By Ray Pride

Sony Pictures Classics Takes EON Int’l’s Latest, Slated For Toronto


Sony Pictures Classics announced that they have acquired all rights in North America, Eastern Europe, Germany and Asia Pay Television to Paul McGuigan’s FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL. The film is premiering in Gala Presentations at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival.

FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL stars Academy Award nominee Annette Bening, BAFTA Award winner Jamie Bell, Academy Award nominee Julie Walters, and Academy Award winner Vanessa Redgrave. The film reunites Sony Pictures Classics and Bening after BEING JULIA, for which Bening was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress.

Based on Peter Turner’s memoir, the film follows the playful but passionate relationship between Turner (Bell) and the eccentric Academy Award-winning actress Gloria Grahame (Bening) in 1978 Liverpool.  What starts as a vibrant affair between a legendary femme fatale and her young lover quickly grows into a deeper relationship, with Turner being the person Gloria turns to for comfort. Their passion and lust for life is tested to the limits by events beyond their control.

Written by Matt Greenhalgh, FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL is produced by Barbara Broccoli of EON Productions and Colin Vaines of Synchronistic Pictures, executive produced by Stuart Ford, Zygi Kamasa, Paul McGuigan and Michael G. Wilson.

“We are thrilled that FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL will be released by Sony Pictures Classics.  We are happy to be working with Mike and Tom who share our passion for this film,” said Barbara Broccoli.

“Annette Bening in the role of a lifetime as an elusive personality whose dramatic true story defies belief. Supported to perfection by Jamie Bell, Julie Walters, Vanessa Redgrave and the rest of the cast, embodied by Paul McGuigan’s precise direction.  And then there’s producer Barbara Broccoli whose diligence over many years made it all happen.  Independent filmmaking doesn’t come better than this. It is a privilege to be involved in bringing this remarkable film to the public,” said Sony Pictures Classics.

WME Global negotiated the deal on behalf of EON Productions with SPC.  International territories are represented by IM Global.


Michael Barker and Tom Bernard serve as co-presidents of Sony Pictures Classics—an autonomous division of Sony Pictures Entertainment they founded with Marcie Bloom in January 1992, which distributes, produces, and acquires independent films from around the world.  Barker and Bernard have released prestigious films that have won 37 Academy Awards® (33 of those at Sony Pictures Classics) and have garnered 163 Academy Award® nominations (137 at Sony Pictures Classics) including Best Picture nominations for WHIPLASH, AMOUR, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, AN EDUCATION, CAPOTE, HOWARDS END, AND CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON.


Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 142 countries. For additional information, go to


EON Productions Limited is the UK based production company that has produced the James Bond films since 1962.  Led by Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, EON has produced some of the most successful Bond films ever including SPECTRE and SKYFALL.  Wilson, Broccoli and EON have produced and executive produced independent film projects including, FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL, A SILENT STORM, RADIATOR and NANCY.  They have also co-produced and co-financed successful theatrical productions that have played in London and on Broadway, including Chitty Chitty Bang BangA Steady Rain, Chariots of Fire, Strangers on a Train, Othello, Once and The Kid Stays in the Picture.

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