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Shochiku sharpens ‘Blade’ for U.K., U.S.

Studio honored with Berlinale's Camera Award

BERLIN — Japanese studio Shochiku has sold Yoji Yamada’s samurai drama “The Hidden Blade” — which unspools in competition today– to a slew of territories, including Tartan Films for the U.S. and U.K.

The martial-arts costumer, which follows Yamada’s 2004 Oscar-nominated “Twilight Samurai,” also went to EMS for Germany, CTV Intl. for France and Aztek Intl. Entertainment for Australia and New Zealand, among a dozen other territories.

Shochiku is being honored this year with the Berlinale’s Camera Award, celebrating the Japanese conglom’s 110th anniversary.

In other market activity, L.A.-based Dream Entertainment inked brisk sales on WWII actioner “Straight Into Darkness,” which went to EMS for Germany and Sharada for Italy, among other territories. Pic about a group of U.S. soldiers who rebel against combat duties is helmed by Jeff Burr (“Spoiler”) and produced by Mark Hannah.

London-based sales company Moviehouse Entertainment has picked up all international rights to “Shut up and Shoot Me,” the first project from L.A.-based producer Paul Sherwood’s new Storitel shingle. A feature film debut by commercials helmer Steen Agro, “Shut Up” — now in post — is a madcap comedy set in the Czech Republic, starring Karel Roden (“Blade II”) and Andy Nyman (“Dead Babies”).

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