×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Cannes: ‘I, Daniel Blake’ Writer, BBC Films, Match Factory Board Carlos Acosta Biopic (EXCLUSIVE)

BBC Films is set to produce a biopic of Cuban ballet superstar Carlos Acosta from “I, Daniel Blake” writer Paul Laverty. Germany’s The Match Factory will handle worldwide sales on the project, titled “Yuli,” and introduce it to buyers in Cannes.

Currently in pre-production, “Yuli” will see the world-renowned dancer star as himself, with two younger Cuban actors playing him at earlier stages of his life. Directed by Spanish filmmaker Iciar Bollain, it is scheduled to shoot in Havana at the end of this year. “Yuli” marks Laverty’s fourth collaboration with Bollain, a relationship that started with 2010’s “Even the Rain.”

Inspired by Acosta’s autobiography “No Way Home,” the film tells the story of his rise from the streets of Havana to the heights of classical ballet, becoming the first black principal guest dancer at the Royal Ballet in London. The film will feature eight contemporary dance pieces that represent key moments in Acosta’s life, to be performed by his Havana-based dance company.

Laverty’s collaborations with British auteur Ken Loach have become a staple of the Cannes Film Festival. Nine of their films have received world premieres in official competition, winning eight prizes, including a Palme d’Or last year, for “I, Daniel Blake,” and in 2006 for “The Wind That Shakes the Barley.” Their 2002 film “Sweet Sixteen” won Laverty Cannes’ best screenplay award.

Bollain’s “Even the Rain” cinematographer Alex Catalan and Academy Award nominated composer Alberto Iglesias have also signed on for “Yuli.” Catalan won a Goya Award for best cinematography for his work on 2014 film “Marshland.” Iglesias has been nominated three times for an Oscar for his original scores to “The Constant Gardener,” “The Kite Runner” and “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.”

“Yuli” was developed by BBC Films, which produces alongside the U.K.’s Potboiler Prods. and Spain’s Morena Films. Germany’s Match Factory Prods. and France’s Mandarin are also co-producing.

More Film

  • FX's 'Snowfall' Panel TCA Winter Press

    John Singleton Hospitalized After Suffering Stroke

    UPDATED with statements from John Singleton’s family and FX Networks John Singleton, the Oscar nominated director and writer of “Boyz N’ the Hood,” has suffered a stroke. Sources confirm to Variety that Singleton checked himself into the hospital earlier this week after experiencing pain in his leg. The stroke has been characterized by doctors as [...]

  • 'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow

    'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow Easter Weekend at the Box Office

    New Line’s horror pic “The Curse of La Llorona” will summon a solid $25 million debut at the domestic box office, leading a quiet Easter weekend before Marvel’s “Avengers: Endgame” hits theaters on April 26. The James Wan-produced “La Llorona,” playing in 3,372 theaters, was a hit with hispanic audiences, who accounted for nearly 50% [...]

  • Jim Jarmusch in 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    Film Review: 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    “Carmine Street Guitars” is a one-of-a-kind documentary that exudes a gentle, homespun magic. It’s a no-fuss, 80-minute-long portrait of Rick Kelly, who builds and sells custom guitars out of a modest storefront on Carmine Street in New York’s Greenwich Village, and the film touches on obsessions that have been popping up, like fragrant weeds, in [...]

  • Missing Link Laika Studios

    ‘Missing Link’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Annapurna Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Missing Link.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.91 million through Sunday for [...]

  • Little Woods

    Film Review: 'Little Woods'

    So much of the recent political debate has focused on the United States’ southern border, and on the threat of illegal drugs and criminals filtering up through Mexico. But what of the north, where Americans traffic opiates and prescription pills from Canada across a border that runs nearly three times as long? “Little Woods” opens [...]

  • Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping

    Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping $60 Million (EXCLUSIVE)

    Netflix has become a destination for television visionaries like Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, with deals worth $100 million and $250 million, respectively, and top comedians like Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle ($40 million and $60 million, respectively). The streaming giant, which just announced it’s added nearly 10 million subscribers in Q1, is honing in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content