Hyde Park pumps Asia

Ashok Amritraj's Hyde Park Entertainment is expanding its Asian operations with a multimillion-dollar film fund. Launching in the fall, the fund will provide about $54 million-$72 million of equity and debt for the production of feature films. Hyde Park Asia's offices will be based in Singapore. Hyde Park already has films shooting in Asia, including "Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li," which is based on the Japanese video game franchise, and "The Other End of the Line," a romantic comedy that will be released by MGM.

call of the 'Forest'

Anjelica Huston, Giovanni Ribisi, Sean Astin and Ron Perlman are lending their voices to the English version of Dygra Films' animated "Spirit of the Forest." Manga Films will handle distribution in Spain, with a release set for Sept. 5. Hollywood Fantastic Films International handles international sales of "Spirit," whose story line offers an environmentally aware message. The film already has been sold to 30 countries.

int'l team on 'rabia'

Celluloid Dreams is teaming with Spain's Telecinco Cinema and Monfort Producciones, Colombia's Dynamo and Mexico's Tequila Gang on "Rabia." The $5.3 million romantic thriller was written and directed by Sebastian Cordero, whose most recent film, "Cronicas," was presented at Un Certain Regard in 2004. "Rabia" is doing principal photography on locations near San Sebastian for eight weeks.

Pataky a 'Thunder' girl

Spanish actress Elsa Pataky has been cast as the superhero's girlfriend — Sigrid of Thule, a Viking princess — in Maltes' $30 million "Captain Thunder." Walt Disney Motion Pictures Iberia holds Spanish rights and first option on U.S. distribution for the adventure movie based on Spain's popular comic book hero Captain Trueno, a 12th century knight-errant who wanders the world fighting injustice. The movie, which has sold to more than 50 countries, begins shooting in July 2009 at Spain's new studio facilities Ciudad de Luz in Alicante.

Myriad at 'Capacity'

Myriad Pictures has picked up worldwide rights to Terry Kinney's "Diminished Capacity," starring Matthew Broderick, Alan Alda, Virginia Madsen, Dylan Baker and Bobby Cannavale. The comedy centers on a man (Broderick) with memory problems who heads on a sick-leave road trip with his senile uncle (Alda). IFC holds U.S. rights to the film, and Myriad will rep it in Cannes.

Dis, NL at Canal plus

Pay TV group Canal Plus has grabbed multiyear broadcasting rights in France for catalog titles from Disney-ABC and New Line. The deal complements Canal Plus' previous pacts with Universal, Fox, Paramount, DreamWorks and Sony.