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Miramax gets rights to pic pair

NEW YORK — Miramax has picked up U.S. and other territorial rights to Mike Barker’s feature debut “The James Gang” and writer-director Roberto Benabib’s “Little City.”

Miramax acquired “Gang,” which is in post-production in the U.K., on the strength of a promo reel that Paragon Entertainment Corp. screened at the recent American Film Market. In addition to all U.S. media rights, Miramax acquired all media rights in the U.K., Australia, New Zealand and South Africa for “Gang,” which is a HandMade Films/BBC Films presentation of a Revolution Films production.

Child support

Written by Stuart Hepburn, the pic is a comedy about an abandoned wife who reluctantly turns to crime as a means of supporting her four children. It stars John Hannah, Helen McCrory, Jason Flemyng and Toni Collette. It was produced by Andrew Eaton (“Jude”). Gareth Jones and David Thompson are exec producers.

“We are thrilled to be working with a director Mike Barker, one of Britain’s brightest new talents,” Miramax co-chairman Harvey Weinstein said.

Big deal for “Little City”

Also, Miramax nabbed North American, U.K., Australian, New Zealand and Scandinavian distribution rights to “Little City” from Initial Entertainment Group.

A romantic comedy, “Little City” stars Jon Bon Jovi, Josh Charles, Joanna Going, Penelope Ann Miller, Annabella Sciorra and JoBeth Williams. The film was produced by Bandeira Entertainment’s Beau Flynn and Stefan Simchowitz along with Ron Wechsler and Jeff Davidson.

The deal for “Gang” was negotiated on behalf of Miramax by executive vice president of acquisitions and co-productions Trea Hoving, senior veepee Scott Greenstein and director of production Iain York. On behalf of Paragon, the deal was negotiated by Paragon chairman and CEO Jon Slan.

Miramax’s Greenstein negotiated the “Little City” deal along with acquisitions and co-production veepees Amy Israel and Jason Blum, veepee of business affairs J.M. Hughes and counsel Steven Hutensky.

The deal was negotiated on behalf of “Little City’s” filmmakers by Initial Entertainment’s Graham King and Colin Cotter, Mickey Mayerson of Loeb & Loeb and Sheri Jeffrey of Kaye Scholer.

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