AFM: SPK Pictures to Finance New Films From Julian Schnabel, Harmony Korine (Exclusive)

Daniel Zuchnik/WireImage; Desiree Navarro/WireImage
Julian Schnabel (left), Harmony Korine

The Swiss shingle, run by Zurich Film Festival head Karl Spoerri, will back Schnabel's van Gogh biopic 'At Eternity's Gate' and Korine's 'The Beach Bum' together with Riverstone Pictures.

Zurich-based SPK Pictures has boarded its first two films as an investor, bankrolling the new features from art-house favorites Julian Schnabel and Harmony Korine.

SPK will help finance Schnabel's upcoming Vincent van Gogh biopic At Eternity's Gate and Korine's The Beach Bum. Both projects are also backed by Riverstone Pictures and are being sold by Rocket Science to buyers at AFM.

Willem Dafoe is playing van Gogh in At Eternity's Gate, alongside Star Wars alum Oscar Isaac, who will play friend and fellow artist Paul Gauguin. Jon Kilik (The Hunger Games) is producing. Schnabel, an acclaimed artist in his own right, made his directing debut with another artist biopic: 1996's Basquiat, which chronicled the troubled life of New York graffiti artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Schnabel is currently shooting At Eternity's Gate from a screenplay by Jean-Claude Carierre (The Unbearable Lightness of Being).

Korine's The Beach Bum will star Oscar-winner Matthew McConaughey as Moondog, a poet, rebel and, yes, beach bum who lives life on his own terms. Steve Golin (Spotlight) and John Lesher (Birdman) will produce with Korine regular Charles-Marie Anthonioz (Spring Breakers). Principal photography is set to start this month in Florida.

SPK Pictures is a Swiss production fund set up by Zurich Film Festival co-founder and artistic director Karl Spoerri to finance and produce smart commercial films and art-house productions with crossover potential.

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