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‘VOICES’ UNVEILED AFTER STRANGE SONY SAGA

When Sony unveils “Voices” Sept. 15 at the Toronto Film Festival, Sony-watchers will be looking on with fascination to see how the film resonates within its murky corporate structure.

“Voices,” produced by Dina De Luca and Cary Brokaw, was the first picture to be funded not by Columbia or TriStar but by the Sony Classical Music division headed by Peter Gelb. The movie, directed by Malcolm Clarke, tells the true story of a British composer who is at odds with his alter ego, a music critic.

De Luca first developed the project at Paramount under Sid Ganis, who later moved to Sony. So did the project, which was set up under the aegis of the Classical division. Gelb’s entity is eager to distribute the Elliot Goldenthal soundtrack, to be sure, but it has no capability in film distribution. Other divisions of Sony have been circling the film warily. As of now, however, no one has stepped forward to distribute the project, which stars Jeremy Northam, last seen as the suave techno-villain in Columbia’s “The Net.”

“This will not go down in history as a great example of vertical integration,” says one Sony exec. “Everyone’s nervous about an orphan picture that suddenly popped up from an unexpected spot in the corporate structure.”

Critics at Toronto should take an interest, however. How many fest pics come along where the critic onscreen is the heavy?

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