Filmax joins in 3-D ‘Magic’

Digital 3-D builds interest in Europe

Digital 3-D continues to rev up in Europe as interest in acquiring local “stereo” pics looks to be building to a feeding frenzy.

A day after France’s StudioCanal announced its acquisition of distribution/sales rights on Ben Stassen’s 3-D “Around the World in 50 Years,” another Euro mini-major, Spain’s Filmax Entertainment, has put its distribution weight behind digital 3-D, taking international rights to Jordi Llompart’s “Magic Journey to Africa.”

Deal on the children’s adventure pic was closed Wednesday in Barcelona.

“Magic Journey,” a live-action 3-D movie mixed with CG images, is in post-production. Most of the 3-D movies in the current wave have been animated; only a handful of live-action digital 3-D pics have been seen in theaters.

Budgeted at E10 million ($13.3 million), “Magic Journey” was made from inception as a film for 3-D theaters and Imax screens, Llompart said.

It stars Eva Gerretsen as a 10-year-old girl who embarks on a magical journey to Africa. Llompart shot the picture in super 35, and it was converted to 3-D in post-production by Apuntolapopso of Barcelona.

Pic was written and produced by Llompart via his Barcelona-based Orbita Max, in co-production with Catalan pubcaster TV3 and Apuntolapopso, which also did the CG work.

Llompart stepped up into digital 3-D after having helmed largescreen documentary “Mystery of the Nile,” partnering with California’s MacGillivray Freeman Films. “Nile” has taken $46 million worldwide since its release in 2005.

“Magic Journey” will be ready for delivery late this year and will be distributed in 2-D, 3-D and Imax theaters.

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