Huppert takes ‘America’

National Book Award-winner going film route

Paris-based producer Paolo Branco’s Gemini is developing a E15 million ($17.9 million) bigscreen adaptation of Susan Sontag’s “In America,” to star Isabelle Huppert and helmed by Jerzy Skolimowski.

The pic, which will shoot in Poland and the U.S., follows Sontag’s heroine Maryna Zalezowska, based on actress Helena Modrzejewska, as she travels from her native Europe to make a new life for herself in America.

Sontag’s novel won the National Book Awards fiction prize in 2000.

Branco reported brisk sales in Cannes on its other hot titles. Andre Techine’s “Changing Times,” starring Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu, has sold to eight territories.

Christophe Honore’s Isabelle Huppert starrer “Ma Mere,” which was at the center of a row between Branco and the festival over its failure to make the official selection, has been acquired by distributors in 15 countries.

Edouard Baer’s$4.5 million “Akoibon,” a comedy starring Jean Rochefort and Chiara Mastroianni, starts shooting in June. Nader Boussandel and Baer are joined in the cast by Cannes fest juror Benoit Poelvoorde.