CineEurope: Fox Searchlight Shares First Footage From James Gandolfini's Final Film

5:34 AM PST 06/26/2013 by Pamela McClintock
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James Gandolfini.

A top Searchlight executive introducing "Animal Rescue" tells international theater owners, "we are all very deeply saddened and feel very honored to have worked with him."

BARCELONA -- Fox Searchlight paid tribute to James Gandolfini when sharing the first footage from crime-drama Animal Rescue, the last film the actor shot before his death June 19 in Italy.

Gandolfini, who plays a bar owner in the crime drama, stars opposite Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace.

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"We were all very deeply saddened and feel very honored to have worked with him. This was the last film he shot," Fox Searchlight International executive vice president of marketing Rebecca Kearey said during her presentation at CineEurope, the annual gathering of foreign theater owners in Barcelona.

Hardy plays the lead character in Animal Rescue, written by Dennis Lehane. The film follows bartender who gets mixed up with the Chechen mob.

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Animal Rescue just went into post-production. A release date has not been set.

Searchlight had been planning to show footage of Nicole Holofcener's untitled romantic comedy also starring Gandolfini, but sources say it wasn't appropriate in light of the movie's comedic tone. Toni Collete and Julia Louis-Dreyfus star opposite the late actor in that film.

Animal Rescue was among a handful of high-profile Searchlight titles promoted by Kearey during her time on the stage at CineEurope. They included upcoming dramedy The Way, Way Back, Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel, which has just wrapped, Birdman and Far From the Madding Crowd, headlining Carey Mulligan.

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