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Sundance: Distributor Motion Film Group Launches With ‘Gun Hill Road’ Deal

By | Thursday January 27, 2011 @ 11:02am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: The 2011 Sundance Film Festival deals keep coming. Upstart distributor Motion Film Group has paid low seven-figures for worldwide sales and distribution rights to Gun Hill Road, the Rashaad Ernesto Green-directed drama which premiered Monday in the U.S. Dramatic Competition. Motion Film Group is backed by financier Fotis Georgiadis. The plan is for a summer theatrical release and to sell offshore rights at Cannes.

The coming of age drama is set in the Bronx and stars Esai Morales, Judy Reyes and Isiah Whitlock. Morales plays a macho ex-con who returns to the Bronx after his latest prison stretch. He discovers the world has knew has turned upside down while he was gone. His wife (Reyes) tries to hide an emotional affair, and his teen son is exploring a sexual transformation beyond his father’s grasp. It’s time for the ex-con to take some responsibility and become a parent. Georgiadis was principal financier behind past indie acquisitions Hounddog, and Twelve. He formed Motion Film Group to take a more active hand in distribution. “We have learned a lot over the past three years, and have developed a core team that we can work with under our own distribution label,” Georgiadis said in a statement. “We’re very excited to add this impressive film to our 2011 theatrical roster.” Ronna Wallace of Eastgate Pictures LLC along with Andre Des Rochers, negotiated the deal … Read More »

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Sundance Film Festival Sets Shorts Slate

Mike Fleming

Park City, UT— Sundance Institute announced today the program of short films selected to screen at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. This year the Festival’s Short Film Program comprises 81 short films from U.S. and international filmmakers selected from 6,467 submissions up 6% over 2010. The 2011 Sundance Film Festival runs January 20-30 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah. The complete list of films is available at www.sundance.org/festival.

”It’s a marvel to discover the creativity in this year’s shorts program. These filmmakers are charged with telling compelling stories, nurturing breakout performances and engaging the audience, all in a fraction of the time allocated to features, and each one delivers,” said Trevor Groth, Sundance Film Festival Director of Programming. “For 2011, we are pleased to be able to shine a light on indigenous filmmakers working around the world in the short-form medium, and to provide festival goers with a window into native storytelling.”

“These directors have once again raised the bar to show us the endless possibilities in short filmmaking,” said Kim Yutani, Sundance Film Festival Programmer. “It’s especially rewarding to see shorts alums such as Andrew MacLean, Sean Durkin, Dee Rees, Rashaad Ernesto Green, Madeleine Olnek, Tiffany Shlain and others returning this year with feature films.”

The short films selected for the 2011 Sundance Film Festival are:

U.S. NARRATIVE SHORTS
This year’s 44 U.S. short films were selected from a record 3,453 submissions.

After You Left (Director: Jef Taylor; Screenwriters: Jef

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