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Mira Nair is glad her film Monsoon Wedding was showcased at the 2001 Cannes International Film Festival in France.
Though it is not competing for the coveted Palme d'Or, Monsoon Wedding has found a company for distribution in North America: USA Films, which released the highly acclaimed drugs saga, Traffic. Orfeo Films International holds its rights outside North America.
While high-profile movies such as Moulin Rouge and Shrek are grabbing headlines at the prestigious film circuit, Monsoon Wedding is significant in its own right.
"Each and every year at Cannes, we make it our business to discover one film that stands out to bring to America," USA Films' executives said in a statement. "This year, the clear choice was Monsoon Wedding.
"Mira Nair continues to expertly survey the humorous, sexual and romantic relationship issues that men and women face together."
In 1999, USA Films bought the rights to Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne's French-language film Rosetta. Last year it purchased Wong Kar-wai's Mandarin film, In the Mood for Love.
Monsoon Wedding, starring Naseeruddin Shah and Lillete Dubey, brings together members of a Punjabi family for the wedding of a young family member. The film explores the relationships and bonds that unite a family.
Terms of the deal were not announced. USA Films, a division of USA Networks Inc, will explore the market before announcing a release date.
Nair, the acclaimed director of Salaam Bombay!, Mississippi Masala and Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love, is ecstatic.
"I am thrilled that USA Films is going to distribute the film in North America with as much passion, commitment and love that I put into making it," she said in the press release.
Nair is currently directing Hysterical Blindness, starring Uma Thurman, for HBO.
The latest news builds on the strong success desi filmmakers are experiencing at film festivals. Earlier this year, Jay Chandrasekhar's Super Troopers was showcased at the Sundance Film Festival and picked up by Fox Searchlight for distribution. Anurag Mehta's American Chai won the audience award for best feature at the Slamdance festival in Park City, Utah.
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