added

It has been a high-profile Cannes this year for the Dfi grants programme which backed Un Certain »


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India's Drishyam Films launches $20m production fund

8 hours ago

Exclusive: Up to 10 features to be produced through new fund.

Mumbai-based Drishyam Films is launching a $20m fund to produce eight-10 independent Indian films over the next two years.

“Our aim is to take Indian cinema to the next level, in terms of script development, production values and international reach,” said Drishyam founder Manish Mundra, whose credits include Masaan, which screened in Un Certain Regard in 2015, and Amit Masurkar’s Newton, which premiered at this year’s Berlin.

Mundra, who recently brought on Natasha Chopra, as head of content development, expects to announce the first projects under the fund in early 2018. The money will also be used to develop Drishyam’s VFX studio in Mumbai, with the aiming of improving the quality of visual effects in local films.

Separate from the fund, Mundra has two new features going into production over the summer – Mohamed Gani’s Cycle, about the importance of the humble bicycle in small-town India, and »


- lizshackleton@gmail.com (Liz Shackleton)

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Lionsgate swoop for animation 'El Americano'

8 hours ago

Exclusive: SpongeBob writer and The Simpsons exec producer penned screenplay.

Lionsgate UK has swopped on CGI animation El Americano – 3D featuring a voice cast of Lisa Kudrow, Edward James Olmos, Rico Rodriguez, Cheech Marin, Kate del Castillo, Erik Estrada, Mexico’s Adal Ramones, and comedians Gabriel Iglesias, and Paul Rodriguez.

The film will launch in the third quarter of this year as Cuco’s Big Adventure and is directed by Mexican animation ace Ricardo Arnaiz (La Leyenda De La Nahuala) and co-directed by Mike Kunkel, an animator who worked on Disney films like Tarzan & Hercules.

SpongeBob writer Richard Pursel and The Simpsons executive producer Phil Roman co-wrote the screenplay, and Kudrow also serves as executive producer.

Grindstone Entertainment previously acquired all North American rights from FilmSharks, who also licensed all Us streaming rights to Netflix, and Latin America to Sony Pictures Television, among other deals. »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Spentzos takes animation pair from Wizart

8 hours ago

Russian sales outfit strikes deals in Cannes.

Russian animation sales specialist Wizart has licensed Sheep & Wolves [pictured] and the first instalment of the Snow Queen franchise to Spentzos Film in Greece.

Cinemundo has picked up all three instalments for a theatrical release in Portugal.

Wizart has also signed an agreement with Klb for the TVoD release of Sheep & Wolves in France.

Indonesian company Pt Satuvisi Abadi / Onevision Entertainment has acquired Sheep & Wolves and the third instalment of Snow Queen. »


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

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'I Am A Teacher' heading to Us

8 hours ago

Exclusive: Russian war drama stars Aleksandr Kovtunets, Yuliya Peresild.

Coccinelle Film Placement has licensed North American rights on its Russian Second World War drama I Am A Teacher to Uncork’d Entertainment and scored a deal with Times Vision for China.

Times Vision took Chinese VOD and home video rights to Tallinn Black Nights 2016 Israeli winner A Quiet Heart, Alex Jovanoski’s Hey, and Caterina Carone’s Italian comedy Fraulein – A Winter’s Tale starring Vittorio De Sica’s son, Christian.

Coccinelle has licensed TV rights on circus acrobats documentary Grazing The Sky to Foxtel in Australia and Sky in New Zealand.

Grazing The Sky previously went to France and Germany (Zdf/Arte), Sweden (Svt), Spain (Canal+), and Taiwan (Joint Entertainment), among others. Previous seller Latido licensed the UK to Matchbox, Taiwan to Joint Entertainment, and Netherlands to Avro. »


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Other Angle clocks up 'In And Out' deals

8 hours ago

Exclusive: Film starring Louise Bourgoin and Stéphane De Groodt scores deals in multiple territories.

Paris-based Other Angle Pictures is racking up sales on its body-swap comedy In And Out, about lovers who wake up to a surprise after a night of passion.

The film has sold to Switzerland (Jmh), Russia (Capella), Latin America (Alebrija Entertainment), former Yugoslavia (2i Film), Taiwan (Creative Century), and Poland (Monolith Films) with negotiations underway for Italy, Spain and Germany.

Louise Bourgoin (pictured) and Stéphane De Groodt star as the body-swap lovers and Universal Pictures International will open In And Out in France on September 20.

Other titles proving popular on Other Angle’s feel-good, comedy-skewed slate include Don’t Tell Her, about a group of girlfriends whose web of little white lies catches up with them.  

Other Angle was a producer and the film has gone to Canada (Axia), Spain (Vercine), Poland (Canal+), Switzerland (Jmh), Turkey (Fabula), and Austria (Thym Film).

The company »


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Dutch Features closes sales on 'Silk Road' with Olivia Lonsdale

8 hours ago

Exclusive: The psychological thriller is heading to Germany, Spain and Scandinavia.

Sales outfit Dutch Features has been enjoying a bumper market led by key sales on Silk Road starring Olivia Lonsdale.

Rights have gone in Germany (Tele München), Spain (AMC Network), and Scandinavia (Manymore Films).

The psychological thriller is inspired by the life of a small-town boy from Holland who becomes the world’s most wanted cybercriminal.

Meanwhile comedy Ron Goossens, Low Budget Stuntman from Steffen Haars and Flip Van der Kuill, has been snapped up for Germany and Italy (Koch Media), and China (Hy Media).

Marc Conen’s thriller Sunset Contract about a social media mogul who encounters the devil in the form of a woman, has closed with Hy media for China. TV series Riphagen has gone to Latin America (Centauro) and China (Melting Culture).

Finally, Tim Oliehoek’s TV crime drama The Body Collector has sold to Notorious Pictures in Italy and Centauro in Latin »


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

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Edinburgh to host 'Okja', 'Daphne', Sean Connery movies, Michael Powell classic

8 hours ago

Exclusive: Movies with a Scottish flavour include Daphne, The Last Photograph, The Marker, while Okja will also screen.

The Edinburgh International Film Festival has revealed a host of movies with Scottish connections set to play at its 70th anniversary edition.

Scottish director Peter Mackie Burns will bring his debut Daphne, which stars Emily Beecham (Hail Caesar) and Geraldine James (Sherlock Holmes), while Scottish actress Freya Mavor (Sunshine On Leith) stars in the world premiere of comedy-drama Modern Life Is Rubbish.

Filmmaker Justin Edgar also returns to the Eiff with The Marker, starring veteran Scottish actor John Hannah; while The Last Photograph, starring Danny Huston, revolves around the Lockerbie disaster.

Bong Joon Ho’s latest offering Okja, starring Eiff honorary patron Tilda Swinton, will also screen and there will also be showcases of local icons Sean Connery and Robbie Coltrane.

Titles filmed and set in Scotland will include Edie, starring Kevin Guthrie and psychological thriller The Dark Mile »


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

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