French titles aplenty available in Toronto

Only 10 of 30 Gallic films have U.S. distribution deals

TORONTO -- A host of French titles remain unsold as they head to the Toronto International Film Festival, including Anne Fontaine's "Girl From Monaco" and Claire Denis' "35 Rhums."

Only 10 of the 30 French movies unspooling in Toronto have U.S. distribution deals in place. Five of those titles have been locked up by Sony Pictures Classics: Philippe Claudel's "I've Loved You So Long," Jean-Marie Straub's "Genou d'Artemide," Christophe Barratier's "Paris 36," the Dardennes brothers' "Lorna's Silence" and Ari Folman's animated documentary "Waltz with Bashir." The last two are minority French productions.

Other pick-ups include IFC Films with Arnaud Desplechin's "A Christmas Tale," Franck Vestiel's "Eden Log" (Magnolia Pictures), Amos Gitai's "Later" (Kino International), Pascal Laugier's "Martyrs" (The Weinstein Co.), Jean-Claude Van Damme starrer "JCVD" (Peace Arch Entertainment) and Jean-Francois Richet's "Public Enemy Number One" (Senator Entertainment).

The remaining Gallic titles up for grabs in Toronto include Barbet Schroeder's "Inju, la bete dans l'ombre," Francois Dupeyron's "With A Little Help From Myself," Rithy Panh's "Sea Wall" and Martin Provost's "Seraphine." All are booked in the high-profile Special Presentations sidebar.

Unsold in the Contemporary World Cinema program are Rabah Ameur-Zaimeche's "Adhen," Gilles Bourdos' "Afterwards," Karim Dridi's "Khamsa" and Safy Nebbou's "Mark of an Angel." Also looking for U.S. deals are Jacques-Remy Girerd's "Mia & The Migoo," Barmak Akram's "Kabuli Kid," Werner Schroeter's "Tonight" and two films from Agnes Varda: "Plages d'Agnes" and "Pointe-courte."

John Kochman, director of French film promotional body Unifrance USA, said that U.S. distributors have yet to see a number of Gallic titles that didn't screen in Cannes.
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