Paul W.S. Anderson's 'Pompeii' Leads Pre-Sale Charge at Market (Cannes)

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Paul W.S. Anderson

"Inferno's Host," starring Saoirse Ronan, "Ender's Game," "Parker" and "The Brothers Grimm: Snow White" are also attracting buyers.

CANNES -- Pompeii, the new 3D period disaster film from Resident Evil helmer Paul W.S. Anderson has exploded in Cannes, with distributors worldwide scrambling to pre-buy the title, budgeted at $100 million plus.

Summit International has all but sold out Pompeii barely 48 hours into this year's market. It was a similar story last year with Anderson’s The Three Musketeers, which Summit also quickly closed worldwide in Cannes 2010. Anderson is currently in post on Musketeers and is expected to being lensing Pompeii in spring 2012.

“We’ve never had such a great response for a project,” said Martin Moszkowicz, head of film and TV at Constantin Film, which is producing Pompeii and bowing it in German-speaking Europe. “It shows if you have the right material, the market is there for it.”

Summit, which will release the film itself stateside, is pitching Pompeii as a Titanic-style epic, with a strong love story anchoring the action and historic elements.

Pompeii might be the hottest pre-sale in the Marche du Film this year but deals are bubbling around several big independent titles. These include Inferno’s Host, the film adaptation of the Stephenie Meyer novel starring Saoirse Ronan (Hanna) which Concorde has taken for Germany in one of several deals; Sierra/Affinity’s sci-fi epic Ender’s Game and Jason Statham-actioner Parker and FilmNation’s Julia Roberts-starrer The Brothers Grimm: Snow White, which Kinowelt snapped up on Day 1 of the market.