Warner buys ‘Adam’ for U.K.

First Brit indie deal for VP Benzakein

LONDON — Warner Bros. has pre-bought U.K. rights to David McKenzie’s “Young Adam,” starring Ewan McGregor.

Deals marks the studio’s first foray into British indie filmmaking since the appointment a year ago of Simona Benzakein as VP of European production.

Benzakein, based in Paris, has a mandate to expand Warner’s presence in local production across the continent.

“Young Adam,” which starts shooting March 14 in Scotland, also stars Tilda Swinton, Peter Mullan and Emily Mortimer. Based on the 1954 novel by Scottish beat writer Alexander Trocci, it’s a sensual thriller set on the canals between Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Pic is being produced by Jeremy Thomas’s Recorded Picture Co., and sold internationally by its sales arm HanWay. Co-financing comes from the Film Council’s Premiere Fund and Scottish Screen. Mikado in Italy and Vertigo in Spain have already pre-bought the film.

Benzakein commented: “‘Young Adam’ offers Warner Bros. Pictures a terrific opportunity to work with Jeremy Thomas and such an amazing line-up of talent. The project is firmly rooted in the local culture and is the kind of independent production we are supporting across Europe.”

Thomas said: “We are all thrilled with Warner’s enthusiasm for this very original tale and it is refreshing to see a major distribution force supporting new British talent in its local market place.”

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