Paramount’s 20 million dollar deal for Dennis Villenueve’s Story of Your Life, starring Amy Adams, is by the far the biggest yet at Cannes, but The Weinstein Company’s likely acquisition of The Coup would place second. Though TWC has not officially acquired the film, Deadline confirms that, after Relativity Media backed out of the bidding war, TWC is currently the sole distributor in talks for the film rights. It is offering between $5 million and $6 million for John Erick Dowdle’s thriller starring Owen Wilson, Pierce Brosnan, and Lake Bell.
The film chronicles an American family that is suddenly uprooted from its newly established life in Southeast Asia during a violent coup in which foreigners are being executed (so would this qualify as a semi-sequel to Behind Enemy Lines?). Though director John Erick Dowdle’s niche has primarily been horror (Devil, found-footage pieces such as Quarantine, The Poughkeepsie Tapes and the upcoming As Above, So Below), a slight shift in genre should provide a new glimpse into the director’s abilities. Dowdle co-wrote the script with his brother Drew, who is also the film’s producer. Michel Litvak and David Lancaster (Legion, Bobby), who recently produced Damien Chazelle’s Sundance hit Whiplash (Grand Jury and Audience Award prizes), are also producing.
Bold Films, the production company financing the film, is having a great start at Cannes: yesterday it completed a $4.5 million deal with Open Road over the rights to Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler, starring Jake Gyllenhaal.
The Coup certainly has a high profile cast, and if the Weinstein Company was willing to go head-to-head with Relativity Media over the film rights (apparently the bidding started after viewing only the trailer and the first 11 minutes of the film), The Coup may be one for which moviegoers should look out.