Helmer's latest on distrib lookout

With “Megalopolis” dead for now, Francis Ford Coppola is deep in post-production on “Youth Without Youth,” the first film from the director in 10 years.

Pic, which stars Bruno Ganz (“Downfall”) and Tim Roth, is expected to be released next year. The question is: By whom?

Abroad, the pic will be released in certain territories by Pathe Intl. But a U.S. distributor has not yet been determined.

Considering the pic’s modest budget and its artistic scope (Coppola has called it an “intellectual ‘Twilight Zone'”), “Youth Without Youth,” which was shot in Romania, would seem a likely candidate for a studio specialty arm.

Coppola wrote and financed the film himself using funds from his winery business, which is expanding. In March, Coppola bought a second — not yet named — winery in Sonoma.

Pic is based on a novel by the Romanian philosopher Mircea Eliade in which an elderly man is hit by lightning and suddenly returns to his youth, blessed with the ability to comprehend almost anything. The story begins in 1938 and continues through the World War II, roaming from Bucharest to Switzerland to India to Malta.

While auds wait for the next work from Francis, another Coppola film is about to unspool: Sofia Coppola‘s “Marie Antoinette” hits theaters in October.

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