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Cannes: Saban Films Takes U.S. Rights on Action Thriller ‘24 Hours to Live’

Saban Films has acquired U.S. rights to Ethan Hawke action thriller “24 Hours to Live,” from “John Wick” franchise producer Basil Iwanyk.

Directed by former stunt coordinator Brian Smrz, “24 Hours to Live” stars Hawke as a career assassin who turns rogue after his latest mission goes awry. Chinese actress Xu Qing, Paul Anderson, Liam Cunningham and Rutger Hauer co-star. Saban plans a U.S. theatrical release later this year.

The film was written by Zachary Dean, based on an original script from Ron Mita and Jim McClain. It is produced by Iwanyk of Thunder Road Pictures and Mark Gao and Gregory Ouanhon of Shanghai-based Fundamental Films, which also fully financed the film. Kent Kubena, Jon Kuyper, Jonathan Fuhrman and Gary Glushon serve as executive producers.

“We’ve been following this project from the script stage, and are very excited we were able to make a deal,” said Bill Bromiley, president of Saban Films. “It’s the kind of high octane thriller we’ve come to know and understand.”

The film is Smrz’s sophomore directorial feature. He has served as stunt coordinator on numerous Hollywood blockbusters, including John Woo’s “Face/Off” and “Mission: Impossible II,” Barry Sonnenfeld’s “Men in Black” and Steven Spielberg’s “Minority Report.” Iwanyk previously recruited another former stunt coordinator, Chad Stahelski, for the hit “John Wick” films, starring Keanu Reeves.

The acquisition was negotiated with CAA, which handled U.S. rights, by Ness Saban and Bill Bromiley for Saban Films. Sierra/Affinity is handling international sales and will screen the film for buyers at Cannes.

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