Silent rights: Classics go to BAC

French company lands 21 films from Rohauer library

Whisper it softly, but news of one of the biggest deals to break during this year's European Film Market sees a host of silent movies, including a slew of Buster Keaton vehicles, winging their way to French distributor BAC Films.

The French company secured the rights to 21 movies from the Rohauer Collection's extensive library of 700 silent and classic titles, which includes Keaton movies, for $500,000.

The titles also cover "Pandora and the Flying Dutchman" (1951), Harry Langdon and Roach/Sennett silent comedies and Man Ray avant-garde shorts.

The deal was struck by Los Angeles-based international sales company Cinema Management Group, headed by veteran international sales and distribution executive Edward Noeltner.

Noeltner made the deal with BAC and is in Berlin at the EFM.

The Rohauer Collection is owned by Douris U.K., which is in administration and raising cash for creditors via the sale of the collection.

"The collection has the unchallenged rights to important material that will hold immense appeal to the specialist film industry," said Nick Edwards, Deloitte partner and administrator for Douris U.K.