A raft of new international projects for French sales agents
by Fabien Lemercier
- Gaumont, Playtime, Doc & Film, Indie Sales and Bac Films are pinning their hopes on Lartigau, Egoyan, Sobel, Nossiter, Rosete and Klein, while Olivier Assayas has secured a huge cast
The French international sales agents are hard at work at the informal (but unmissable) market of the 43rd Toronto International Film Festival (6-16 September) and have announced the addition of several highly desirable new projects to their slates, particularly ones in the English language. Here is a quick overview of the main announcements.
The only major new French-language addition is attributed to Gaumont, which has kicked off pre-sales for #iamhere, the seventh feature by Eric Lartigau (The Bélier Family [+see also:
film profile], The Big Picture [+see also:
film profile]). The filmmaker will be reuniting with topliner Alain Chabat (who was nominated for the César Award for Best Actor in 2007 thanks to I Do: How to Get Married and Stay Single [+see also:
film profile], his third nomination after the ones he got in 1996 and 1998), who will play (in a screenplay co-penned by the director and Thomas Bidegain) a famous chef who falls in love with a mysterious South Korean woman on Instagram and who jets off to Seoul to meet her. But she does not turn up as planned, and so he sets off in search of her... Production duties are being handled by Rectangle, and the shoot will take place in October and in spring 2019.
Playtime has also whipped out a couple of impressive announcements. The French company has begun pre-sales for Guest of Honour, the upcoming film by Canada’s Atom Egoyan, the shoot for which will get under way in November. The plot will revolve around a father and daughter; the latter, aged around 20, refuses to come out of prison, even though she has not committed the sexual assault she has been accused of. In addition, Playtime has teamed up with New York-based Animal Kingdom for the English-language remake of the Austrian feature Goodnight Mommy [+see also:
interview: Severin Fiala and Veronika …
film profile] by Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala (unveiled at Venice in 2014), which will be directed by Matt Sobel and shot in the summer of 2019.
Doc & Film International has announced that it has added Last Words by Jonathan Nossiter (Mondovino) to its line-up. For this movie, the director will assemble a cast comprising US actor Nick Nolte, British actress Charlotte Rampling, Italy’s Alba Rohrwacher and Valeria Golino, and Sweden’s Stellan Skarsgard. This post-apocalyptic flick centred on a handful of survivors in 2085 (with a screenplay written by the director and Santiago Amigorena), which will be shot this autumn, is being produced by Italy’s Stemal Entertainment and France’s Les Films d’Ici, with Paprika Films on board as a co-producer.
Bac Films has kicked off pre-sales for Remember Me, the second feature by New York-based Spaniard Martin Rosete, following Money. Again in the English language and currently in production, the movie boasts a cast consisting of US actor Bruce Dern (Best Actor Award at Cannes in 2013 and nominated for the Oscar for Best Actor in 2014 for Nebraska), France’s Caroline Silhol, Scottish thesp Brian Cox and the UK’s Sienna Guillory, and will depict the quest of a man who, aided by his granddaughter and his best friend, tries to re-establish contact with his old flame and one true love, a woman now suffering from Alzheimer’s. In order to get close to her and gain access to the old people’s home where she is living, he pretends to be ill... The production is a joint effort between the USA, France (F Comme Film) and Spain (Kamel Films).
Indie Sales has embellished its already great-looking line-up (see the news) with the addition of Adventures of a Mathematician by Germany’s Thorsten Klein, an English-language feature, the shoot for which has just got under way. The movie will take a look back at the career of US scientist of Polish heritage Stanislaw M Ulam, who was forced to flee his country of birth in 1939 when the Nazis arrived, before being involved in the development of the H-bomb and the computer in the United States. The cast includes France’s Philippe Tlokinski and Esther Garrel, Ireland’s Sam Keeley and Switzerland’s Joel Basman. Production duties have been entrusted to German outfits Dragonfly Films and Zischlermann Filmproduktion, the UK’s Mirror Productions and Poland’s ShipsBoy, with Erfttal Film on board as a co-producer.
While we’re on the subject of films in production, in the strictest sense of the term, it is also worth noting that the cast of the next feature by Olivier Assayas, Wasp Network (a project whose vague details were unveiled at Cannes last May – see the news), has been fleshed out with the addition of Spanish star Penélope Cruz, equally famous Mexican actor Gael García Bernal and Brazil’s Wagner Moura, who will be flanked by Venezuela’s Edgar Ramírez and Chile’s Pedro Pascal. The spy film, produced by Paris-based outfit CG Cinéma and Brazilian firm RT Features, will begin principal photography early next year.
(Translated from French)
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