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John Carney’s ‘Begin Again’ Acquired for China Release
15 May 2014 : Aisling Newton
Chinese theatrical and platform rights to John Carney’s ‘Begin Again’ have been jointly acquired by Beijing Galloping Horse Film Co., Ivanhoe Pictures and Exclusive Media.

‘Begin Again’ (formerly Can A Song Save Your Life?), the musical-driven independent film, follows the story of Gretta (Keira Knightley) and her long-time boyfriend Dave (Adam Levine), college sweethearts and songwriting partners who come to New York when he lands a deal with a major label. The film also features Mark Ruffalo, Hailee Steinfeld, James Corden, Yasiin Bey, Cee Lo Green and Catherine Keener.

The acquisition was negotiated by Ronan Wong, director of Beijing Galloping Horse's overseas business department, Brian Kornreich for Ivanhoe and by Alex Walton on behalf of Exclusive, nine months after the movie first premiered at the Toronto Film Festival. The deal marks Ivanhoe’s first acquisition since international financier Robert Friedland launched the company last September to finance and produce film and TV projects with global audience appeal, particularly in China, India, Korea, and Japan. The company also is involved in developing a movie version of Kevin Kwan’s debut novel ‘Crazy Rich Asians’.

Carney had previous success in China with his 2006 film ‘Once’, which he wrote and directed. ‘Begin Again’ is due for release by The Weinstein Company this summer.

In other film festival news, Brendan Muldowney’s feature ‘Love Eternal’ has been selected for the Sydney Film Festival in June. The film has had continued success around the world with festival screenings and awards including the Dublin Film Critics Circle Best Irish Feature at Jameson Dublin International Film Festival. Featuring the Emmy-nominated Dutch actor Robert de Hoog (Skin) and Pollyanna McIntosh (The Woman), and based on the Japanese novel ‘In Love with the Dead’ from acclaimed author Kei Oishi (Apartment 1303, The Last Supper), the film centres on an isolated and death-fixated young man who tries to make sense of the world, and his existence, in the only way he knows how, by getting closer to death.

‘Love Eternal’ was produced by Conor Barry, Morgan Bushe and Macdara Kelleher for Fastnet Films, with Luxembourg co-producers Red Lion, Dutch co-producers Rinkel Film and TO Entertainment from Japan, with support from the Irish Film Board, the Film Fund Luxembourg and the Netherlands Film Fund. For more information on the upcoming Sydney Film Festival, which runs from June 4 – 15, click here.

The Cannes Film Festival, which opened yesterday Wednesday May 14, is also set to feature ‘Ship of Fools’, a US short executive produced by John Goodwin from Ballina, Co. Mayo. The 16-minute short film will screen in the Short Film Corner at the festival and is also among the award nominees at this week’s St Tropez International Film Festival. Goodwin made his production debut with ‘Ship of Fools’, a film that tells the story of a legendary photographer who reveals the truth behind his most iconic photograph while recalling Stranded, the greatest rock and roll band never known.

A preview for ‘Ship of Fools’, directed by Mike McGuirk, is available to view below:

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