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Round-Up: Acquisitions, Partnerships, Pipeline

By Tom White

The just-wrapped Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) traditionally kicks off the fall season--and the six-month drumroll that reaches a crescendo with the Oscars season. In addition to our Doc Shots that we showcased during TIFF, here are some highlights from the business and acquisitions side of the fest:

Celluloid Dreams--Soul Power (Dir.: Jeffrey Levy-Hinte)
For Doc Shot with Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, click here.

For review from indieWIRE blogger Tom Hall, click here.

Cinema Guild--24 City (Dir.: Zia Zhangke)

Sony Pictures Classics--Every Little Step (Dirs./Prods.: James Stern and Adam Del Deo)

Strand Releasing--Of Time and the City (Dir.: Terence Davies; Prods.: Solon Papadopoulos, Roy Boulter)
Click here for DocuWeek Q&A with Terence Davies.
Click here for review by indieWIRE blogger Tom Hall.

Elsewhere is the world of acquisitions...
Arthouse Films--Rem Koolhaas: A Kind of Architect (Dirs.: Markus Heidingsfelder, Min Tesch).

Solid Entertainment--Revolution Green (Dir.: Stephen Strout).

Solid Entertainment--Hijos de la Guerra (Children of the World) (Dir.: Alexandre Fuchs)

And on the partnership front, Participant Media is teaming up with Imagenation, the Abu Dhabi-based production company, for a $250 million fund to produce 18 films over the next five films. No word in a report in Variety about how many of these films would be documentaries, but Participant is well known for such films as An Inconvenient Truth, Murderball, Darfur Now, Chicago 10 and Angels in the Dust, among others.
IndieWIRE reports that Participant Media will also team up with book publisher PublicAffairs for a series of books based on Participant's films. Robert Kenner's Food, Inc., which premiered at Toronto and features authors Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation) and Michael Pollan (The Ominivore's Dilemma), will be the first Participant/PublicAffairs collaboration.

In the pipeline, Harvard professor Henry Louis "Skip" Gates received $12 million in funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and PBS, the Harvard University Gazette Online reports. Gates' previous work for PBS includes African American Lives, African American Lives 2, America Beyond the Color Line and Wonders of the African World. His upcoming projects--The Faces of America, Searching for Our Roots: The History of the African American People and African American Lives 3: Reclaiming Our Past --will air in 2010, 2011 and 2012, respectively.Finally, Jack Osbourne is executive-producing a documentary about his father, Ozzy Osbourne, the heavy metal maven turned reality TV star. Jack's mother, Sharon Osbourne, is also executive producing the film, which is being directed by Mike Piscitelli, and written and produced by Jordan Tappis. The film will be the inaugural release of Osbourne's fils' production company, Jacko Productions. Click here for more from Variety.