Sundance: New Distribution Deals; Naked Daniel Radcliffe and 'Escape from Tomorrow' Stir Buzz

Sundance: New Distribution Deals; Naked Daniel Radcliffe and 'Escape from Tomorrow' Stir Buzz

Jan 21, 2013

The Spectacular Now

Top Stories

Drama Deals: High school coming-of-age drama The Spectacular Now, praised by our own Erik Davis, has been acquired by new-ish company A24, which plans a summer release. The film stars Shailene Woodley and Miles Teller. [Indiewire] Michael Winterbottom’s The Look of Love, with Steve Coogan as a real-life adult-magazine publisher who became one of Britain's wealthiest men, was acquired by IFC Films. [Thompson on Hollywood] Calvin Lee Reeder’s midnight mystery thriller The Rambler, starring Dermot Mulroney, got picked up by Anchor Bay. [Deadline]

Doc Deals: Documentaries have been especially popular with distributors, with five docs securing deals in the opening days of the festival: Twenty Feet from Stardom, about highly talented but unknown backup singers; The Summit, about a disastrous mountain climbing expedition; The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear, which explores the lives of people in the former Soviet Georgia; History of the Eagles, a history of the pop-rock group; and Dirty Wars, an investigation into the war on terror. [Indiewire]

Unexpected Visitors: As expected, plenty of celebrities hit the festival over the weekend -- Daniel Radcliff, Naomi Watts and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, among many others -- but visitors also included an unauthorized camel, “brand ambassadors” (i.e. young, attractive women representing corporate sponsors), and cats, in the form of short films featuring cats that were screened at the first ever Catdance. [Los Angeles Times]

Kill Your Darlings

Movies with the Most Buzz

Our writers on the ground have already covered a great selection of buzz-worthy titles; here are some more that are stirring up talk in Park City, Utah:

Kill Your Darlings: Daniel Radcliffe has shed his Harry Potter image in a big way by starring as beat poet Allen Ginsberg in Kill Your Darlings. Radcliff appears nude in an “explicit” sex scene with another man, has a make-out session with another male costar, and has a third sex scene as well. He’s fine if audiences come solely to see Harry Potter naked: “If I can help get a film like this attention, that's without doubt, that's a great thing." [Associated Press]

Escape from Tomorrow: Shot guerilla-style at Walt Disney World in Florida, the movie has grabbed more attention for its questionable legal status -- filmmaker Randy Moore did not get legal releases from Disney, park employees or visitors -- than for the quality of its perverse family drama. Many question whether the film will ever be shown legally, outside the festival. [Fandor]

Fruitvale: Already earning comparisons to Beasts of the Southern Wild (as an unheralded low-budget indie with no big stars), Fruitvale is said to have generated a heated bidding war for distribution rights, with four companies reportedly in the mix. The dramatized story recounts the final day in the life of a 22-year-old man whose death galvanized protests against police brutality in Oakland, California. [Deadline]


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