In today’s Global Bulletin, “The Prince of Egypt” musical plans its return to London’s West End, BBC Arts unveils a slate of TV and radio adaptations for its Lights Up festival, Festival MiX Milano rebrands as MiX International Festival of LGBTQ+ Cinema and Queer Culture, Mip Cancun announces 2021 in-person market dates and details, and Telefilm backs two new features in Canada.
Following the latest U.K. government guidance on the easing of lockdown restrictions, DreamWorks Theatricals has announced that “The Prince of Egypt” musical theater adaptation of the DreamWorks Animation classic film, will resume live performances at London’s Dominion Theater in the West End on July 1 and has extended its booking through Jan. 8, 2022.
As an extra precautionary measure, performances from July 1 through Sept. 4 will be held under Step 3 protocols, including strict social distancing restrictions. Starting Sept. 6, performances will take place under Step 4 protocols, with limits on social contact lifted.
“The sheer size of this historic venue allows for full social distancing and, as soon as all legal limits on social contact are removed, we will return to our full audience capacity at the earliest opportunity,” said DreamWorks Theatricals producer Michael McCabe and Neil Laidlaw in a statement. “In re-opening, we are proud to re-unite our exceptional company and provide employment again for 149 uniquely talented individuals. We’d like to thank each and every one of them for their unwavering commitment and resilience during this difficult time for everyone in our industry.”
“The Prince of Egypt” is directed by Scott Schwartz with choreography by Sean Cheesman. It’s produced by DreamWorks Theatricals, a division of Universal Theatrical Group.
The Royal Shakespeare Company will, for the first time in its history, premiere one of its productions, “The Winter’s Tale,” on BBC television as part of Lights Up, a U.K. theater festival comprised of productions which were closed or never even opened because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of the BBC Arts’ Culture in Quarantine initiative, the organization has announced several plays adapted for the screen and radio. BBC Four and BBC iPlayer will broadcast “J’Ouvert,” Yasmin Joseph’s debut play and the directorial debut of actor Rebekah Murrell and rapper-playwright Testament’s “Orpheus In The Record Shop,” which fuses spoken word and beatboxing with classical music.
A raft of audio adaptations are headed to various BBC radio stations and BBC Sounds including “The Meaning Of Zong,” about the notorious massacre aboard the slave ship Zong in 1781, for Radio 3; “Folk,” a new play from Nell Leyshon; “Stripe By Stripe And Other Stories,” a collection of short stories told from a Black woman’s point of view; Olivia Hannah’s “Braids,” directed by Chinonyerem Odimba; Nick Dear’s “Dedication”; and Nadia Fall’s “Welcome To Iran.”
Spain Broadcaster-Streamer Movistar Plus and ViacomCBS Global Distribution Group have renewed their exclusive licensing deal, which will make Showtime Original series “Dexter,” “American Rust,” “Flatbush Misdemeanors,” and “Yellowjackets” made available on Movistar Plus in the region this year.
Last October, ViacomCBS’ AVOD service Pluto TV was launched in Spain in an alliance with the market’s biggest content investor, Movistar Plus, as part of an existing ad-sales alliance. The partnership has seen Movistar Plus sell Pluto TV’s conventional advertising in Spain, and is expected to help Pluto TV’s offering reach 100 available channels in Spain by the end of the year.
Italy’s Festival MiX Milano is changing its name to MiX International Festival of LGBTQ+ Cinema and Queer Culture in a rebranding move aimed at boosting the event’s international standing.
Founded in 1986 and dedicated from the outset to global LGBTQ+ cinema, the MiX fest over the years has grown to become a prominent European platform for movies addressing themes such as civil rights battles, diversity and inclusion. Canada’s Xavier Dolan and Bruce LaBruce, France’s Sébastien Lifshitz, Christophe Honoré, New-York based Marie Losier, and Kim Longinotto of the U.K., are among directors who have launched films from MiX and made the trek to Milan.
The MiX fest’s upcoming 35th edition will take place in September 2021 using a hybrid formula combining physical screenings at Milan’s prestigious Piccolo Teatro venue as well as via a streaming platform viewable in Italy. This formula, tested in 2020, achieved a good turnout of more than 8,000 online views, organizers say.
Along with its new name and logo for the 35th edition the MiX fest is also announcing its open call to filmmakers from all over the world: anyone can send their works via the entry form until May 31, 2021. – Nick Vivarelli
Reed Midem’s leading Latin America-U.S. crossover film and TV market Mip Cancun will return with a physical, in-person event at Cancun’s Moon Palace Resort, Nov. 16-19.
2021 will see leading Latin American and international distributors, buyers, producers and commissioners get together in person for four days of highly anticipated and sorely missed face-to-face meetings, many for the first time in more than a year.
Mip Cancun 2021 will be broken down into three main sections, the Distribution Market, including 17-25 face-to-face pre-scheduled meetings between distributors and international buyers operating in the Hispanic markets of Latin America and the U.S.; Co-Production Forum, 10-15 pre-arranged meetings between regional producers and commissioners seeking to develop co-production opportunities; and the Conference Program featuring keynote sessions and speeches focused on the Latin American and Hispanic markets.
Canadian cinematographer Jordan Oram (“Spiral”) and screenwriter Andrew Burrows-Trotman (“Frankie Drake Mysteries”) are teaming with producer Kari Hollend on a pair of new feature films, backed by Telefilm funding and looking for potential co-producers.
“Eugenie” is a psychological thriller that follows its titular protagonist, an elderly Caribbean woman who lives alone and must deal with her worsening dementia, convinced that dark spiritual forces have entered her home. Burrows-Trotman borrows from his mother’s own story for inspiration. An immigrant herself, she suffered from dementia before contracting COVID-19 and passing last year.
“Tarbaby” is a historical drama which unspools in the world of boxing to recount the story of Sam Lanford, known as the Boston Tar Baby, one of Canada and the world’s greatest pugilists who fought at the turn of the 20th century and faced constant racism and adversity throughout his career. Renowned Canadian boxing promoter and manager Lee Baxter will serve as executive producer.