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Sundance 2014: William H. Macy- Helmed ‘Rudderless’ Gets Closing-Night Slot; Roger Ebert Docu & ‘The Raid 2′ Among Premiere Selections

sundance 2014The Sundance Film Festival today unveiled its Premieres and Documentary Premieres sections for the 30th anniversary gathering in Park City next month. Among the selections in the out-of-RUDDERLESS_still2_BenKweller_BillyCrudup_AntonYelchin__byJRCooke_2013-12...competition sections is the William H. Macy-directed musical drama Rudderless, which will be the fest’s closing night film. The rock and roll themed pic is the Shameless star’s feature directorial debut and stars him as well as Selena Gomez Billy Crudup, Felicity Huffman, Anton Yelchin, and Laurence Fishburne, Rudderless will play at 6:30PM on the night of January 24th in the Eccles at the upcoming Sundance, which runs January 16-26.

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Roger Ebert & Gene SiskelAmong other premiering films announced today for next month’s Sundance is a documentary about one of the festival’s biggest supporters Roger Ebert. The Steve James-directed film about the Pulitzer Prize winning critic, who passed away on April 4 this year, will see the writer’s wife Chaz Ebert in attendance. This coming Sundance also sees the festival’s first Fellowship for Film Criticism inspired by Ebert. The 2014 festival will see the return of directors Michael Winterbottom, Gregg Araki and Lynn Shelton, who had her Your Sister’s Sister follow-up Touchy Feely in the 2013 festival, with new films. The Indonesian action pic The Raid Read More »

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IFC Films Lands U.S. Rights To Michael Winterbottom-Helmed ‘The Trip To Italy’

By | Monday June 24, 2013 @ 7:11am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: IFC Films has pre-bought U.S. rights to The Trip To Italy, with director Michael Winterbottom just getting underway. The film is the follow to the 2010 road trip comedy The Trip, which Winterbottom also directed. IFC released that film, and original stars Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon are back for the second road trip. The Trip To Italy is a semi-fictional improvised tour of Italy, reuniting Rob and Steve (Brydon and Coogan). The film follows them as they travel through the countryside, talking about life, careers, and the world. The friends often got on each other’s nerves in the original. Melissa Parmenter is producing for Revolution Films, and Andrew Eaton and Henry Normal are exec producers. Pic is currently in production in Italy, a co-production with Babycow and Small Man Ltd. Read More »

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Hot Sundance Clip: ‘The Look of Love’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Here’s a peek at a racy clip for The Look Of Love, the Michael Winterbottom-directed Sundance film that has its premiere tomorrow. I’m not convinced this one is going to get a PG-13.

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Anna Friel, Imogen Poots, Tamsin Egerton Join Michael Winterbottom’s ‘King Of Soho’

Michael Winterbottom’s King Of Soho has found its queens in a trio of British actresses who’ve boarded the comedy drama about legendary porn publisher and club impresario Paul Raymond. Steve Coogan stars as Raymond, a modern King Midas who became one of Britan’s wealthiest men by building an empire of gentleman’s clubs, adult magazines and nude theaters. Known as the “King of Soho,” Raymond, natch, led a colorful personal life, too. Anna Friel (Limitless) will play his first wife, Tamsin Egerton (Chalet Girl) his glamour model girlfriend and Imogen Poots (Filth, Fright Night) will star as his beloved daughter. Coogan, a huge comedy star in the UK, is best known to US audiences for Winterbottom’s recent road movie The Trip as well as for roles in Tropic Thunder and the Night At The Museum movies. He also previously teamed with Winterbottom on 24 Hour Party People and Tristram Shandy: A Cock And Bull Story. King Of Soho was written by Matt Greenhalgh (Nowhere Boy, Control). Film4 developed and Read More »

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AFM: Sony Group Pacts For Michael Winterbottom’s Jack Black Comedy ‘Bailout’

Culver City, CA (November 3, 2011) – Ealing Metro has struck a multi-territory deal with Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) on Michael Winterbottom’s (Trishna, The Trip, 24 Hour Party People) eagerly anticipated comedy BAILOUT starring Jack Black (School of Rock). The deal includes North America, South America, Australia, South Africa and Scandinavia and was negotiated by Will Machin for Ealing Metro along with Tana Evans, Vice President Acquisitions & Distribution, and Michael Helfand, Executive Vice President, Business Affairs for SPWA.

Helmed by Winterbottom and based on Jess Walter’s acclaimed novel The Financial Lives of the Poets, BAILOUT is produced by Michael Besman (About Schmidt), Melissa Parmenter (Trishna) Jack Black and Pryanka Mattoo.. It is a Revolution Films/Ballyhoo, Inc./Electric Dynamite Production and is slated to start shooting January, 2012, in the US. The Ealing Metro team expects to announce additional U.S. comedy stars for key roles in the near future.

Matt Prior (Jack Black) wakes up to find himself jobless, in serious debt, convinced his wife is having an affair and six days away from losing his home. BAILOUT is a heartfelt comedy about a down on his luck guy who will go to hysterical measures in order to take his life back.

Commenting on the deal, Will Machin, Head of Ealing Metro said: “We’re delighted to partner with Sony on this film. They share our enthusiasm for the project and our excitement at the pairing of Michael and Jack in

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It’s Only Rock ’N’ Roll: Stars Align For Stone Roses And Beatles Movies

By | Wednesday October 26, 2011 @ 8:22am PDT

EXCLUSIVE: BBC Films is set to back a movie about cult British rock band Stone Roses, whose reunion concerts announced last week sold out within minutes. The band’s self-titled debut has been voted the best British album of all time. Spike Island, a drama about the band’s May 1990 outdoor concert — which has been compared to the Woodstock of the ecstacy pill-dropping generation — starts shooting in March 2012. Elliott Tittensor (Shameless) and Matthew McNulty (Misfits) will co-star. Mat Whitecross, director of the Ian Dury biopic Sex&drugs&rock&roll, is the director, and the producers are Fiona Neilson and Esher Douglas of Fiesta Productions. State financier BFI Film Fund is already on board, as is Revolver Entertainment, which has taken UK rights. Bankside Films is co-financing and selling the project internationally. The band has given permission to use their music for the movie. Read More »

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Toronto: Sundance Selects Lands North American Rights To ‘Trishna’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: IFC’s Sundance Selects has acquired North American rights to Trishna, the Michael Winterbottom-directed drama that stars Freida Pinto and Riz Ahmed. It has been a busy 24 hours for Jonathan Sehring and Arianna Bocco, who add this deal to yesterday’s IFC acquisitions of the Lynn Shelton-directed Toronto title Your Sister’s Sister and the gory Midnight Madness title The Incident, as well as the Abel Ferrara-directed Last Day on Earth. Read More »

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CANNES: Jack Black Teams For ‘Bailout’ Comedy With Director Michael Winterbottom

By | Thursday May 12, 2011 @ 1:47am PDT
Mike Fleming

Ealing Metro International and The King’s Speech financier Prescience will finance and sell worldwide rights on Bailout, a Michael Winterbottom-directed comedy that will star Jack Black. The film is based on the Jess Walter novel The Financial Lives of The Poets. Walter adapted his novel, which follows the misadventures of Matt Prior (Black), who loses his job, is crippled with debt and is convinced his wife is having an affair. He’s two weeks from losing his home when he meets two losers at the supermarket who offer him a strange business opportunity and his last chance to save himself. Michael Besman of Ballyhoo is producing with Melissa Parmenter of Revolution Films, Black and Ben Cooley and Priyanka Mattoo of Electric Dynamite. Shooting will begin in August. WME reps Black and Winterbottom, ICM reps Walter.

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‘Slumdog’ Star Freida Pinto Now Indian ‘Tess’

By | Wednesday February 16, 2011 @ 10:01am PST

The Slumdog Millionaire actress starts shooting an Indian version of the classic Thomas Hardy tragic novel on location in Rajasthan and Mumbai on February 28th. Riz Ahmed (Four Lions) will co-star as the son of a wealthy property developer who falls for the daughter of an auto rickshaw driver. Trishna will be directed by Michael Winterbottom (A Mighty Heart). Sales agent Bankside has begun selling the film in Berlin. This is the 3rd time that Michael Winterbottom has turned to author Thomas Hardy for his source material. First he made Jude (1996), starring Kate Winslet and Christopher Eccleston, then he made The Claim (2000), a Klondike version of The Mayor of Casterbridge. Winterbottom’s producer partner Andrew Eaton tells me that Winterbottom has always been a big Hardy fan. He made a short at university based on the pig-sticking scene in Jude The Obscure and then got to film it for real 10 years later. This is the 7th time that Hardy’s tragedy has been filmed – most famously Roman Polanski’s Tess, which starred Natassia Kinski as the trusting servant girl who’s abused by the men around her.

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IFC Plans ‘Trip’ With Michael Winterbottom

By | Monday October 4, 2010 @ 8:53am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: IFC is wrapping up U.S. distribution on The Trip, the Michael Winterbottom road comedy that stars comics Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon as they tour eateries in Northern England. Winterbottom turned the humorous results into a 6-part BBC miniseries, and the new movie, which premiered at Toronto, is culled from that marathon but features some exclusive footage. I’m told by sources on both coasts that IFC will get the film, which was produced by Winterbottom’s longtime collaborator, Andrew Eaton. IFC has been on an acquisitions tear lately, landing the James Gunn-directed Super, the Barry Blaustein-directed Peep World, and finding a home for Tom Six’s The Human Centipede Part 2 (Full Sequence), whose premise–mad doc catches victims, links their digestive systems together to create a human centipede–is hands down the most disturbing horror movie premise I’ve ever heard of.

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