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AFM Notes

Headliner Prods. has acquired U.S. distribution rights to “La Madre Muerta” (The Dead Mother), a thriller from Spanish director Juanma Bajo Ulloa. Sogepaq repped the Spanish pic at AFM. The film has won prizes at the Stockholm, Puerto Rico and Montreal film festivals. Star Ana Alvarez was named best actress in Stockholm. Headliner will release the film domestically this fall.

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Pic producer/director Antonio Jalili, president of the World Film Institute, announced formation of the World Film Awards, to be held in November in Washington, D.C. The goal of the event is to advance awareness of multinational filmmaking. The award is named the Olympia.

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MCEG Sterling Entertainment has picked up all foreign rights to “The Donor,” directed by Andrew Stevens and starring Sasha Mitchell. Production will begin mid-April. Domestic rights are held by Prism Pictures. Ashok Amritraj will produce through his Amritraj Entertainment. The action/mystery focuses on the black-market organ donor trade.

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Miklen Entertainment is developing a slate of five pix in the action/adventure/erotic thriller genres. Three will be on offer at Mifed: “Leather and Lace,” about a homeless veteran innocently caught up in an assassination plot; “Naked Games,” a thriller; and “Lap Dancing,” a drama that intermixes interviews with real strippers. Martial arts pic “Hard as Nails” is expected to be available for licensing at Cannes in May.

Going into production after Cannes will be “Married People, Single Sex II,” a sequel to the company’s successful first film, which has been sold at AFM to Star Intl. for Latin America as well as Gelsand Ltd. of Israel, Media Vision of Turkey, Mongkol Cinema of Tahiland, Mendel of Venezuela, Continental of India, Well Go Communications of Taiwan and Marrex of Malaysia.

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Third Coast Entertainment is bringing its feature film “The House on Todville Road” to AFM. The company recently announced that, in association with Texas Capital Securities, it has filed for three $ 5 million publicly registered limited partnerships. The first offering closes in June. The $ 15 million, expected to be raised over the next two years, will provide Third Coast with the capital for production and acquisition of films. Third Coast prez Robert Burge plans three pix including “Keepers of the Tomb,” in which a young sideshow barker discovers he is the reincarnation of his own 2,000-year-old mummy.

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“We’ve already surpassed our goal of $ 2 million in sales for the entire American Film Market,” said American First Run Pictures’ Gregory Stuart, exec in charge of worldwide distribution. The company has sold TV series “Tarzan” and “Acapulco H.E.A.T.” to India. “Tarzan” also has sold to Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Jordan, Egypt, Cyprus and the United Arab Emirates, and “Acapulco” as a two-hour movie for video in South Africa.

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Rysher Entertainment has set March 21 as the start date for “Perfect Alibi,” starring Teri Garr and Hector Elizondo. Kevin Meyer scripted and directs the suspense thriller about a family whose lives are turned upside down when a new nanny comes into their home.

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Cindy Cowan has been appointed VP of acquisitions for Platinic Films. She will be responsible for acquiring finished features and TV shows, seeking product in the $ 3 million-$ 8 million range. Platinic is an indie distrib of theatrical pix as well as worldwide sales rep of indie films.

Trident Releasing has acquired foreign rights to director Lawrence D. Foldes’satire “Social Suicide.” The Star Entertainment production, starring Shannon Sturges, Bobbie Bresee and Trini Lopez, was produced by Victoria Paige Meyerink. Foldes co-wrote the script with Elisa J. Charouhas. Pic preemed at Edinburgh Film Festival. Foldes and Meyerink of Star negotiated the deal with Trident’s Jean Ovrum and Victoria Plummer.

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Filmayer Video of Spain, the exclusive licensee of Hanna-Barbera product in Spain, was awarded the first marketing excellence award for international homevid marketing of the H-B line at a seminar at the start of AFM. The award, known as the Freddie (after H-B character Fred Flintstone), was presented to Angel Blasco, general director of Filmayer, by Robert Lazarus, senior VP/general manager of Turner Pictures Worldwide. Filmayer was commended for its work in what Lazarus described as one of the most difficult homevid markets, given the high piracy rate and the saturated market through previous distributors.

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