×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

MUBI, in Cannes With ‘Port Authority,’ Steps Up Production Activity (EXCLUSIVE)

Streaming service MUBI — whose first production, transgender love story “Port Authority” from first-time director Danielle Lessovitz, is in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard — is stepping up film production activity. It now has plans for a 10-picture slate, including a film from French director Rachel Lang.

MUBI has boarded Lang’s “Mon Legionnaire,” her follow-up to “Baden Baden,” which launched in 2016 at Berlin and was MUBI’s first U.S. theatrical release. “Legionnaire,” a drama set against the backdrop of the Foreign Legion, is currently shooting.

Efe Cakarel, CEO of the arthouse streaming service, said he was delighted with Un Certain Regard’s plum Saturday evening slot for the premiere of “Port Authority,” which MUBI boarded in the development stage and co-financed with Rodrigo Teixeira’s RT Features and Martin Scorsese’s Sikelia, which executive produced. WME and France’s MK2 are selling the pic in Cannes, handling U.S. and international, respectively.

“When it comes to production, our approach is different,” said Cakarel, “because we are not trying to optimize the films we finance to come on MUBI exclusively. … We want to make sure that what’s best for the film is the highest possible return on investment for everyone.”

Popular on Variety

Cakarel said the mandate in the first year is to develop about 10 projects and produce two or three films with budgets of about $5 million in tandem with other producers, by initially taking a stake of “anywhere up to 30%” and then “put IN more and more capital in coming years and increase the team working on this slate.”

MUBI senior VP Bobby Allen, who is now fully focused on production, said he had high hopes for a “good theatrical release” for “Port Authority,” which is set in the world of New York’s LGBT Kiki ballroom scene. MUBI has long had a foot in both the streaming and theatrical release camps.

Allen also underlined that he sees MUBI as a “bridge” between English and non-English-language filmmaking, with a preference for U.S. indie films on the English-lingo side. “We really want to be present as producers in both markets,” he said.

The MUBI platform offers a lineup of 30 movies. A new title is added each day as another is removed.

More Film

  • Best Served Cold

    Horror-Action Film 'Best Served Cold' Poised for Singapore-Malaysia Co-Production Status

    Singapore’s 108 Media has secured the support of the Malaysian authorities to develop horror-action film “Best Served Cold,” based on the short story “Don’t Eat The Rice” by Sabah-based author Jill Girardi and characters in her novel “Hantu Macabre.” The adaptation is by writer-director Aaron Cowan. The film could be one of the first to [...]

  • Lamia Chraïbi Teams With Hicham Lasri

    Lamia Chraibi Teams With Hicham Lasri on Pan-Arab Supernatural Series 'Meskoun' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Lamia Chraibi, a leading producer of daring films from the Middle East and North Africa region, is developing “Meskoun,” an ambitious pan-Arab genre-bending series with Moroccan filmmaker Hicham Lasri (“Jahilya”) on board as showrunner. Chraibi (“Mimosas”) will produce the 14-episode series with her Moroccan banner La Prod, along with Mohamed Hefzy’s Egyptian company Film Clinic, [...]

  • Leap! first draft picks

    ATF: Leap! to Discover the Next Generation of Singapore Talent

    Singapore has launched a scheme to help find the next generation of filmmakers from the South East Asia region. Local content producers Blue3Asia and CreativesAtWork, with the support of Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority launched the Leap!, a short film production scheme at the ongoing Asian TV Forum & Market on Thursday. Seven filmmakers from [...]

  • Mikhail Red

    ScreenSingapore: Mikhail Red Announces Philippines Western ‘Arisaka’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    Cult Filipino filmmaker, Mikhail Red will direct “Arisaka,” a film named after a World War II Japanese bolt-action rifle. “It’s a Western based on a famous massacre that happened in the Philippines,” Red told Variety. Philippines production house Ten17P, whose credits include Lav Diaz’s “A Lullaby To The Sorrowful Mystery” and Paul Soriano’s “Mananita,” will [...]

  • Stephen Graham Venom 2

    'Irishman' Star Stephen Graham Joins 'Venom 2'

    Stephen Graham is set to join Tom Hardy and Michelle Williams in Sony’s “Venom 2,” with Hardy returning as the titular anti-hero. Andy Serkis is set to direct, and Naomie Harris and Woody Harrelson are also on board. Sony had no comment on the casting. The original film was a huge hit for the studio [...]

  • Sundance Winner Eugene Jarecki Prepares ‘Tuareg

    Sundance Winner Eugene Jarecki Prepares 'Tuareg Project' in Morocco

    Eugene Jarecki – two times winner of the Sundance Grand Jury Prize – for “Why We Fight” (2005) and “The House I Live In” (2012) – is preparing an untitled “Tuareg Project,” that he will shoot in Morocco. The pic will be produced by Addison O’Dea (“Discovery TRVLR”), and line produced by Moroccan producer Zakaria [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content