Eagle feathers television, movie nest

Projects include five int'l films, new productions for local market

MILAN — Eagle Pictures, the Milan- and Rome-based distribution and production outfit, unveiled a batch of film and TV productions at the Mifed film mart Tuesday.

Projects include five international films and new productions for the local market.

“Blackberry Wine,” based on a new novel by “Chocolat” author Joanne Harris (at Mifed to present the project with Eagle chairman Gian Paolo Sodano), will start shooting at the end of 2002.

Also newly acquired are the rights to John Case’s bestseller “Genesis Code,” which Eagle will produce with Bigel/Mailer Films, and “The Oracle,” inspired by Valerio Manfredi’s thriller set in modern Greece.

‘White Rose’ blooms

Eagle is also producing “The White Rose,” which will be directed by Joel Schumacher from a script by John Leekey. The $15 million film, set in Germany during the Nazi period, will start shooting at the end of next year.

The international films include “The Lazarus Child.” Months ago, the Italian outfit hired (for $2 million) Ron Bass to write and produce the family drama. Pic, which probably will be distributed internationally by Eagle ally Helkon, is in development.

For Mediaset and the Kirch Group joint venture E-vision, Eagle is producing English-lingo miniseries “Alex Race,” about motorbike racing, “Alex,” already in production, will probably will have a theatrical version, too.

Digital domicile

With pubcaster RAI, Eagle is developing three digital TV movies, set in the same villa in Naples in different times of the last century. The three dramas, in development, are “The Lemon House,” “Double Room 22” and “Beate and Her Son.”

Eagle said it will distribute in Italy “Birthday Girl,” with Nicole Kidman; “Novocaine,” with Steve Martin; and Sundance-honored “The Believer.”

Founded in 1986 by the Dammicco brothers and chaired by Sodano, Eagle has not showed much activity recently apart from the successful distribution of “Chocolat” and “Save the Last Dance.”

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