The Japan External Trade Organization, the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and the Consulate General of Japan are set to honor the Tom Cruise sci-fi action flick Edge Of Tomorrow with a pair of prizes at the second annual Japan Cool Content Contribution Awards Ceremony. On September 13 at the official residence of the Consul General of Japan in LA, Cruise will receive the J3C Acting Award and EOT helmer Doug Liman will be given the J3C Director Award. Legendary Pictures is receiving the J3C Producer Award for Godzilla. The awards will be held in conjunction with the LA EigaFest (Japan Film Festival), which is presented by the Japan Film Society from September 12-14 at the Egyptian Theatre. EOT was based on the Japanese sci-fi novel All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. Although it was well-received by critics, it fared far better overseas than domestically with $264M international and $99.7M in North America. It made about $15M in Japan which makes it the No. 5 Hollywood title of 2014. Cruise’s previous cultural ties to Japan extend back to 2003’s The Last Samurai. “Mr Cruise is a global film icon whose film roles have brought Japanese content and culture to a worldwide audience,” says JETRO President Sachiko Yoshimura. Part of the Japanese government’s “Cool Japan” initiative, the awards support the needs of co-production or development of Japanese content in Hollywood.
Shooting has started on BBC Two’s Life In Squares, a three-part drama about the Bloomsbury Group — a collection of friends and lovers that included Virginia Woolf, John Maynard Keynes, EM Forster and Lytton Strachey. Written by BAFTA winner Amanda Coe (Room At The Top) and produced by Ecosse Films in association with Tiger Aspect, Life In Squares dramatizes the relationship between sisters Woolf and Vanessa Bell. It also delves into Bell’s sexually complicated alliance with gay artist Duncan Grant as they, and their group of like-minded friends, navigate their way through love, sex and artistic life in the first half of the 20th century. Phoebe Fox (A Poet In New York), Lydia Leonard (Wolf Hall), James Norton (Happy Valley), Sam Hoare (An Adventure In Space And Time), Ben Lloyd-Hughes (Divergent), Edmund Kingsley (The Borgias), and Ed Birch (Sherlock) star. The cast also includes Eve Best, Catherine McCormack, Rupert Penry-Jones, Jack Davenport, Elliot Cowan and Andrew Havill. The series kicks off in 1901 with the death of Queen Victoria and tells the story of the young friends as they aspire to build a world of their own design according to their own distinctive lifestyle in which they “lived in squares, painted in circles and loved in triangles.” The story of their early years is told alongside the later lives of Bell and Woolf. Rhonda Smith (Fresh Meat, Mistresses) is producer with Lucy Bedford, Coe, Douglas Rae and Lucy Richer executive producing.
Entertainment One’s boutique sales arm Séville International has acquired rights Kiwi feature The Dark Horse. Séville is handling international outside Australia/New Zealand and will launch sales in Toronto. From writer-director James Napier Robertson, the drama follows a man who searches for the courage to lead, despite his own adversities — finding purpose and hope in passing on his gift to the children in his community. Cliff Curtis (Whale Rider), James Rolleston (Boy), Kirk Torrance and newcomer Wayne Hapi star. Tom Hern produced for Four Knights Film. The Dark Horse recently opened the New Zealand International Film Festival and has been in release locally for two weeks grossing over $1M.
RealD has inked a deal to bring its 3D technology to the Kazakhstan market for the first time. The company has pacted with cinema circuit Chaplin Cinemas to install 3D in seven cinema screens — two in Chaplin Mango Cinema and seven in the new flagship multiplex Chaplin Mega Park (five screens), with the first of the screens expected to open this month. “Eastern Europe continues to be a growth market, with 3D total box office revenue rising from $417 million in 2012 to $532 million in 2013,”said Robert Mayson, Managing Director of RealD Europe. “Kazakhstan has the potential to contribute to these figures and RealD is committed to meeting this demand for quality 3D cinema in the region for years ahead.”