Co. sought partner during financial difficulties

MONTREAL — Distribber Alliance Atlantis has inked to handle Montreal-based distributor Film Tonic’s pics in Canada.

Alliance Atlantis Vivafilm, Alliance’s Quebec subsidiary, will release the pics in Quebec, and Odeon Films will handle the Tonic pics in the rest of Canada.

Film Tonic has been facing grave financial difficulties and spent much of the past year searching for a partner to either buy the company or help release its pics.

“We’re using the Alliance machine to put the films out there, but they’re still Tonic films,” said Joanne Senecal, one of the partners from Film Tonic. “We’ll still have total control. We were looking for a deal and Alliance came up with an interesting proposal and were willing to help us.”

Upcoming Film Tonic pics include Lars von Trier’s “Dogville”, which Tonic has for Quebec only. Alliance plans to launch it simultaneously with Lions Gate Films, which has rights to the pic in the rest of North America.

Other Tonic pics include Quebec helmer Louis Belanger’s much-anticipated “Gaz Bar Blues,” due this fall, and Montreal auteur Lea Pool’s William Hurt starrer “The Blue Butterfly,” expected in theaters next February.

Film Tonic also has on its slate Bertrand Bonello’s Cannes competition entry “Tiresia,” also set for a fall release in Canada.

Alliance Atlantis handle Film Tonic’s film catalogue.

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