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Having announced a bumper slate of English-language titles in Cannes, EuropaCorp used its first and CineEurope 2015’s last presentation to give exhibitors a bigger taste of what was to come from Luc Besson’s growing Paris-based mini-major.
For psychological thriller Shot In, star Naomi Watts sent a video message from the set in Montreal, saying that the film – shot in sub-zero temperatures and based around a troubled woman living in isolation – offered “great action.” EuropaCorp’s newly appointed president of U.S. marketing, Tommy Gargotta, said the film, due out in February 2016, featured “elements of The Shining and The Sixth Sense.”
Kevin Spacey served up the clips for feline comedy Nine Lives, also starring Jennifer Garner and Christopher Walken and utilizing the same special effects team behind Life of Pi.
The film sees Spacey’s workaholic character trapped in the body of a cat after an accident, with the actor claiming in a video message that it was “Face/Off, but with John Travolta being played like a cat.”
Back to EuropaCorp’s traditional high-octane fare, The Lake – written by Besson and Richard Wenk and telling the story of a group of Navy SEALs attempting to capture lost Nazi gold – was described as an “epic underwater action movie.” The film, directed by Steven Quale, who served as second unit director on both Avatar and Titanic, is due out in July 2016.
For Warriors Gate – the $48 million Chinese co-production with Fundamental – behind-the-scenes footage from the action fantasy was revealed, with director Matthias Hoene saying he wanted to avoid CGI to “capture the majesty” of shooting in China, and that the country’s backlots were “bigger than any studios anywhere else in the world.”
A brand new trailer for the Transporter prequel, Transporter Refueled, was also unveiled, introduced by its new lead, Game of Thrones star Ed Skrein. In typical CineEurope fashion, it came from an on-set video message, this time from the sidelines of the Deadpool shoot.
Although production is yet to start, EuropaCorp offered an elaborate animated “mood piece” introduction to its Colombian narco biopic Escobar, starring Javiar Bardem as the infamous cartel boss and Penelope Cruz as his wife, who “followed him to hell,” through whom the story is set to be told.
“Think Scarface meets The Godfather meets The Last King of Scotland,” said Gargotta.
But the biggest upcoming EuropaCorp title – actually the company’s “biggest project ever” – was saved till toward the end. Announced in Cannes and due out summer 2017, Valerian sees Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne take the lead in a big-budget space epic based on the French graphic novels.
With 23 books available, Gargotta confirmed that the company was hoping to start a major intergalactic franchise, and that there could be “10 movies and more.”
Although production is yet to begin, it was announced that Besson will be going to Comic-Con for the very first time to offer more details of his upcoming “passion project.”
EuropaCorp concluded its debut CineEurope bow with a quick reveal of its further afield future offerings, set to include the sequel to last year’s $450 million international hit, Lucy.
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