Studio gets rights to 'Henderson'

NEW YORK — Continuing a buying streak that unexpectedly kicked up heading into the Sundance Film Festival, Miramax has acquired North American, Latin American and German distribution rights to helmer Stephen Frears’ latest finished feature, “Mrs. Henderson Presents.”

Pic stars Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins in the story of an eccentric, wealthy widow who buys a London theater on the eve of WWII. She then turns her investment into the Windmill, a legendary home for burlesque revues.

Martin Sherman penned the screenplay. Pic was produced through Pathe Pictures and BBC Films, along with Heyman-Hoskins Prods.

Norma Heyman produced, and Hoskins and David Aukin served as exec producers.

Miramax has previously rolled out Frears projects “The Grifters,” “The Snapper” and “Dirty Pretty Things.”

Though in talks with corporate parent the Walt Disney Co. over the future of their contracts, Miramax co-heads Bob and Harvey Weinstein have been particularly active of late on the acquisitions front. The duo’s recent pickups include the Oz-set horror feature “Wolf Creek” and Pierce Brosnan starrer “The Matador.” Both films screened at the recent Sundance fest.

Miramax also recently sealed a pact with Pathe to acquire the toon feature “Sprung! The Magic Roundabout.”

The minimajor has further been selling off some of its library to pump profits. Company sealed a deal this week to send “Prozac Nation,” the movie adaptation of the controversial bestseller, to John Malone’s Starz! pay TV network.

Pathe’s Francois Ivernel said Miramax had been one of several companies circling Frears’ latest pic.

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