UPI lands key Euro territories on Good Universe titles
Joe Drake’s new financing, production and sales outfit Good Universe has descended on its first Cannes with a bang, locking multi-territory deals with Universal Pictures Intl. for “Oldboy” and “Last Vegas.”UPI acquired rights for the U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Australia and Spain for both pics. UPI also snagged “Last Vegas” for Scandinavia. “Oldboy,” a remake of the Park Chan Wook’s pic, is helmed by Spike Lee and penned by Mark Protosevich, based on the manga by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi. It stars Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen and Sharlto Copley. Lee produces with Roy Lee, Doug Davison and Good Universe’s Nathan Kahane. John Middleton will executive produce and Protosevich will co-produce. “Last Vegas,” a laffer directed by Jon Turteltaub, stars Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro and Morgan Freeman. CBS Films has domestic rights for the pic, a comedy about four old friends who throw a bachelor party for the only one who has remained single. Dan Fogelman penned the screenplay while Laurence Mark and Amy Baer produce with Kahane and Lawrence Grey exec producing. Matt Leonetti will co-produce and Nicole Brown is overseeing the project for Good Universe. The UPI acquisitions reflect two major themes that are unfolding at the Cannes Film Festival this year: one, that studios are becoming more acquisitive in international markets than in the past; and two, that new sales companies headed by seasoned execs are proving to be the outfits that discerning buyers are turning to for product. Good Universe, which was launched by former Lionsgate motion picture group prexy Drake and former Mandate Pictures prexy Kahane, has partnered with Lionsgate in Mandate’s development list. The duo is also looking to acquire franchise material, and aims to expand the Ghost House Pictures brand with more funds and increased focus on the horror genre.