Abu Dhabi fund bears first fruit


A movie based on George A. Romero's 1974 cult classic "The Crazies" and the Brendan Fraser family comedy "Furry Vengeance" will benefit from cash from the $250 million movie fund created by Imagenation Abu Dhabi, owned by Abu Dhabi Media and Participant Media.

The high-profile projects are among the first to benefit from the rolling fund set up in September.

The cash pool will partner on "Crazies" with U.S. distributor-financier Overture Films, which will distribute in North America. Par Vantage is on board to sell the pic, which revolves around the inhabitants of a small Iowa town beset by insanity then death after a mysterious toxin contaminates their water supply. It stars Timothy Olyphant, Radha Mitchell, Danielle Panabaker and Joe Anderson and is directed by Breck Eisner from a script by Ray Wright and Scott Kosar.

The fund also plans to partner on "Furry" with Summit Entertainment. Summit will distribute in the U.S. and is handling worldwide sales. Starring Fraser as a man who uproots his family from the big city to launch a housing subdivision in the Oregon wilderness, "Furry" is directed by Roger Kumble from a script by Michael Carnes and Josh Gilbert.

Both titles are being sold internationally here. (partialdiff)