Latest International News

Peter Kujawski Named Managing Director Of Universal Pictures Int’l Productions

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Peter Kujawski is moving from EVP Worldwide Acquisitions at Universal Pictures to a newly created position. He'll become Managing Director of Universal Pictures International Productions, the division that expands the studio's overseas presence through local production, financing partnerships, acquisitions in emerging markets and the acquisition of English-language films for the studio on a worldwide basis. Kujawski will continue to report to Universal Pictures Chairman… Read

‘Mommy’ To Rep Canada In Foreign-Lingo Oscar Race; Belgium Picks ‘Two Days, One Night’

Director Xavier Dolan, Jury Prize award winner for his film "Mommy", poses during a photocall at the closing ceremony of the 67th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes

Canadian wunderkind director Xavier Dolan scored the Jury Prize in his first time in the main Cannes Competition earlier this year with Mommy. The film has now been selected to represent Canada in the Foreign Language Oscar race. While the last Canadian film to win an Oscar was 2003's The Barbarian Invasions, the country has had a strong showing with four nominees since 2006. Mommy is 25-year-old Dolan's fifth film as director and his second to rep Canada after his 2009… Read

Annabelle Wallis Joins Armie Hammer In Psychological Thriller ‘Mine’

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EXCLUSIVE: British actress Annabelle Wallis has boarded psychological thriller Mine from writer-directors Fabio Guaglione and Fabio Resinaro, the team behind award-winning short Afterville. Armie Hammer stars as Mike, a soldier who finds himself stranded in the desert after a failed assassination mission. There, he has to survive many dangers while also battling the psychological toll of his situation. Wallis will play Jenny, the girlfriend with whom Mike has a… Read

Scotland Votes To Remain In The UK: Political Changes Loom, Effect On Film & TV Biz Uncertain

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There are 31 of 32 districts reporting on the Scottish vote for independence. A phenomenal 86% voter turnout is estimated, and the result saw 1.6M voters in favor of separating from the UK — curiously Glasgow was pro, Edinburgh was con. But the vote is split at 45% Yes and 55% No, a far closer result than was expected when the referendum was initially floated. In the run-up to the vote, I ran down the potential effects of a Yes. While the fate of the BBC, indie financing… Read

James Schamus On Screenwriting: “124 Pages Of Begging For Money & Attention”

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When James Schamus is on a bill, he can generally be trusted to deliver an intellectual reality check to the motion picture business. That's just what he did tonight in London as the first guest of BAFTA's 2014 Screenwriters' Lectures series. Introduced as "renowned autodidact and multihyphenate," the former Focus Features boss and the author of dozens of screenplays in 25 years of making movies used his 60 minutes at the lectern to reject the use of the word "art" as… Read

Robert Downey Jr. & Judi Dench Among BAFTA LA Britannia Awards Honorees

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Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Emma Watson, Mike Leigh and Judi Dench will be honored at the 2014 BAFTA Los Angeles Jaguar Brittania Awards, BAFTA LA announced today. The awards honor individuals who have dedicated their careers to advancing the art forms of the moving image in the U.S., UK and beyond. British actor and comedian Rob Brydon is returning to host the awards show set for October 30 at the Beverly Hilton. It will be broadcast on BBC America on Sunday… Read

Scottish Independence Vote: If The Ayes Have It, What Happens For Film & TV Biz?

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Beginning at 7 AM local time Thursday, Scots will head to the polls to decide the fate of a nation that has been part of the UK for 307 years. Politics aside, what would a yes vote on the independence referendum mean for the film and TV business? The London-based centralized government and related organizations oversee tax incentives which have attracted international productions in droves of late (though mostly to England), and London is also home base for national… Read

Imperative Entertainment, Bastei Lubbe AG Form Joint Media Venture

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Imperative Entertainment, the multi-platform media shingle formed in March by Heroes' Tim Kring, Zak Kadison and Bradley Thomas, has pacted with Germany-based publishing company Bastei Lubbe AG on a new joint venture. Both companies will have a 50% stake in Bastei LLC, which will focus on developing new IP for the film, TV and gaming markets. Their slate launches with a quartet of projects: Family drama Capital Gains, set in the high-stakes world of private equity and… Read

Sony Slashes Profit Estimate As Mobile Phone Sales Fail To Connect

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U.S. shares are down 6.1% in mid-day trading after Sony took a $1.67B charge for its mobile communications unit. Its mid-range mobile phones struggled to keep up with rival models from Apple and Samsung. As a result, the company says today it will cut back on those models and concentrate on its higher-end ones in “certain geographical areas.” With the writedown, Sony says that it expects the fiscal year that ends in March to record a $371.8M operating loss vs  the $1.3B… Read

ITV Closes Curtain On ‘Rising Star'; UK Version Will Not Go Forward

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In a fairly shocking development, the UK's ITV has elected not to proceed with its version of interactive singing competition Rising Star. The network won the rights to the format in November with plans to make the local take a a co-production of ITV Studios and Keshet International UK. Other versions have launched thus far in Brazil, Portugal, the U.S. and Germany. Although Brazil re-upped for a second season and Portugal saw strong ratings, the ABC series that aired… Read

Global Showbiz Briefs: Rome Film Festival Reveals First 5 English-Language Titles; Soda Pictures Bringing ‘Phoenix’ To UK; More

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The Rome Film Festival announced Tuesday the first five English-language pics for its upcoming ninth edition. The Cinema Today section will present the European premiere of Oren Moverman's Time Out Of Mind, starring Richard Gere and Jena Malone. The Gala section will screen the international bows of Stephen Daldry's Trash, starring Rooney Mara and Martin Sheen, and Christian Ditter's Love, Rosie, starring Lily Collins and Sam Claflin. That section also will show the Euro… Read

‘WIGS’ Creators Launch Indigenous Media With WPP, ITV Backing

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Indigenous Media, a digital-video company led by film and TV vets Jon Avnet, Rodrigo Garcia and Jake Avnet, has launched with investments by ITV and WPP. Jon Miller, former head of AOL and News Corp.'s digital media unit, is non-executive chairman. Producer/director/writers Avnet (Fried Green Tomatoes, Justified, Righteous Kill) and Garcia (In Treatment, Carnivale, Six Feet Under) and Avnet's tech-savvy son, Jake Avnet, are the creators behind WIGS, the female-centric… Read

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