Mongrel Has Date With ’100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out A Window’
Canada’s Mongrel Media has acquired the Swedish hit The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out A Window And Disappeared. Felix Herngren’s film is an adaption of Jonas Jonasson’s best-selling novel. It’s scored big in Scandinavia so far, earning $11.4M in 12 days of release in Sweden, and has been the top movie from the region at the box office in Norway and Denmark. The film is the lighthearted story of a healthy centenarian who decides it’s not too late to start over. When Allan (Robert Gustafsson) lands in a nursing home, he refuses to celebrate his 100th birthday and instead escapes out a window to embark on a journey that involves a suitcase of cash and a gang of criminals. Flashbacks reveal that Allan also played a key role in 20th century history when he was pals with U.S. presidents and Russian tyrants. Mongrel, which acquired all Canadian rights from StudioCanal, will release it in summer this year.
‘Downton Abbey’ Creator Responds To Julian Fellowes Remarks
Earlier this week, I noted there had been some breathless reporting about comments made by Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes in a recent interview with The Wall Street Journal. Queried by the paper on Downton, Fellowes said he didn’t “know yet if there is a season 6, but it’s not going to go on forever. It won’t be Perry Mason.” This led to rampant headlines about the possible demise of the hit Brit period drama that just debuted its 4th season in the U.S. The response prompted Downton executive producer Gareth Neame to release a statement today to calm things down. “I can confirm that there are no plans to end the show after the fifth series,” he said. “ITV commission each series on a year-by-year basis. In an interview given to The Wall Street Journal, Julian Fellowes stated that the show would not go on forever (inevitable of course and something both he and I have been on the record for previously). For now ITV have commissioned series five, and that is what we are busy preparing,” Neame said. It’s long been known that Fellowes is signed on for NBC drama The Gilded Age with a script commitment and significant penalty attached. He’s previously said that if NBC picks up the show, he’ll be writing it when Downton “finishes.” Neame will be collaborating with Fellowes on The Gilded Age.
Fox International Productions Germany Adds Two Execs
Fox International Productions Germany has brought aboard Anna Maria Zündel and Magdalena Prosteder as production executives. The pair will work closely with Fox Germany chief Vincent de la Tour and marketing manager Germar Tetzlaff to ramp up the co-production, acquisition and development activities of German language films for the company. FIP has a strong local-language business in Germany, with recent hits that include The Break-Up Man, which grossed $25M there in 2013. Zündel has been an independent producer and previously worked for Network Movie Film – Und Fernsehproduktion and Action Concept Film & Stuntproducktion. Prosteder was formerly assistant producer at Neue Schönhauser Filmproduction. FIP President Sanford Panitch said today, “Anna and Magdalena will be instrumental in continuing to build-out our local operations in Germany. Vincent de la Tour has done a superb job in both managing and distributing our local films in Germany, and this expanded production team brings additional strength to the already excellent local team.” Also, Marco Mehlitz will shift roles within FIP Germany, focusing on English-language European/German co-productions such as Fox’s upcoming Agent 47 (aka Hitman 2), which will shoot this year in Berlin. Also among new pics on FIP Germany’s slate are teenage comedy, Doktorspiele, and adaptation of popular kids’ book Rico, Oskar Und Die Tieferschatten which will both go out this summer.
Universal Networks International Taps Pair Of VPs
Universal Networks International has created two new roles with Sarah Lloyd-Baker appointed VP Marketing, UK, and Kjetil Njoten appointed VP Creative, UK & Emerging Markets. Both will be based in London and will work to strengthen the presence of UNI’s portfolio of pay-TV brands. Lloyd-Baker, a former BT exec, will focus on the UK. Njoten, formerly of UKTV, will cover both the UK and emerging markets business which includes Africa, Benelux, Central Europe and Scandinavia. In the UK, UNI’s portfolio of channel brands includes Universal Channel, Syfy, E! and Movies 24.