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‘Bel Canto’ With Julianne Moore, Ken Watanabe Sells to Screen Media (EXCLUSIVE)

Screen Media has acquired North American rights to “Bel Canto,” Paul Weitz’s adaptation of the acclaimed Ann Patchett novel. The drama about a hostage crisis stars Julianne Moore and Ken Watanabe. Opera legend Renée Fleming contributes vocals to the film. A national theatrical release is planned for September.

“Bel Canto” centers on Roxane Coss (Moore), a famous American soprano, who travels to South America to give a private concert at the birthday party of a Japanese mogul (Watanabe). The festivities are interrupted by guerrillas demanding the release of their imprisoned comrades. A lengthy standoff ensues, and as talks drag on bonds are formed between hostages and captors.

Sebastian Koch, Christopher Lambert, Ryo Kase, Tenoch Huerta and María Mercedes Coroy round out the cast. The film was written by Anthony Weintraub and Weitz. It is produced by Caroline Baron and Anthony Weintraub of A-Line Pictures; Weitz and Andrew Miano of Depth of Field; and Lizzie Friedman, Karen Lauder and Greg Little, who are producing and financing through their company Priority Pictures.

“I’m so happy with Screen Media’s passion for the movie,” said Weitz. “It was a joy filming it, and working with actors from such disparate backgrounds”

Seth Needle of Screen Media negotiated the deal. Endeavor Content represented the filmmakers.

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