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Ombra, Blumhouse, LBI Set ‘Curve’

Universal to distribute horror thriller worldwide

SITGES – Jaume Collet-Serra’s Ombra Films, Jason Blum’s Blumhouse and Julie Yorn’s LBI are teaming to produce horror thriller “Curve,” with Iain Softley (“K-PAX,” “Trap For Cinderella”) attached to direct.

Collet-Serra’s producing partner Juan Sola will serve as executive producer with Erik Olsen. Universal Pictures has taken worldwide rights.

Currently in pre-production, and to shoot in Los Angeles, “Curve” stars Julianne Hough (“Paradise,” Footloose,” “Safe Haven”) as a young bride-to-be who is trapped in her overturned car off a deserted highway after deliberately crashing it in an attempt to escape a charming, predatory hitchhiker. 

Collet-Serra and Kimberly Johnson developed the screenplay for “Curve” while Collet-Serra was shooting “Orphan.” Original script is by Kimberly Johnson, re-write by Lee Paterson.

“We started the company with the idea of developing films which could mostly be shot in Spain or at least have Spanish elements. As you start to develop as a company, you start broadening out to take in other opportunities,” Sola said at Sitges.

Production details of “Curve” come as Ombra Films, which Collet-Serra and Sola launched in 2011 to tap into Spanish talent, world premiered Sunday at Sitges its first production, psychological thriller “Mindscape,” starring Mark Strong (“Sherlock Holmes”) as a man capable of entering other people’s memories who takes on the case of a 16-year-old girl (Taissa Farmiga) to determine whether she’s has a traumatized past or is a dangerous psychopath.

Trouble is, the investigator has his own unresolved traumas and the girl may be playing him, presenting false memories.

Twice-nominated for Spanish Academy Goya Awards – for shorts “La Guerra” and “”Nuevos Tiempos” – Spain’s Jorge Dorado makes his feature debut on “Mindscape.” 

Plushly shot by “The Impossible” d.p. Oscar Faura, “Mindscape” packs powerful partners: Warner Bros. Pictures Espana distributes in Spain; Atresmedia Cine co-produces; Studiocanal has acquired world sales rights. Peter Safron also takes a producer’s credit. Warner Bros. will release “Mindscape” in Spain on Jan. 31.

A second movie from Ombra, Pablo Larcuen’s “Hooked Up,” made for less than $20,000 and shot on an iPhone, again world premieres at Sitges.

Also on Ombra’s production slate, Shyam Madiraju survival thriller “Eden,” about a soccer team whose plane crashes on a deserted island, has two days of principal photography left to shoot in Los Angeles. Voltage Pictures is handling world sales rights outside Spain.

Ethan Peck (“Nothing Left To Fear”), Diego Boneta (“Rock of Ages”), Nate Parker (“Non-Stop”), Spain’s Mario Casas (“I Want Tou”), in his first English-language role, and Jessica Lowndes (“90210”) star. Pic also lensed in Malaysia.

Spain’s government confirmed last week it would pay back subsidies owed to producers. When it will pay, and whether it will pay in full, still remains to be seen however.

“There’s an amazing opportunity to keep on doing films like ‘Mindscape’ or ‘Grand Piano,” Sola said in Sitges.

“But producers can’t do it by themselves. Spanish subsidies are a tool needed by Ombra and everyone to keep on doing what we are doing,” he added.

Softley’s “The Wings of the Dove” was nominated for four U.S. Academy Awards including actress (Helena Bonham Carter) and adapted screenplay (Hossein Amini).

Emilio Mayorga contributed to this report

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