Olga Kurylenko (Quantum of Solace, Oblivion) has signed on to supernatural horror pic Mara, from Room 101, Mann Made Films, The Solution Entertainment Group, and Synchronicity Entertainment. Clive Tonge is directing in his feature debut. Pic riffs on the mythology and true phenomena of sleep paralysis aka sudden unexpected nocturnal death syndrome, with Kurylenko playing a criminal psychologist investigating the murder of a man seemingly strangled in his sleep by his wife. She uncovers a mystery surrounding an ancient demon who kills people in their sleep and must save herself and the dead man’s young daughter from becoming the next victims. Solution’s Myles Nestel is producing with Room 101’s microbudget horror guru Steven Schneider (Paranormal Activity, Insidious) and Mann Made Films’ Scott Mann and James Edward Barker. Kurylenko is repped by CAA and Tavistock Wood.
Shoreline Entertainment has picked up worldwide sales rights to medical drama The Shift, starring Danny Glover, Leo Oliva, and Casey Fitzgerald. It tells the true story of a young male nurse (Oliva) who struggles with whether doctors, nurses, and families should let long-suffering patients live in pain or allow them to die in peace. Star Oliva also wrote and produced The Shift for his Oliva Productions and M.A.D. Elephant Inc., based on his own experiences as an emergency room nurse. Filming took place at the Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center. Shoreline’s Director of Acquisitions Melody Djavaldi and Melanie DiPietro CEO of M.A.D. Elephant negotiated the deal.
François Ozon‘s next film The New Girlfriend (Une nouvelle amie) has been picked up for international rights representation by Paris-based Films Distribution. Ozon adapted the script from Ruth Rendell’s short story and is directing the film about a woman who falls into a depression following her best friend’s death but finds strength after discovering an unexpected secret about her friend’s husband. Romain Duris, Anaïs Demoustier, and Raphaël Personnaz star. Filming is underway in France aiming for a summer 2014 debut. Frequent Ozon collaborators Eric and Nicolas Altmayer of Mandarin Cinema are producing.
Kiwi docu box office hit Beyond The Edge has sealed international distribution in territories including the UK (Metrodome), German-speaking Europe (Polyband), Japan (Kadokawa), and the Middle East (Gulf). The 3D Mount Everest pic premiered at Toronto and has gone on to become the biggest nonfic performer in New Zealand; it’s taken in NZ$505,601 to date. Film recounts the tale of Sir Edmund Hillary’s 1953 Everest ascent, blending archival footage and 3D re-creations. Leanne Pooley wrote and directed the film, with Matthew Metcalfe producing. The New Zealand Film Commission financed the pic in association with NZ On Air’s Platinum Fund, TVNZ, Digifilm, and Rialto Distribution; Altitude Film Sales are repping international at AFM.
Vision Films has picked up international sales rights to musical drama The Identical, starring Blake Rayne, Erin Cotrell (Love’s Long Journey), Amanda Crew (Crazy Kind of Love), Brian Geraghty (Boardwalk Empire), Seth Green (Dads), Ashley Judd (Olympus Has Fallen), Joe Pantoliano (The Matrix) and Ray Liotta (GoodFellas). The Dustin Marcellino-directed pic written and produced by Howard Klausner follows identical twins (played by Rayne) separated at birth during the Great Depression whose shared musical passions bring their lives together again. Matt Russell, Joe McDougall, Coke Sams and Clio Tegel also produced. More than 20 songs written and produced by Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, and Lionel Richie producer Jerry Marcellino with Yochanan Marcellino are featured in the film.
Taiwan pre-sales on 108 Media’s Camera Trap have gone to Pomi ahead of the film’s AFM premiere this week. Wildlife docu filmmaker Alex Verner makes his narrative debut with the thriller about a British crew trying to trap a rare wildcat in the mountains of Nepal who get the tables turned on them as they become the prey. The found-footage pic is produced by Steve Christian (The Disappearance of Alice Creed, Chico and Rita). The sale marks an early deal for 108 Media’s new Asian office headed by Ryo Ebe.
Premiere Entertainment Group has inked a deal to rep international sales on a number of their remastered AFM titles including Robert Altman’s Cookie’s Fortune, Mike Figgis’ Hotel, and Michael Radford’s Dancing at the Blue Iguana. Moonstone President Etchie Stroh, meanwhile, will handle distribution of the recently acquired Imperial library while developing and producing new projects Codename Falcon and Scoop. Recent Premiere pickups include Sundance pic Afternoon Delight, SXSW’s Scenic Route, and indie comedy It’s a Disaster. The deal was negotiated by Etchie Stroh on behalf of Moonstone Entertainment and by Ryan Noto on behalf of Premiere Entertainment Group. Premiere Entertainment Group, meanwhile, will rep worldwide sales on the Austrian WWII drama-romance The Silent Mountain, starring Chronicles of Narnia‘s William Moseley, Eugenia Costantini, and Claudia Cardinale. Ernst Gossner (South of Pico) directed the film about a soon-to-be-deployed soldier who meets a young Italian girl at his sister’s wedding and must rescue her amid the dangerous Alps terrain as war breaks out. PEG’s Ryan Noto is overseeing post on the pic for Digital Post Services, which will include a German-dubbed version in addition to the original English-language version. PEG’s Elias Axume negotiated the deal with Heinz Stussak for Sigma Films and Ernst Gossner for Vent Productions.