Underscoring market appetite for high-profile arthouse movies, Euro film-TV group Studiocanal has sold most all of the world – save for the U.S. and Japan – on “Mon Roi,” with Vincent Cassel and Emmanuelle Bercot.
Sales confirm “Mon Roi” as, with Nick Park’s Aardman production “Early Man,” revealed on the cusp of Cannes, one of Studiocanal’s two best sellers at 2015’s Cannes Festival.
They come as Studiocanal’s intl. sales head Anna Marsh confirmed momentum off Cannes on a U.S. sale for Stephen Frears’ “The Program,” starring Ben Foster, who, from the evidence of a promo, bears an uncanny resemblance to Lance Armstrong.
Variety reported last week that several distributors expressed interest in the project. A U.S. deal should go down in the next two weeks, Marsh said.
Studiocanal will directly distribute “Mon Roi” in France, Germany and the U.K. It is helmed by Maiwenn, who broke out with Cannes 2011 grand jury prize winner “Polisse,” a tale of amour fou. The film has also closed a plethora of major territories. Flagship deals include Medialog for South Korea, Videa in Italy, Spain’s Golem and Nashkino for Russia.
“The sales show that we do have a diverse slate and that we can work with blue-chip arthouse buyers as well as the big commercial distributors,” Marsh said.
“Mon Roi” has also been licensed to Sweden (Folkets Bio) and Hungary (Vertigo Media) and to Selim Ramia & Co (Middle East), Prior Ent. (Baltic States), Spentzos Films (Greece), Lusomundo (Portugal), Best (Poland), Film Europe Media Co. (Czech Republic/Slovakia), Megacom Film (former Yugoslavia) and Colombia (Cine Colombia).
Studiocanal is working on closing the rest of Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. Offers are out for much of Latin America.
“’Mon Roi’ is a film which provokes discussion, debate and exchange,” Marsh said. Apart from a few pre-sales, deals were clinched on the Croisette, she said. “Distributors were blown away by the way Maiwenn treated the love story.”
Of major territories, only the U.S. is left on “The Program.” Studiocanal will distribute the Lance Armstrong story in the U.K., Germany, France and Australia/New Zealand. Of multiple pre-sales, “The Program” has closed (Vertigo), Italy (Videa), Scandinavia (Svensk), Latin America (Sun), South Korea (Pan Cinema) and Japan (Longride).
Japan continues to come back as a buyer of international titles, Marsh observed, noting that sales there include the James Marsh Project, with Colin Firth, and Luca Guadagnino’s “A Bigger Slash” to Japan’s Kino Films. A Japanese deal is also going down on Michel Gondry’s “Microbe & Gasoline.”
Other pre-sales on “The Program”: Switzerland (Impuls), Spain Portugal (Lusomundo), Greece (Spentzos), Iceland (Myndform), Poland (Monolith), Hungary/Romania (Ablo), Bulgaria (A Plus), Baltic States (Acme), Czech Republic (Bohemia), ex-Yugoslavia (Cinemania), Israel (Forum), Turkey (Fabula), the Middle East (Selim Ramia), Hong Kong (Golden Scene), Thailand (DNA), Taiwan (Catchplay), Singapore (Shaw) and the Philippines (Captive).