UPI inks Cronenberg deal

To roll out 'Method' in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain

LONDON -- Universal Pictures International has signed up for David Cronenberg's Keira Knightley starrer "A Dangerous Method" across a slew of territories in a deal with the project's producer Jeremy Thomas.

UPI president of international production and acquisitions Christian Grass sealed a deal with Thomas for the title to roll it out in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain and South Africa.

Starring Knightley, Viggo Mortensen, Michael Fassbender and Vincent Cassel, the movie takes place on the eve of World War I and is set to go before the cameras in Germany, Switzerland and then Austria beginning in May.

Thomas' Hanway Films sales label also struck a deal with a slew of independent distributors for the title, including MARS for French rights, E1 for the title in Canada, Transmission in Australia and Cineart in Benelux.

"A Dangerous Method" is produced by Thomas' Recorded PC with co-producers Marco Mehlitz of Lago Film in Germany and Marty Katz of ProsperoFilm in Canada.

It is billed as a dark tale of sexual and intellectual discovery drawn from true-life events based on the turbulent relationships between fledgling psychiatrist Carl Jung (Fassbender), his mentor Sigmund Freud (Mortensen) and Sabina Spielrein (Knightley).

Screenwriter Christopher Hampton has adapted his play "The Talking Cure" for the big screen.

Cronenberg said: "I have long been drawn to the story of erotic daring between these two good doctors and the woman who both divided and defined them. History can only hint at the psychological and physical terrain they opened up, but a film can explore it."

Said Thomas: "Bringing the ideas of Jung and Freud together through their relationship with Sabina Spielrein, as seen by David Cronenberg, will make for an unusual and alluring film for anyone interested in modern thought. I can't wait to see that movie, and I couldn't ask for a better partner than Universal."

Dylan Wilcox and Negeen Yazdi oversaw the deal on behalf of UPI, with Tim Haslam representing HanWay.

The multi-territory pact marks one of the first headline deals for Grass since taking up the reins to oversee Universal Pictures' reorganized international production efforts announced earlier this year.

Backers remained tight-lipped about which distributor is going to emerge victorious in the battle for U.K. rights.
comments powered by Disqus