Feature is first Filipino film to play at Cannes

HONG KONG — Foreign sales company Fortissimo Films has picked up international rights to Brillante Mendoza’s “Serbis” (Service), the first Filipino pic in 24 years to be selected to play at Cannes.

Pic is set in and around a run-down movie theater and involves multiple, criss-crossing stories about a matriarchal Filipino family.

It was produced by Ferdinand Lapuz of Mendoza’s Centerstage Prods. and executive produced by Didier Costet of Gaul’s Swift Prods. Swift has distribution rights in France.        

Mendoza’s first film, “The Masseur,” shared a Golden Leopard at the 2005 Locarno fest. The helmer followed up last year with “Slingshot,” which was presented in Berlin, and “Foster Child,” which appeared in Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight.

The pickup is Hong Kong- and Amsterdam-based Fortissimo’s third movie in Cannes’ Official Selection.

Company is also repping Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s “Tokyo Sonata” in Un Certain Regard and Wong Kar-wai’s “Ashes of Time Redux,” which is headed for a special screening.

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