In an extremely active Cannes visit, Buena Vista Intl. has sold to Quadra all non-English-speaking country rights to “The Deedles,” one of Walt Disney Pictures’ major summer 1998 releases, the company told Variety Thursday.
Pic, directed by Steve Boyum, will star Dennis Hopper and two as-yet uncast teenagers. Described as “Bill and Ted Go to Yellowstone,” the project is about two surfer kids from Hawaii sent to boot camp in the mountains of Yellowstone National Park. Hopper plays the camp’s right-wing militaristic leader.
Pic is the helming debut of Boyum, a former world-class surfer. Jim Herzfeld scripted.
Disney is financing the $24 million project. BVI will retain rights in all English-speaking territories. The Mouse will handle U.S. distribution. Pic starts lensing in August in Utah.
“This is a major Disney summer 1998 picture,” said Jere Hausfater, senior VP of business affairs and acquisitions. “We’re thrilled to be in business with Quadra.”
“The Deedles” will be BVI’s first deal with Quadra, which was started a year ago under CEO Christian Halsey Solomon as a foreign distrib outfit handling major studio pics. Prexy of distribution Chris Bialek and chief financial officer Lee Solomon helped broker the deal with BVI.
The pact is another in a host of deals BVI has set up this year in Cannes, led by Hausfater and VP of acquisitions Anne Sterling. The company, which operates with a $200 million fund to pick up foreign rights to big-ticket items, already has deals with Sony Pictures Entertainment on Paul Verhoeven’s “Starship Troopers” and Wolfgang Petersen’s “Air Force One.”
The Mouse outfit also announced its acquisition of rights in Germany and Austria to Wim Wenders’ “The End of Violence,” which is in the official selection.
With Miramax Films, BVI picked up another competition pic, Michael Winterbottom’s “Welcome to Sarajevo,” for France, Spain, Germany, Australia and New Zealand.
BVI also acquired, “Character,” which is in Intl. Critics Week here, for Benelux.
Earlier this week, the company unveiled other deals for foreign rights on Disney product:
Martin Scorsese’s “Kundun” was sold to UGC for all international except the U.K. Scorsese is expected in Cannes this week to promote the pic with a 10-minute trailer.
“Firelight,” written and directed by Bill Nicholson (“Shadowlands”) under the Hollywood Pictures label, is being sold by Guy East’s Intermedia. Pic’s domestic distribution will either be through Disney or Miramax.
BVI also snagged theatrical and video rights in Scandinavia and Benelux for “The Fifth Element.”
And the company lifted all international rights to John Woo’s John Travolta-Nicolas Cage starrer “Face Off.”