Gallic heavyweight takes French theatrical, overseas
MADRID — After producing Jessica Biel starrer “The Tall Man,” Paris-based production-distribution-sales outfit SND-M6 Group has extended its line in smart thrillers taking French theatrical and international rights to Julien Leclercq’s “The Informant.”Studio 37, which co-produces “The Informant” with Dimitri Rassam’s Chapter 2, SND and Canada’s Transfilm, will handle Gallic DVD distribution. Budgeted at €18.9 million ($24.8 million), and toplining Gilles Lellouche (“Point Blank”), Vincent Lindon (“Anything For Her”) and Ricardo Scamarcio (“Romanzo Criminale”), “Informant” reps SND’s weightiest new offering at next week’s European Film Market. Based on Marc Fievet’s autobiographical book, “Dans la peau d’un narco,” “Informant” stars Lellouche as a French undercover agent who infiltrates a Gibraltar drug cartel, falling foul of its collusion with customs authorities. Leclercq broke through with last year’s hijack actioner “The Assault.” “Informant” is penned by Abdel Raouf Dafri, a writer on Jacques Audiard’s “A Prophet” and “Mesrine,” from “The Artist” producer Thomas Langmann. “We want to keep close to France’s new generation of action/genre directors,” said Lionel Uzan, director, acquisitions and international sales, SND-M6. SND’s prime reason for boarding “Informant,” however, Uzan added, was “a fascinating, unique true story told in a gripping thriller style set in an extraordinary place, Gibraltar.” Led by Guillaume Canet’s “Little White Lies,” Lellouche top-five hits over the last decade grossed a combined $159 million in France, according to Gallic consultancy CBO Box-Office. Lellouche and Lindon give “Informant” wide audience potential, Uzan argued, while thrillers often have significant value in ancillary. “Man” market preems at the EFM.