D Films takes “Creation” to Canada
Canadian distribution company D Films has picked up Canadian rights to Jon Amiel’s 2009 Toronto Fest opener, “Creation.” The Charles Darwin drama starring Paul Bettany (“The Da Vinci Code”) and Jennifer Connelly will have its world premiere on September 10 as TIFF’s opening night gala. The deal was negotiated on behalf of D FILMS by Sherry and Cianciotta, and by Tim Haslam on behalf of Hanway Films. “I’m absolutely thrilled to be associated with ‘Creation’,” said D Films’ Vice-President of Acquisitions, Tony Cianciotta in a statement. “We couldn’t have asked for a better fit than ‘Creation’ as our first acquisition under the D Films banner. [The film] has an extraordinary cast, a great script, and is extremely well-made. I fell in love with the script some time ago, but I was completely blown away by the finished film.”
Keaton to take Zurich honors
Actor/director Michael Keaton (“Batman”) will receive a Career achievement Award from the Zurich Film Festival. As part of the festivities, the fest will present “The Merry Gentleman,” which he directs and stars in. Additionally, in a Zurich master class on October 2, Keaton will discuss the topics of actinga nd directing with 20 selected participants. “Not only is Michael Keaton an unbelievably multifaceted actor, he can also celebrate a remarkable directing debut with ‘The Merry Gentleman,’ which was received with great enthusiasm at the Sundance Film Festival by the press and audiences alike,” commented Karl Spoerri, co-director and artistic director of the Zurich Film Festival.
European Film Awards announce 48 contenders
The European Film Academy and EFA Productions gGmbH unveiled 48 films that are recommended for nominations for the 2009 European Film Awards. In the coming weeks, the 2,000 members of the European Film Academy will vote for the nominations in the different award categories. The nominations will then be announced on 7 November at the Sevilla European Film Festival in Spain. The 22nd European Film Awards with the presentation of the winners will take place in Germany’s Ruhr Metropolis on 12 December. Among the contenders this year are: Pedro Almodovar’s “Broken Embraces,” Lars von Trier’s “Antichrist,” Uli Edel’s “The Baader Meinhof Complex,” Anne Fonaine’s “Coco Before Chanel,” Andrea Arnold’s “Fish Tank,” Ken Loach’s “Looking for Eric,” Corneliu Porumboiu’s “Police, Adjective,” Jacques Audiard’s “A Prophet,” Stephen Daldry’s “The Reader,” Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire,” Elia Suleiman’s “The Time that Remains,” Marco Bellocchio’s “Vincere” and Michael Haneke’s “The White Ribbon.”
“Oceans” for Tokyo
The world premiere of Jacques Perrin’s “Oceans” will open the 22nd Tokyo International Film Festival. The film is described as a tale of “the mysterious ocean and the living.” Devoting over 70 trips to 50 places and 4 years it captures more than 100 species.
Screen: Mike Goodridge to take editor’s role at Screen International
Mike Goodridge, Screen International’s US editor, is to return to London to take up the editor’s chair of Screen. Goodridge, currently based in Los Angeles, will take over as editor of Screen International and ScreenDaily from October. He has been based in LA for 12 years and will return to the UK early next year. Screen reports.
BBC: Hugo Chavez walks Venice red carpet
He’s one of the most controversial figures walking the political stage at the moment – but at the Venice Film Festival, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has been walking the red carpet. He was in Venice for the world premiere of director Oliver Stone’s documentary examining his portrayal in the media…Stone’s documentary “South of the Border” started as an attempt to find out the truth behind the newspaper headlines about the Venezuelan leader. Emma Jones reports.
AP: Clooney speeds into Venice for premiere of “Goats”
“The Men Who Stare at Goats,” directed by Grant Heslov, was shown out of competition Tuesday at the Venice Film Festival. Based on Jon Ronson’s book of the same name and inspired by true events, the movie features an all-star cast that also includes Ewan McGregor, Jeff Bridges and Kevin Spacey. “I think we looked at this and thought it wasn’t an Iraq war film,” Clooney said at a press conference Tuesday. “We thought it was a comedy about some crazy ideas that went on, that started at the end of the Vietnam war and carried on through, not that long ago and maybe still carry on,” he said. Sheri Jennings reports.
AFP: “White-collar criminal” Matt Damon does Venice
Hollywood golden boy Matt Damon does a number on the world of white-collar crime in Steven Soderbergh’s “Informant!” screening out of competition Monday at the Venice film festival. Based on a non-fiction novel by Kurt Eichenwald, the comic thriller tracks Mark Whitacre’s machinations as a whistle-blower with “issues” that include looking after number one. AFP reports.
AFP: Taiwan festival hacked over Uighur film
Anonymous hackers have attacked a Taiwan film festival over plans to screen a documentary on the US-based leader of China’s predominantly Muslim Uighur minority, festival organisers said Tuesday. A message, posted on a blog run by one of the organisers of the Kaohsiung Film Festival, blamed Rebiya Kadeer for recent bloody unrest in northwest China’s Xinjiang region, which is home to the Turkic-speaking Uighurs. AFP reports.