You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Italian distributor launches gay label

"L.A. Zombie" kicks off niche releases

In Italy, just when the going for specialty pics is getting tougher, an indie shingle is getting going, and launching a gay cinema label to boot.

The birth of three-month-old Atlantide Entertainment marks two absolute novelties for the Italian market: Atlantide will theatrically distribute pics in original language, without dubbing; a first, since to date even arthouse titles have always been dubbed in Italy.

Also, Atlantide has started a separate unit, called Queer Frame, dedicated to gay and lesbian art titles, a bold move in a land where this type of product has so far struggled to find outlets.

Based in Turin, which is Italy’s edgy movie mecca thanks to the Turin Film Festival and also the Turin Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Atlantide is now looking to occupy a tiny but profitable niche in the insidious Italo distribution market.

Company’s slate comprises recent works by known auteurs, such as Gus Van Sant, Michel Gondry and Mika Kaurismaki, which are part of their generalist slate, but also more esoteric fare like gay zombie pic “L.A. Zombie” by Canadian helmer/provocateur Bruce LaBruce, with which Atlantide is launching Queer Frame.

L.A. Zombie,” starring French male porn star Francois Sagat as schizophrenic who thinks he’s a zombie, searching for dead bodies to have sex with in L.A. streets, will unspool in the Locarno competish next month.

Unlike Blighty, where Peccadillo Pictures has long been distributing gay movies, or Gaul, where they are handled by the Optimale label, gay-themed pics have not really had a specific outlet before in Italy.

“It’s been a scarcely represented market segment here, because distributors have been unwilling to (take a) risk on these titles,” says Atlantide head of distribution Cosimo Santoro.

And seeking to adopt a new media business model that could set them apart from ailing specialty outfits around the planet, Queer Frame in September plans to launch a gay-themed Web TV site from the Venice Film Fest, where it is the main sponsor of the Lido’s Queer Lion nod.

Popular on Variety

More Film


    Berlin-based Pluto Films Snags Sales Rights to Joshua Gil’s ‘Sanctorum’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    MORELIA, Mexico — Berlin-based Pluto Film Distribution has picked up the international sales rights, with the exception of Mexico, to Joshua Gil’s ‘Sanctorum,” which competes at the 17th Morelia Int’l Film Festival (FICM). Founded by Torsten Frehse, the fledgling world sales and festival distribution company has an eye for arthouse and crossover films as well as features from emerging [...]

  • Crowds Of German Refugees Pictured On

    'Last Days in Vietnam's' Rory Kennedy to Direct AR Content’s Refugee Documentary (EXCLUSIVE)

    Alexander Rodnyansky’s AR Content – in partnership with Kevin Macdonald, an Oscar winner with “One Day in September,” and Rosanne Korenberg – has tapped Academy Award nominated and Emmy winning director Rory Kennedy, best known for “Last Days in Vietnam,” to direct its untitled documentary centering on a little-known refugee crisis immediately preceding World War [...]

  • Global Screen Nabs ‘Amazing Maurice,’ Based

    Global Screen Picks Up ‘The Amazing Maurice,’ Based on Terry Pratchett’s Novel (EXCLUSIVE)

    Global Screen has picked up worldwide distribution rights, excluding North America, the U.K. and German-speaking territories, to the English-language animated feature “The Amazing Maurice,” based on a Terry Pratchett novel. The screenplay has been written by Terry Rossio, Oscar-nominated for “Shrek.” Rossio’s credits also include the animated movie “Aladdin” and the “Pirates of the Caribbean” [...]

  • Yoji Yamada-directed film is to open

    Tokyo Market: Shochiku Launches Horror, Comedy and Mystery Lineup

    Major Japanese studio, Shochiku has the honor of leading off next week’s Tokyo International Film Festival with its “Tora-san, Wish You Were Here.” The film is a revival of a beloved in-house drama franchise, directed by veteran Yoji Yamada, that is set as the event’s opening night gala presentation. Before that, the company has the [...]

  • The Truth

    Singapore Festival to Focus on Asian Excellence for 30th Edition

    For its 30th edition the Singapore International Film Festival has avoided programming novelty and instead focused on assembling excellence – mostly indie titles — from Asia and further afield. The festival, which previously announced local filmmaker Anthony Chen’s second feature “Wet Season” as its opening night gala presentation, announced the balance of its programming on [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content