Cannes Market on the Upswing While Sundance Scores UT Major Cash, Weinsteins Near Bin Laden Pic Deal: Biz Break

Also Wednesday afternoon, Jane Fonda picks up a role, Anthony Hopkins and Andy Garcia team for a story about Hemingway in Cuba and Sacha Baron Cohen's midnight screenings outshine Dark Shadow.

Cannes Market Up 9% in 2012
The Marché du Film — better known as the Cannes Film Market — is defying a flat economy locally and growing by leaps and bounds. This year, 4,600 titles including finished films and projects, are up for sale in the market, a separate component from the overall Cannes Film Festival. And the number of buyers has also increased, according to the market's own publication, Cannes Market News. Two hundred more buyers from around the world have descended on Cannes compared to last year, bringing the total to about 1,900. "Maybe it's the word of mouth or the fact that the festival is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year, but we have the feeling people want to be here," noted Marché du Film director Jérôme Paillard. The Cannes Film Market is now in its 53rd year.

Sundance Blesses Utah with $80M
Festivals are a business and they're a big draw of people with expense accounts (and those without). The 2012 Sundance Film Festival, which takes place primarily in Park City, UT had an $80 million impact on Utah including $6.9 million in tax revenue and supporting 1,731 jobs. 46,000 attended the festival, an increase of 2% from the previous year. "Nationwide it is proven that the arts boost tourism, create jobs, increase educational outreach and support local businesses, and we are proud to be a strong example of this," said Sundance Institute exec. director Keri Putnam.

Around the 'net…

Jane Fonda Has Better Living Through Chemistry
Fonda is a customer of the pharmacy run by a character played by Sam Rockwell. Her character is the conscience of the film. She is currently in Cannes and will join the shoot currently underway in Maryland, Deadline reports.

Weinsteins Near Deal on Bin Laden Hunt Pic
The Weinstein Company is in negotiations for the U.S. rights to Code Name Geronimo, the John Stockwell-directed drama about the manhunt for Osama bin Laden, Deadline reports.

Anthony Hopkins and Andy Garcia to Film Hemingway & Fuentes
Annette Bening will star along with Hopkins and Garcia will direct from a screenplay he co-wrote with the famed author's niece Hilary Hemingway. The story centers on the relationship between Hemingway (Hopkins) and his Cuban fishing boat captain Gregorio Fuentes (Garcia), a friendship that was critical for one of his great works, The Old Man and the Sea, THR reports.

The Dictator Snags $600K at Midnights
Sacha Baron Cohen's The Dictator opened Tuesday to $600,000 in midnight screenings — similar to the start of last week's Dark Shadows but at half the locations. The pic screened at 800 midnight locations vs. approximately 1,600 for Shadows last Thursday, which grossed $550,000, Variety reports.



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