HBO catches ‘Fever’

Jolie, Redgrave will co-star in HBO Films' pic

CANNES — Angelina Jolie and Vanessa Redgrave will star in “The Fever,” directed by Carlo Nero and produced by Jason Blum and Redgrave for HBO Films, one of several projects being represented here by the company’s newly formed international sales banner.

The project joins a slate of features being sold in Cannes by HBO Films London, the new sales arm headed by international distribution veterans Penny Wolf and Rosa Bosch.

Adapted by Wallace Shawn from his play, “Fever” chronicles the political awakening of a middle-class woman previously untouched by world events.

HBO came aboard to fully finance the feature on the basis of the script and 10 minutes of footage funded by Redgrave and Nero, the son of the actress and Italian thesp Franco Nero.

In addition to the new sales banner, HBO’s presence in Cannes will be reinforced this year by Gus Van Sant’s competition entry “Elephant,” and writer-director team Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini’s “American Splendor,” screening in Un Certain Regard.

Banner’s projects include:

  • Stephen Hopkins’ “The Life and Death of Peter Sellers,” with Geoffrey Rush as the British thesp, alongside Charlize Theron, John Lithgow, Miriam Margolyes, Stephen Fry, Stanley Tucci and Emily Watson;

  • Bruce Beresford’s “And Starring Pancho Villa As Himself,” based on the true story of the Mexican revolutionary’s enlistment to do a Hollywood action movie, starring Antonio Banderas, Michael McKean, Colm Feore, Alan Arkin and Jim Broadbent, with a script by Larry Gelbart;

  • Mike Nichols’ six-hour “Angels in America,” adapted by Tony Kushner from his play, with Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Emma Thompson, Mary-Louise Parker, Jeffrey Wright and James Cromwell;

  • “Undefeated,” actor John Leguizamo’s directing debut about a poor first-generation Puerto Rican-American dealing with newfound fame as a championship boxer;

  • German helmer Katja von Garnier’s drama “Iron Jawed Angels,” starring Hilary Swank, Frances O’Connor, Molly Parker, Julia Ormond, Patrick Dempsey and Anjelica Huston.

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