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Sewell to star in ‘Helen’

Helmer Gilbert's soph pic will be at CRC co-pro meet

Rufus Sewell will star in child abuse drama “Helen,” Irish writer-director Virginia Gilbert’s sophomore pic.

Project teams France’s “A Prophet” producer Chic Films and 1.85 Films with Ireland’s Grand Pictures.

The Paris-set “Helen” turns on David (Sewell), a divorced 40-year-old man who lives with his 12-year-old daughter Helen, who one day announces that her mother’s new husband has molested her.

Producers plan to shoot in Paris this summer, said Chic Films’ Lauranne Bourrachot.

Gilbert’s first feature, romantic drama “A Long Way From Home,” starring James Fox, is in post.

“Helen” will be one of 23 European projects pitched at the Berlinale’s 7th Capital Regions for Cinema (CRC) Co-Production Meeting on Tuesday, looking for co-production and distribution deals, Bourrachot said.

The CRC network — formed by the Ile-de-France, Lazio and Madrid Film Commissions and the Berlin-Brandenburg Film Board — is key in the drive towards pan-European film co-production.

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Also at the meet, Germany’s Pandora Films’ subsid Pola Pandora will search for co-producers for Alice Rohrwacher’s drama “When You Were Born.”

“Born” has already lined up Italy’s RAI Cinema, Switzerland’s Amka, Italo distributor Sacher Film and sales agent Match Factory. Pic will roll late summer in Italy.

Projects from Italy also include Gianni Amelio’s dramedy “L’intrepido,” produced by Palomar with RAI, which has confirmed €2.3 million ($3.1 million) of its $4.4 million budget, and is looking for French and German co-producers.

Bibi Film will seek partners for Paola Randi’s sci-fi family comedy “Tito il piccolo,” another RAI co-production.

Spanish highlights include Manuel Estudillo’s debut “Prisoners of Paradise,” a concentration camp drama picked up by Fox Distribution Spain, which is TV company Grupo Ganga’s entry into film production.

Jana Films’ Ana Rodriguez (“Looking for Eimish”), a regular participant at CRC events, brings her soph feature, action drama “Parkour,” a co-production with Germany’s Homero Films and Latvia’s Baltic Films.

Canada’s film industry, one of the most in-demand international territories for co-production, will be the event’s special guest.

“Our aim is to get to know the Canadian film financing system better,” said Olivier-Rene Veillon, Ile-de-France Film Commission exec director.

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