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Friday, September 17, 2010

Toronto International Film Festival

Toronto International Film Festival 2010 - A Review.

Toronto International Film Festival
In a move that injects a new contender into this year's Oscar race, Lionsgate has picked up North American rights to the Nicole Kidman drama "Rabbit Hole," which had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this week.

As the festival winds to its Sunday close, other distributors were lining up films that could play next year's festival circuit: IFC Films acquired worldwide rights, except Canada, to Barry Avrich's documentary "Unauthorized: The Harvey Weinstein Project," and Sony Pictures Classics picked up North American rights to Pedro Almodovar's gothic thriller "The Skin I Inhabit," now filming. Additionally, Anchor Bay Films has secured rights to "Carjacked," a thriller being directed by John Bonito ("The Marine").

Lionsgate will release "Rabbit Hole" by year's end, and based on positive reactions here, that should make the movie a player during awards season. Directed in a marked change of pace by John Cameron Mitchell -- whose previous films include "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" and "Shortbus" -- and adapted by David Lindsay-Abaire from his play, the movie, in the vein of such domestic dramas as "Kramer vs. Kramer" and "Ordinary People," stars Kidman and Aaron Eckhart as parents coming to terms with the grief over the death of their child.

Kidman, Eckhart and Dianne Wiest, who plays Kidman's mother, have been lauded for their awards-worthy performances. The play, first produced in 2006 in New York, earned a Pulitzer as well as a Tony for Cynthia Nixon, who played Kidman's role.

It marks Lionsgate's second buy of a high-profile Toronto title this year after it joined with Roadside to acquire Robert Redford's "The Conspirator," which will be released next year.

Almodovar's "Skin," which stars Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya and Marisa Paredes, began production last month in Spain. The story centers on a father avenging his daughter's death and is inspired by Thierry Jonquet's novel "Mygale."

Bonito's "Carjacked" is set to star Maria Bello and Stephen Dorff and begin principal photography November 15 in Baton Rouge, La. Anchor Bay's rights deal is for theatrical and video and includes North America, U.K. and Australia. The aim is to release the movie during second-quarter 2011. Bello will play a single mom who, with her son, is carjacked by a bank robber (Dorff) on the run from police.

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