Luc Besson's big-budget sci-fi epic Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is moving to another galaxy, and will now be released by STX Entertainment, along with several other EuropaCorp films.
STX and EuropaCorp USA have entered into a three-year agreement for STX to provide theatrical marketing and distribution services for EuropaCorp’s upcoming motion picture releases in the U.S.
Along with Besson’s film, STX will release The Circle, starring Tom Hanks, Emma Watson and John Boyega and directed by James Ponsoldt; Lone Scherfig’s Their Finest, a romantic comedy-drama set in World War II Great Britain starring Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy; and Renegades, a heist adventure written by Besson and Richard Wenk, directed by Steven Quale and starring Sullivan Stapleton and J.K. Simmons.
"Luc Besson is a visionary entrepreneur, storyteller and filmmaker and we are enormously excited to be working with him and his entire team releasing EuropaCorp’s slate of motion pictures in the United States," Adam Fogelson, chairman of STX Entertainment's Motion Picture Group, said Tuesday in a statement. "Additionally, Marc Shmuger is not only a gifted executive but a friend to many in our company. Together we’ve enjoyed great successes in the past, and we all share a marketing shorthand that will make this an especially potent partnership."
Valerian was produced and financed by Besson’s EuropaCorp and was slated to be released by RED, EuropaCorp's and Relativity Media’s joint venture. But the upheaval at Relativity over the past year, including the recent exit of Dana Brunetti as president and Ryan Kavanaugh's decision to step back at the company, has left RED in a troubled state.
The film, a longtime passion project for Besson with a reported budget of at least $180 million, stars Dane DeHaan as the time-traveling hero Valerian and Cara Delevingne as his love interest and partner, Laureline. Ethan Hawke, Clive Owen and John Goodman also star in the adaptation of a 1960s-era French comic book.
“We can’t wait to get started on this partnership with our friends at STX," Besson said in a statement. "I worked with Adam when he championed Lucy at Universal, and I have great faith in him and the marketing and distribution team.”
STX's recent films include comedies The Edge of Seventeen and Bad Moms, along with Free State of Jones and the upcoming sci-fi pic The Space Between Us.