South Korean crime action film The Merciless has been sold to France's ARP, CJ Entertainment announced on Friday.
The movie will open in French theaters on June 28, following its premiere in the fest's Midnight Screenings section.
Directed by Byun Sung-hyun, The Merciless stars veteran actor Seol Gyeong-gu (Peppermint Candy, Haeundae) opposite K-pop star/actor Yim Si-wan (The Attorney, Misaeng: Incomplete Life). Seol plays the role of a prisoner who takes a newbie (Yim) under his wing in order to expand his underworld influence beyond bars.
"It's a suspenseful thriller film that spotlights great screenwriting, direction and characters … full of surprising twists and turns," says ARP's Michele Halberstadt about The Merciless.
While Korean art house films introduced through film festivals have traditionally made their way to French cinemas, an increasingly number of big-budget, mainstream titles are also starting to play in the country.
ARP has previously distributed a number of Korean titles, including The Good, The Band, The Weird, also a CJ film, and Train to Busan. Both films were invited to past editions of the Cannes festival.
In particular, Train to Busan (Next Entertainment World) enjoyed critical and box-office success at home and abroad after showing in Cannes' Midnight Screenings. French studio Gaumont also recently won the high bid to create the English-language remake of the zombie actioner.