Bankable joins legion for 'March'

Marc Fiszman's outfit joins international co-prod'n

CANNES -- Marc Fiszman's Bankable films is cashing in on new international co-production "March or Die," about legionaries fighting for survival in 1940s Indochine.

Bankable, the production powerhouse behind 2006 boxoffice hit "Jean-Philippe" and upcoming Jean-Claude Van Damme starrer "JCVD," will back the 3 million euro ($4.7 million) first feature from French director Wahib.

Shooting is set to begin in July in Thailand, and Bankable hopes to finalize the budget through presales at Cannes' Marche du Film. Producers are in negotiations with a major French production/distribution company set to be finalized in the coming days along with German and Thai co-producers.

Set in March 1947, "March or Die" is based on the true story of a troop of legionaries cast into the jungle after pursuing Ho Chi Minh during the storming of Nimh Binh, who find themselves clinging to their lives. French, German and Thai actors will round out the international cast, but no major talents are expected.

"It's a very violent movie. All of the actors will die one after the other, so it would actually be a handicap to have big stars involved," Fiszman said.

Bankable's "JCVD," the first French-language film for Belgian-born action star Van Damme, is set for a June release in Gaul and will be on international sales agent Gaumont's slate at the Cannes market.