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December 11, 2001 2:00 AM
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DAILY NEWS: French Film Acquisitions; Castle Hill Deal

DAILY NEWS: French Film Acquisitions; Castle Hill Deal



with articles by Anthony Kaufman and Brian Brooks/indieWIRE



>> French Film Fever: Sony Grabs "My Wife"; Remstar Nabs "Nationale"


(indieWIRE: 12.11.01) -- With Miramax Zoe's "Amelie" ushering in another
banner year for French films in the United States (box office for
French-language films have increased by more than 400% since last year), New
York's French Film Office announced a handful of new acquisitions of
French-made productions that are soon to play Stateside.


Sony Pictures Classics has acquired Yvan Attal's second feature "My Wife is An Actress," a Toronto 2001 world premiere, starring French starlet
Charlotte Gainsbourg as an actress and her real life spouse, writer-director-actor Attal, as her husband, a journalist who must deal with the jealousies inherent in having a celebrity wife.


Remstar, the Canadian arthouse distrib ("Baise-Moi"), has picked up rights
to "Nationale 7," directed by Jean-Pierre Sinapi. A favorite on the 2000
film festival circuit, and winner of audience awards in Berlin and San
Sebastian
, "Nationale" is a dark comedy about the sexual life of the
seriously disabled.


Also, California Newsreel has acquired Joseph Gaï Ramaka's "Karmen Gei," a French African production based on Bizet's "Carmen," soon to screen in the Sundance Film Festival's World Cinema program and Rialto Pictures has taken Julien Duvivier's 1937 gangster classic "Pepe le Moko" to revive in theaters next year. Rialto Pictures recently had success with re-releases of Jules Dassin's "Rififi" and Luis Bunuel's "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie" and "Diary of a Chambermaid." [Anthony Kaufman]


>> Castle Hill Prod. Takes on "The Last Man"


(indieWIRE/12.11.01) -- North American rights to "The Last Man" by Harry
Ralston
have been picked up by Castle Hill Productions the company announced. The film, Ralston's first, is described in a statement by Castle Hill as a
"post-apocalyptic romantic comedy." Characters in the film played by Jeri
Ryan
("Star Trek Voyager"), David Arnott ("Code Name Phoenix") and Dan Montgomery ("Red Dirt") are the only three remaining humans on earth, and must contend with survival amidst their own love triangle. "The Last Man" premiered at the Hamptons Film Festival and screened in festivals in North America and Europe winning top prizes in England and New Orleans.


The film, executive produced by Oscar-winning writer of "Pulp Fiction" Roger Avary, will open February 22 in New York and in Los Angeles in mid-March.
[Brian Brooks]

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