Trio gets windfall

'Beauty,' 'Friedmans' get U.K. distrib'n coin

LONDON — Seven films — including “The Station Agent,” “Capturing the Friedmans” and “Stage Beauty” — have been awarded a total of £670,000 ($1.2 million) in distribution support by the U.K. Film Council.

Richard Eyre’s “Stage Beauty” is the biggest beneficiary, receiving $546,000 to underwrite its P&A risk through the U.K. Film Distribution Program.

The initiative is designed to promote the wider release of British movies deemed to have a real chance of crossing over to a mass audience. “Stage Beauty” is only the second pic to be awarded support under this scheme, following “Bright Young Things” last fall.

The other six pics have been granted smaller amounts of coin — between £50,000 and £100,000 apiece — under the P&A fund designed to aid arthouse distribution.

Along with “Capturing the Friedmans” and “The Station Agent,” beneficiaries include Michael Winterbottom’s “Code 46,” Takeshi Kitano’s “Zatoichi,” Leon Herbert’s “Emotional Backgammon” and Denys Arcand’s “The Barbarian Invasions.”

“The Station Agent,” released by BVI, is the second pic from a major studio to get a distribution grant, following the Warner pic “Young Adam.” The other films are all released by local indies.

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