Also drawing interest are Michael Polish’s hurricane-set actioner “Force of Nature” with Mel Gibson and Kate Bosworth, and Voltage Pictures’ action-thriller “The Minuteman” with Liam Neeson.
movie business is undergoing a wave of dramatic consolidation. The U.S.
“There aren’t a lot of U.S. distributors, period,” said Martin Moszkowicz, CEO of Constantin Film, the producer of “Resident Evil.”
That means that the number of major studios have shrunk from six to five. Under its new ownership, it is expected to release fewer than six movies annually, roughly half of what it once fielded in a typical year. The independent film world seems to be teetering. Broad Green and Open Road have gone belly up, Annapurna is dialing down its ambitions after a series of flops, and STX and Lionsgate are flailing as they search for new film franchises. Twentieth Century Fox Film has been subsumed into Walt Disney Studios as part of a larger $71.3 billion deal.
It’s expected to be standing room only when Stuart Ford’s AGC Studios unveils Emmerich’s “Moonfall,” which is budgeted at $150 million, in an intimate presentation to buyers on May 15 at the Carlton Hotel. A few films are drawing buyers' attention. AGC Studios’ Michael Rothstein said the film is “in the spirit of ‘2012,’ with Roland wreaking joyful cinematic havoc on our planet as only Roland can.”
“Despite all the uncertainties, it is actually an exciting time if you have capital and access to talent,” added Harold van Lier, at Anton.
“You are certainly not going to see too many flashy big-budget movies being touted, just because the market can't really afford that kind of budget,” said David Garrett, founder of the sales company Mister Smith Entertainment.
If studios do buy domestic rights to a movie, they often want part of international as well, which makes dealmaking more complex. distribution. Until they do ink a U.S. deal, which would guarantee an impactful marketing campaign, many foreign-based distributors will hold off on purchases. Hardly any of even the big movie projects bowing at Cannes have U.S. Buying at Cannes will, as a consequence, almost certainly remain as targeted as the movie projects themselves.
These include Bankside Films’ “Let Me Count the Ways,” with Emilia Clarke as poet Elizabeth Barrett; See-Saw Films' “The Power of the Dog" from director Jane Campion with Benedict Cumberbatch and Elisabeth Moss; and the STX Intl. As for family entertainment, Kate Winslet voices the horse in Constantin’s “Black Beauty" and Mel Gibson plays Santa Claus in Fortitude’s “Fatman.” thriller “I Care a Lot” with Rosamund Pike.
“It’s better than over the last two years in volume, and quality,” said Moszkowicz.
You cannot beat that.”” /> “In a very small place, in very short time, a lot of people with a lot of energy, enthusiasm, ambition and resources come together. “Cannes is unique,” said Rocket Science founder Thorsten Schumacher, the producer and sales agent of the “Cliffhanger” reboot.
Though the Cannes Film Festival is unfolding an ocean and several time zones away from Hollywood, the aftershocks from the mega-mergers and bankruptcies currently roiling the entertainment industries will likely be felt by the executives and agents prowling the Croisette in search of movies to buy. Major studios are being swallowed up and indie players are dropping like flies.
With the U.S. But in a risk-averse environment, many of Cannes higher-profile movies are keeping a tighter rein on costs. market looking dicier, some foreign territories could help plug the gap. Many have budgets below the $20 million to $25 million range. China, for instance, has a growing appetite for science-fiction movies and family fare.
But what the market lacks in sizzle it makes up for in depth. Most of the films for sale aren’t on the level of “355,” a spy thriller with Jessica Chastain and Lupita Nyong’o that captivated buyers at last year's Cannes.
Amazon Studios returned to dealmaking with a vengeance, while Netflix was also active. However, the Berlin Film Festival, unfolding just a few weeks later, was notably slower and smaller when it came to sales. In contrast, this year’s Sundance Film Festival was red hot despite the systemic issues facing the movie business.
But “the number of higher-profile films seems significantly reduced from years past — and there are absolutely (fewer) big-budget films,” said Rothstein.
But these films have to contend with a new reality. There are a smattering of big-budget films on offer, including Roland Emmerich’s epic “Moonfall” and a “Cliffhanger” reboot that will trade Sylvester Stallone for a female protagonist. Those companies that have survived this period of dramatic change won’t find many splashy titles for sale. Hollywood’s studios are taking fewer risks and releasing fewer films.

Martin Moszkowicz is executive producing. "Black Beauty" is being produced by Jeremy Bolt and Robert Kulzer, who teamed on the "Resident Evil" franchise.
Mackenzie Foy and Kate Winslet have come aboard Constantin Film's contemporary take on "Black Beauty."
Ashley Avis is directing from her own script.
McElroy, which follows six friends from New York taking a hiking trip to the West Virginia Mountains, who unwittingly fall prey to a savage sect known as the Foundation. The film is being produced by Kulzer and James Harris, with Moszkowicz executive producing.” /> Mike P. Nelson is directing "Wrong Turn" from a script by Alan B.
"Black Beauty" is based on Anna Sewell's best-selling novel about the deep and enduring bond between a 17-year-old girl and the wild horse who helps her overcome the trauma of her loss following her parents' death. Foy, whose credits include "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms," "Interstellar" and the last two "Twilight" movies, will play Jo while Winslet will voice Beauty.
Constantin Film also announced on Tuesday that it is launching a re-imagined version of the horror film "Wrong Turn." Mister Smith Entertainment will commence sales on both projects, currently in pre-production, to buyers at the Cannes Film Festival next week.