'Bel Ami' adaptation adds cast


LONDON -- Uma Thurman, Kristin Scott Thomas and Christina Ricci have joined Robert Pattinson in the cast of Declan Donnellan and Nick Ormerod's "Bel Ami," backers said Tuesday.

Adapted by Rachel Bennette from Guy de Maupassant novel of the same name, the co-directors are shooting in London and Budapest from this week.

The project details the story of a young man played by Pattinson in 1890s Paris who seduces his way to wealth and fame from a poor beginning. Sex and celebrity feature heavily in de Maupassant's novel and the big screen adaptation will also include turns from Holly Grainger, Philip Glenister and Colm Meaney.

British-based sales and finance house Protagonist Pictures said the picture is selling well ahead of the upcoming European Film Market in Berlin.

The sales outfit has struck deals with Rai Cinema in Italy to come aboard as a production backer, taking Italian rights in exchange. It has also gone to Studio Canal for France, the U.K. via label Optimum Releasing and its German release label Kinowelt. Protagonist is holding back on a North American deal at time of going to press.

"Bel Ami" is a Redwave Films production in association with Simon Fuller's new company XIX, Protagonist Pictures and RaiCinema.

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