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American Film Market Dailies

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Every Fall, the Global Film Industry Converges in Santa Monica: Filmmakers, producers, directors and writers from around the world come to AFM to gain exposure, discover new projects and make deals. The American Film Market & Conferences is the largest motion picture trade fair in the world. 

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Pre roll newsletter N° 1 (October  18)
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AFM 2016Pre roll N° 1 I Pre roll N° 2 Opening Newsletter N°3 I N°4 I N°5 I N°6 Focus on ANIMATION  I N°7 I Final wrap
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AFM 2014:   Newsletters  N°1 N°2 N°3 N°4 N°5 N°6 N°7 N°8


Protagonist Pictures CEO Dave Bishopn confirms Annette Benning and Bill Nighy in Hope Gap

Academy Award nominee Annette Bening (Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, The Kids Are All Right, American Beauty) and BAFTA and Golden Globe winner Bill Nighy (Their Finest, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Love Actually) are set to star in Academy Award nominated writer-director William Nicholson’s (Breathe, Everest, Gladiator, Shadowlands, Les Misérables) second feature, it was announced today by Protagonist Pictures CEO Dave Bishop.

Grace (Annette Bening) and Edward (Bill Nighy) have been married twenty-nine years. When their son Jamie comes to visit for the weekend at their seaside home, Edward informs him that he plans to leave Grace. The next day. Just another break-up. Hope Gap tracks the unravelling of three lives, through stages of shock, disbelief and anger, to a resolution, of sorts. It’s tender, it’s funny and above all, true. There are no easy answers, no simple paths to redemption, but in the end, it is a story of survival. A story of hope. 


Currently in pre-production, this nuanced and tender take on familial disbandment is produced by BAFTA and Golden Globe winning producer David M. Thompson of Origin Pictures (Woman in Gold, Revolutionary Road).


“Ever since SHADOWLANDS I’ve been obsessed by the collision of love and pain: HOPE GAP is the most intense, most painful, and most loving story I’ve ever told. I’m so proud to have Annette Bening and Bill Nighy to tell it for me.”


“Bill has written a truly moving and witty script and we could not have asked for a stronger cast. I am delighted that Annette Bening and Bill Nighy are going to star in what is sure to be a really powerful and captivating film.”


Protagonist’s CEO Dave Bishop comments, “Not only are Annette Bening, Bill Nighy and William Nicholson some of the most gifted film talent working today, they are also some of the most beloved. We cannot wait to help bring their cathartic take on embracing shifting family dynamics to their legion of fans worldwide.”

Protagonist is handling international sales with North American sales co-repped by CAA and Protagonist. Protagonist and CAA will introduce Hope Gap to buyers at the upcoming American Film Market. Principal photography is set to begin Summer 2018.

Four-time Academy Award nominee and two-time Golden Globe winning actress Annette Bening first rose to prominence in Stephen Frears’ 1990 The Grifters, crime thriller opposite Anjelica Huston and John Cusack for which she was nominated for an Academy Award. Subsequent roles in American Beauty, Being Julia and The Kids Are All Right also garnered Academy Award nominations. She won two Golden Globes for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical for her roles in Being Julia and The Kids Are All Right. Bening most recently took a starring turn in 20th Century Women released by A24.


Nighy is best-known to international audiences for his memorable performances in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and as washed-up pop singer Billy Mack in Love Actually which won him a BAFTA for best supporting actor. In 2005 he was awarded a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or a Motion Picture Made for Television for his role in Gideon’s Daughter. He has also made appearances in major franchises including the Underworld series, Pirates of the Caribbean series, and the Harry Potter franchise. Recent credits include Their Finest, The Limehouse Golem, Jack the Giant Slayer and About Time.


Writer-director William Nicholson was nominated for Academy Awards for writing the modern acclaimed classics Gladiator directed by Ridley Scott and starring Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix and Shadowlands directed by Richard Attenborough and starring Anthony Hopkins, Debra Winger and Julian Fellowes. His latest offering, Breathe starring Andrew Garfield, Claire Foy and Hugh Bonneville was a runaway hit at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival following rave reviews and was released in the US October 13th, 2017 by Bleecker Street Media. Nicholson’s impressive roster of credits also includes Unbroken directed by Angelina Jolie, Everest, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom and Elizabeth: The Golden Age.


Bening is repped by CAA, Nighy is repped by CAA and Markham, Froggatt and Irwin and Nicholson is repped by CAA.




Protagonist Pictures is an international finance, production and sales company which has a proven track record in outstanding films and commercial successes. Based in the UK, the company handles films from around the world, always maintaining a strong focus on filmmakers with exceptional vision and storytelling skills. 


Protagonist’s current successes on releases around the world include Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire with its ensemble cast of Brie Larson, Armie Hammer, Cillian Murphy, Sharlto Copley and Jack Reynor; Charlie McDowell’s The Discovery with Rooney Mara, Jason Segel and Robert Redford, William Oldroyd’s Lady Macbeth. Other titles include the 2017 Directors’ Fortnight Art Cinema Award Winner The Rider from Chloé Zhao to be distributed by Sony Pictures Classics, The Florida Project from Sean Baker distributed by A24, 2017 Un Certain Regard Grand Jury Prize winner April’s Daughter from writer, director, producer Michel Franco and Toronto International Film Festival 2017 Official Selections Beast, from writer/director Michael Pearce, and Clio Barnard’s Dark River starring Ruth Wilson.


Currently in post-production are Vita & Virginia starring Gemma Arterton and Elizabeth Debicki, Richard Loncraine’s Finding Your Feet to be released by Roadside Attractions, Amma Asante’s Where Hands Touch, Kristoffer Nyholm’s Keepers, Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War, which will be distributed by Amazon Studios, and The Souvenir from Executive Producer Martin Scorsese directed by Joanna Hogg. Currently in pre-production are Paramour, directed by Alexandra-Therese Keining and starring Kristin Scott Thomas, Juan Cabral’s Two/One starring Boyd Holbrook, and Gypsy Boy starring Benedict Cumberbatch.





About American Film Market Dailies

WOLF Jonathan

The AFM is not a festival - it is the largest motion picture market in the world. 8,000 industry attendees, including producers, distributors, directors, agents, writers, lawyers & bankers. Over 540 films screened, most world or U.S. premieres.

$US3 Billion spent annually by participants to produce films
8,000+ industry professionals
2,000+ new films and projects
1,000+ production companies
400+ distributors
540+ films screened
100+ world premiers 
70+ countries represented
50+ thought leaders speaking
7 days of networking activities
1 beachfront campus that covers it all


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