Here’s the official trailer for Drafthouse Films‘ latest docu acquisition The Final Member, about an American, an aging Icelander, and the proprietor of the only “phallological museum” in the world, whose lives intertwine in a quest for immortality as one man attempts to complete his penis exhibit with …
OSCARS: Drafthouse Films Embracing Risks – And Hoping For Change – With Genocide Documentary ‘The Act Of Killing’
Specialty distributor Drafthouse Films opened shop in 2010 and scored a surprise Oscar nomination with its third release, the Belgian Best Foreign Pic contender Bullhead. Now Drafthouse is back in the awards game with Joshua Oppenheimer’s startling Indonesian genocide documentary The Act Of Killing, a provocative pic backed by Werner Herzog and Errol Morris that has already racked up dozens of awards and made the Oscar documentary shortlist in a notably competitive year for nonfiction. Oppenheimer’s film profiles the celebrated death squad leaders responsible for mass murders in 1960s Indonesia as they flamboyantly re-stage their crimes for the camera in Hollywood-style re-enactments — and, in one killer’s case, start to grasp the severity of their actions. The film’s brutal themes required such a careful touch that Drafthouse’s considered awards approach began the moment they won a hard-fought bidding war for the film. But how do you market a film with protagonists like these and win over traditional-minded Academy voters with such a non-traditional message?
Oppenheimer’s film leaves the moralizing to the audience, but it has not for nothing earned a rep as one of the more unsettling Oscar hopefuls in recent memory.
Los Angeles, CA, September 4, 2013 (NASDAQ: CIDM) — Cinedigm announced today that it has partnered with Drafthouse Films, the distribution arm of Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas, to release a slate of critically-acclaimed films across all home entertainment channels. Platforms will include DVD/Blu-ray, broadcast television, subscription VOD, cable VOD, and digital platforms. Drafthouse Films is a curated brand of provocative, visionary and artfully unusual films new and old from around the world. Going forward, Drafthouse plans to release 10-12 films in theaters in 2014. The partnership between Cinedigm and Drafthouse will begin in January 2014 with the pre-theatrical VOD release of SXSW award-winner CHEAP THRILLS, starring Ethan Embry, Pat Healy, and Sara Paxton, followed by a theatrical release in February. Other upcoming films include Ari Folman’s THE CONGRESS, which premiered at Cannes and stars Robin Wright Penn; acclaimed Cannes premiere BORGMAN, and Ben Wheatley’s latest film, A FIELD IN ENGLAND.
EXCLUSIVE: Joshua Oppenheimer’s award-winning The Act of Killing garnered wide acclaim and the year’s best nonfiction debut this summer. But the filmmakers believe the docu, in which ex-death squad leaders of the 1965-1966 Indonesian genocide reenact their own atrocities for the camera, can’t have a traditional release in the country where said mass murderers are still celebrated as national heroes. So the film’s most significant release will come in September when Drafthouse Films, VICE, and VHX open the pic in Indonesia – for free.
The 1965 genocide that killed an estimated 500K to 1 million accused leftists, intellectuals, and ethnic Chinese is rarely talked about in the country and isn’t taught in history books. It’s so sensitive within Indonesia that the 60+ Indonesian crew members on The Act Of Killing are credited as “Anonymous” for fear of retribution. Filmmakers fear that, if submitted to the government-run film board, the docu would likely be banned and subsequent screenings would invite violent attacks by paramilitary groups. Instead, Drafthouse, VICE, Signe Byrge Sørensen’s Final Cut for Real ApS, and VHX will release Act of Killing within Indonesia on September 30 via www.actofkilling.com, where local viewers can download the 159-minute directors cut for free from a site exclusively geo-blocked for Indonesia.
Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act Of Killing, about a group of Indonesian men who revisit and re-enact assassinations they committed after the military coup of 1965, made waves at both Telluride and Toronto in 2012. Earlier this …
Borgman was the first Dutch film in the Cannes Film Festival‘s competition lineup in almost 40 years when the Dutch thriller from director Alex van Warmerdam hit the Croisette earlier this month. Now Drafthouse Films has picked up North American rights in a deal with Fortissimo Films, with a U.S. theatrical and VOD/digital release planned for 2014. Films We Like will handle Canadian distribution.
Borgman is an allegorical tale exploring the nature of evil in unexpected places. A vagrant enters the lives of a typical but arrogant upper-class family, igniting a descent from darkly comic dream to maddening psychological nightmare. Annet Malherbe and Eva van de Wijdeven, two regulars in van Warmerdam’s films, stars along with Jan Bijvoet. Graniet Film (Netherlands) produced.
“Maybe once a year, I am deluged after a premiere with texts and emails to the effect of ‘this is such a Drafthouse movie,’” says Drafthouse Films founder and CEO Tim League, “Its strange, disturbing, hysterical and utterly unique. Borgman is the quintessential Drafthouse film of Cannes. We can’t wait to share it with audiences in North America.”
Drafthouse Films, the distribution arm of the Alamo Drafthouse, has acquired North American rights to original horror film A Field In England. It’s the fourth feature from writer/director Ben Wheatley whose credits include the tour-de-force thriller Kill List, the 2012 Cannes selection Sightseers and a segment in The ABCs Of Death. Billed as “a psychedelic trip into magic and madness,” A Field In England follows a group of English Civil War soldiers in the 17th century who are captured by an alchemist and led into a vast mushroom field, where they fall victim to violent and nightmarish forces. Reece Shearsmith (The League Of Gentlemen), and Michael Smiley (Kill List) star. Julian Barrett (The Mighty Boosh) is also featured in the film. A theatrical and VOD release is planned for 2013.
UPDATE, 5:35 PM: It’s official: Drafthouse Films and Snoot Entertainment have confirmed their acquisition of the midnight pic Cheap Thrills, which will receive a theatrical and VOD release. The deal kicked off sales at SXSW 2013, which picked up today when another late night selection, Haunters, went to IFC Midnight. The official Cheap Thrills announcement appears below Deadline’s original exclusive.
EXCLUSIVE, SUNDAY PM: The first deal of SXSW 2013 closed today as Drafthouse Films and Snoot Entertainment took theatrical, home vid and VOD rights to E.L. Katz’s midnight selection Cheap Thrills. Pat Healy, David Koechner, Sara Paxton, and Ethan Embry star in the twisted comedy thriller about a working class family man tempted by a rich couple into a series of escalating bets. Bidding wars are rare at the Austin fest, but competition broke out late Friday night after the film’s premiere where audience and critical enthusiasm was high. I hear Magnolia, Anchor Bay, and IFC were also in the running at various stages with some eager to buy right away. But in stark contrast to Sundance, where auctions carry on into the wee hours of the night and nobody sleeps, this deal took all of Saturday to unfold.
The documentary chronicling proto-punk band Death had its world premiere at the 2012 Los Angeles Film Fest and screens March 14 at SXSW. Austin-based Drafthouse is planning a summer theatrical and VOD release.
AUSTIN, TX – February 26, 2013 – Drafthouse Films, the film distribution arm of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, announced today the acquisition of North American rights to Jeff Howlett and Mark Covino’s riveting rockumentary A Band Called Death, which is set to screen at this year’s SXSW Film Festival in the “24 Beats Per Second” film category. The film chronicles rebirth and rise to cult stardom of early-’70s African-American “proto-punk” trio Death, following a new generation’s discovery of a virtually unheard demo tape more than 30 years later. A theatrical and VOD release for A Band Called Death is scheduled for this summer.