French companies rack up the announcements at Cannes
by Fabien Lemercier
- CANNES 2016: Bac Films, MK2 and Wild Bunch lead the pack with Virzi, Assayas and Loach, while Manny Film, Mare Nostrum and Macasssar Productions also excel
On the fifth day of the Film Market at the 69th Cannes Film Festival, where for the time being popular opinion seems to favour steady, sustained activity without things getting too frenetic, French companies continue to set the pace for the sales and projects currently on the agenda.
Bac Films has thus kicked off pre-sales (except for North America) for the English-language project The Leisure Seeker by Italy's Paolo Virzi, an adaptation of the US novel of the same name, which the French company will co-produce and which is due to start shooting in July, with well-known actors Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland among the cast. A rising star on the international stage, yesterday Virzi unveiled Like Crazy [+see also:
Q&A: Paolo Virzì
film profile] in the Directors' Fortnight, which is also on the French sales agent's slate, as was the previous movie by the director from Livorno, Human Capital [+see also:
interview: Paolo Virzì
film profile]. Interestingly, another English-language project has been added to the line-up of Bac Films, which the firm will both sell and co-produce: the Irish feature The Third Wave by David Freyne, which will begin filming in October, toplined by young Canadian star Ellen Page.
Another partner on Like Crazy, but this time as a co-producer, is Paris-based outfit Manny Films, which also continues to open itself up to Italian productions, as the firm has come on board 7 minuti [+see also:
film profile] by Michele Placido (Romanzo criminale [+see also:
interview: Michele Placido
film profile]), which is currently in post-production. We should also point out that Manny Films is a partner on another European project: Happy Birthday by the British director of Cypriot-Greek heritage Christos Georgiou.
MK2 has announced some tasty sales for Personal Shopper [+see also:
interview: Artemio Benki
interview: Olivier Assayas
film profile] by Olivier Assayas, which will have its world premiere at the start of next week in the Cannes competition, and has been acquired for the United Kingdom (Metrodome) and China (by iQIYI, for the VoD rights). These sales have just been added to an already long list of territories that pre-empted, including Germany (Weltkino), Austria (Filmladen), Benelux (The Searchers), Switzerland (Filmcoopi), South Korea and the USA (IFC). The French release will be handled on 19 October by Les Films du Losange.
Wild Bunch has also been topping up its sales of another film in competition: I, Daniel Blake [+see also:
film profile] by British director Ken Loach. Among the myriad countries that have acquired the title are Spain (Caramel), Germany (Prokino), the Czech Republic (Film Europe), Hungary (Vertigo), the countries of the former Yugoslavia (Megacom), Romania (Independenta), Greece (Feelgood), Switzerland (Filmcoopi), Turkey and the entirety of Latin America, not to mention the pre-sales deals already closed with the United Kingdom (eOne), France (Le Pacte), Italy (Cinema), Benelux (Cinéart) and Japan, with negotiations for Scandinavia and the USA at a very advanced stage. Furthermore, the American subsidiary of Wild Bunch, Insiders, has added the fantastic film project The Giant by David Raboy to its slate (read the news).
As for the main production announcements, French outfit Macassar will be co-producing In the Fade, the next movie by Germany's Fatih Akin, which will be shot in the autumn, with Diane Kruger in the lead role.
Meanwhile, Paris-based company Mare Nostrum, managed by Alexandra Lebret (with support from Spain's Morena Films), has officially launched a project that will adapt I Spit on Your Graves by Boris Vian, with Spaniard Santiago Zannou attached as the director.
Lastly, we should highlight that the French subsidiary of major Sony Pictures Releasing will for the first time be distributing a quasi-French title – namely, the Belgian-French co-production Don't Tell Her by Solange Cicurel (read the article).
(Translated from French)