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Tom Ford’s ‘Nocturnal Animals’ Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Amy Adams Sells for $20 Million to Focus Features

Cannes 2015: Focus has Universal backing in the acquisition

Focus Features has acquired worldwide rights to Tom Ford’s forthcoming thriller “Nocturnal Animals.” Lead by Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal, Universal will handle international distribution with Focus taking the lead stateside.

Rights sold for roughly $20 million, an individual close to the negotiations told TheWrap. Ford, who will write, direct and produce the film through his production company Fade to Black, personally presented his vision to buyers in Cannes.

Based on the Austin Wright novel “Tony And Susan,” the script follows an art gallery owner who is haunted by her ex-husband’s novel manuscript, a violent thriller she interprets as a veiled threat and symbolic tale of revenge. Production is scheduled for fall.

“Tom’s vision for his film is unique and inspiring and something that global audiences will be thrilled by,” Focus CEO Peter Schlessel said.”Tom has proven his prowess as a filmmaker and this romantic tale of revenge and regret will be a fantastic addition to our slate.”

Focus acquisitions head Lia Buman and VP of Business Affairs Beth Lemberger negotiated on behalf of the studio, which also included Peter Kujawski, Managing Director of Universal Pictures International Productions. CAA and FilmNation sold the film on behalf of the filmmaker