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Ascot buys ‘Emperor,’ ‘Blacklist’

Wild Bunch nabs 'The Hunt,' 'November Man'

BERLIN — German distribs have continued to close acquisition deals in the wake of the Cannes Film Market.

Swiss-German distrib Ascot Elite picked up all German rights for the epic war drama “Emperor” and Robert Pattinson starrer “Mission: Blacklist,” while Wild Bunch Germany nabbed Thomas Vinterberg’s competition screener “The Hunt,” which won star Mads Mikkelsen Cannes’ best actor prize.

Peter Webber’s “Emperor,” from Sierra/Affinity, stars Matthew Fox as a general looking to bring Japan’s war criminals, including Emperor Hirohito himself, to justice. The film, which co-stars Tommy Lee Jones as General Douglas MacArthur, is currently in post.

Embankment Films’ “Mission: Blacklist,” by Jean-Stephane Sauvaire, follows a U.S. army staff sergeant (Pattinson) who becomes instrumental in the capture of Iraqi president Saddam Hussein.

Ascot likewise took Hanway Films’ “The Big Shoe,” Steven Shainberg’s upcoming comedy about a foot fetishist-shoe designer, starring Jim Sturgess and Susan Sarandon; and Morgan O’Neill and Ben Nott’s Australian surfing drama “Drift,” starring Sam Worthington and Xavier Samuel, from TF1 Intl.

Further Ascot pick-ups included Gabriele Salvatores’ “Siberian Education,” about a gang of children growing up in a forgotten corner of the former Soviet Union, starring John Malkovich, Peter Stormare and Eleanor Tomlinson, from Westend Films; and Film Factory’s “The 7th Floor,” Patxi Amezcua’s thriller about a Buenos Aires lawyer on the hunt for the kidnappers of his two young children.

Wild Bunch Germany also bagged Roger Donaldson’s spy thriller “November Man,” starring Pierce Brosnan and Dominic Cooper; John Erick Dowdle’s “The Coup,” with Brosnan and Owen Wilson; Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer’s “Hunger Games” spoof “The Starving Games”; and Christian Vincent’s “Haute Cuisine,” which it acquired with fellow distrib Alamode Film.

The distrib is also releasing Cristian Mungiu’s Cannes screener “Beyond the Hills,” which won the screenplay prize for the writer-director as well as actress kudos for Cristiana Flutur and Cosmina Stratan.

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