U.S. distribs go on end of Cannes spending spree
After getting off to a slow start for U.S. acqusitions, the pace picked up towards the end of the Cannes film festival, with Sony Classics and IFC again the most active buyers.Sony Pictures Classics acquired competition screener “Of Gods and Men” for the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, after earlier acquiring Mike Leigh’s “Another Year,” and the upcoming Danish pic “Another World.” “Of Gods and Men” was directed by Xavier Beauvois and is based on an actual incident in which seven French monks, who lived in harmony with the local Muslim population, were allegedly executed by Islamists during the Algerian Civil War. IFC Films, which releases most films in selected theaters and on video on demand near the same date, picked up U.S. rights to Gregg Araki’s “Kaboom,” Bertrand Tavernier’s “The Princess of Montpensier” and Jorge Michel Grau’s “We Are What We Are.” Araki’s sex-fueled comic thriller “Kaboom” screened out of competish at Cannes. Set in France in the 1500s, “Princess” centers on a young aristocratic woman whose father forces her to marry a prince despite her love for a war hero. Written and directed by Grau and screened in the Director’s Fortnight, “We Are What We Are” centers on a family of cannibals that must figure out how to survive when their father figure — and flesh provider — dies. The IFC titles join Cannes pickups that already include “Heartbeats,” “Prey” and “Certified Copy,” as well a multi-platform release of Olivier Assayas’ “Carlos” in partnership with the Sundance Channel. The only other U.S. acquisition during the fest was Magnet Releasing’s pickup of Critics’ Week screener “Rubber,” a French comedy-horror pic.