First joint project will be 'Attack the Block'

Brit shingle Big Talk has inked a co-financing and co-production pact with U.K. distrib and producer Optimum Releasing.

It’s the latest sign of Optimum’s desire to ramp up production and become a major player in the British film industry.

The deal will also include pubcaster Channel 4’s production arm Film4, with whom Big Talk has had a partial first-look deal for the past two years.

The first pic to come out of the deal will be Joe Cornish’s “Attack the Block,” about a gang of South London teenagers defending their housing project home against an alien attack.

Cornish, who co-wrote Steven Spielberg’s upcoming “The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn,” will make his directorial debut on the pic. Lensing is set to begin early next year.

Nira Park, James Wilson, Edgar Wright, Matthew Justice and Tessa Ross receive producer credits while Clarke and Jenny Borgars are exec producers.

StudioCanal will handle international sales, as well as on all forthcoming Big Talk-Optimum productions, while the films will be distributed directly through its divisions — Optimum in the U.K., StudioCanal in France and Kinowelt in Germany. Film4 will take customary U.K. TV and associated rights.

As part of the overall deal, Optimum will contribute to Big Talk’s overhead and development budget as well as committing to co-financing and co-producing projects for two years.

Big Talk has tapped Working Title’s Rachael Prior as its new head of development. Prior will work alongside existing development exec Tamzin Cary.

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