This story was updated at 2:49 p.m.
Pathe Pictures Intl. is selling worldwide rights to helmer Julian Schnabel’s “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” a French-language adaptation of French Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby’s bestseller about his life after he was struck down by a rare paralytic condition.
Age 43, Bauby suffered a stroke and, after lapsing into a coma, awoke 20 days later to find himself the victim of locked-in syndrome — mentally alert but a prisoner inside his body. His only means of communication was by blinking his left eye. Despite this, Bauby managed to painstakingly write his memoirs letter by letter.
The film, which started shooting in Gaul in September, stars Mathieu Amalric (“Munich”) Emmanuelle Seigner (“Frantic,”) Marie-Josée Croze (“The Barbarian Invasions,”) Anne Consigny (“36 Quai des Orfèvres”,) Emma de Caunes (“The Science of Sleep” and Max Von Sydow (“Minority Report”.)
The pic is produced by Kathleen Kennedy (“E.T.”) and Jon Kilik (“Babel”.)
“We are absolutely delighted to be involved in this project and are convinced it will resonate with audiences across the globe as did the best-selling book,” commented Mike Runagall, Head of Pathé Pictures International.
“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” is a Pathe Renn Prod. Film in co-production with France 3 Cinema and in association with Canal Plus.