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Luis Tosar set for thriller ‘El Nino’

Von Trier, Sorrentino pix pull down Eurimages coin

MADRID — Luis Tosar (“Miami Vice”) will star in “El Nino,” a Gibraltar Straits-set action thriller that is one of the biggest Spanish films prepping production for 2013.

Produced by Spain’s Telecinco Cinema, Ikiru Films, El Toro and Vaca Films, and France’s La Ferme Prods., “El Nino” is among 17 European co-productions that have landed backing — via loans — from pan-European org Eurimages.

Further projects include Lars von Trier’s “Nymphomaniac” and Paolo Sorrentino’s “L’Apparato humano.”

Budgeted around €6.5 million ($8.1 million), “El Nino” reunites Tosar with director Daniel Monzon following on from cell-block riot thriller “Cell 211,” a 2009 Spanish sleeper, which grossed $16 million in Spain.

Studiocanal handles international sales outside France and Spain and has distribution rights for France, Germany and the U.K.

Written by Monzon and regular co-scribe Jorge Guerricaecheverria (“The Oxford Murders”), “El Nino” is the moniker of a small-time trafficker in his early 20s whose exploits dodging the Straits customs police rile both its counter-narcotics authorities and drug lords. Tosar will play a Spanish narco squad cop.

The Straits is Europe’s largest drug entry point, and the film has a multinational scenario, so the dialogue is in several languages: Spanish, Arabic, French, Russian and English, said Telecinco Cinema CEO Ghislain Barrois.

Now in pre-production, “El Nino” will shoot March-April 2013, Barrois said.

“El Nino” pulled down $812,500 from Eurimages, as did “Nymphomaniac” and “L’Apparato.”

Starring Charlotte Gainsbourg as a 50-year-old woman detailing her erotic life to an older man through one long night, “Nymphomaniac,” on which Von Trier is promising softcore and hardcore features ready for 2013’s Cannes, will be co-produced by Arte France Cinema, in a decision announced Tuesday. Denmark’s Zentropa Ent. lead produces; Germany’s Zentropa Intl. and France’s Slot Machine co-produce.

Paolo Sorrentino’s “L’Apparato humano” (aka “The Great Beauty”) is a Rome-set drama toplining Sorrentino regular Toni Servillo (“Il Divo”) and sold internationally by Pathe.

Further Eurimages recipients include “Wandering,” a humor-laced buddy movie from Germany’s Benjamin Heisenberg who made a splash with 2005 debut “Sleeper,” and “Run, Boy, Run,” a fact-based World War II Jewish identity drama from German Pepe Danquart, who won a live-action short Academy Award in 1994 for “Schwarzfahrer.”

Svein Andre Hofso, a 32 year old with Down Syndrome, will make his professional acting debut in Norwegian Bard Breien’s “The Downs Detective” as a Sandefjord City Hall messenger-service employee turned gumshoe. Breien skewered politically correct optimism on disabilities in the black comedy “The Art of Negative Thinking,” which was a hit at Karlovy Vary festival in 2007.

“Downs Detective” receives $437,500 from Eurimages. TrustNordisk handles international sales.

EURIMAGES RECIPIENTS, WITH COIN AWARDED:

“Bota” (Iris Elezi, Albania, Italy, France) $125,000

“The Downs Detective” (Bard Breien, Norway, Czech Republic, Denmark) $437,500

“Nymphomaniac” (Lars von Trier, Denmark, Germany, France) $812,500

“L’Apparato umano” (aka “La Grande bellezza”) (Paolo Sorrentino, Italy, France) $812,500

“The Judgment” (Stephan Komandarev, Bulgaria, Germany, Macedonia) $312,500

“Sputnik” (Markus Dietrich, Germany, Belgium, Czech Republic) $437,500

“Le Temps de l’aventure” (Jerome Bonnell, France, Belgium, Ireland) $650,000

“Dzma” (Teona Mghvdeladze, Thierry Grenade, France, Georgia) $187,000

“L’appart” (Francois Desagnat, France, Luxembourg, Belgium) $350,000

“Wandering Stars” (Benjamin Heisenberg, Germany, Switzerland, Austria) $287,500

“The Blue Wave” (Merve Kayan, Zeynep Dadak, Turkey, Germany, Netherlands) $137,500

“The Gambler” (Ignas Jonynas, Lithuania, Latvia) $125,000

“El Nino” (Daniel Monzon, Spain, France) $812,500

“Moscow Never Sleeps” (John O’Reilly, Ireland, Russia) $300,000

“La Beaute, l’art rescape des camps nazis” (Christophe Cognet, France, Germany) $125,000

“Run, Boy, Run” (Pepe Danquart, Germany, France, Poland) $725,000

“Fountain of Youth” (Serkan Zelzele, Turkey, Netherlands) $275,000

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