Belgian stop-motion pic sold to North America

BIARRITZ, France — New York-based distrib company Zeitgeist Films has nabbed North American rights to Belgium stop-motion toon “A Town Called Panic,” helmed by Stephane Aubier and Vincent Patar.

“Panic” follows the adventures of plastic and resin-based figurines of a cowboy, an Indian and a horse.

Pic is based on the hit TV series, which was originally broadcast on Gallic paybox Canal Plus, and was later dubbed for Brit auds by “Wallace and Gromit” producer Aardman and aired on Nicktoons in the U.S.

“Panic” preemed at Cannes in the Official Selection and was picked up in key territories including U.K. (Optimum Releasing) and Italy (Nomad), as well as in Australia (Madman), Korea (Jin Jin Pictures) and the Middle East (Media International Pictures (Middle East).

Philippe Bober, prexy of production and sales house Coproduction Office, which reps “Panic,” said the company is in negotiation with German and Japanese buyers.

The Coproduction Office has three films in competition at Venice Film Festival. Austrian helmer Jessica Hausner’s “Lourdes,” Japanese helmer Shinya Tsukamoto’s “Tetsuo, the Bulletman,” and Iranian visual artist Shirin Neshat’s feature directorial debut, “Women Without Men.”

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