French Distributor Version Originale/Condor Checks Into ‘Short Term 12’

A hit at SXSW and Locarno, the Memento-repped pic played on Tuesday in Deauville

DEAUVILLE– Version Originale/Condor, a new Paris-based distribution player, has acquired Destin Daniel Cretton’s “Short Term 12,” which is competing at Deauville American Film Festival.

Pic played today at the French Normandy fest, earning a large standing ovation. 

Repped by Memento, “Term” bowed at South by Southwest fest, where it won the Grand Jury and audience nods. It went to play at Locarno were it snatched up four awards, including actress for Brie Larson and a special mention.

Term,” penned by Cretton, stars Larson as a 20-something supervisor working at a foster-care facility for teenagers who comes to explore her own troubled past.

VO was founded by Eric Le Bot, a former distribution executive at Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp and Pierre-Ange Le Pogam’s Stone Angels, in partnership with Condor Ent., an outfit handling DVD and VOD distribution rights. It’s backed by 123 Ventures, a fund that supports such well-established French distribs as Mars and Bac.

 VO and Condor Ent. team up on acquisitions, with VO taking theatrical distribution and Condor nabbing VOD and DVD rights.

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The company will release Short Term in France early next year on 50 prints. 

Another recent VOD/Condor pickup: Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s sci-fi drama “Real” which will have its international premiere at Toronto and will later play at New York. Based on Rokuro Inui’s novel, A Perfect Day for Plesiosaur, “Real” marks Kurosawa’s follow-up to “Tokyo Sonata,” winner of Cannes’ Un Certain Regard nod in 2008.  

 “(VO/Condor) aims at handling four films per year,” said Le Bot, who previously worked on the French roll-out of David Cronenberg’s “Cosmopolis,” among other releases.

 Added Condor topper Alexis Mas, “We’re particularly interested in U.S., Latin American and Asian indie films that can appeal to younger audiences and work well in secondary markets.”

 Le Bot said the company’s most successful release so far is Kurosawa’s mini-series “Shokuzai.” It came out in two parts on 40 prints and sold 150 000 tickets, grossing an estimated $950,000. 

 Next up, shingle will release Emilio Estevez’ “The Way” on Sept. 25. 

 Although the French distribution landscape is highly competitive, it counts only a handful of distributors – such as Pretty Pictures and Diaphana — that have a taste for U.S. indies which are not necessarily cast-driven or genre pics.






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