‘Strange’ set for international seas

Cinemavault.com pacts for distrib deal

BERLIN — “Strange Culture,” a docu by American film essayist Lynn Hershman Leeson about the paranoid reaction of U.S. security authorities in the wake of 9/11, opened Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama sidebar Friday in front of a packed house — and with news the pic had landed an international distrib.

Pic producer Steven Beer said a deal for international sales was signed with Cinemavault.com in Berlin earlier on Friday.

“There’s been a lot of interest overseas,” Beer said, adding that the pic was made for “far less than $1 million.”

He said they were also in talks for distribution in the U.S.

Pic is story about Steve Kurtz, a biogenetics professor suspected of terrorism after his wife died of heart failure. Kurtz was working on an art exhibition and materials found in their house were thought to be terror-related.

Thomas Jay Ryan and Tilda Swinton play Kurtz and his wife, while Kurtz himself recounts his harrowing experiences with the FBI. He is awaiting trial on federal mail and wire fraud charges and if convicted faces 20 years in jail.

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