LONDON — Robert Altman, Alex Cox and Simon Beaufoy are among the first filmmakers to be awarded lottery coin from the U.K.’s new Film Council.
Altman’s “Gosford Park” heads the debut slate of the council’s Premiere Fund, which has $14.5 million a year to invest in commercial British movies.
The $19.8 million pic, financed by Capitol Films and to be distribbed by USA Films in North America, will receive $2.9 million in lotto coin.
Ryan Phillippe has joined an otherwise British ensemble cast, which includes Emily Watson and Kristin Scott Thomas.
The fund is also pumping $1.74 million into Steve Barron’s soccer mockumentary, “Mike Bassett: England Manager,” and $1.2 million into Marc Munden’s “Miranda,” starring Christina Ricci.
The New Cinema Fund, which has a $7.25 million budget to support new talent and experimental filmmaking free of commercial pressures, also has unveiled its projects.
Cox’s “The Revengers Tragedy,” based on Thomas Middleton’s Jacobean play and starring Christopher Eccleston, will receive $725,000. Script is by Frank Cottrell Boyce.
“Full Monty” scripter Beaufoy has written “This is Not a Love Song,” to be directed by Billie Eltringham, which receives $290,000 in lotto coin. Pic, a thriller set on the Yorkshire moors, will be shot on digital video over 12 days.
“Bloody Sunday,” directed by Paul Greengrass, has been awarded $360,000. James Nesbitt stars, with Portman Films handling foreign sales.
Other payouts include $220,000 to be invested by the New Cinema Fund into toon pic “Ape,” an Anglo-Irish co-production with co-financing from the Irish Film Board and RTE. The writer/director is Rory Bresnihan.