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MARKET France

StudioCanal scores with Resnais, Thompson and Kassovitz

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In a report for Cineuropa of its activity at Venice and Toronto, French international sales outfit StudioCanal has made some attractive sales.

According to Sales Director Muriel Sauzay, one of the most popular titles is Private Fears in Public Places [+see also:
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by Alain Resnais. Winner of the Silver Lion for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival, the film has been sold to the UK (Artificial Eye), Germany (Telepool), Benelux, Switzerland, Portugal (Atalanta Filmes), Romania, Israel, Mexico and Argentina, with negotiations well underway for the US, Spain and Greece.

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Recently shortlisted as the French candidate in the 2007 Oscar nominations for Best Foreign Language Film, Orchestra Seats [+see also:
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by Danièle Thompson has also generated strong sales. Acquired, among others, by Germany (Tobis Film), Italy (DCN), Benelux, Switzerland, Portugal, Russia, Central and Eastern Europe, the feature has also attracted buyers in the Middle East, the Gulf states, Israel, Canada, Korea and Central and South America (Mexico, Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay).

Optimum Releasing, the new subsidiary of Canal +, are expected to release the title in the UK, while ThinkFilm will release it on US soil in January 2007.

Meanwhile, Babylon AD [+see also:
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by Mathieu Kassovitz – scheduled to begin shooting in November – has registered what Sauzay calls “massive” sales.

Starring Vin Diesel, Michelle Yeoh and Vincent Cassel, the Légende/MNP Entreprise production has already been pre-sold to territories, with the exception of Italy, handled by StudioCanal: Germany, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Scandinavia, Russia, Central and Eastern Europe and Turkey. Fox is handling sales for the US, the UK and Asia.

Lastly, StudioCanal has done big business with INLAND EMPIRE by David Lynch (a US production financed by Canal +). However, the search is still on for a US distributor with tight negotiations underway with several distributors.

The current hit in French theatres Don’t Worry, I’m Fine [+see also:
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by Philippe Lioret (426,000 admissions in two weeks) has led to renewed interest from buyers, which could well materialize into something concrete at the American Film Market (November 1-8) – one of the biggest markets in the second half of the year, according to Sauzay.

At the AFM, StudioCanal will launch sales of Dialogue avec mon jardinier (lit. “Conversations With My Gardener”) by Jean Becker, starring Daniel Auteuil and Jean-Pierre Darroussin (see news).

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(Translated from French)

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