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Cinecittà touts Italian tax credits to Hollywood

21 hours ago

A small delegation from Cinecittà Studios toured Los Angeles this week to promote the revised Italian tax credit to Hollywood studios and production companies.

CEO Giuseppe Basso and Cristina Giubbetti, sales manager international productions, were touting key changes that among other things allow Cinecittà Studios to act as an Italian production service company.

The change means the 78-year-old Rome institution has shifted its position to not only provide a range of studio amenities and advisory services but can now pay and process local expenses and guarantee rapid reimbursement.

Revisions to the national 25% tax credit also set up a Euro 10m cap per production company – no longer per project.

“We asked the government in the past few years to allow us to be competitive with the UK system and other countries,” Basso told Screen. “Today we can say we have something very similar.”

“This new incentive allows [foreign productions] to shoot their entire movies in Italy,” said Giubbetti »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Suffragette lands awards slot

23 hours ago

Focus Features has set an autumn release date for the anticipated drama starring Carey Mulligan, Ben Whishaw and Meryl Streep.

The film will open exclusively on October 23 followed by expansion. The slot makes it a strong candidate for a world premiere berth at Toronto, which runs this year from September 10-20, or Telluride, which typically takes place immediately prior to the Canadian festival.

Another option is the increasingly prestigious New York Film Festival, set to run from September 25-October 11. AFI Fest cannot host the world premiere as it takes place this year from November 5-12

Sarah Gavron’s drama is inspired by the early 20th century campaign to secure the vote for women and centres on Maud – played by Mulligan – a working wife and mother who fights for her dignity at home and in the workplace.

The principal Suffragette cast includes Helena Bonham Carter, Anne-Marie Duff and Brendan Gleeson.

Ruby FilmsAlison Owen and Faye Ward produce »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Gillian Flynn boards New Regency heist thriller

27 March 2015 9:54 AM, PDT

The Gone Girl author and screenwriter is reuniting with New Regency to co-write the adaptation of UK show Widows with Steve McQueen.

McQueen, who collaborated with New Regency on best picture Oscar winner 12 Years A Slave, will direct and produces alongside his Shame and upcoming Codes Of Conduct collaborators Iain Canning and Emile Sherman of See-Saw Films.

New Regency is understood to be in talks with Film4 to co-finance the project and license UK free TV rights.

The feature is based on Lynda La Plante’s UK miniseries Widows, in which the wives of four armed robbers killed during a heist resolve to complete the job themselves.

Flynn is currently developing the HBO series and UK TV adaptation Utopia with her Gone Girl director David Fincher.

New Regency’s slate includes True Story starring Jonah Hill and James Franco set to open on April 17 through Fox Searchlight, Cameron Crowe’s Aloha that arrives on May 29 through [link=co »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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UK regions need more support, Labour report

27 March 2015 7:11 AM, PDT

Labour-backed creative industries report also calls for additional diversity targets.

A Labour policy paper has called for greater support for the creative industries in the UK regions and more diversity targets.

The paper, titled Leading the Field: A Review of the Creative Industries, praised the growing strength of the UK creative industries but also set out a host of recommendations for improvement.

Regions

The report, compiled by former UK Film Council chief executive John Woodward, argued that the lack of creative industries growth in the UK’s regions should be a “priority” for Whitehall, which should devolve more decision-making and funding away from London.

“The welcome emergence of London as possibly the leading creative industry hub in the world has disguised the lack of equivalent growth outside London, and this situation should be addressed by Government as a priority, not least through the devolution of decision making and funding away from Whitehall and into the English regions »


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

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Almodovar producer talks new film ‘Silence’

27 March 2015 6:44 AM, PDT

Cast revealed for Pedro Almodovar drama set in a “female universe” that will begin shooting in May.

Pedro Almodovar is to begin principal photography on his new drama Silence (Silencio) in Spain this May.

The film centres on Julieta, whose life in 2015 finds her on the verge of madness but is shown 30 years earlier during the 1980s at a more prosperous time in her life.

Spanish actresses Adriana Ugarte (TV series The Time In Between) and Emma Suárez (The Red Squirrel, The Mosquito Net) will play the younger and older Julieta respectively.

It will be produced by Madrid-based El Deseo, the company founded by Pedro and brother Agustin Almodovar. Agustin will produce alongside Ester Garcia.

Speaking to ScreenDaily, Agustin Almodovar said: “We are working with some of these talented actors for the first time, which makes it very exciting.

“The film is a return to drama based around women but it will also present new challenges.

“It »


- jsardafr@hotmail.com (Juan Sarda)

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‘Cinderella’ beats ‘Insurgent’ in social buzz

27 March 2015 5:29 AM, PDT

Live action fairytale moves ahead of Divergent sequel – but new Fast and Furious looks set to overtake.

Disney’s live action take on Cinderella dominated the competition in the latest social buzz chart with more than 11,400 comments ahead of its release in the UK this weekend, according to Way To Blue.

Nearly 16% of those comments – from March 19-25 – expressed intent to view the family film, directed by Kenneth Branagh. This means that those mentions across social media, news, forums and blogs looked to convert comments into box office.

It stole the march on Divergent sequel Insurgent, which generated nearly 8,800 comments, of which 23.5% expressed intent to view after a week on release.

Of the films coming soon, Fast & Furious 7 has the pedal to the metal, recording nearly 7,900 comments, of which 24% expressed intent to view after it is released in the UK on April 10. »


- michael.rosser@screendaily.com (Michael Rosser)

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‘Cinderalla’ beats ‘Insurgent’ in social buzz

27 March 2015 5:29 AM, PDT

Live action fairytale moves ahead of Divergent sequel – but new Fast and Furious looks set to overtake.

Disney’s live action take on Cinderella dominated the competition in the latest social buzz chart with more than 11,400 comments ahead of its release in the UK this weekend, according to Way To Blue.

Nearly 16% of those comments – from March 19-25 – expressed intent to view the family film, directed by Kenneth Branagh. This means that those mentions across social media, news, forums and blogs looked to convert comments into box office.

It stole the march on Divergent sequel Insurgent, which generated nearly 8,800 comments, of which 23.5% expressed intent to view after a week on release.

Of the films coming soon, Fast & Furious 7 has the pedal to the metal, recording nearly 7,900 comments, of which 24% expressed intent to view after it is released in the UK on April 10. »


- michael.rosser@screendaily.com (Michael Rosser)

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Hot projects on Screenbase

27 March 2015 4:38 AM, PDT

Projects new to Screenbase include Ian Bonhôte’s directorial debut Alleycats and Jeppe Rønde’s fictional debut Bridgend.Ian Bonhôte’s Alleycats

Filming is underway on the bike-racing thriller starring Eleanor Tomlinson (Polkdark), Sam Keeley (What Richard Did), and John Hannah (Four Weddings and a Funeral).

The film, produced by Andy Ryder and written by Simon Uttley, Max Kinnings, and Anthea Anka, is funded by The Fyzz Facility and also raised money through a Kickstarter campaign.

Production companies include The Fyzz Facility and Elephant Gun Films.

Jeppe Rønde’s Bridgend

Based on a series of teen suicides in Wales, drama Bridgend is set for its U.S. premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in April.

Ronde’s feature will star Hannah Murray (Game of Thrones), Steven Waddington (The Imitation Game), and Josh O’Connor (The Riot Club).

New Europe Film Sales picked up world sales rights, with the exception of Denmark. Producers are [link »


- mam27@bu.edu (Monica Mendoza)

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Writers, directors gain share of BFI ‘Locked Box’ recoupment

27 March 2015 4:34 AM, PDT

‘Locked Box’ scheme has previously been tapped into by UK producers.

UK writers, directors and producers are now to share an equal third of the BFI’s ‘Locked Box’ recoupment.

Directors UK, Pact and The Writers’ Guild of Great Britain have struck a deal to ensure that directors and writers of feature films supported with Lottery funding through the BFI Film Fund will share with producers in the BFI’s ‘Locked Box’, a pool of recouped income up to 37%, which is held by the BFI and then can be used for developing and producing future films.

The recouped income that is held in the Locked Box will be split with directors, writers and producers each guaranteed a minimum share of 12.5%. 

While producers have been tapping into the pool since 2012, the UK writers and directors trade bodies had yet to strike a deal with Pact.

To date fifteen productions have drawn down money from the ‘Locked Box’, including »


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

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'Star Wars' producer readies first Czech-Dutch co-pro

27 March 2015 4:00 AM, PDT

Exclusive: Prague-based Us producer Rick McCallum is behind what is likely to be the first official Czech-Dutch co-production with writer-director Karin Babinská’s romantic drama Following The Dream (Za Sny).

Speaking at this week’s Febiofest – Prague International Film Festival, Film United’s McCallum and Martin Šebík revealed that the project with the director of road movie Dolls had been in development for the past year.

“As the story is set in the Czech Republic and another European country, it had been built from the very beginning as a European co-production,” said Šebík .

He explained that they had needed a seaside location and a large city nearby, criteria that were fulfilled by Rotterdam and the surrounding area.

This brought Film United to Michael John Fedun’s Corrino Media Group with whom they had been a partner on Lee Tamahori’s action adventure Emperor last year.

“They were looking for a minority co-producer from Holland and the script »


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

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Ralph Fiennes to receive Empire Legend award

27 March 2015 3:13 AM, PDT

The Grand Budapest Hotel star to collect honour at a ceremony this weekend.

British actor-director Ralph Fiennes is to receive the Legend Award at the Empire Awards in London this Sunday (March 29).

Previous recipients of the award include director Tim Burton, actress Helen Mirren and actor Tom Cruise.

Since his BAFTA-winning breakout performance in Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List (1993), Fiennes has starred in more than 30 films including The English Patient, the Harry Potter franchise, The Constant Gardener and The Reader.

More recently, his leading role as meticulous concierge M. Gustave in Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel earned him BAFTA and Golden Globe nominations.

Fiennes made his directorial debut in 2011 with Coriolanus, in which he also starred, and made his second film in 2013 with The Invisible Woman, in which he played author Charles Dickens.

His upcoming film projects include the Coen Brothers’ Hail, Caesar! and the new James Bond feature, Spectre, in which »


- michael.rosser@screendaily.com (Michael Rosser)

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WWE, Gene Simmons launch Erebus Pictures

26 March 2015 4:00 PM, PDT

WWE and the media entrepreneur and former Kiss idol will finance and produce ‘elevated’ horror fare, kicking off with a three-film deal led by Temple.

WWE Studios originally acquired and developed Temple, which is set to begin shooting this summer and follows elite operatives trapped inside an isolated military compound with a terrifying history.

Matt Savelloni wrote the screenplay and a director and cast will be announced shortly. The second Erebus production is forecast to begin shooting before the end of the year.

“The horror genre continues to fascinate me as it proves to be endlessly thrilling and engaging for audiences,” said Simmons. “I am so thrilled to be working with the masterminds from WWE Studios in launching Erebus Pictures.”

“Horror films fall into a genre that thrives on genuine passion and I believe this partnership truly capitalises on that sentiment and supports our vision,” said WWE Studios president Michael Luisi. “I am confident »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Relativity EuropaCorp names marketing head

26 March 2015 2:02 PM, PDT

Relativity EuropaCorp Distribution has appointed Tommy Gargotta as president of theatrical marketing.

Gargotta will oversee marketing at the company that supports EuropaCorp’s film releases in the Us and Relativity’s slate. 

He will report to Relativity president Tucker Tooley and EuropaCorp CEO Christophe Lambert.

The new hire arrives Sony Pictures Entertainment, where he served 13 years, most recently serving as president of worldwide creative advertising.

He served as vp and creative director at Intralink Film Graphic Design and as head editor/producer at Trailer Park.

Relativity’s slate includes Sundance favourite The Bronze on July 10, Masterminds on August 7, Kidnap on October 9 and Autobahn on October 30.

EuropaCorp’s upcoming films include The Transporter Refueled on June 19, Shut-In on February 19 2016 and The Lake on July 15 2016. »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Kino Lorber dives for 'The Pearl Button'

26 March 2015 1:57 PM, PDT

Kino Lorber has picked up all Us rights to Chilean director Patricio Guzmán’s documentary and Silver Bear best screenplay winner at this year’s Berlinale.

The Pearl Button (El Bóton de Nácar) plays out against the backdrop of the Patagonian Archipelago as Guzman’s follow-up to Nostalgia For The Light explore the secrets of Chile’s past.

Kino Lorber plans a nationwide release in more than 50 markets this autumn followed by digital roll-out after further festival appearances.

CEO Richard Lorber negotiated the deal with Pyramide International head of sales and international acquisitions Lucero Garzon. »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Kino Lorber takes 'The Pearl Button'

26 March 2015 1:57 PM, PDT

Kino Lorber has picked up all Us rights to Chilean director Patricio Guzmán’s documentary and Silver Bear best screenplay winner at this year’s Berlinale.

The Pearl Button (El Bóton de Nácar) plays out against the backdrop of the Patagonian Archipelago as Guzman’s follow-up to Nostalgia For The Light explore the secrets of Chile’s past.

Kino Lorber plans a nationwide release in more than 50 markets this autumn followed by digital roll-out after further festival appearances.

CEO Richard Lorber negotiated the deal with Pyramide International head of sales and international acquisitions Lucero Garzon. »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Lakeshore launches Off The Dock

26 March 2015 1:22 PM, PDT

Lakeshore Entertainment, which earlier this week unveiled plans to boost its film production pipeline, is targeting the YouTube generation with a full-service digital studio.

Off The Dock will finance, produce, acquire and distribute digital influencer-led content in a bid to free up the fiercely guarded disposable income of Millennials and their younger Generation Z counterparts.

“We are excited to blend Lakeshore’s knowledge and skills gained from its 20-year track record of traditional film-making and distribution with the new world of digital influencers,” said CFO Marc Reid. “We think each world can elevate the other.”

The first film is Kinetic Films’ Man Up from and starring Justin Chon with Us comedian and YouTube celebrity Kevin Wu (pictured) aka KevJumba.

Man Up centres on two 19-year-old friends who are forced to prepare for the unintended arrival of a baby.

Off The Dock has partnered with Supergravity Pictures, led by Marc Hustvedt and Max Benator, to distribute »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Verve to handle international sales

26 March 2015 1:04 PM, PDT

The talent and literary agency has brought on Amy Beecroft to run its new global business development division Verve Ventures in what is likely to become a talking point in Cannes and beyond.

The initiative will focus on creative partnerships in film and television and will get involved with financing and sales, digital distribution and the development of new technology such as virtual reality.

Beecroft has served as an international sales executive at FilmNation, GreeneStreet Films, Solar Pictures and First Look/Overseas Film Group and has also worked at HBO, among others.

“The international landscape has changed drastically in the last five years,” said Beecroft. “With 70% of the box office coming from the international marketplace, savvy foreign distributors, producers, and financiers alike are looking to establish new and strategic partnerships on both the theatrical and television sides.

“With Verve representing some of the best directors and writers in the business, I feel we »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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XLrator Media leaps into 'Time Lapse'

26 March 2015 12:36 PM, PDT

The distributor has acquired North American rights to the time travel thriller starring Danielle Panabaker and plans a day-and-date release via its Macabre genre label.

Matt O’Leary and George Finn also star in Bradley King’s feature directorial debut about three friends who discover a machine that can take pictures 24 hours into the future.

Time Lapse will open theatrically and on VOD on May 15.

King co-wrote the script with Bp Cooper, who also produced alongside Rick Montgomery. Whiplash Oscar winner Tom Cross was the editor.

The film premiered at Seattle 2014 and has screened in more than 65 festivals worldwide.

XLrator Media’s Barry Gordon and Lea Flome brokered the deal with Paradigm Agency’s Ben Weiss and Meghan Oliver on behalf of the film-makers.

Sundance selection Slow West starring Michael Fassbender and Kodi Smit-McPhee will launch on Directv on April 16 and arrive in theatres and on VOD on May 15.Thunder Road and Film House Germany have optioned »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Magnolia Pictures acquires 'Experimenter'

26 March 2015 11:47 AM, PDT

The North American deal follows the film’s world premiere at Sundance in January and sets up a theatrical release later this year.

Michael Almereyda directed the story starring Peter Saarsgard as Stanley Milgram, who rocked the world in the 1960s with his infamous Yale study on obedience to authority.

Rounding out the key Experimenter cast are Winona Ryder, Jim Gaffigan, Taryn Manning, Anton Yelchin, Kellan Lutz, John Leguizamo, Anthony Edwards, Josh Hamilton, Lori Singer, Vondie Curtis-Hall and Dennis Haysbert.

Uri Singer, Fabio Golombek, Isen Robbins and Aimee Schoof produced.

Magnolia brokered the deal with Cinetic Media for the film-makers. »


- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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Cineworld launches Movie Planner

26 March 2015 10:33 AM, PDT

UK cinema chain Cineworld has launched its first-ever Movie Planner.

Cinema-goers will be offered the opportunity to download the release dates of their most anticipated films into their personal calendars using the new planner.

The Planner was built by digital creative agency, Catch, and is designed to let people know when films are released at the cinema.

It has been designed for use on any smartphone, desktop and tablet device across Apple, Android and Windows. Users can synchronise the planner to their individual iCal, Gmail, Yahoo or Outlook account calendars.

Users access the Planner via a feed on the Cineworld website or through the Cineworld Facebook page.

In addition, when a film is released at a Cineworld cinema, users will either receive a calendar alert or push-notification (dependent on their settings) to let them know about the release along with the option to book tickets at www.cineworld.com. »

- michael.rosser@screendaily.com (Michael Rosser)

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