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FESTIVALS France

Fair Play in the running at San Sebastian

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The debut feature by French director Lionel Bailliu, Fair Play [+see also:
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, will take part in the 54th San Sebastian International Film Festival (September 21-30, 2006). The film will feature in the Zabaltegi-New Directors section, which showcases 18 first or second films.

Featuring a star-studded cast that includes Benoît Magimel, Marion Cotillard, Jérémy Rénier, Eric Savin and Mélanie Doutey, Fair Play, a psychological thriller about sport and harassment at work, comes from a director whose second short (Squash) was nominated for an Oscars in 2004 and won awards at several international festivals (Clermont-Ferrand, Cork, Valence, Toronto, Palm Springs, Aspen).

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Fair Play sets out to explore manipulation and tense relationships between five co-workers. Sculling on calm waters, squash, golf and river rafting at the end of a deep gorge form the backdrop against which five yuppies bash out their jealousy, grudges and double-crossing as they fight for control of a large company.

Produced by French outfit Films Manuel Munz (71%), Fair Play was co-produced by Belgium's Entre Chien et Loup (19 %) and Czech outfit Okko Productions (10%) on a €5.33m budget. The film received Eurimages funding of €400,000 and pre-sales financing from TPS and M6 (€1.2m, including €200,000 for co-production).

International sales are being handled by TF1 International. Fair Play will be released in French theatres on September 6 by TFM.

Also lined up in the Zabaltegi-New Directors section is the French minority co-production The Backwoods by Spanish director Koldo Serra. A 10% co-production by Parisian outfit Divine Productions (see news October 4, 2005), the film, which is also supported by Eurimages, stars French actress Virginie Ledoyen alongside British actors Gary Oldman and Paddy Considine and Spanish/Italian star Aitana Sánchez-Gijón.

(Translated from French)

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