Morena has its day in the 'Sol'


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CANNES -- Madrid-based production house Morena Films said Thursday it is taking the production lead in Adrian Caetano's much-anticipated "Leopardo al Sol."

The €10 million ($13.4 million) Spanish-language family saga, a la a Colombian "Godfather," will be a co-production between Spain, Colombia and Argentina, with Wild Bunch handling worldwide distribution.

Cast is yet to be decided.

Uruguayan director Caetano's "Chronicle of an Escape," captured worldwide attention and was a main contender for the 2006 Cannes Film Festival Golden Palm.

"Leopardo," which centers on warring contrabandist families in Colombia with a magical realism touch, is based on Laura Restrepo's novel of the same name.

Additionally, Morena confirmed it has taken a minority co-production stake in the $70 million two-film project centering on Latin American revolutionary Che Guevara, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Benicio Del Toro. The first film "The Argentine," focuses on the 20th century icon's experiences in the Cuban revolution, while the second film, "Guerrilla" is based on his diaries during the Bolivian revolution, where he was killed.

The first of the two films to shoot will go on location in Puerto Rico in July. Later locations will include Spain and Bolivia.

Los Angeles-based Laura Bickford produces the project via her Guerrilla Films production house, with Morena and Spanish broadcaster Telecinco Cinema acting as co-producers. Wild Bunch is handling sales worldwide.

One of Spain's most internationally driven producers, Morena Films is in postproduction on Rodrigo Pla's social thriller "La Zona," about the inhabitants of a rich residential area who hunt kids from the city's slums for fun.