Palm nets domestic 'Rocket' rights


NEW YORK -- Palm Pictures scored all domestic rights for the hockey biopic "The Rocket: The Legend of Rocket Richard," winner of nine Canadian Genie awards including best director and best actor.

Charles Biname's film follows the life of Maurice "The Rocket" Richard (Roy Dupuis), a Quebec factory worker who broke through discrimination against French Canadians in the 1940s and '50s to rise to the top of the National Hockey League. The film, written by Ken Scott and produced by Daniel Louis and Denise Robert, features many violent sports scenes in its recreation of an era before helmets were used.

"Rocket" earned the Canadian equivalent of the Oscar this year for Biname, Dupuis, Julie LeBreton (as Richard's wife) and Stephen McHattie (as Richard's coach). It will be released in U.S. theaters late this fall, followed by a DVD release this winter.

Palm head of theatrical distribution Ed Arentz negotiated the deal with Emmanuelle Dessureault of Montreal-based FunFilm Distribution.