Gaumont Lands U.S. Remake Rights for South Korean Zombie Hit 'Train to Busan'

'Train to Busan'

The French studio snapped the sought-after rights for the action film that smashed box-office records across Asia.

Gaumont has picked up U.S. remake rights of Train to Busan, one of the biggest South Korean box-office hits of all time, the French studio announced Wednesday.

Danny Lee and Vincent Kim at Contents Panda, in charge of international sales and distribution of Train to Busan, negotiated the deal with Cecile Gaget, Gaumont's head of international production and distribution. Gaumont was among a number of studios that The Hollywood Reporter exclusively reported to be pursuing the deal.

The zombie actioner produced by RedPeter Film and released by Next Entertainment World grossed over $83.5 million at home this summer, after premiering at Cannes. The film reached 11.6 million admissions, which accounts for over a fifth of the South Korean population. Train to Busan was sold to over 150 territories and was a huge success in Hong Kong, Singapore and Vietnam, among other countries.

"We've been chasing this remake since the Cannes Film Festival where the whole team loved it so much, and we are excited to start working on the U.S. adaptation that will mark our foray into English language movies in Los Angeles," said Gaumont CEO Sidonie Dumas in a statement.

Said Kim Woo-taek, CEO of NEW: "We are more than happy to start our business with Gaumont, one of the greatest film companies with rich experience in terms of global projects. We hope this opportunity could let Korean films get more attention and be familiar with the audience all over the world."

Critically acclaimed animator Yeon Sang-ho made his live-action directorial debut with Train to Busan. The thriller chronicles the chaos that ensues after a deadly virus sweeps through Korea and passengers must fight for their survival aboard a bullet train from Seoul to the southern port city of Busan, which is ensconced from the outbreak.

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