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Brian De Palma finds ‘Passion’ project

He'll direct English-language remake of Gallic hit

Brian De Palma will direct thriller “Passion,” a remake of 2010 Gallic psychodrama “Crime d’amour” (Love Crime), helmed by France’s Alain Corneau.

Passion” is set up at Paris-based SBS Prods., headed by Said Ben Said, who produced “Crime.” SBS will handle worldwide sales.

SBS is producing Roman Polanski’s “God of Carnage,” starring Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz and John C. Reilly.

French-language “Crime” starred Kristin Scott Thomas and Gaul’s Ludivine Sagnier as two feuding corporate execs, one of whom is driven to murder the other.

The remake will be set in the U.K., Ben Said said.

“Not since ‘Dressed to Kill’ have I had a chance to combine eroticism, suspense, mystery and murder into one spellbinding cinematic experience,” De Palma told Variety.

Budgeted at about $30 million, according to Ben Said, “Passion” will be structured as a France-Germany-U.K.-Spain co-production, partly financed, like “Carnage,” by a combination of co-production coin from European partners, subsidies, tax coin and French TV money.

Principal photography is due to start in August at a studio in Cologne or Berlin, tapping into Germany’s tax rebates. Exteriors will be filmed in London and key cast announced by the start of the Cannes Film Festival in May.

“Passion” adds to the U.S. talent currently signing on to film or TV projects financed and often produced out of Europe.

Ben Said said he was willing to discuss financing with a Hollywood studio, but thought it more likely he would produce English-language European movies with top-notch American directors without recourse to U.S. finance.

“As with Roman Polanski’s ‘God of Carnage,’ we can use a European film model and all its support systems, set up co-productions and find the money to make it,” said Ben Said. “Movies of this kind are very difficult to make today in the U.S. because the U.S. doesn’t have co-productions and the studios are not interested in making them.”

“Carnage” has sold worldwide except for the U.S. and Japan.

De Palma’s last film was Iraq-themed 2007 drama “Redacted.”

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