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Cannes 2012: Zalman King Makes a Posthumous Appearance With His Final Film

DEATHS: Zalman King
David Livingston/Getty Images
Zalman King.

The director's "Kamikaze Love" gets a new title, and is being offered in the market by Moonstone Entertainment.

Zalman King died, at the age 70, in February, but he is making something of a posthumous appearance at this year’s market, where Moonstone Entertainment’s Etchie Stroh is offering the director’s final feature.

At the time of his death, King had just completed shooting a film called Kamikaze Love. But given that King was a veritable brand name in the world of erotic cinema, where he was known for films like 1989’s Wild Orchid and the Red Shoes Diaries TV series, the film has been retitled Zalman King’s Pleasure and Pain for its market debut.

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With David Saunders, King’s longtime producer partner, exec producing, along with Jonathan Krogman and Amnon Lisbona, the film stars Malena Morgan as a young designer who falls under the erotic sway of an older man, played by Christos Vasilopoulus. “It’s about the sensual adventures and sexual education of a young woman,” says Stroh, who is betting that it will find a receptive audience among buyers, primed by the currently popularity of the similarly-themed book Fifty Shades of Grey and curious to see King’s final films.

Although Stroh represented many of King’s works over the years, he reports that King himself was not a regular here on the Croisette. “In many respects, he was very shy,” says Stroh. “He actually was a great family man.”

The Zalman King Company also has struck a deal with SexArt, a new website launched by the owners and operators of MetArt, a high-end erotic photography site. SexArt will present Zalman King’s Pleasure and Pain in webisode form, targeting the growing online female audience for erotic fare, while promoting the film itself.