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MARKET USA/France

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French sales agents ready to spring into action at the AFM

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- 27 French companies will be attending the last major international market of the year, which kicks off tomorrow in Santa Monica

French sales agents ready to spring into action at the AFM
Gangsta by Belgian duo Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah

No fewer than 27 French international sales agents (15 of which will be attending under the UniFrance umbrella) are plotting a course for Santa Monica, where they intend to strike some great deals at the 38th AFM (American Film Market), which will unspool from 1-8 November. And they will certainly not be lacking ammo on their slates, as besides the myriad screenings of films that have already been unveiled elsewhere, they will be able to boast a plethora of features in post-production and production, as well as several brand-new titles. Continue reading for an overview of the most tantalising line-ups being showcased. 

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Indie Sales will be kicking off pre-sales for three films in post-production: Gangsta by Belgian duo Adil El Arbi and Billal Fallah (based on a promo reel – see the article and watch the trailer), Romulus and Remus, The First King by Italy’s Matteo Rovere (see the article) and L’amour est une fête by France’s Cédric Anger (toplined by Guillaume Canet – see the article), not to mention other movies such as Mother’s Instinct by Belgium’s Olivier Masset-Depasse (see the article), which is also in post-production. 

Memento Films International will be pressing on with pre-sales for The Apparition by Xavier Giannoli (see the article) and Claire Darling by Julie Bertuccelli (see the article), which are in post-production, plus Everybody Knows by Iran’s Asghar Farhadi (in production – see the article – starring Javier BardemPenélope Cruz and Ricardo Darín).

MK2 will be getting started with pre-sales for At War by Stéphane Brizé, the shoot for which has already kicked off, and for which the director is teaming up with actor Vincent Lindon for the fourth time (their last collaboration, The Measure of a Man [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Stéphane Brizé
film profile
]
, was crowned with the Best Actor Award at Cannes). Also standing out on the jam-packed MK2 line-up are a number of titles in post-production, such as Ramen Shop by Eric Khoo (produced by Singapore, France and Japan), Sorry Angel by Christophe Honoré (see the article), Amanda by Mikhaël Hers (see the article), Cold War by Poland’s Pawel Pawlikowski (see the article) and The Trouble With You by Pierre Salvadori (see the article), besides P.E.A.R.L by Elsa Amiel (see the article) and Ash Is Purest White by China’s Jia Zhangke, both of which are in production.

Playtime will be presenting promo reels for 15 Minutes of War by Fred Grivois (a Capture The Flag Films production about the kidnapping of a group of children and their teacher in Djibouti in 1976, and about the French response team tasked with freeing them; starring Olga Kurylenko and Alban Lenoir), Gun Fight by Spaniard Dani de la Torre (see the article; toplined by Luis Tosar), Lady Winsley by Hiner Saleem (see the article), Black Tide by Erick Zonca (see the article) and The Royal Exchange by Marc Dugain (see the article).

Charades will be pre-selling the project Sympathy for the Devil by Guillaume de Fontenay, the storyline of which recounts the misadventures of a French photographer (set to be played by Niels Schneider) in Sarajevo during the Bosnian War. The film is being staged by Monkey Pack Films together with Go Films and Nexus Factory, with backing from Logical Pictures and Rezo.

SND will get stuck into pre-selling The Call of the Wild by Christian Duguay, an adaptation of the Jack London novel, the shoot for which will get under way in February (a production by French outfit 5656 Films together with Canda’s CD Productions, which will be funded by SND).

TF1 Studio will begin pre-sales for the science-fiction movie Just a Breath Away by Daniel Roby (toplined by Romain Duris – see the article) and will continue working on its numerous other titles (see the news).

Pathé International will be banking on the British project Judy by Rupert Goold, starring Renée Zellweger (in the role of Judy Garland; the story revolves around the personal and professional trials and tribulations during the famous US artist’s 1968 tour of England), as well as Capri Battery by Italy’s Mario Martone (in production – see the article).

Le Pacte will be pre-selling two titles starring Virginie Efira in the lead role: Keep Going by Belgium’s Joachim Lafosse, principal photography for which has just got under way (see the article), and An Impossible Love by Catherine Corsini (also featuring Niels Schneider among the cast; currently in post-production – see the article).

Four titles have been added to Wild Bunch’s slate: the firm is kicking off pre-sales for The Translators by Régis Roinsard (who turned heads with Populaire [+see also:
film review
trailer
making of
film profile
]
), who is once again working with Les Productions du Trésor and is preparing a thriller centring on a group of nine translators working together to translate a bestseller in a bunker cut off from the rest of the world. The cast include Sidse Babett KnudsenOlga KurylenkoSara GiraudeauMaria LeiteAnna Maria SturmLambert WilsonRiccardo ScamarcioAlex LawtherEduardo Noriega and Manolis Mavromatakis.

Also hitting Wild Bunch’s line-up are two fresh animated titles: the US project Foxy Trotter by Chris Prynoski and Where Is Anne Frank? by Israel’s Ari Folman (Waltz with Bashir [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
), an adaptation of the graphic novel written by the filmmaker and David Polonsky, based on The Diary of Anne Frank), which is about to enter production for a tentative 2019 release (a production involving Israel, Belgium, the Netherlands and France). Another new addition is La Quietud by Argentina’s Pablo Trapero (co-produced by Paris-based outfit Macassar Productions), which will begin shooting in late November, starring Martina Gusmán and Bérénice Bejo.

Elle Driver is set to launch sales for a project that will certainly whet the appetite of zombie fans: Road of the Dead by Matt Birman (who co-penned the screenplay with the late George Romero). It will also be working on Girls of the Sun by Eva Husson (see the article) and Savage by Vincent Mariette (see the article), both in production, on the title Carnivores by Belgian brothers Jérémie and Yannick Renier, in post-production, and on the Italian project La paranza dei bambini by Claudio Giovannesi (an adaptation of a Roberto Saviano book).

Doc & Films International will be pinning its hopes on the series Coincoin and the Extra-humans by Bruno Dumont (the sequel to Li’l Quinquin [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
), which was shot over the summer, on the French-German documentary Game Girls by Alina Skrzeszewska (in post-production) and on the Australian-French project Slam by Partho Sen-Gupta.

Bac Films Distribution will be negotiating deals for the French-Luxembourgish-Belgian animated film Funan by Denis Do, currently in production, and for Land by Babak Jalali (in post-production – co-produced by Italy, France, Mexico and the Netherlands).

EuropaCorp will be counting on the thriller Carbon by Olivier Marchal (see the article) and on several titles in post-production, such as Eva by Benoît Jacquot (see the article) and the comedy I Feel Better by Jean-Pierre Améris (toplined by Eric Elmosnino).

The Bureau Sales has high hopes for the movies Our Wonderful Lives by Fabienne Godet (see the news) and Postcards from London by Steve McLean, both in post-production.

Reel Suspects will carry on with the sales for the Polish film The Man with the Magic Box [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Bodo Kox, which it started at Toronto, while Wide will be banking on the market premieres of the Dutch film Brothers by Bram Schouw. Meanwhile, Other Angle Pictures will get the ball rolling on sales for the comedy Budapest by Xavier Gens (see the article).

Versatile will get pre-sales under way for the thriller The Sound of Animals Fighting by South Africa’s Sibs Shongwe-La Mer, starring Emile Hirsch and Alice Braga and slated to be shot in Brazil in the second quarter of 2018.

Other companies that will also be hard at work at the AFM include StudioCanal, Gaumont, Celluloid Dreams, KinologyWTFilmsFuturikonMercure International and Alfama Films.

(Translated from French)

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