×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Berlin: IFC Films Buys Armando Iannucci’s ‘The Death of Stalin’ (EXCLUSIVE)

IFC Films has bought North American rights to “The Death of Stalin” out of the Berlin Film Festival’s European Film Market, Variety has learned.

Closed by Gaumont, the sale was in the seven figure range. A bidding war involved several distributors, including A24 and The Orchard, according to insiders.  The film is a comic look at how Joseph Stalin’s stroke in 1953 threw the USSR into chaos and inspired a mad power grab among his top advisers. It reunites IFC with Armando Iannucci. The company released the writer and director’s “In the Loop,” which earned Iannucci an Oscar nomination for its screenplay. He also created the Emmy-winning political satire “Veep” for HBO. Adrian McLoughlin plays Stalin. Iannucci specializes in a kind of four-letter filled lunacy and has long applied his rapier wit to taking down the pettiness of bureaucratic infighting in the likes of “In the Loop,” “Veep,” and “The Thick of It.” His attraction to Soviet Russia makes sense.

The all-star cast made this a hot title at Berlin. It includes Steve Buscemi (“Boardwalk Empire”), Simon Russell Beale (“Into the Woods”), Rupert Friend (“Homeland”), Jason Isaacs (the Harry Potter films), Michael Palin (“A Fish Called Wanda”), and Jeffrey Tambor (“Transparent”).

Iannucci wrote the screenplay with David Schneider and Ian Martin with additional material by Peter Fellows. Yann Zenou, Nicolas Duval-Adassovsky, Laurent Zeitoun and Kevin Loader produced the picture. 

Adapted from the French graphic novel by Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin, and based on a true story, “The Death of Stalin” chronicles the chaotic days before Stalin’s funeral, marked by fierce infighting for the supreme power.

CAA represented Gaumont, which financed the film, in the negotiations. Iannucci is represented by UTA.

More Film

  • Nona

    Film Review: 'Nona'

    Twenty years and 12 features down the line, it’s still hard to peg the directorial sensibility of Michael Polish, with or without the presence of brother Mark as frequent co-writer and actor. His output has been all over the place, from early Lynchian quirkfests to the very middle-of-the-road inspirational dramedy “The Astronaut Farmer,” not to [...]

  • Pawel Pawlikowski "Cold War"

    Pawel Pawlikowski's 'Cold War' Wins for Best Film, Director at European Film Awards

    “Cold War,” Pawel Pawlikowski’s black-and-white romance set in the 1950s, scooped the prizes for best film, director and screenplay at the 31st edition of the European Film Awards on Saturday. “Cold War” star Joanna Kulig also won the award for best actress. Marcello Fonte, the star of Matteo Garrone’s “Dogman,” won for best actor. Armando Iannucci’s [...]

  • The Favourite Bohemian Rapsody Star is

    The Best Movie Scenes of 2018

    When we think back on a movie that transported us, we often focus on a great scene — or maybe the greatest scene — in it. It’s natural. Those scenes are more than just defining. They can be the moment that lifts a movie into the stratosphere, that takes it to the higher reaches of [...]

  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

    Box Office: 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse' Soars Toward $35-40 Million Debut

    “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is swinging into theaters on a high note. Sony-Marvel’s latest output is launching to $42 million from 3,813 North American locations in its debut, though other more conservative estimates place that number at $35.5 million. The animated superhero story picked up $12.6 million on Friday, easily leading the pack for the weekend. [...]

  • Ventana Sur : Cinema226 Closes Four

    Cinema226 Announces Four Intl. Co-Productions, Hints at More (EXCLUSIVE)

    Mexico’s Cinema226, run by Marco Antonio Salgado and Sam Guillén, is driving into a raft of Mexico, Argentina and Spain co-productions, playing off the current vibrancy of Mexican film production funding and distribution outlets. Among the projects are titles which have been standouts at Ventana Sur’s Blood Window, the next film by Mexico-based Argentine filmmaker [...]

  • Ventana Sur Debates Gender Parity in

    Ventana Sur Debates Gender’s 50/50 in 2020 for Argentina Film Industry

    BUENOS AIRES — Despite recent gains, namely the equality pledge towards 50/50-2020 signed at the Mar del Plata Film Festival on Nov. 12, producer Magalí Nieva, pointed out that no representative from INCAA was present following the apparent resignation of its vice-president Fernando Juan Lima. “We are left without an interlocutor to discuss gender policies [...]

  • Ventana Sur Rocks with Sales, Mass

    Ventana Sur Rocks with Sales, Mass Attendance, Structural Growth

    BUENOS AIRES — Celebrating its 10th anniversary with a huge hike in attendance to over 4,000 accredited delegates, the 2018 Ventana Sur will go down in history on multiple counts: Sales and pick-ups on movies which combined social comment and entertainment value, increasingly the new foreign-language movie standard; new sections, led by a Proyecta co-production [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content