A mix of pics showing footage or unspooling in their entirety for the first time at AFM
DEATH AT A FUNERAL: Comedy, about a dysfunctional British family gathered to mourn the passing of their patriarch, toplines Matthew Macfadyen, Peter Dinklage, Ewen Bremner and Rupert Graves.Pic shot in and around London this summer under the helm of Frank Oz (“Dirty Rotten Scoundrels”). Bows Stateside through MGM. A three-minute promo reel will be shown. (Sales: Kimmel Intl.) DEATH DEFYING ACTS: Helmed by Aussie Gillian Armstrong, pic follows illusionist Houdini on tour in Britain, where he encounters a seductive psychic imposter. Recently wrapped romantic thriller starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Guy Pearce will show first footage to buyers during AFM. (Sales: Myriad Pictures) D-WAR: South Korean actioner featuring dragons smashing up downtown Los Angeles. Pic, helmed by Hyung-rae Shim, represents Korea’s most expensive ($70 million) and first large-scale attempt at English-language filmmaking, with a cast that includes Jason Behr and Robert Forster. Film boasts a full hour of CGI work, created entirely in Korea. First unveiling of pic will have 90% of the f/x work complete. (Sales: Showbox) EXTE: Japanese horror from Sion Sono, the indie auteur who has won B.O. success and international acclaim with recent pics “Noriko’s Dinner Table” and “Strange Circus.” Ren Ohsugi (“Zebraman”) stars as a detective investigating a bizarre case of hair extensions that bring suffering and death to their wearers. Chiaki Kuriyama (“Kill Bill”) plays an apprentice stylist he falls for — with tragic consequences. (Sales: Toei) KM. 31: First Mexican horror film in a decade is a co-production with Mexico’s Lemon Films and Spanish horror masters Filmax. Pic is written and directed by newcomer Rigoberto Castaneda, who is signed on to do Capitol Films’ “Blackout” next. Pic, which spent a long time in post and is now headed for an early 2007 Mexican bow, will screen for buyers at AFM. (Sales: Filmax) MISS POTTER: Chris Noonan’s first movie since “Babe,” with Renee Zellweger playing children’s author Beatrix Potter in the sort of tear-jerking feminist period romance that, if done well, could have strong appeal both to wide upscale auds and Oscar voters. Pic will have its premiere screening in unfinished form during AFM, prior to its U.S. release (Dec. 29) via the Weinstein Co. (Sales: Summit Entertainment) STORM WARNING: Company behind “Wolf Creek” cranks up the terror quotient in this tale of a couple on a boating trip driven by bad weather into an isolated swamp. John Brumpton, Nadia Fares and Robert Taylor topline. Pic marks the return to Oz of Melbourne-hatched helmer Jamie Blanks, who headed to Hollywood straight from film school. His debut frightener, “Urban Legend” (1998), grossed $38 million Stateside. (Sales: Darclight) – Compiled by Adam Dawtrey, Michaela Boland, Michael O’Boyle, Darcy Paquet, Mark Schilling and Sharon Swart
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