6 Sales sells pic to French distrib

“Blackthorn,” the Spanish-backed reprise of the Butch Cassidy story, has sold to Bac Films for France after sealing a Spanish deal.

Sam Shepard stars as an incognito Cassidy in the pic, which is the English-language directing debut of Spain’s Mateo Gil, Alejandro Amenabar’s longtime co-scribe.

Bac will release “Blackthorn” theatrically and will handle its DVD release.

Deal follows a Spanish distribution pact on “Blackthorn” with Vertice Cine, which bows Gil’s film in late May.

The pic co-stars Eduardo Noriega and Stephen Rea.

Shepard’s Cassidy is living peacefully in Bolivia 20 years after he was supposedly gunned down by police. He plans to return to the U.S. to meet the son he’s never seen. But a trigger-happy young cowboy (Noriega) forces him into one last adventure.

Rea plays a former railroad employee, still trying to hunt Cassidy down; Magaly Solier, the lead in Berlin Golden Bear winner “The Milk of Sorrow,” plays Cassidy’s girlfriend.

Themed around the loss of ethics in modern times, per producer Ibon Cormenzana, “Blackthorn” is being sold internationally by Madrid-based 6 Sales.

It is produced from Spain by Cormenzana’s Arcadia Motion Pictures, Andres Santana’s Ariane-Aiete Films and Manto Films AIE, which put up about 25% of its budget in tax-break coin. From France, Jerome Vidal’s Noodle Prod. co-produces.

James Atherton and Jan Pace’s U.K. company Quickfire Films is co-financing, in a deal brokered by 6 Sales. Vidal cut the French distribution deal with Roch Lener and Veronique Crasset at Bac.

Gil’s screenwriting credits with Amenabar run from helmer’s debut, “Thesis,” to “Open Your Eyes,” “The Sea Inside” and “Agora.”

Shown in a promo reel at Berlin, “Blackthorn” is finalizing post-production.

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