‘Asterix’ to world premiere in Paris

Release coincides with Rendez-Vous

MADRID — Frederic Forestier and Thomas Langmann’s “Asterix at the Olympic Games,” one of the most expensive European films ever made, will world preem Jan. 13 in Paris.

Budgeted at Euros 78 million ($114.6 million), the family adventure comedy film, the third in the live action franchise, will unspool in the presence of key cast, such as Clovis Cornillac (“A Very Long Engagement”), who takes over from Christian Clavier as Asterix, Gerard Depardieu, who reprises his role as Obelix, Alain Delon as Julius Caesar, Benoit Poelvoorde as Brutus, and Spain’s Santiago Segura as Doctormabuse.

World preem has been arranged on a Sunday to ease the attendance of multiple sports personalities, such as Michael Schumacher and Zinedine Zidane, who have speaking parts, cameos or walk-on roles in the film.

Pic is produced by Jerome Seydoux and Langmann for Paris-based indie La Petite Reine and Pathe, in co-production with broadcaster TF1, Germany’s Constantin Film, Spain’s Tripictures and Sorolla Films.

“Asterix” has been sold by Pathe to distributors such as Warner Bros. for Italy, Sandrew Metronome for Scandinavia and Central Partnership for Russia.

“Asterix’s” world preem coincides with the 2008 Rendez-Vous with French Cinema.

Organized by French export org Unifrance, the French films screenings and mart runs Jan.10-14 in Paris.

One of its highlights may be Guillaume Ivenel and Arthur Qwak’s Gallic CGI toon pic “Dragon Hunters,” which world preems as a gala screening at the Rendez-Vous.

Produced by Philippe Delarue’s Futurikon in France, Germany’s Trixter Film and Luxembourg’s Lux Animation, the $23.5 million animated feature is a spin-off from the successful TV toon series of the same name, which airs on Gallic pubcaster France 3. A second season is in production.

Series turns on two cack-handed friends, Gwizdo and Lian-Chu, who are persuaded to hunt monstrous mutant creatures.

International sales are handled by Futurikon, which has mopped up pre-sales with Russia (Global Motion Pics), Mexico (Gussi), Brazil (Conquest), India (Video Movie Intl.) and China (Hollywood Classics Ent.)

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