Paramount plans French productions

Studio will distribute three to five films annually

PARIS — In a new strategy, Paramount will locally co-produce and distribute three to five French films a year.

Par France topper Camille Trumer, former head of UIP in Gaul, outlined the initiative in an interview for Le Figaro.

French cinema’s growing market share — which reached 45% last year — and the soaring cost of U.S. production were the main reasons behind the move.

“To keep on developing, the U.S. industry must look to international, where costs aren’t rising so fast, and concentrate on dynamic countries like France,” Trumer said.

Warner Bros. has been co-producing French fare for the past 10 years and backed Gallic cinema’s biggest box office hit last year, “Les Bronzes 3: amis pour la vie.”

Fox is about to release its first French film, the Catherine Deneuve starrer “Apres lui,” which bows May 23 following its Cannes preem in Directors’ Fortnight.

Trumer declined to say which projects, if any, the company had already boarded.

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