Back to news
21 September 2020


London, 22 September 2020

Following its critically acclaimed World Premiere at the Venice Film Festival, Pathé is delighted to announce that Sony Pictures Classics has acquired THE DUKE for distribution in multiple territories including the US, Latin America and Scandinavia. All other world territories had been sold by Pathe International prior to the Venice Film Festival.

Directed by Roger Michell from a script by Richard Bean and Clive Coleman, the comedy drama stars Oscar-winners Jim Broadbent and Helen Mirren and tells the delightful and moving true story of a man determined to live a meaningful life:

In 1961, Kempton Bunton, a 60-year old taxi driver, stole Goya’s portrait of the Duke of Wellington from the National Gallery in London. It was the first (and remains the only) theft in the Gallery’s history. Kempton sent ransom notes saying that he would return the painting on condition that the government agreed to provide television for free to the elderly. What happened next became the stuff of legend. Only 50 years later did the full story emerge – a startling revelation of how a good man set out to change the world and in so doing saved his son and his marriage.

Pathé will release the film in the UK, France and Switzerland. Other sales already announced include: Australia (Transmission), Benelux (Paradiso), Canada/Germany/Spain (eOne), China (Huanxi), Czech Republic (AQS), Former Yugoslavia (MCF), Israel (Forum), Italy (BIM), Japan (Phantom), Middle East (Front Row) and Poland (Monolith).

THE DUKE is a Pathé, Ingenious Media and Screen Yorkshire presentation of a Neon Films Production. Nicky Bentham is the Producer and the Executive Producers are Cameron McCracken and Jenny Borgars for Pathé, Andrea Scarso for Ingenious Media, Hugo Heppell for Screen Yorkshire, Peter Scarf and Christopher Bunton.

For further information please contact:
Sophie Glover - Pathé UK /

Nicki Foster – Premier /

Pathé operates as a film studio in France, the UK, the Netherlands and Switzerland. It is involved in all aspects of filmmaking, from development and production through to international sales, distribution and exhibition.

Films produced/distributed by Pathé range from The Queen to Slumdog Millionaire and from Philomena to Selma. In recent years Pathé’s productions have won 17 BAFTAs (70 nominations) and 14 Oscars (50 nominations), most recently the Best Actress Oscar and BAFTA for Renee Zellweger in Judy.

Pathé International handles the international marketing and sales of Pathé’s own productions and also acquires third party films for worldwide representation. As one of Europe’s leading sales agents, Pathé International has a significant presence at all major film markets and festivals.