A slew of new specialty rollouts hit theaters over the weekend with mixed results. Indomina’s Sundance documentary The Imposter came in as the per-theatre-average winner, with a single location in New York. The Bart Layton-directed film grossed $20,643. “It’s a great opening weekend,” Indomina’s Rob Williams said this morning. “Stellar reviews and great public turnout shows us the film is really connecting.” Indomina will take the title to additional markets on July 27th. The Weinstein Company opened Swedish production Easy Money in two locations, averaging just under $12K. “We feel we’re off to a good start with Easy Money,” said TWC’s Head of Distribution Erik Lomis. “We had a 75% jump from Friday to Saturday, which proves there is great word of mouth on the film so we’re optimistic for our prospects heading into the expansion.” Cohen Media Group’s Farewell My Queen opened nicely in several locations, averaging just over $18K per site. The film directed by Benoît Jacquot has grossed over $72K.
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Three features and two docs are among this week’s new specialty releases hitting theaters against the summer tentpoles. Sundance doc The Imposter may prove somewhat controversial given the con-man who figures at the center of the story — and who proved to be the source of heavy anxiety in making the film. Ballplayer: Pelotero may move beyond hard-core baseball fans about two people pursuing the American dream. On the narrative side, Red Lights director Rodrigo Cortés tells Deadline about a rule he broke while writing the screenplay for the story he also directed. Easy Money distributor The Weinstein Company hopes to tap into the success of director Daniel Espinosa’s previous box office smash, and Sundance Selects’ Trishna heads into theaters after a hefty festival run for the Michael Winterbottom-directed feature.
Directors: Ross Finkel, Trevor Martin, Jonathan Paley
Subjects: Jean Carlos Batista, Miguel Angel Sano, John Leguizamo (Narrator)
Distributor: Strand Releasing
Executive producers Andrew Muscato and Bobby Valentine set up Makuhari Media in 2010 to make sports documentaries and thought baseball would make a good start. The pair saw footage from what would become Ballplayer: Pelotero and decided to take on the project. “What drives me is that we want to tell stories set in the world of sports but have a general appeal to an audience,” Muscato told Deadline. “These people in Pelotero tell a story about people who want to fulfill their dreams.” The project also attracted veteran doc editor Mary Manhardt (Racing Dreams, The Canal Street Madam), which also was a boon to the project about two top baseball players from the Dominican Republic who face fierce competition and corruption as they chase their dreams. “She can take a niche subject and make it palatable to audiences,” noted Muscato. “Getting her made it a selling point for us to be part of the film.” Read More »
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 »
The 55th BFI London Film Festival has set its slate for the 16-day festival that runs Oct. 12-27. It’s composed mostly of the high-profile films that will have made their debuts at the Venice, Telluride, Toronto and New York film festivals. The festival previously announced Fernando Meirelles’ 360 as its opener, and other highlights include George Clooney’s The Ides of March as well as The Descendants, the Alexander Payne film that stars Clooney. Lynne Ramsay’s We Need to Talk About Kevin, Michael Winterbottom’s Trishna, Roland Emmerich’s Anonymous, Madona’s W.E., Steve McQueen’s Shame, David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method and Michel Hazanavicius’ celebrated silent film The Artist are all on the docket for the Gala Premiere section.
The Film on the Square program includes the Roman Polanski-directed Carnage, Gus Van Sant’s Restless, the Paolo Sorrentino-directed Sean Penn-starrer This Must Be the Place, Oren Moverman’s Rampart, Dee Rees’ Pariah and Sean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene.