'Marley' Biopic Sells to Several International Territories (Berlin)

4:00 PM PST 02/15/2011 by Scott Roxborough

BERLIN -- Buyers are jamming for Kevin Macdonald's upcoming Bob Marley biopic Marley, with Fortissimo Films closing deals with Germany's Kinowelt and Wild Side in France on the basis of a few minutes of footage screened at Berlin's European Film Market.

South Africa's Nu Metro and Ascot Elite in Switzerland also took a toke of Marley, and Fortissimo said there are bidding wars between distributors in Australia and Benelux for the title, so several more deals are likely to come soon.

"The early footage we are showing at the EFM is an irresistible taster of what is to come, and we anticipate sealing further deals before the market concludes," said Fortissimo chairman Michael Werner.

The doc, produced by Tuff Gong Films and Shangri-La Entertainment in cooperation with Cowboy Films, will feature never-before seen footage from Marley's private family archive.

Macdonald, director of the award-winning documentaries One Day in September and Touching the Void, took over Marley after original helmer Martin Scorsese exited. Macdonald's latest, the Ridley Scott-produced doc Life in a Day has been a buzz title in Berlin.

"What made Bob tick is probably unanswerable, but viewers will certainly feel that they know him a little better after seeing our documentary," Macdonald said.

Marley is set for release later this year, to mark the 30th anniversary of the musician's death.

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