Submarine Pacts With SnagFilms, Launches Torpedo Pictures
Submarine Entertainment announced today at the Cannes Film Festival that it has licensed three films to on-demand hub SnagFilms: Sundance 2011 entry Letters From The Big Man, about a Forest Service employee who stumbles across a sasquatch in the Oregon wilderness; punk-rock documentary Hi My Name Is Ryan; and 2010 Berlin title Arias With A Twist: The Documentary, about the collaboration between cabaret and drag artist Joey Arias and master puppeteer Basil Twist. SnagFilms now has exclusive cable VOD and digital distribution rights to the films in the U.S. and will release them across all platforms this year.
Torpedo Pictures, being launched with Dakota Group, will house a slate of low-budget sci-fi, horror and thriller genre films with budgets between $500K-$1.5 million. Dakota Group will finance the slate, while Submarine will rep worldwide rights.
Anchor Bay Takes Officer Down & Pawn
Anchor Bay Films has acquired all English-speaking territories for the action titles Officer Down and the Michael Chiklis hostage drama Pawn from Red Sea Media, which has completed sales on both to Polar Star (Latin America), Globo TV (Brazil), Dutch FilmWorks, (Benelux), Eagle Films (Middle East), IPA (Thailand), Prorom (Romania), and Horizon Int’l (Turkey).
Adam Leon’s Gimme The Loot took SXSW’s prize for best narrative feature last week. Sundance Selects today announced that it acquired North American and Latin American rights to the film, which centers on two determined teens from the Bronx who are the ultimate graffiti writers. A rival gang, however, buffs their latest masterpiece and they decide to get revenge by tagging an iconic NYC landmark. Arianna Bocco, SVP Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films, negotiated the deal with Josh Braun of Submarine Entertainment. Gimme The Loot is produced by Natalie Difford, Dominic Buchanan, Jamund Washington and stars newcomers Tashiana Washington,Ty Hickson, Meeko, Zoe Lescaze and Sam Soghor.
Related: SXSW Announces Audience Awards
Once an addendum to the overlapping music event, the SXSW Film Festival solidified itself in the top tier of U.S. film events in the mid-2000s after specialty distributors made it an annual mainstay. And they have been coming back.
SXSW’s not-so-secret trump card may be its overlapping music and tech-centric Interactive events. The throngs of people who attend all three big events certainly exacerbate the annual challenge of finding hotel rooms, making flight reservations and even getting a place to eat in downtown Austin, but the energy of thousands who come to the city has not only been a boon to the festival’s bottom line (it is a for-profit enterprise), but it has developed a creative dynamic that is rarely matched. And clearly so-called Indiewood and beyond have embraced the festival.
“(SXSW) almost always has the most recent innovation and all of a sudden, in the post-Twitter blow up, there were huge groups of people who had never been there going to these three siblings, Music, Film and Interactive,” said Tom Quinn, co-president of new Weinstein Company label Radius. “On any given night it’s hard to tell what is the lifeblood, but from a distributor POV it’s fascinating to see.” Quinn first attended SXSW eight years ago as an exec at Magnolia Pictures, picking up sci-fi feature Monsters at the festival in 2010, one of a number of watershed moments that has kept the event on the map.
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EXCLUSIVE: Rough House Pictures has come aboard to present The Comedy, the provocative film starring Tim Heidecker that’s playing here in Park City. He plays Swanson, a hipster insulated by privilege but living in a social bubble of recreational cruelty with his clique of friends.
Submarine Entertainment has made a deal with Hanway Films for the latter to handle Constance Marks’ award-winning Sundance documentary Being Elmo, about the creator of the iconic Sesame Street character. The doc previously picked up some rights deals when it was shopped at the Cannes Film Festival. The deal was negotiated by Josh Braun and David Koh of Submarine on behalf of Marks along with Hanway managing director Thorsten Schumacher and sales and distribution director Fabien Westerhoff. Submarine is handling an Oscar-qualifying run in major U.S. markets in the fall.
Being Elmo, the Sundance prize-winning documentary about the creator of the Sesame Street puppet and his behind-the-scenes beginnings on the iconic PBS children’s show, has landed multiple deals at the Cannes market, where it is being sold by Submarine Entertainment. The Constance Marks film, which will be released theatrically this year by Submarine to qualify for Oscar consideration, has been sold to New Video for DVD and digital rights (via its Docurama Films label) and ITVS & Independent Lens for the first TV window. Mongrel Media will release in Canada, and Madman Entertainment has sold to Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.