'Synecdoche' in sync with SPC


Sony Pictures Classics is in advanced negotiations for domestic rights to one of this year's more buzzed-about titles from the Festival de Cannes Competition, "Synecdoche, New York," for low-seven figures.

Writer Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut chronicles 40 years in the life of a writer (Philip Seymour Hoffman) who sets out to create the ultimate play. He spends decades creating an enormous set with actors who mirror him and the many women in his life (Samantha Morton, Michelle Williams, Catherine Keener, Emily Watson and others).

The special effects-filled $20 million film received mixed reviews on the Croisette. The original cut was a little more than four hours, and after its Cannes premiere, Kaufman said the two-hour, four-minute version he debuted there might be whittled further. Producers apparently are aiming for a late 2008 release for awards-season qualification.

Sidney Kimmel Entertainment, which has recently had financial troubles, produced with longtime Kaufman collaborators Anthony Bregman ("Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind") and the originally slated director, Spike Jonze.

UTA is repping the filmmakers.

(Gregg Goldstein and Steven Zeitchik)