Thursday, May 12, 2005

Shutter remake rights sold

Remake rights for the 2004 Thai horror, Shutter, will be sold to Hollywood's Regency company, according to The Nation.

The $1 million deal is the biggest ever for remake rights to a Thai film and is worth twice as much as remake rights for the J-horror hit The Ring.

The agreement between Regency and Thailand's GTH Co will be signed on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival.

Roy Lee is the key player. The Korean-American businessman has brought other Asian remakes to Hollywood, including The Ring, The Grudge and My Sassy Girl.

GTH president Visute Poolvoralak made the following comments on the deal:

We used to be envious when other Asian movies were bought to be remade. Now it’s our turn, and moreover the chance comes with the highest price too. This negotiation is good experience for us in international legal contracts. It has a lot of detail that we have to look through carefully. The problem for Thai producers is that we lack a strategy to set a price. That is why Thai movies have never fetched a high price for remake deals before."

Shutter is a co-production of GTH (a merged company from GMM Grammy, Tai Entertainment and Hub Ho Hin) and Phenomena Motion Pictures. Directed by the young duo of Banjong Pisanthanakul and Parkpoom Wongpoom, the film was Thailand's top box-office hit in 2004 with 110 million baht in ticket sales.

GTH is bringing three other finished projects to sell at the Cannes film market: Jira Maligool's followup to Mekhong Full Moon Party, Maha’lai Muang Rae (The Tin Mine), which is due for release on May 26, the comedy Jaew (Maid) and Yuthlert Sippapak's 2004 crime comedy, Sai Lor Fah (Pattaya Maniac).

Sahamongkol Films has brought Tom Yum Goong to Cannes, where a huge poster for the followup to Ong-Bak dominates the Croissette, according to comments from Sebu, who also cites a Hollywood Reporter story.

Also in Cannes are the Pang Bros., shopping Re-Cycle and something called Forest of Death, according to Twitch.

Other Thai movies that have previously been sold for remake include Pen-ek Ratanaruang’s Ruang Talok 69 (6ixty9ine), which is being directed by the Lizzie McGuire Movie's Jim Fall and Kittikorn Liawsirikul’s Saving Private Tootsie, which has stalled in Hollywood.

(Cross-published at Rotten Tomatoes)

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