HBO has inked a deal for North American TV rights to Martin Scorsese’s documentary George Harrison: Living in the Material World, which will debut on the network in two parts on Oct. 5 and Oct. 6. The doc explores the musical and spiritual life of the ex-Beatle and cultural icon, mostly in Harrison’s own words. It’s the latest musical documentary from Scorsese, who also recently made No Direction Home: Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones doc Shine a Light. His latest feature film, the 3D Hugo Cabret, is due out Nov. 23 from Paramount.
Millennium Entertainment has acquired U.S rights to Puncture, a legal drama starring Chris Evans, and is planning a fall 2011 theatrical release. In the based-on-fact film, directed by Adam and Mark Kassen, Evans plays a drug-addicted lawyer who takes on a powerful medical-supply corporation by representing a renegade safety-needle inventor, exposing corruption and kickback schemes in the health care industry. Millennium director of acquisitions Vincent Scordino made the deal along with CAA, which packaged the project. The company in Cannes acquired Elgin James’ Little Birds, also planned for a fall release.
New York, NY (June 14, 2011) — The Cinema Guild announced today the acquisition of U.S. distribution rights to Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s “Once Upon a Time in Anatolia,” co-winner of the Grand Prix at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival. The deal was negotiated by Ryan Krivoshey of The Cinema Guild with Sezgi Üstün on behalf of producer Zeynep Ozbatur of Zeyno Film. Theatrical release details will be forthcoming.
A haunting story about a group of men, among them a local prosecutor, doctor, police chief and two murder suspects, who go in search of a missing body in the Anatolian steppes, “Once Upon a Time in Anatolia” is a breathtakingly beautiful work from celebrated Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan.
Born in Istanbul in 1959, Ceylan is the director of six feature films, including “The Town” (1997), “Clouds of May” (1999), “Distant” (2003), which won the Grand Prix and the Best Actor prize at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival, “Climates” (2006) and “Three Monkeys” (2008), winner of the Best Director award at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival.
New York, NY, June 13, 2011 – The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today that it has acquired U.S. distribution rights to “W.E.,” Madonna’s directorial debut of a feature film. W.E. is a romantic drama co-written by Madonna and Alek Keshishian, produced by Madonna and Kris Thykier and executive produced by Scott Franklin (BLACK SWAN). It stars Abbie Cornish (LIMITLESS), Oscar Isaac (DRIVE), James D’Arcy (MASTER AND COMMANDER: THE FAR SIDE OF THE WORLD), Andrea Riseborough (NEVER LET ME GO), Natalie Dormer (“The Tudors”), Richard Coyle (PRINCE OF PERSIA: THE SANDS OF TIME), James Fox (SHERLOCK HOLMES) and Laurence Fox (“Inspector Lewis”). The announcement was made by TWC Co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein and President of Production Donna Gigliotti.
Spanning six decades, W.E. juxtaposes a contemporary love story with that of King Edward VIII and American divorcée Wallis Simpson.
LOS ANGELES, CA May 5, 2011 – Sanford Panitch, President of Fox International Productions, announced today that Fox International Productions has brokered a deal for the worldwide rights to EVERYBODY HAS A PLAN starring Viggo Mortensen (The Lord of the Rings trilogy) and Soledad Villamil (The Secret in Their Eyes) in the feature film directorial debut of writer/director Ana Piterbarg. The film, which will be distributed by Twentieth Century Fox in Spain and Argentina, will be introduced to select international distributors for the first time at the Marché Du Film at the Cannes Film Festival by Fox International Productions’ Senior Vice President of Sales Shebnem Askin-Schreger.
EVERYBODY HAS A PLAN tells the story of Agustín (Mortensen), a man desperate to abandon what he gradually has come to feel is an unfulfilling existence after years of living in Buenos Aires. Following the death of his identical twin brother Pedro, Agustín sets out to begin his life anew by assuming Pedro’s identity and returning to the mysterious Tigre Delta region where the brothers had spent their childhood. Soon after his homecoming, however, Agustín finds himself unwittingly embroiled in the deadly criminal underworld that his brother had been part of.
The film is set against the peculiar landscape of the Tigre Delta, a maze of islands and rivers that once served as a recreational playground for the Buenos Aires elite, where one can still find French- and English-style mansions flanking the Delta’s waterways as
BURBANK, Calif., May 4, 2011 – Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group today announced an agreement to acquire Flixster, the movie discovery application company with over 25 million worldwide users per month. The acquisition also includes Rotten Tomatoes website devoted to film reviews, information and news. Under the terms of the deal, Flixster will continue to operate independently and will expand its services beyond movie discovery to enable digital content ownership and delivery across any connected digital device.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group will utilize the Flixster brand and technical expertise to launch a number of initiatives designed to grow digital content ownership, including the recently announced consumer application “Digital Everywhere.” This studio-agnostic application will be the ultimate destination for consumers to organize and access their entire digital library from anywhere on the device of their choice, as well as to share recommendations and discover new content. The Flixster acquisition and “Digital Everywhere,” combined with the Studio’s support of the UltraViolet format are all part of an overall strategy to give consumers even more freedom, utility and value for their digital purchases.
“Driving the growth of digital ownership is a central, strategic focus for Warner Bros.,” said Kevin Tsujihara, President, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group and Office of the President, Warner Bros. Entertainment. “The acquisition of Flixster will allow us to advance that strategy and promote initiatives that will
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to Blackthorn, a Western about the final days of Butch Cassidy. Pic stars Sam Shepard, Stephen Rea, Eduardo Noriega and Nicolaj Coster-Waldau. Mateo Gil directed it from script by Miguel Barros. Ibon Cormenzana and Andres Santana produced. Pic premiered last week in downtown Manhattan and will debut in the Market at Cannes next month.
Dimension Films has preemptively purchased the spec script The Greys, a sci-fi thriller by scribe Adam Cohen that Before the Fall helmer F. Javier Gutierrez will direct. Sean and Bryan Furst are producing. Logline’s being kept under wraps.
Magnolia Pictures announced today that it has acquired all world rights to Limelight, a documentary about legendary nightclub owner Peter Gatien, from filmmakers Billy Corben and Alfred Spellman of rakontur.
IFC Midnight has acquired U.S. rights to the Dutch film Saint, directed by Dick Maas, ahead of its North American premiere tonight in New York. The slasher film reimagines Santa Claus as a murderous bishop unleashed on Amsterdam. The deal was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, SVP of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films, with Nate Bolotin of XYZ Films on behalf of the filmmakers.
Los Angeles – April 20, 2011 – Red Flag Releasing announced today that it has acquired “WE WERE HERE,” produced and directed by David Weissman and editor/co-director Bill Weber. The film recently world premiered at the Sundance Film Festival followed by the Berlin International Film Festival. Red Flag will theatrically release the film in September 2011.
WE WERE HERE is the first documentary to take a deep and reflective look back at the impact of the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco when it was first identified 30 years ago this year. It explores how the City’s inhabitants were affected by, and responded to the calamitous epidemic. WE WERE HERE reaches beyond San Francisco and the human toll of AIDS itself. It is an inspirational film that speaks to the human capacity of individuals to rise to the occasion, and to the incredible collective power of a community coming together with love, compassion, and determination.
Red Flag Releasing will distribute the film in partnership with the filmmakers, The Film Collaborative, New Video and PBS’ Independent Lens, creating a release pattern fitting for this incredibly moving look into the tragedy and eventual triumph of a community organizing to respond to the AIDS epidemic. The film’s release will include theatrical, OnDemand, DVD, digital download channels, and television (in spring 2012), as well as an educational/non-theatrical outreach component through New Yorker Films. The film’s worldwide producer’s rep Jonathan Dana and TFC’s Orly Ravid orchestrated the deals.
David Weissman and Bill Weber previously
At one point there was a lawsuit in the U.S. that claimed the proposed deal made little sense and that Rupert Murdoch was “paying for nepotism” by buying his daughter Elisabeth’s TV production company. News Corp said the suit was “without merit”
New York, NY (April 5, 2011) — News Corporation today announced it has completed the acquisition of 100 percent of Shine Group, for which the Shine Group shareholders received approximately £290 million in aggregate proceeds
The transaction was approved by the Audit Committee of the News Corporation Board of Directors. The Audit Committee, which is composed entirely of independent directors, received advice and a fairness opinion from Centerview Partners, an independent investment bank, and legal advice from Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. News Corporation was advised by Hogan Lovells. J.P. Morgan acted as exclusive financial advisor to Shine Group, with legal advice from Olswang LLP in the U.K. and O’Melveny & Myers LLP in the U.S.
Oscilloscope Laboratories and Showtime Networks Inc. announced today their acquisition of the widely lauded Sundance Film Festival 2011 documentary, REBIRTH, directed by Jim Whitaker.
The result of a filmmaking journey into living history, the story of REBIRTH follows the transformation of five people, over the course of 10 years, whose lives were forever altered on September 11, 2001 – and simultaneously tracks, via unprecedented multi-camera time lapse photography, the evolution of the space where the Twin Towers once rose over lower Manhattan.
Whitaker seamlessly weaves these personal stories of hope and healing and reveals a universal truth, one which shows human beings will overcome and aspire to renewal, even when the very fabric of their lives has changed.
Oscilloscope will release REBIRTH in theatres in August 2011. SHOWTIME will broadcast REBIRTH on the 10th anniversary of the events of September 11th.
The film as well as other original programming created by the REBIRTH team will eventually be housed at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum located at Ground Zero. All proceeds from REBIRTH will go to the Project Rebirth Center to develop and provide new multi-media tools to aid the therapists, academics, first responders and others working with people dealing with grief.