Writer-director Timur Bekmambetov, whose NIGHT WATCH series is a sensation in Russia, has inked a one-year, first-look deal with Rogue Pictures for English-language flicks, reports VARIETY. The second film in his horror/sci-fi series, DAY WATCH, was released on New Years Day and has already become the highest grossing film in Russian history. The first film in the series, NIGHT WATCH, is set to hit theaters in the States Feb. 17, 2006, from Fox Searchlight.
"We want to be filmmaker driven, because there are a lot of people in this genre space right now. Our deal with Bekmambetov will help us define who we are as a company," said Rogue production president Andrew Rona.
Bekmambetov is developing WANTED at Universal Pictures, which is the parent company of Focus Features, which is the parent of Rogue. He is also set to produce a feature version of Shane Acker animated short, 9, along with Tim Burton and Focus execs Jim Lemley and Dana Ginsberg.
Twentieth Century Fox has an option to develop and finance DUSK WATCH, the third film in the planned WATCH trilogy.