Film unit pacts with Gullane Filmes

Buena Vista Intl. has struck a pioneering deal with Gullane Filmes, one of Brazil’s most internationally aggressive production houses, to co-develop helmer Cao Hamburger’s “ICU.”

Hamburger’s second film, Berlin competition player “The Year My Parents Went on Vacation,” is Brazil’s submission for the foreign-language Academy Award.

The BVI-Gullane deal includes a first option for Disney to co-produce “ICU” via Miravista, Disney’s Latin American production label, and to take pan-Latin American rights to the film, Gullane CEO Fabiano Gullane said. The thriller turns on a nurse, young girl and old woman who all confront death in an intensive care unit.

Hollywood is now heavily involved in local filmmaking in Brazil, where studios can tap tax breaks to produce local films. “ICU,” however, reps an early case of a studio moving in on a project at its development phase to tie down the talent and extend a relationship with its helmer.

BVI took Latin American rights to “The Year My Parents Went on Vacation.” Rodrigo Saturnino, general manager of Colombia TriStar Buena Vista Films do Brasil, produced Hamburger’s first feature, “Castelo Ra-Tim Burn.”

Distrib City Lights Pictures will bow “The Year My Parents Went on Vacation” theatrically in the U.S. in early February.

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