Martin Scorsese's 'Silence' Lands Key Foreign Territory Deals

Martin Scorsese

Says Scorsese: "Lois Smith was a legend: warm, wise, funny and generous -- one of the sharpest people in the business. She was my friend, and I am lucky to have known and worked with her."

The 17th century epic, set in Japan, stars Andrew Garfield and Ken Watanabe.

Martin Scorsese's historical drama Silence has secured a number of key territory deals after the filmmaker personally showed up at the Cannes Film Market to tout the passion project for IM Global. The film is set to star Andrew Garfield and Ken Watanabe.

Based on Shusaku Endo’s 1966 novel of the same name, Silence tells the story of two 17th century Portuguese missionaries who undertake a perilous journey to Japan to search for their mentor, and to spread the gospel of Christianity. The script was adapted by Scorsese and Jay Cocks.

PHOTOS: Martin Scorsese On Set

Scorsese is set to start shooting in Taiwan in July 2014. The film is being financed by Emmett/Furla Films, Paul Breuls' Corsan Films and Len Blavatnik's Al Films. Randall Emmett and George Furla are producing alongside Emma Koskoff of Sikelia Productions, Irwin Winkler, Vittorio Cecchi Gori and Barbara DeFina. Niels Juul and Paul Breuls are executive producing.

Key deals closed by Stuart Ford's IM Global include Metropolitan for France, Concorde for Germany, Gaga for Japan, RAI for Italy, Gussi for Latin America, Transmission for Australia, Mis. Label for Scandinavia, Paradiso for Benelux, JMD Entertainment for South Korea, Aqua for Turkey, Lusomundo for Portugal, United King for Israel, Golden Scene for Hong Kong, Spentzos for Greece, Padora for Ex-Yugoslavia, Catchplay for Taiwan, MVP for Singapore and Apsara for India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.

“Any Martin Scorsese project is an event, but having a directorial legend come and explain his vision for the project in his own words and in his own inimitable style was an unforgettable Cannes experience and inevitably resulted in a flood of interest and very strong sales. I wish they could all be this much fun," said Ford, adding that he is in the process of negotiating additional deals.