Film Movement has acquired North American rights to a quartet of awards titles — “Bent,” “Midaq Alley,” “All About Lily Chou-Chou” and “The Mad Adventures of ‘Rabbi’ Jacob,” Variety has learned exclusively.
The films will have limited theatrical releases, followed by digital and home entertainment releases in 2018 and early 2019 under the company’s three-year-old Classics label.
“We continue to expand our Classics imprint, and spend a great deal of time uncovering films that deserve to be reintroduced into North America” said Michael Rosenberg, president. “We’re thrilled to add these four films to our catalog, each of which stands the test of time, and delivers an original story, peerless filmmaking and memorable star turns.”
“Midaq Alley,” directed by Jorge Fons, won 49 international awards, including 11 Ariel Awards upon its release in 1995. The drama takes place in a rundown neighborhood in Mexico City where three people’s lives intertwine beginning one Sunday afternoon with two men in love with the tarot reader’s daughter, played by Salma Hayek in her first major role.
“Bent,” which follows one man’s struggle to maintain his dignity while imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp, was adapted in 1997 by Sean Mathias from the award-winning 1979 play by Martin Sherman. The film stars Lothaire Bluteau, Clive Owen, Brian Webber, Ian McKellen and Mick Jagger. “Bent” received the Prix de la jeunesse at Cannes and the Best Feature Award as the Torino International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.
“All About Lily Chou-Chou” from director Shunji Iwai is set among a group of adolescents growing up absurd in Japan’s pervasive pop/cyber culture. Hayato Ichihara portrays an 8th grader who worships Lily Chou-Chou, a Bjork-like chanteuse. The 2001 film won the CICAE Panorama Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival and a Special Jury Award at the Shanghai International Film Festival.
“The Mad Adventures of ‘Rabbi’ Jabob” was nominated for the Best Foreign Film award at the 1974 Golden Globes. The comedy stars Louis de Funès as a blustering, bigoted French factory owner who finds himself taken hostage by an Arab rebel leader. The two dress up as rabbis as they try to elude assassins and the police with de Funes posing as Rabbi Jacob, a beloved figure who’s returned to France for his first visit after 30 years in the United States.