'Adele' heads to key territories except U.K., U.S.
EuropaCorp has sold out 80% of territories on Luc Besson’s next directorial gig, the French-language “The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec.”Sales come only days after bringing the film to the market at Cannes. The $33 million pic sold in all key territories except the U.K. and U.S. with only the screenplay, a pitch and pic’s concept as sales tools. “Adele” is a 1912 Paris-set femme adventure-action film, which Besson describes as “a cross between ‘Amelie’ and ‘Indiana Jones.’ ” French press reports place Louise Bourgoin (“The Girl From Monaco”) in the starring role. EuropaCorp is now looking to export not just movies but whole marketing campaigns. For “Arthur and the Invisibles,” the first part of Besson’s toon trilogy, EuropaCorp struck marketing deals for France with McDonalds and Gallic bank BNP Paribas. For sequel “Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard,” due out in late 2009, it has extended those McDonalds and BNP Paribas pacts to most of Europe, EuropaCorp CEO Jean-Julien Baronnet said. EuropaCorp has inked for a console vidgame with Ubisoft. EuropaCorp has developed real-time 3-D software for virtual world marketing. And it has appointed Steve Rubin, former WB managing director in France, as VP of international marketing to facilitate overseas marketing on EuropaCorp pics with international distributors. In France, the first part of the animated saga, “Arthur and the Invisibles,” grossed a huge $52 million. “The first ‘Arthur’ had a very strong 360-degrees plan in France. We’d like to extend that to the world,” Baronnet said. Founded by Luc Besson and Pierre-Ange Le Pogam, the Gallic mini-major has struck further sales deals on “Arthur 2.” There is also initial buzz — especially in Asia and Latin America — on Richard Barry’s “22 Bullets,” now shooting. Based on true events, pic stars Jean Reno as a former French gangster who survives being shot 22 times, twice in the head. He sets out to discover the motives and man behind the attack. Baronnet describes the film as an “action drama.” “We don’t want to make just pure action movies.” Baronnet said. “We want to add values. ‘Bullets’ is about family, friendship and someone asking if they should change their life.”