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CANNES 2019 Marché du Film

French sales agents mount their attack in Cannes


- Highly dynamic French international sales firms are banking on a diverse mix of films showcasing in the various Cannes selections

French sales agents mount their attack in Cannes
Wild Goose Lake by Diao Yinan

Playing a pivotal role in the international circulation of films, whether via the traditional route of cinema auditoriums or modern-day digital platforms, international sales agents depend on the Marché du Film, which is opening today as part of the 72nd Cannes Film Festival (running 14 to 25 May), for a significant share of their annual turnover. And within this particular field of activity, French firms occupy the high ground; not only because they’re on home turf on the Croisette, but chiefly because they negotiate on behalf of films (auteur films in particular) produced all around the world.

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Cineuropa has already published various Cannes line-ups in relation to Wild Bunch (see our article), mk2 Films (news), Pyramide International (article), Charades (article), SBS (article), Pathé Films (news), Playtime (article), Indie Sales (news), Totem Films (read our interview), Kinology (article), Bac Films (news), Le Pacte (article), Jour2Fête (news), Alpha Violet (article) and Reel Suspects (news); but many other French players will also enter into the fray, with titles set to showcase in the various Cannes selections.

To this effect, Memento Films International is selling The Wild Goose Lake (which was also produced by Memento) by Chinese director Diao Yinan, which is in the running for the 2019 Palme d’Or, and The Climb by American filmmaker Michael Angelo Covino, set to be unveiled within the Un Certain Regard section. 

Coproduction Office is likewise selling a film battling it out in the official competition: the English-language work Little Joe by Austria’s Jessica Hausner

Luxbox has added Nina Wu by Burmese director Midi Z to its line-up (news), which is slated to headline Un Certain Regard.

Gaumont will also be in the game with the film set to occupy the final festival slot: The Specials by the duo comprising Olivier Nakache and Éric Toledano.

Shining bright in the Celluloid Dreams line-up is the animated film by Zabou Breitman et Eléa Gobbe-Mevellec, The Swallows of Kabul, which will be presented within the Un Certain Regard programme. 

WTFilms is selling Deerskin by Quentin Dupieux which is opening the Directors’ Fortnight tomorrow.

Les Films du Losange will be throwing their weight behind works including Particles by Switzerland’s Blaise Harrison, which will be unveiled during the Directors’ Fortnight, Burning Ghost by Stéphane Batut, which will be screened within the ACID programme, and Oh Les Filles! by François Armanet, which will have its world premiere as part of the Official Selection, bolstering the Cinéma de la Plage programme.

Loco Films is banking on Once in Trubchevsk by Russian director Larissa Sadilova, set to world premiere in the Un Certain Regard line-up.

Other Angle is negotiating on behalf of The Best Years of a Life by Claude Lelouch, which will enjoy a Special Screening within the Official Selection. 

Doc & Film International is selling Blind Spot by Pierre Trividic and Patrick-Mario Bernard, scheduled to be showcased as part of the ACID programme. 

Urban Distribution International (UDI) is banking on As Happy As Possible by French filmmaker Alain Raoust, which will likewise screen in the ACID selection.

Also looking to make their presence felt at the Marché du Film are StudioCanal, Orange Studio, SND, Elle Driver, The Bureau Sales, EuropaCorp, France TV Distribution, Stray Dogs, TF1 Studio, Wide Management, Versatile, Alfama Films, Funny Balloons, CAT&Docs and Wide House, not to mention foreign subsidiaries of French sales companies, such as Best Friend Forever (the new Belgian branch of Indie Sales) who will be negotiating for a title featuring in the Directors’ Fortnight segment (read our news) and the three sister companies of Playtime: Belgian arm Be For Films (with one film in the Directors’ Fortnight section –  read our article), German subsidiary Films Boutique (with two titles in Un Certain Regard, one in Directors’ Fortnight and one in Critics’ Weeknews) and the British derivative Film Constellation (with the American film Bull in Un Certain Regard and Family Romance, LCC by Germany’s Werner Herzog, down for a Special Screening within the Official Selection).

(Translated from French)

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