With the Toronto Film Festival still underway, deals are being made left and right which has seen numerous titles score U.S. distributors who have already begun planning release strategies.
Neon has picked up Brady Corbet’s “Vox Lux” starring Natalie Portman as a troubled pop diva. The film, and in particular Portman, are drawing serious awards buzz with the likelihood the small distributor will push it out into cinemas this year for a potential Oscar run. Neon employed that exact same strategy with “I Tonya,” that film scoring multiple nominations and a Best Supporting Actress win for Allison Janney. [Source: Variety]
Richard Says Goodbye
Saban Films and DirecTV have picked up North American rights to Johnny Depp-led drama “Richard Says Goodbye” for around $3 million with plans for a 2019 theatrical release. Zoey Deutch and Rosemarie DeWitt co-star and Wayne Roberts directed from his own script.
Depp plays a college professor who is given a life-changing diagnosis and then decides to throw all pretence and conventions to the wind and live his life as boldly and freely as possible. He smokes, drinks, has sex, and insults anyone who annoys him. [Source: Variety]
The Standoff at Sparrow Creek
RLJE Films has picked up “The Standoff at Sparrow Creek” starring James Badge Dale as a reclusive ex-cop who finds himself unwittingly forced out of retirement when he realizes a shooter at a police funeral belongs to the same militia he joined after quitting the force.
He quarantines his fellow militiamen in the remote lumber mill they call their headquarters and sets about a series of gruelling interrogations, intent on ferreting out the killer. Brian Geraghty, Chris Mulkey and Robert Aramayo co-star. Henry Dunham penned and directs the project with plans for a theatrical run ahead of a VOD release next year. [Source: RLJE Films]
A24 and DirecTV have acquired rights for the Guy Nattiv-directed biographical drama film “Skin” starring Jamie Bell as Byron Widner, a man raised by skinheads who risks his life to leave a white supremacy group in order to become a better person and have a chance at a new normal life with Julie. Vera Farmiga, Danielle MacDonald, Mike Colter and Bill Camp co-star in the film which is set for a 2019 release. [Source: Variety
Media Rights Capital has won the rights to Rian Johnson’s “Knives Out,” committing to fully financing the $40 million thriller which serves as Johnson’s directorial follow-up to “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”. Filming begins in November with star Daniel Craig and MRC also offered a strong back-end for Craig and the filmmakers.
The project is dubbed an Agatha Christie-esque modern-day murder mystery in the classic whodunit style, infused with Johnson’s original voice that informed films from “Brick” to “Looper”. Johnson wrote the script and will be producing alongside Bergman. [Source: Deadline]