Director eyes French film

Ron Howard may unlock an American version of “Cache” for Universal.

Brian Grazer will produce the remake for Imagine, which acquired the rights from Plum Pictures, with Howard looking to direct.

Plum’s Celine Rattray will exec produce, along with Randy Simon, and Plum’s Galt Niederhoffer and Daniela Taplin Lundberg will co-produce.

Michael Haneke wrote and helmed the French original, which starred Daniel Auteuil and Juliette Binoche as a couple who find increasingly violent videos on their porch. Haneke won the director prize at Cannes for the film in 2005.

Sony Classics released it Stateside late that year; pic, also called “Hidden,” went on to earn $3.6 million at the domestic box office. Universal version, to be set in the U.S., is expected to amp up the suspense and consequences.

Howard has several other potential projects in the offing. Besides “Frost/Nixon,” the bigscreen adaptation of the play, there’s “The Da Vinci Code” follow-up “Angels & Demons” and “The Look of Real,” an examination of the garment industry that could star his daughter, Bryce Dallas Howard.

Gotham-based Plum optioned the rights to the “Cache” story in December 2005 as the pic was about to make its Stateside bow (Daily Variety, Dec. 13, 2005). Plum also produced two recent Sundance acquisitions, “Grace Is Gone,” which the Weinstein Co. bought for $4 million, and “Dedication,” sold to TWC and First Look for $4 million.

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