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October 24, 2000 12:07am
''Rape Me'' set for U.S. release in early 2001
Source: Reuters/Variety

(LOS ANGELES, CA) -- Controversial French film ''Baise-moi'' (''Rape Me''), in which a prostitute and a rape survivor embark on a violent road trip, will reach U.S. movie theaters early next year.

Montreal-based distributor Remstar Distribution has picked up U.S. rights to the picture, and hopes to release it in January or February 2001 in partnership with a U.S. distributor, said Remstar executive director Craig Adlard.

Remstar also has English- and French-speaking rights in Canada, and released the film in Quebec in early September where it has grossed $250,000 theatrically, Adlard told Reuters Monday.

He said it was ``certainly a possibility'' that ``Baise-moi'' would be released unrated in the United States, since its graphic scenes would likely lead to an NC-17 rating, a commercially damaging tag.

In Canada, where films are rated on a provincial basis, the Quebec authorities are ``largely very forgiving,'' Adlard said, and cleared the film without any cuts. The film faces a tougher road elsewhere in the country.

``Rape Me'' stars real-life porn actresses Karen Bach and Raffaela Anderson whose characters kill and have sex with a lot of men during a cross-country rampage. It was directed by Coralie Trin Thi and Virginie Despentes, who adapted the script from Despentes' successful 1995 novel.

In France, the government slapped the film with a rare ``X'' rating and it did strong business. Variety described it as ``a half-baked, punk-inflected porn odyssey masquerading as a movie worth seeing and talking about.''

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