Fortissimo has record market
by Annika Pham
"We’ve had a fantastic market, a real record market, and started selling even before we arrived in Cannes", said a tired but happy Nicole Mackey, Senior VP International Sales at Fortissimo Film, with branches in Amsterdam, Hong Kong and London. Indeed, although most sales companies had empty offices by Friday afternoon, buyers were still queuing at Fortissimo’s door.
The company’s competition film Shanghai Dreams by the Chinese Wang Xiaoshuai was sold to a handful of European territories such as Italy (Teodora Film), Spain (Civite), Benelux (A-Film), France (ARP), Greece (Village Roadshow) Poland (Monolith), Portugal and was in negotiations for the UK and Germany.
The Australian film Jewboy at Un Certain Regard attracted a lot of interest although its 52 minutes prevented it from selling theatrically in many markets, according to Mackey, but France was still considering it for a big screen release.
U-Carmen e Khayelitsha, the Berlin Film Festival's 2005 Golden Bear based on Bizet’s opera Carmen and shown in the World Cinema Section did brisk business, selling to Germany (MFA + Film Distribution), France (ID Distribution), Italy (Lady Film), Benelux (A-Film), Norway (Fidalgo), Sweden (Triangelfilm), Portugal (Lusomundo), Switzerland (Look Now!), Greece (Village Roadshow) and CIS (Partner Video).
Two mainstream English language titles with star names attached: Mark Evans’ Snow Cake starring Alan Rickman and Sigourney Weaver, and Patrick Slettner’s The Night Listener starring Robin Williams and Toni Collette, pre-sold very well during Cannes. Snow Cake was pre-sold to Svensk Filmindustri for Scandinavia, Village Roadshow for Greece, Monolith for Poland and Lusomundo for Portugal. The UK/Canadian co-production will be ready for Berlin 2006.
The adaptation of Armistead Maupin’s international best-seller The Night Listener was pre-sold to Scandinavia (Svensk Filmindustri), the UK (Icon Distribution), Italy (Video CDE), Greece (Prooptiki), and Poland (Monolith).
Finally Germany (X -Film) bought the US independent film Mad Hot Ballroom which screened at the market.
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