ROME – Hot on the heels of Italian director’s Alice Rohrwacher’s success with “The Wonders” at Cannes, veteran Italian distributor Valerio De Paolis has sealed a deal to acquire a 20 percent stake in Carlo Cresto-Dina’s Tempesta Film, producer of the fest’s recent Grand Prix winner.
De Paolis (pictured) is the founder of BIM Distribuzione, which is currently releasing “The Wonders” in Italy, where the drama about the inexorable evaporation of healthy rural traditions is playing well at the local box office, having pulled roughly $800,000 in two weeks.
The long-in-the-works investment deal gives De Paolis an option to raise his stake in Tempesta to 40 percent over the next twelve months. But it does not involve any type of special relationship with BIM or with BIM’s owner, Wild Bunch.
“After many years in the business I am proud to be able to work with a young company, which is full of energy and dedicated to forming debuting directors which so far have had exceptional results,” De Paolis said in statement.
“This agreement will give me the possibility to mount projects using the vast contacts and international credibility that De Paolis has,” Cresto-Dina told Variety. “I hope this will generate important minority co-productions on films by international auteurs.”
Tempesta’s top two directors, Rohrwacher and Leonardo Di Costanzo, whose well-received first fiction feature “The Interval” screened at Venice, Toronto, among many other fests, have also joined the Bologna-based shingle as partners.
New projects in Tempesta’s pipeline currently include “Asino vola,” by first-timers Marcello Fonte and Paolo Tripodi, about a boy determined to play the tambourine in a band on the poverty-striken outskirts of Reggio Calabria, Southern Italy, where the pic will start shooting later this month. And Turin-set “Le ultime cose,” three intertwined tales turning on a pawnshop, marking the fiction feature debut of Irene Dionisio.