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Samuel Goldwyn Acquires ‘Cowgirls ‘N Angels’

By | Thursday March 15, 2012 @ 9:11am PDT
Mike Fleming

New York, NY (March 15, 2012) Samuel Goldwyn Films announced today that it has acquired US theatrical rights to the coming of age family film COWGIRLS ‘N ANGELS. Twentieth Century Fox will handle North American ancillaries and all international media.

The company has slated a May 25th Memorial Day release.

COWGIRLS ‘N ANGELS tells the story of Ida (Madison), a rebellious young girl who dreams one day of finding her father, a rodeo rider. While searching for her dad, she connects with the Sweethearts of the Rodeo, a team of young female trickriders run by former rodeo star Terence Parker (Cromwell). Recognizing Ida’s drive and determination, Terence sees a lot of himself in Ida and recruits her to become a member of the Sweethearts. Accepted wholeheartedly by her new “family,” Ida finds a new passion and direction. Although she sets out to find her father, she soon discovers much more including a love for horses and a personal responsibility that redefines her life.

In addition to Cromwell, Madison, Witt and BREAKING DAWN PART 2’s Jackson Rathbone, COWGIRLS ‘N ANGELS also stars Kathleen Rose Perkins Frankie Faison, Leslie Ann Huff, Dora Madison Burge and a host of others. The film was directed by Timothy Armstrong from a script by Armstrong and Stephen Blinn. Ben Feingold of Sense and Sensibility Ventures LLC is the producer.

According to Meyer Gottlieb, President of Samuel Goldwyn Films: “COWGIRLS ‘N ANGELS is a wonderful film for the entire family.

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Samuel Goldwyn Films Takes Rights to ‘The State Of Illusion’

By | Friday February 10, 2012 @ 8:33am PST

Scott Cervine’s People V. The State Of Illusion was picked up by Samuel Goldwyn Films. Written and produced by Austin Vickers, the film explores the science and power of perceptions and imagination reminiscent of 2004′s What The Bleep Do We Know!?? – also a Goldwyn title. Set in a New Mexico penitentiary, the story centers on Aaron Roberts who is convicted of claiming a woman’s life, forcing his daughter to become a ward of the state. An attorney learns of her plight and decides to represent her in an innovative and emotionally compelling case against the state. Vickers, a professional speaker in the field of emotional intelligence and self-awareness, will appear at the film’s premiere in cities across the country to conduct audience Q&As. Goldwyn acquired U.S. rights and plans a March release.

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‘The Island President’, ‘Solar Mamas’ Take $25K Environmental Award: Sundance

By | Sunday January 22, 2012 @ 4:14pm PST

Sundance Institute announced two winners for its inaugural Hilton Worldwide LightStay Sustainability Award honoring documentaries that showcase “the connection between sustainability, economic growth and community development.” Jon Shenk’s The Island President took the prize in the feature category and Jehane Noujaim and Mona Eldaief’s Solar Mamas won the award in the “in-process feature film” category. Each will receive $25,000. Screening tonight, The Island President features President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives whose low-lying nation is threatened by rising sea levels. Samuel Goldwyn will release the feature March 28th. This year’s winners were chosen from 1,500 features and over 5,000 shorts submitted to the Sundance Institute Documentary Program.

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Samuel Goldwyn Films Acquires US Rights To Toronto Docu ‘The Island President’

By | Monday November 7, 2011 @ 8:22am PST
Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films acquired US rights to The Island President, the documentary that won the Audience Award at the Toronto Film Festival. Goldwyn will release the film in February and is hopeful that it will make noise in the Oscar race. The Jon Shenk-directed film tells the story of President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives and his campaign to save his country. After bringing democracy to the Maldives after three decades of despotic rule, he wages a campaign against global warming. To him it is a life or death struggle: as one of the most low-lying countries in the world, a rise of three feet in sea level would put the 1200 Maldive islands underwater and render them uninhabitable. It brings him to the Copenhagen Climate Summit in 2009, where he makes his impassioned plea. Shenk directed Lost Boys of Sudan. The film’s produced by Richard Berge and Bonni Cohen and Jon Else is exec producer.

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Sex Trafficking Feature ‘The Whistleblower’ Gets UN Screening Tomorrow

Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films and director Larysa Kondracki have finally been given a date for a United Nations screening and panel discussion on The Whistleblower, the drama about sex trafficking in post-war Bosnia that occurred under the watch of UN peacekeepers. The screening will take place tomorrow at 3:30 PM. Kondracki will take part in the panel discussion along with Madeleine Rees, former UN rights lawyer and secretary of the Women’s International League For Peace And Freedom (played in the film by Vanessa Redgrave); Susana Malcorra, Under Secretary General, Department of Field Support; and Anne-Marie Orler, Police Adviser, Department of Peacekeeping Operations. The screening and discussion is being hosted by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. The screening will be attended by member states and UN staff. Read More »

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First Toronto Sale: Samuel Goldwyn Nabs Doc ‘Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel’

By | Friday September 9, 2011 @ 11:45am PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: The first deal of this year’s Toronto Film Festival he goes to Samuel Goldwyn, which acquired the doc Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel. Goldwyn acquired North American rights and will put the film out theatrically in at least 20 markets. The film was directed by Lisa Immordino Vreeland, wife of the late fashion magnate’s grandson. It got strong reaction in Venice and Telluride, and after a private screening at the Royal York Hotel last night Goldwyn, IFC, Magnolia and Sony Pictures Classics and Music Box went after it. Goldwyn took it around 4 AM. Pic was repped by Submarine’s Josh Braun.

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UN Screening Bosnian Sex Trafficking Drama ‘The Whistleblower’

Mike Fleming

After months of back and forth, the United Nations has told director Larysa Kondracki that her controversial film The Whistleblower will be given a special screening at UN headquarters on the week of Oct. 10. After the screening, a panel discussion will address the issue of sex trafficking in post-war Bosnia. It’s an embarrassing chapter for the UN, as the film depicts UN peacekeepers not only turning a blind eye to the trafficking of women forced into prostitution in post-war Bosnia, but actually assisting in the transport of sex slaves over the border and into unimaginable hellholes. This latest development comes as a surprise to Kondracki, who has lobbied for months to bring her cautionary tale to the UN. The film stars Rachel Weisz as Kathryn Bolkovac, an American police officer who takes a job as UN peacekeeper in Bosnia and not only was shocked to discover the sexual enslavement of young girls, but that UN peacekeepers and private contractors were major customers. Given diplomatic immunity by the State Department when they hired on, the men were never punished for their complicity in the criminal enterprise. Bolkovac, on the other hand, was excoriated and blackballed for exposing the scandal.

Samuel Goldwyn Films began slowly rolling out the film two weeks ago, and Kondracki initially got a frosty response from the UN. She figured out why when she was slipped an internal UN memo, which she shared with me and which indicated how conflicted senior advisers were over whether to embrace the film or run from it. “After the film premiered and there was quite a bit of press, that’s when I was given the memo by someone who works for the UN and we heard they were going the damage-control route,” Kondracki told me. “I wrote the Secretary General, sent him the DVD, and said they were making the wrong decision.” Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Whistleblower’

By | Thursday June 2, 2011 @ 2:07pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films has released a trailer for the Larysa Kondracki-directed The Whistleblower, with Rachel Weisz starring as an American police officer who becomes a peacekeeper in post-war Bosnia. Her hopes of helping rebuild the country are dashed when she sees rampant sex-trafficking activity, and apathy or worse among government officials who turn a blind eye to what is going on. Script was written by Ellis Kirwan & Kondracki, and it’s inspired by a true story. Vanessa Redgrave, Monica Bellucci and David Strathairn also star. The film begins rolling out Aug. 5.

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Samuel Goldwyn Films Acquires ‘There Be Dragons’

Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films bought U.S. rights on the Roland Joffe-directed There Be Dragons, a Spain-set drama that stars Wes Bentley, Charlie Cox, Olga Kurylenko, Derek Jacobi and Dougray Scott. The film will be released May 6. Scott plays a journalist who tries to unravel a mystery that links his father to the founder of Opus Dei.

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Goldwyn Acquires Russia Oscar Entry ‘The Edge’

By | Thursday January 13, 2011 @ 1:07pm PST
Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films acquired U.S. distribution rights to The Edge, Russia’s Academy Award entry that is nominated for Best Foreign Language Film in Sunday’s Golden Globes. The Alexey Uchitel-directed film has been set for a spring, 2011 release.

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Thriller ‘The Whistleblower’ Finds A Home

Mike Fleming

Samuel Goldwyn Films closed U.S. rights to The Whistleblower, the Rachel Weisz-starrer that premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. Larysa Kondracki directed the drama, which also stars Vanessa Redgrave, Monica Bellucci and David Strathairn. Weisz plays a cop who takes a peacekeeper job in post-war Bosnia and uncovers a sex trafficking scandal. Pic will be released in August. UTA Independent Film Group’s Rena Ronson  brokered the deal. Here is a scene from the film that Deadline previewed at Toronto:

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