Leguizamo, Sandino star in assassination tale

New York and Paris-based Urban Distribution Intl. has bought worldwide rights outside Latin America to one of the region’s key titles in production in 2012: “Roa,” from Colombia’s Andi Baiz.

John Leguizamo and Catalino Sandino are in negotiations to star in the $3 million-budget pic, a hefty sum in Colombia.

“Roa,” a Colombian “JFK,” turns on the 1948 assassination of liberal presidential candidate Jorge Eliecer Gaitan, focusing on his alleged killer, Juan Roa, a 26-year-old with delusions of grandeur.

It’s produced by Colombia’s Dynamo Capital and Argentina’s Patagonik. The pick-up consolidates UDI’s relationship with Colombia: It sold Carlos Cesar Arbelaez’s RCN co-produced “The Colors of the Mountain.”

“I really think Latin America today is as exciting as Asia two decades ago,” UDI’s Eric Schnedecker said.

UDI has also acquired international sales rights to “The Gang of Jotas,” from France’s Marjane Satrapi, and to Spaniard Javier Rebollo’s “El muerto y ser feliz.”

Her first solo outing after “Persepolis” and “Chicken With Plums,” Satrapi wrote, directed and starred in “Jotas” — a Spain-set comedy now in post.

“Muerto,” an Argentina-set road movie, toplines Spanish actor Jose Sacristan as a dying hitman. It is produced by Jose Nolla’s Iconica and Luis Minarro’s Eddie Saeta in Spain plus Argentina’s Utopica.

In other UDI deals, French indie distrib Diaphana has bought French rights to Adam Leon’s Un Certain Regard player “Gimme the Loot,” a SXSW Festival grand jury winner picked up by Sundance Selects/IFC for the U.S.

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