Wellspring Curtseys to Desplechin's "Kings and Queen"
by Brian Brooks
U.S. rights to French director Arnaud Desplechin's "Kings and Queen" have been acquired by Wellspring, the company announced Wednesday afternoon. The film, which stars Mathieu Almaric ("Alice and Martin"), Emmanuelle Devos ("Read My Lips"), and Catherine Deneuve, is screening at the New York Film Festival and will be released sometime in 2005, followed by a DVD release.
"Kings and Queen" is described by Wellspring as a feature that "tells the parallel stories of two ex-lovers: Nora, a single mother suddenly faced with the care of her terminally ill father, and Ismael, a brilliant musician trying desperately -- in high comic fashion -- to escape from a mental hospital. The two characters interact on screen only twice, yet the film progressively demonstrates that the lives of any couple that has experienced a deep love are perpetually intertwined." The feature, which had its world premiere at the recent Venice International Film Festival, screened last month in Toronto and will screen at the NYFF on October 6 and 7.
Wellspring's head of acquisitions, Marie Therese Guirgis negotiated the deal with Carole Baraton of Paris-based sales group Wild Bunch on behalf of producer Pascal Caucheteux's Why Not Productions.
"'Kings and Queen' is hilarious, smart, rich and moving," commented Guirgis in a statement. "[The film is] Desplechin's most accessible film to date [and] we hope to significantly expand the audience for this great director who has long been a critical favorite here in the U.S." Desplechin's past credits include "My Sex Life, or How I Got into an Argument," "Esther Kahn," and "In the Company of Men."
Currently, Wellspring has Cedric Kahn's "Red Lights," Vincent Gallo's "The Brown Bunny," and Tsai Ming-liang's "Goodbye Dragon Inn" in release. The company will release Jonathan Caouette's acclaimed "Tarnation" next week. Wellspring is a division of American Vantage Media Corporation.