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The Hottest Titles for Sale at the Cannes Film Festival

Variety logo Variety 5/16/2017 Brent Lang
© Provided by Variety

Studios are hitting the Croisette armed with checkbooks, hoping to snap up the next big commercial hit or Oscar darling. Here are 12 packages that seem destined to result in bidding wars.

Red Sea Diving Resort

(WME, worldwide)

Director: Gideon Raff

Cast: Chris Evans, Greg Kinnear, Ben Kingsley

Why Buyers are Circling: The “Captain America” actor will play an Israeli spy tasked with rescuing thousands of refugees trapped in 1970s Sudan.


(Covert Media, worldwide)

Director: Claire McCarthy

Cast: Naomi Watts, Daisy Ridley, Clive Owen, Tom Felton

Why Buyers Are Circling: It’s “Hamlet” told from the tragic

heroine’s perspective.

Hotel Artemis

(Lionsgate, international; WME, domestic)

Director: Drew Pearce

Cast: Jodie Foster, Sterling K. Brown, Jenny Slate, Jeff Goldblum, Dave Bautista

Why Buyers are Circling: This thriller casts Foster as the nurse at a hospital for dangerous criminals.

Book Club

(Bloom; WME)

Director: Bill Holderman

Cast: Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen

Why Buyers Are Circling: Three acting icons unite as girlfriends whose lives are changed by “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

Promised Land

(UTA, worldwide)

Director: Eugene Jarecki

Why Buyers Are Circling: “Amy,” “What Happened, Miss Simone?” and “20 Feet From Stardom” have ushered in a music-documentary renaissance. Jarecki takes a road trip across America in Elvis Presley’s Rolls Royce, with musical guests that help illuminate the mood of the country.

All the Old Knives

(Sierra/Affinity; CAA, WME)

Director: Neil Burger

Cast: Chris Pine, Michelle Williams

Why Buyers are Circling: Two sexy leads playing spies and ex-lovers — sounds like a fresh spin on “Mr. & Mrs. Smith”


(Rocket Science; CAA)

Director: Taika Waititi; co-director Mark Gustafson

Why Buyers Are Circling: This stop-motion biopic about Michael Jackson’s celebrity pet chimp certainly wins the prize for the most gonzo logline.


(Mister Smith; UTA, WME)

Director: Jim Sheridan

Cast: Pierce Brosnan, Jamie Dornan, Cillian Murphy

Why Buyers Are Circling: The true-life story of 38 IRA members who bust out of a maximum-security prison is Northern Ireland’s version of “The Great Escape.”


(Mad River Pictures; UTA, WME)

Director: Ben Wheatley

Cast: Alicia Vikander, Armie Hammer

Why Buyers Are Circling: This misfits-versus-monsters thriller could be a breakout project for Wheatley (“High-Rise”).


(Bloom; CAA, WME)

Director: Josh Trank

Cast: Tom Hardy

Why Buyers are Circling: Hardy will play Al Capone in his twilight years.


(The Exchange)

Directors: Hannah Marks and Joey Power

Cast: Maika Monroe, Jeremy Allen White, Marisa Tomei, Gina Gershon, Joe Keery

Why Buyers are Circling: Buzzy young actors star in a dramedy about of a couple who question whether their love can endure after surviving a cancer scare.

Spinning Man

(Film Bridge International)

Director: Simon Kaijser

Cast: Pierce Brosnan, Guy Pearce, Minnie Driver

Why Buyers are Circling: Brosnan is a tough detective on the trail of a missing young woman in the tense thriller.

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