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Deadline’s Best Film Stories Of The Week

By | Sunday November 17, 2013 @ 4:54pm PST

Catch up with the best of this week’s film stories on Deadline:

JFK Assassination 50th AnniversaryThe Day JFK Was Shot: 50 Years Later, Hollywood Remembers
By Dominic Patten - In remembrance of the 35th president, I asked some of the industry’s most notable and insightful individuals — a few of whom had seen JFK just before his death — where they were when they heard the news of the shooting and what they experienced that day. Here’s what they told me…

AFM: Schlock Still Rocks In Santa Monica
By Dominic Patten – Allow me to butcher a Mark Twain quote and say that rumors of schlock’s demise have been greatly exaggerated…

Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison Partner Jack Giarraputo Plots Retirement
By Mike Fleming Jr.EXCLUSIVE: This week, Jack Giarraputo has been telling associates at studios like Sony and Paramount that he will retire after he finishes producing the Warner Bros. comedy Blended, and after that the Chris Columbus-directed Pixels for Sony.

Facts Be Damned! How Traffic Trumped Factual Reporting On Tom Cruise-Mark Wahlberg Non-Story
By Mike Fleming Jr. – The digital age has made entertainment industry coverage more exciting, but the race to post and the hunger for eyeballs leads to increasingly shameful reporting of innuendo and flat-out falsehoods. Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Kids Movies Bow Big In Slovenia, Croatia; ‘Yves Saint Laurent’ And ‘A Second Chance’ Seal Deals At AFM

Kids Pics Open Big In Slovenia And Croatia
Two children’s films have had impressive openings this week in Slovenia and Croatia. Miha Hocevar’s sequel Going Our Way 2 had the best local opening ever in Slovenia when it debuted last weekend. The film about a group of scouts at summer camp grossed $187,872 on 24 screens, beating the record set by Hocevar’s original Going Our Way in 2010. According to Cineuropa, it had topped $236,000, including previews, as of Thursday. The original film ended its run with $1.08M in 2011. In Croatia, Silvije Petranovic’s The Little Shoemaker scored the second-best local opening ever, behind this year’s EFA-nominated The Priest’s Children, and stood at $138,500 as of yesterday. It’s about a shoemaker’s apprentice who sets off on an adventure. The live-action film follows the animated original from 1997 that was based on The Brave Adventures Of Lapitch, a 1913 novel by Ivana Brlic-Mazuranic.

SND Books Sales For ‘Yves Saint Laurent’ At AFM
After screening the first footage of hot biopic Yves Saint Laurent at the AFM, sales company SND pacted on further territories including Taiwan (Catchplay), Latin America (Swen) and Belgium (Eone Benelux). Negotiations are underway in Japan, Korea and Italy. The film by Jalil Lespert had previously sold to The Weinstein Co for the U.S. and to eOne for the UK, Canada and Australia, among other deals. Pierre Niney plays the titular designer and SND is releasing in France on January 8th. Check out the subtitled trailer here. Read More »

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AFM: Hyde Park International Closes Deals For ‘Life Of Crime’, ‘The Fall Guy’, ‘Christ The Lord’

By | Friday November 15, 2013 @ 4:02pm PST

Ashok Amritraj’s company came home from AFM with a raft of sales for the features Life Of Crime, The Fall Guy and Christ The Lord. Hyde Park International closed deals for Daniel Schecter’s Jennifer Aniston starrer Life of Crime in territories including the UK (Artificial Eye), Canada (VVS), Germany (Constantin). Sales for McG’s actioner The Fall Guy, starring Dwayne Johnson and based on the ’80s TV series, included StudioCanal for the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Australia and New Zealand. And Cyrus Nowrasteh’s Christ the Lord, based on the Anne Rice novel about Jesus’ early years, sold to Germany (Tele-Munchen), Latin America (Swen), Middle East (Gulf Film) and elsewhere. Hyde Park also closed deals for the pics in other territories.

Related:
AFM Hot Titles: Better Quality Pix In The Mix
‘Life Of Crime’ Helmer Laments Death Of His Idol Elmore Leonard

Read More »

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AFM: Anchor Bay Picks Up Drag Racing Pic ‘Snake & Mongoo$e’

By | Friday November 15, 2013 @ 1:19pm PST

EXCLUSIVE:  Anchor Bay Films has acquired U.S. and Canadian rights to Snake & Mongoo$e in a post-AFM deal. The fast-paced pic produced by Entertainment Universe and Rhino Films tells the true-life story of the friendship and rivalry between 1960s Southern California drag racing champs Don “Snake” Prudhomme and Tom “The Mongoo$e” McEwen. “We’re excited to be part of this energetic and heartfelt film. It’s a compelling story in the realm of sport classics like Brian’s Song, and we’re eager to share it with audiences early next year,” Anchor Bay Entertainment President Bill Clark said in a statement today. No release date has been set for the Wayne Holloway-directed pic, which stars Noah Wyle, with Grey’s Anatomy’s Jesse Williams as Snake and Richard Blake as Mongoo$e. Holloway co-wrote the script with auto industry journalist Alan Paradise. Anchor Bay EVP Acquisitions and Co-Productions Kevin Kasha negotiated for Anchor Bay Films with producer Robin Broidy for the filmmakers.

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AFM: Apsara Nabs ‘American Ultra’ & ‘The Night Comes For Us’ In Pan-Asia Pacts

By | Tuesday November 12, 2013 @ 3:24pm PST

Apsara Distribution has inked multi-territory rights to a pair of films out of AFM. The pan-Asian division of IM Global locked rights to Project X helmer Nima Nourizadeh’s American Ultra, starring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart as a small town stoner and his girlfriend who are targeted by a government operation. Apsara will release the pic in nine territories: Hong Kong, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Vietnam, and India. The action comedy, scripted by Chronicle‘s Max Landis, is produced by Likely Story’s Anthony Bregman and Circle of Confusion. FilmNation’s Rob Carney negotiated the deal with Ben Rekhi of Apsara and Darius Kapfer of DK Media.

Apsara also nabbed multiple Asian rights to The Night Comes For Us, from VHS 2‘s Timo Tjahjanto and The Raid‘s Gareth Evans. Tjahjanto will direct the pic about a Triad enforcer who returns home to the Jakarta crime world, which Evans co-wrote and will produce for his own PT Merantau Films alongside XYZ Films. Earlier this year the pair co-wrote and co-directed the VHS 2 segment “Safe Haven” to critical acclaim. Evans, who is finishing post on his own action sequel The Raid 2 for Sony Classics, will work on Night next and will distribute it in Indonesia through his own distribution banner. Read More »

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AFM Briefs: Vision Films Nabs Veterans Docu ‘Comedy Warriors’ With Galifianakis, Saget, More; ‘For A Woman’ Goes To Film Movement; ‘Reclaim’, ‘Barely Lethal’ Secure Financing From 120DB Films, ‘Sharon 1.2.3.’ Adds Matt Bush

By | Tuesday November 12, 2013 @ 2:55pm PST

Vision Films has acquired U.S. and Canada rights to Comedy Warriors: Healing Through Humor, a docu following a group of wounded Iraq and Afghanistan veterans as they develop their own stand up comedy routines with the help of pros Zach Galifianakis, Bob Saget, B.J. Novak, and Lewis Black. John Wager directed the film and also produced with Rey Reo, with Steven Beer executive producing. Comedy Warriors is a project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. It is also supported by the Wounded Warrior Project, dedicated to honoring and empowering injured service men and women. Vision Films also has worldwide sales rights on the film.

Film Movement has taken U.S. and Canada rights to Diane Kurys’s For A Woman (Pour Une Femme), a semi-biographical film about a woman who, after her mother’s death, discovers an old photo that uncovers a family secret about her own identity and her mother’s great love. French thesps Benoit Magimel, Mélanie Thierry, Nicolas Duvauchelle, and Sylvie Testud star in the pic which opened in France. Film Movement will release the pic in Q2 2014 in theaters and on VOD and DVD. Film Movement’s Adley Gartenstein and Rebeca Conget negotiated the deal with EUROPACORP’s Cécile Fouché. Read More »

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AFM: Cassian Elwes And Cohorts Launch Bridge-Financing Service Lifeboat Capital

By | Tuesday November 12, 2013 @ 9:01am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: e2b Capital’s Robert Ogden Barnum and Cassian Elwes have teamed with Windy Hill Pictures’ Buddy Patrick to form Lifeboat Capital, a service that will provide bridge financing to makers of indie films. The trio will manage the fund from Los Angeles and New Orleans. The plan is to make loans of between $1 million and $5 million to between 15-20 films. Piecing together indie films is a tightrope walk, and the service aims to be a resource for filmmakers who fall short of the funding mark, or have to scramble if a financial commitment disappears. Between Barnum, Elwes and Patrick, they’ve financed or assisted in funding over 200 films. They will use a combination of institutional lenders, private equity and commercial banks here.  
“Bridge lending, while considered a high risk business, is often a requirement on independent films that need to commence production while simultaneously closing loans and completion bonds,” Barnum said in a statement. “With Cassian and I overseeing the loans, we’re able to assist filmmakers in the closing—protecting both the producers and the bridge lender.”    
Said Patrick: “In some cases, lack of bridge funding could cause the production to lose creative elements that result in financiers backing out or the production to fold. We hope to ensure a smooth pre-production period and confidence to all parties as they … Read More »

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AFM Briefs: Well Go USA Acquires Justin Long Pic ‘The Lookalike’; ‘Generation Iron’ Sells Overseas

By | Monday November 11, 2013 @ 1:13pm PST

Well Go USA has acquired North American rights to crime-romance The Lookalike, starring Justin Long, John Corbett, Gillian Jacobs, Jerry O’Connell, Gina Gershon, Scottie Thompson and Luiz Guzman. Richard Gray directed and produced the pic about drug lord William Spinks, who uses his gangster pals Bobby and Frank to get to the woman of his dreams. When she dies, the duo sets out in search of a lookalike to replace her. A theatrical and VOD release is planned for Summer 2014. Arclight Films’ Ying Ye negotiated the deal with Doris Pfardrescher on behalf of Well Go USA, which is also handling international rights.

The Vladar Company’s bodybuilding docu Generation Iron sold all overseas rights over the weekend. Those pacts include theatrical deals in Germany (KSM Film), Australia and New Zealand (Madman Entertainment), and Brazil (Probiotica). Vlader is currently locking deals for additional territories including Italy, Spain, China, and the UK. The pic opened domestically in September and has grossed $800K. Pumping Iron‘s Jerome Gary produced the film, which was helmed by Vlad Yudin and features appearances by Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lou Ferrigno and Mr. Olympia Phil Heath.

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AFM: Schlock Still Rocks In Santa Monica

By | Monday November 11, 2013 @ 9:12am PST

Last week, Mike Fleming talked about the premium on star-driven films at AFM and noted that schlock is in short supply. He’s too busy focusing on the high-end films. I’m here in the corridors of the Loews in Santa Monica, and I am a schlock connoisseur. While he might be right in labeling this AFM a cut below the Surf Nazis Must Die heyday of the ’90s, allow me to butcher a Mark Twain quote and say that rumors of schlock’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. While I might be bashful to ask him this directly, has Mike pondered the tantalizing cinematic possibilities of Kama Sutra 3D? And how about All Cheerleaders Die: Revenge Is A Bitch or Dead Sea: It’s Feeding Time or even Bigfoot Wars: The Battle For Boggy Creek?

And what about the mutant electric eels running rampant in Shock Attack? Or the time-traveling Army Of Frankensteins, where a neck bolt brigade shows up to fight in the Civil War? There’s the promising Bikini Model Academy with Gary Busey and Morgan Fairchild. Hungry? The cannibal tale Bone Boys is on the menu here. 

Hands down, the schlock title to beat is FDR American Badass, with Barry Bostwick battling werewolves in a pimped-out wheelchair. It might be easy to dismiss what’s billed as a “kick-werewolf-ass movie for history buffs (or not),” but I am not here to judge. After all, did we not learn from Timur Bekmambetov that Abe Lincoln was a vampire killer and didn’t Quentin Tarantino fill us in on how Hitler and his cohorts were blown up in a theater during the premiere of the Nazi propaganda film Nation’s Pride? Here, FDR takes out Nazis as well as werewolves. MutliVisionaire Pictures seems to be getting a good response. And based on this trailer, can anyone be surprised?

Related: Domestic Box Office: ‘Thor 2’ Eyeing $86M to $87.7M Weekend

And while Thor crushed all comers at the box office this weekend, how about the D-level version of that, which Halcyon International has in God Of Thunder. Now, there’s a long history of satirical takes on movies (and the litigation that follows), but give Halcyon points for good timing.Both based on Norse mythology, as far as I can tell, the only difference between the Disney/Marvel franchise and this one is the main character’s tresses: This hero’s hair is shorter than Chris Hemsworth’s blond mane, and it looks like Supercuts was involved. It seems there wasn’t enough money in the budget for a suicide blond dye job, but Loki, Asgard and Thor are also here in a movie we’re told is “based on the Fox Comics Super Hero.” In postproduction, God Of Thunder will be in a theater, or a courtroom, near you in 2014. Read More »

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AFM Briefs: Samuel L. Jackson Anime Adaptation ‘Kite’ Sells Int’l; Soft-Core Bio ‘The Sarnos’ Goes To Film Movement; Image Springs For ‘Wolf Creek 2′; Brit Gangster Pic ‘Krays’ Sells Down Under; Origin Nabs ‘Truth About You’

By | Sunday November 10, 2013 @ 2:30pm PST

After making its AFM debut yesterday, Distant Horizon and The Weinstein Co.’s Samuel L. Jackson-fronted Kite has inked a batch of international sales. Adapted from the Japanese anime by Yasuomi Umetsu, the live-action revenge pic tracks Sawa, a young girl out for justice against the human traffickers she believes killed her parents. So far Kite’s inked deals with Rentrak for Japan, Tiberius in Germany, Ascot Elite in Switzerland, Noori in South Korea and Vietnam, SWEN for Latin America, Forum Film for Eastern Europe and Israel, Odeon in Greece, PT Amero in Indonesia, Soundspace in Malaysia, The Tanweer Group in Turkey, All Media for Russia and the CIS, the Dagur Group in Iceland, Lusomundo in Portugal, Golden Village in Singapore, Major Cinepictures in Thailand, Captive in the Philippines, Italia Film International for the Middle East, and Star TV for Pan-Asian television. India Eisley and Callan McAuliffe also star in the pic for helmer Ralph Ziman.

Swedish filmmaker Wiktor Ericsson makes his feature debut with The Sarnos – A Life In Dirty Movies, which has been picked up by Film Movement. The docu film, set to premiere this month at DOCNYC, profiles the soft-core filmmaker Joe Sarno and his wife Peggy as the man once known as the Ingmar Bergman of 42nd Street tries to get a new erotic pic off the ground at age 88. (Sarno died in 2010.) A theatrical debut is being eyed for Spring of 2014, followed by a Q3 VOD and home vid release. Film Movement’s Adley Gartenstein and Rebeca Conget negotiated the deal with The Yellow Affair’s Miira Paasilinna. Read More »

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AFM: Two Offers On ‘Two Night Stand’

By | Sunday November 10, 2013 @ 9:57am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Two offers are in on Two Night Stand, the directorial debut of Max Nichols, son of the great helmer Mike Nichols. The film stars Miles Teller and Crazy, Stupid, Love‘s Analeigh Tipton as young lovers who have a one night stand and have it end by getting into a huge fight. She goes to leave, but a snowstorm requires her to spend another night in his Brooklyn apartment. This is the Black List script by Mark Hammer which Beau Flynn produced with Ruben Fleischer and Demarest’s Sam Englebardt. I’m told that A24 and RADiUS-TWC are among those in the mix after a buyer’s screening held at The Grove last Wednesday. Deal will likely close by tonight, with UTA brokering. Stay tuned.

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AFM Briefs: Roger Daltrey’s Keith Moon Biopic Leads Multi-Pic Pact; Sam Worthington Sets 3D ‘Paper Planes’; eOne Takes ‘The Hunted’ & Zom-Com ‘April Apocalypse’; Alvernia & Fu Works Productions Team On Poland Incentives

By | Saturday November 9, 2013 @ 5:00pm PST

Refresh for latest…

Exclusive Media and Da Vinci Media Ventures are making the untitled Keith Moon biopic the first joint development title in a newly announced multi-picture agreement. The Who’s Roger Daltrey, who’s been developing the project with Exclusive Media‘s Nigel Sinclair, is guiding the pic with Da Vinci’s Wendy Rutland also exec producing. They’re seeking a screenwriter for the film about legendary Who drummer Moon, who died in 1978. The biopic is expected to be a European co-production.

Sam Worthington, Anthony LaPaglia, and Ed Oxenbould (Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day) have been set to star in Arclight Films’ 3D family pic Paper Planes. The inspired-by-true-events tale follows 11-year-old Dylan (Oxenbould), who lives with his father (Worthington) in the Australian countryside. His life is changed forever when he wins his way up to the World Paper Plane Championship in Japan. Filming is underway in Perth, Western Australia, and Tokyo under writer-director Robert Connolly (Underground: The Julian Assange Story). Author Steve Worland scripted with Connolly. Arenamedia’s Liz Kearney and Maggie Miles are producing with Screen Australia, ScreenWest, the ACTF and MIFF. Eric Bana, Gary Hamilton, Ying Ye, Jonathan Chissick, Andrew Myer, and Bernadette O’Mahony are exec producers. Arclight Films is handling international sales.

Entertainment One Films US has acquired N.A. rights on a pair of indie horror pics. The Hunted, from director/star Josh Stewart, follows two hunters who head into the secluded mountains of West Virginia with dreams of landing their own hunting show, only to realize they’re not alone. Brett Forbes and Patrick Rizzotti produced for Fortress Features. It’s Stewart’s first outing as director after starring in pics like The Collector, The Collection, and the upcoming Transcendence. WME Global negotiated the deal on behalf of the filmmakers with eOne’s Dan Fisher; Cinema Management Group is repping international sales.

EOne also picked up zombie comedy April Apocalypse, about Artie (Reece Thompson), who wakes up from a car crash to find he’s in the middle of the Zombie Apocalypse. With newfound courage and power he becomes a bad-ass zombie slayer to protect his dream girl April before the bite on his hand turns him into a full-fledged flesh-eater. Jarret Tarnol directs the pic from brother Brent Tarnol’s script; the pair (Barrio Tales, See You In Valhalla) produced together for their Tarnol Group Pictures. Bellflower‘s Rebekah Brandes, Brent Tarnol, Stephanie Hunt, Todd Stashwick, Mark Rolston, Sarah Hyland, Roger Bart, and George Lopez also star. Preferred Content’s Zac Bright negotiated the deal on behalf of the producers with eOne’s Dan Fisher. Arclight Films is handling international sales. Another zombie indie eOne acquired at the 2011 AFM for a number of territories, including the U.S., Canada and the U.K., Valeri Milev’s Code Red, is back at the Santa Monica market as a finished product, shopped in the rest of the world by Outsider Pictures. Read More »

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AFM: Charlize Theron Pic ‘Dark Places’ Goes Everywhere As Exclusive Media Wraps Sales

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 5:59pm PST

Exclusive Media has closed a ton of deals to send the adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s bestseller to five continents. Charlize Theron toplines and co-produces writer-director Gilles Paquet-Brenner’s Dark Places, which has sold in more than 20 territories at AFM. The thriller now has all-rights deals with Mars in France, Remstar in Canada, CCC in Japan, Svensk in Scandinavia, Ascot Elite in Switzerland, Nu Metro in South Africa, Odeon in Greece, Sam Films in Iceland, Tanweer in Turkey, India and Pakistan, Tandem in Bulgaria, Discovery in Croatia/Slovenia/Serbia, AQS in the Czech Republic, Prorom in Hungary and Romania, Monolith in Poland, West in Russia/the Baltic States, Noori in South Korea, and United King in Israel. It also pacted with IDC in Latin America, Front Row in the Middle East, PT Amero in Indonesia, Universal Excel in Malaysia, Captive in the Philippines, Intercontinental in Hong Kong, M Pictures in Thailand, Noori / Megastar in Vietnam, Cathay in Singapore, CMC in Taiwan, Fox/Star for SEAsian TV and Jaguar for planes/ships.

Related: AFM: Mark Strong Orbits ‘Ad Inexplorata’ Read More »

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AFM Briefs: Universal Pics Int’l Contracts ‘Cooties’ In 4 Territories; One Village Acquires ‘The Suspect’; MPI/Dark Sky & XYZ Launch Female Horror Anthology; More

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 5:15pm PST

Refresh for latest …

Universal Pictures International Entertainment has picked up multi-territory rights to the horror comedy Cooties from Synchronicity Entertainment. The deal for the pic starring Elijah Wood, Alison Pill and Rainn Wilson covers the UK, Germany, Benelux and Brazil. When a mysterious virus turns young children into a swarm of cannibals, it’s up to their substitute teacher to save the day. Cary Munion and Jonathan Milott direct from a script by Saw veteran Leigh Whannell and Ian Brennan.

One Village Entertainment, the Image Entertainment label that targets black and urban audiences, has acquired North American rights to psychological thriller The Suspect starring Mekhi Phifer, William Sadler and Sterling K. Brown. Stuart Connelly made his directorial debut on the pic, which is set to be released in second-quarter 2014. The film centers on a small town that encounters its first armed bank robbery at the exact moment a mysterious stranger appears. The local police struggle to tie the crime to their uncooperative suspect, but the truth is far more complicated. The deal was negotiated by Brett Dismuke and Michael Bayer on behalf of One Village and Scott Aronson and Mary Jo Barthmaier on behalf of Modoc Spring. ITN Distribution is handling international sales at AFM. Read More »

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AFM: Mark Strong Orbits ‘Ad Inexplorata’

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 3:24pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Low Winter Sun star Mark Strong will team with writer-director Mark Elijah Rosenberg for Ad Inexplorata, a film that will start production in 2014. Strong plays a NASA pilot alone on a one-way mission to Mars. IM Global has signed on to sell foreign. Project came together at the Sundance Screenwriters Lab.

Rosenberg described Strong as “such a smart and intense actor who is going to bring hypnotic power to the film.” Such a project gets some currency off the remarkable grosses of the two-hander Gravity. Court 13′s Josh Penn produces with Loveless’s Matthew Parker and TideRock’s Thomas B. Fore and Jason Michael Berman. Strong’s repped by CAA and Markham, Froggart And Irwin. WME Global reps TideRock and CAA reps Rosenberg.

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AFM: Vertical Entertainment Acquires U.S. Rights To ‘Boys Of Abu Ghraib’

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 1:29pm PST

Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz executive produced the military thriller Boys Of Abu Ghraib, which Vertical Entertainment now plans to release in March 2014 after landing North American rights at AFM. Dean Devlin’s Electric Entertainment is handling international distribution and shopping the title this week in Santa Monica. Boys Of Abu Ghraib was written by Luke Moran, who made his directorial debut, produced and starred in the pic based on true events about a forbidden friendship between a U.S. soldier and an Iraqi detainee during the infamous torture scandal at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison. Sean Astin, Sara Paxton and John Heard co-star. The deal was negotiated by Peter Jarowey on behalf of Vertical and Resolution on behalf of the filmmakers. Sonia Mehandjiyska negotiated the deal on behalf of Electric, which in Toronto tapped her to run the company’s new international sales division.

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AFM: Olive Films Launches Martini Entertainment Indie Division

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 1:09pm PST

There’s a new player on the indie scene today. Olive Films announced their new Martini Entertainment division Friday at AFM. The intent of Martini is to develop and produce U.S. independent pics as well as acquire and release them. Producer and former MGM Home Entertainment and Starz/Anchor Bay Entertainment exec Eric Wilkinson will oversee Martini as Olive’s EVP of Production, Development and Acquisitions. “I’m extremely pleased to be adding Eric to the Olive Films team,” said Olive Films President Farhad Arshad today. “His passion for film and knowledge of the business will be a true asset to the Martini Entertainment label. This next year will be an exciting time for all of us at Olive as we continue to expand.” Wilkinson’s producing and writing partner Richard Schenkman will also be on board to develop new projects and titles for the company. Olive was originally launched in 2003 by Arshad as a boutique theatrical and distribution label.

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AFM: Oscilloscope Picks Up U.S. Rights To Thriller ‘Coherence’

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 1:05pm PST

Oscilloscope Laboratories today acquired the domestic rights to Coherence. A winner at this year’s Fantastic Fest, where Coherence premiered, the company plans to release the indie sci-fi thriller both theatrically and online next year after its festival run. The directorial debut of James Byrkit, the pic won the Next Wave Best Screenplay at Fantastic Fest in September. The film follows an odd night of an astrological anomaly where a dinner party turns very strange for eight friends. “Coherence is an incredibly smart, incredibly original, and incredibly impressive debut,” Oscilloscope’s David Laub and Dan Berger said in a statement today. “With hints of a low-budget sci-fi mindfuck like Primer and a deep, engaging, and emotionally resonant take on interpersonal relationships channeling the depth of Woody Allen at his best, it’s without a doubt unlike anything we’ve seen previously.” Director Byrkit is represented by Gersh, who co-repped domestic rights with P. Jennifer Dana. The deal was negotiated on behalf of filmmakers by P. Jennifer Dana. Independent Sales are repping the pic internationally at AFM.

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Hot AFM Trailer: Bertrand Tavernier’s ‘Quai D’Orsay’

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 3:39am PST

The latest entry to Bertrand Tavernier‘s diverse canon is a political satire that’s inspired by a comic book. Quai D’Orsay opened on Wednesday in France, scoring the best first-screening numbers in Paris, but ended up second overall for the day, behind another French film, En Solitaire. Both widely outperformed other new entries Inside Llewyn Davis and Ender’s Game. Quai D’Orsay stars veteran actor Thierry Lhermitte as Foreign Affairs Minister Alexandre Taillard de Vorms, an extravagant aristocrat who’s constantly in motion. The film has made some noise in France since the lead character is based on former Foreign Affairs Minister (later Prime Minister) Dominique de Villepin, the silver-haired international emblem of France’s opposition to the invasion of Iraq. The film’s source comic, Quai D’Orsay – Chroniques Diplomatiques, is co-authored by Abel Lanzac, a pseudonym for Antonin Baudry, who worked as an advisor to de Villepin. In the farcical look at the inner workings of the Foreign Affairs Ministry, de Vorms hires a young speechwriter, played by Raphaël Personnaz, to be his head of language. Niels Arestrup also stars. Quai D’Orsay won the screenplay prize in San Sebastian and screened in Toronto. Pathé is handling international sales at the AFM.

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