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BVI/Germany wins rights to ‘Investigators’

Deal is in low- to mid-seven figures

Buena Vista Intl./Germany has won a bidding war for all German-lingo rights to Studio Hamburg’s “Three Investigators.”

Studio Hamburg topper Sytze van der Laan said it was “the highest presale price ever paid for a German family film.” Deal is in the low- to mid-seven figures.

The English-language film marks the Hamburg-based studio’s first move into international theatrical production. Hamburg’s head of production, Stuart Pollok, said it “will be the first in a franchise.”

Directed by Germany’s Florian Baxmeyer and penned by longtime Disney writer Phil Lezabnic (“Pocahontas,” “Shrek”), pic will be shot in South Africa. South Africa’s IDC is helping with the financing.

Company is looking to finance commercial English-language films between $5 million and $15 million using a variety of financial tools. Said Pollok, “we’ve been working on a series of alternative methods and if the German government were to close the tax funds tomorrow it would have no effect on us.”

Also on the Studio Hamburg slate is “The Conclave,” a tale of political intrigue set in the Renaissance Italy of 1458 directed by Christoph Schrewe and starring British Shakespearean actor Brian Blessed, and “Hellion,” a thriller in the vein of “Rosemary’s Baby,” that is being co-produced with Sandstorm Films.