The Venice Days section of the Venice Film Festival has added Julie Delpy’s Lolo to the competition lineup. Delpy wrote, directed and stars in the bittersweet comedy alongside French megastar Dany Boon, Asterix And Obelix: God Save Britannia’s Vincent Lacoste and Cesar-winning actress Karin Viard. Delpy plays Violette, a neurotic Parisienne who meets her soulmate on vacation in the South of France. Back home, though, they have to deal with Violette’s brainy and tyrannical son who has no intention of relinquishing control over the family and the emotions of his darling mother. Produced by Michael Gentile (Vinyan, The Time That Remains) it will world premiere in the sidebar on the Lido.
Chinese audiences are flocking to romance drama Diamond Lover, an original series from DMG Entertainment. Across the Middle Kingdom, 1.45B viewers have tuned in online since its July 20 debut. Diamond Lover is at the midway point of its run on two national broadcast networks and VOD sites including Youku.com, Tudou.com, iQIYI.com, Letv.com and qq.com. Viewership reached 400M views within the first three days. This bests DMG’s previous biggest hit, All Quiet In Peking, which earned a cumulative 400M viewers. Korean superstar Rain stars in Diamond Lover as a cold, overbearing, manipulative business executive; Tang Yan as a disfigured young woman who will undergo a metamorphosis; Luo Jin as an awkward obstetrician; and Di Li Re Ba as a glamorous movie star. The characters are placed under intense pressure that will either transform them into diamonds or crush them. DMG is in talks with various regional broadcasters to syndicate the show across Asia when it finishes its initial run in mid-August. DMG TV’s upcoming original scripted titles include Lonely Battle and Little Woman.
Viacom-owned Channel 5 has greenlighted a British version of Spike’s U.S. entertainment format Lip Sync Battle. This is the UK broadcaster’s most ambitious primetime entertainment commission since Viacom acquired it. The eight-part series will be produced for Channel 5 by Whizz Kid Entertainment. An early 2016 airdate is expected. Hosted by LL Cool J, the Spike original series features celebrities going head-to-head as they lip-sync the song of their choice. It’s the most-watched original series in the network’s history, averaging nearly 3M viewers.
HBO Asia has released the first photos of Halfworlds, an eight-episode dark thriller series premiering on HBO networks at the end of this year. Starring an ensemble cast of leading Asian actors and directed by Indonesian filmmaker Joko Anwar, the series reveals a hidden universe in the alleys and backstreets of Jakarta, where an underground society of demons known as the Demits have lived among us for centuries. But this delicate balance is disrupted as the series unfolds. The cast includes Salvita Decorte, Reza Rahadian, Aimee Saras, Adinia Wirasti, Hannah Al-Rashid, Tara Basro, Alex Abbad, Ario Bayu, Verdi Solaiman, Nathan Hartono and Bront Palarae.
News Corp’s HarperCollins Publishers and joint venture partner Ediouro Group have formed HarperCollins Brasil. The imprint is a tie-up of the existing operations of Thomas Nelson Brasil and Harlequin Brasil with Ediouro’s commercial trade publishing titles and personnel. HarperCollins Brasil will publish about 350 titles per year from HarperCollins trade, children’s, Christian and romance imprints around the world, as well as a focused list of Brazilian authors. The new structure aligns Brazil with the HarperCollins strategy to build on existing infrastructures and relationships to grow its authors’ international presence and publish outside of the English language, as has been done in Germany, Poland, Nordic, Holland, Japan and Spain.