Cannes 2012: Sony Pictures Classics Takes Historic Drama 'No'

1:36 AM PST 05/22/2012 by Scott Roxborough

In director Pablo Larrain’s drama, from Participant Media, Gael Garica Bernal plays an advertising executive who designs a campaign against Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet.

CANNES – Sony Pictures Classics has said yes to No, picking up all North American rights to the Chilean drama starring Gael Garcia Bernal.

The deal for the Participant Media film marks one of the few U.S. acquisitions at the Cannes Film Festival so far. No, directed by Pablo Larrain, premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight section of the Cannes film festival.

"This movie is a masterfully engaging and energetic drama about politics and power, a tonic for the brain that is also a major entertainment,” SPC said in a statement. “No establishes Pablo Larrain as a major international director and Gael Garcia Bernal gives his finest performance.”

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In the historic drama, based on a true story, Bernal plays an advertising executive who spearheads an ad campaign aimed at winning a referendum aimed at ousting Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. In 1988, facing international pressure to reform, Pinochet held a referendum in which voters had to choose Yes to keep the dictator or No to kick him out

“Pablo, Gael and the team made a brave, inspiring film, and we are grateful to the audiences at Cannes for embracing it so warmly,” said Participant Media CEO Jim Berk. “Sony Pictures Classics is the perfect partner to introduce this film to American audiences.”   

Jeff Ivers and Jonathan King of Participant Media negotiated the deal with SPC.

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