Directed by Elyse Steinberg, Josh Kriegman and Eli Despres ('Weiner'), the film chronicles what it is like to be an ACLU lawyer in the Trump era.
Magnolia Pictures and Topic Studios have scooped up the Kerry Washington-produced Sundance documentary The Fight. A source pegged the deal in the low seven figures.
Directed by Elyse Steinberg, Josh Kriegman and Eli Despres, the film chronicles what it is like to be an ACLU lawyer in the Trump era, beginning with the civil liberties group's battle with the Trump administration over the so-called Muslim ban that was proposed just days after Trump's inauguration in 2017.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired worldwide rights to Assassins, the latest feature documentary from Ask Dr. Ruth filmmaker Ryan White. The film just had its world premiere in the Sundance Film Festival’s Documentary Premieres lineup. A 2020 release is planned.
Part true crime and global spy thriller, the documentary investigates the 2017 assassination of Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, in a Malaysian airport. The brazen attack was caught on camera, with two young women — Siti Aishah from Indonesia, and Doan Thi Huong from Vietnam — shown attacking Kim with a VX nerve agent while he walked through the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Participant and Magnolia Pictures have acquired North American rights to “John Lewis: Good Trouble,” a look at the life and career of the civil rights activist and congressional leader.
The film was executive produced and financed by CNN Films, AGC Studios and Time Studios. Magnolia is planning to release the film in the spring of 2020. Lewis is expected to play a key role in promoting the picture, which chronicles his social activism and legislative action as a Democratic representative from Georgia on civil rights, voting rights, gun control, health-care reform and immigration. Dawn Porter, best known for “Gideon’s Army,” directed the film and produced it with Laura Michalchyshyn.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to “About Endlessness” following its best director win at this year’s Venice International Film Festival.
It reunites the company with Swedish filmmaker Roy Andersson, who previously directed Magnolia’s 2015 release “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence.” The indie studio is planning a 2020 theatrical bow for the film.
“About Endlessness” presents a dreamy look at both the historical and the banal, taking viewers through a kaleidoscope of experiences — a couple floats over a war-torn Cologne; on the way to a birthday party, a father stops to tie his daughter’s shoelaces in the pouring rain; teenage girls dance outside a cafe; a defeated army marches to a prisoner-of-war camp.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to Two of Us, the relationship drama directed by first-time helmer Filippo Meneghetti that just had its world premiere in the Discovery section of the Toronto Film Festival. A theatrical release in early 2020 is in the works.
The pic revolves around Nina (Barbara Sukowa) and Madeleine (Martine Chevallier), who live across the hall from each other in the same apartment building but have kept their romance hidden for decades.
Meneghetti, a France-based Italian filmmaker, also wrote the script with Malysone Bovorasmy and Florence Vignon. The film is from Paprika Films, Tarantula Luxembourg and Artémis Production. Pierre-Emmanuel Fleurantin and Laurent Baujard are producers.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to the drama “Out Stealing Horses,” starring Stellan Skarsgard and directed by Hans Petter Moland.
The film, based on Per Petterson’s award-winning novel, premiered in competition at the 2019 Berlinale and is Norway’s official Oscar entry for best international feature. Magnolia is planning a theatrical release for next year.
Skarsgard portrays a 67-year-old man who, after the death of his wife, retires to a desolate place in the east of Norway. As winter arrives he discovers he has a neighbor, a man he knew during the summer of 1948.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired worldwide rights to Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band, Daniel Roher’s documentary that is set to launch the Toronto Film Festival tonight. Magnolia is planning a theatrical release for early in 2020.
Executive produced by Martin Scorsese, Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, the documentary tells the story of the seminal rock group that went from backing up Bob Dylan to becoming one of the most influential of its era.
Based mostly on Robertson’s 2017 memoir Testimony, the pic is being billed as a part-confessional, cautionary, and sometimes humorous tale of the lead singer’s young life and the evolution of the band. It featured rare archival footage and interviews with friends and collaborators including Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, Taj Mahal, Peter Gabriel, David Geffen and Ronnie Hawkins.
Participant and Magnolia Pictures have acquired North American rights to “Collective,” a documentary that followed a team of Romanian reporters who untangle an intricate web of corruption in the wake of a devastating nightclub fire.
The film premiered to sterling reviews at the Venice Film Festival and was greeted with similar acclaim when it screened at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. Both IndieWire and Rolling Stone listed it as one of the 12 best films to come out of Toronto, and Vox called it one of the five best films that “flew under the radar.” Other reviewers were similarly enthusiastic.
Variety’s Jay Weissberg said that its look at bureaucratic and corporate malfeasance made “Collective” both prescient and sadly universal despite its Eastern European setting. “This is truly a documentary for our times, deserving of widespread exposure,” he wrote.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired distribution rights to Merce Cunningham documentary CUNNINGHAM, which includes never-before-seen footage of the choreographer.
CUNNINGHAM, written and directed by Alla Kovgan, will be an immersive look into the life of the choreographer who started as a dancer in post-WWII New York. The film will be released in honor of what would have been Cunningham’s 100th birthday. He died of natural causes in New York in 2009.
“Alla Kovgan’s stunning cinematic tribute to the genius of Merce Cunningham is destined to end up as a classic of the genre,” said Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles. “We’re thrilled to be bringing it to the public.”
Cunningham is considered to be one of the greatest modern dancers, earning two Guggenheim fellowships in the 1950s and a Kennedy Center Honors and MacArthur Fellowship in the 1980s. Over Cunningham’s 70 year career, he worked closely with composer John Cage to produce original dance compositions to Cage’s scores.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to LITTLE JOE, a sci-fi drama that won the Cannes Film Festival’s best actress award for star Emily Beecham. The indie studio is planning a theatrical release for later this year.
LITTLE JOE centers on Alice (Beecham), a single mother and dedicated plant breeder at a corporation engaged in developing new species. In that role, she creates a special crimson flower, one that is beautiful and emits a scent that induces happiness. One day, Alice violates company policy by taking the plant home as a gift for her teenage son, Joe. As it grows, Alice becomes suspicious that her creation may do more harm than good. In a positive review out of Cannes, where the film premiered, Variety’s Owen Gleiberman called LITTLE JOE the “‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ for the age of antidepressants.”
The film is the English-language feature debut of director Jessica Hausner (“Lourdes”) and also stars Ben Whishaw (“Spectre”).
Magnolia Pictures has nabbed North American rights to MISTER AMERICA, a feature-length comedy that’s being billed as an extension of the world of “On Cinema,” the cult Adult Swim show.
The film stars “On Cinema” hosts Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington and follows Heidecker’s attempt to enter the world of politics. Eric Notarnicola, who previously oversaw several episodes of the show along with its 2018 Oscar special, directs. Magnolia is eyeing a fall theatrical release.
In the movie, Heidecker beats a murder charge for selling faulty e-cigarettes at an EDM festival, and mounts a campaign to unseat the San Bernardino District Attorney. His effort to win voters tries to overcome a lack of experience and funding by leaning into the candidate’s personal likability. It does not go well.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to the Sundance documentary RAISE HELL: THE LIFE & TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS, an ode to the firebrand journalist whose blistering political wit made her an outsized legend in the Lone Star State. Magnolia is eyeing a theatrical release by year’s end for the film, which hits plenty of the hot-button media issues in the ramping 2020 presidential race.
Ivins died at age 62 in Austin, Texas, on the last day of January 2007 after a protracted battle with cancer but the documentary from director Janice Engel presents the late writer’s work and its legacy as more timely and trenchant than ever. RAISE HELL premiered in January at the Sundance Film Festival and will be screened next month the closing-night selection at the AFI DOCS Film Festival in Washington, D.C. That June 23rd screening at the Navy Memorial’s Burke Theater is being presented in conjunction with the Washington Post Press Freedom Partnership.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired the North American rights to the documentary COLD CASE HAMMARSKJ?LD, which won the World Cinema Documentary Directing Award at Sundance this month. Magnolia is planning to release the film this year.
The film follows the unfinished investigation into the death of UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskj?ld, who was killed in a plane crash in 1961. It’s understood that because at the time, Hammarskj?ld was advocating for Congo’s independence, the “crash” was an assassination.
With the case still unsolved fifty-plus years later, Danish journalist and filmmaker Mads Brügger takes up the case and begins to uncover a critical secret that could send shockwaves around the world.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to the documentary MIKE WALLACE IS HERE, the distributor announced on Wednesday.
The film, directed by Avi Belkin, is a documentary about veteran newsman Mike Wallace, whose confrontational, no-holds-barred style of journalism influenced generations of reporters.
MIKE WALLACE IS HERE offers an unflinching look at the legendary reporter, who interrogated the 20th century’s biggest figures in his over fifty years on air, and his aggressive reporting style and showmanship that redefined what America came to expect from broadcasters. Unearthing decades of never-before-seen footage from the 60 Minutes vault, the film explores what drove and plagued Wallace, whose storied career was entwined with the evolution of journalism itself.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to director Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’ Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am, an uplifting documentary chronicling the vibrant life and compelling works of the legendary storyteller who in 1993 became the first African-American woman to win the Nobel Prize.
In addition to Nobel Laureate Morrison, the film features conversations with Hilton Als, Angela Davis, Fran Lebowitz, Walter Mosley and Sonia Sanchez, as well as Oprah Winfrey, who adapted Morrison’s 1987 novel Beloved into a 1998 feature film directed by the late Jonathan Demme.
Magnolia is aiming for a theatrical release before year’s end. The Pieces I Am, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, will stream on Hulu (which just acquired its second Sundance documentary, news that Deadline just broke). The film will make its exclusive U.S. broadcast premiere in late 2020 on PBS as part of the American Masters series.
Magnolia Pictures has picked up worldwide rights to the Steve Bannon documentary THE BRINK.
The feature, which is set to premiere at Sundance, was directed by Alison Klayman (Take Your Pills) and follows the former White House chief strategist as he takes his effort to spread extreme nationalism from the U.S. to the rest of the world. The film follows Bannon through the 2018 U.S. mid-term elections and sheds light on his efforts to mobilize and unify far-right parties in order to win seats in the May 2019 European Parliamentary elections.
RYOT Films co-financed the movie, which was produced by Marie Therese Guirgis and Klayman. Executive producers are Adam Bardach, Hayley Pappas, Bryn Mooser and Matt Ippolito.
Satan is coming to a theater near you after Magnolia Pictures on Thursday said it acquired worldwide rights to HAIL SATAN?, the documentary that was just selected to make its world premiere in January in the U.S. Documentary Competition section of the Sundance Film Festival. The distributor plans a spring 2019 theatrical release, and it will sell international rights at Berlin’s European Film Market.
The film, directed by Penny Lane, charts the rise of The Satanic Temple, a mysterious organization led by Lucien Greaves that is calling for a Satanic revolution to save the nation’s soul. Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles said it “is as uplifting and hilarious as it is thought-provoking.”
The Hard Working Movies production is produced by Gabriel Sedgwick.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to Italian director Matteo Garrone’s gritty revenge drama DOGMAN, which won the best actor prize at the Cannes Film Festival.
Dubbed an “urban Western,” the movie marks Garrone’s return to smaller-scale Italian-language filmmaking following his English-language fantasy “Tale of Tales.” DOGMAN is inspired by a murder committed by a dog groomer during the late 1980s in a gang-ridden area outside Rome.
Newcomer Marcello Fonte, who plays the mild-mannered dog groomer caught up in spiraling violence with a bullying boxer, “gives an expert performance as a saintly scamp who ‘blooms’ into a butterfly of vengeance,” Variety critic Owen Gleiberman said in his review. Besides the acting nod for Fonte, DOGMAN also won Cannes’ unofficial Palm Dog award for its canine cast.
Magnolia Pictures has picked up North American rights to SHOPLIFTERS, the acclaimed new drama from Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda, Variety has learned.
The film is in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and marks the director’s seventh time appearing at the prestigious French gathering for cinephiles. SHOPLIFTERS has garnered strong reviews for its humanist look at a family living on the margins. Variety’s Maggie Lee, for instance, wrote that Kore-eda “makes a mature and heart-wrenching return to his socially-conscious dramas,” while IndieWire’s David Ehrlich declared that SHOPLIFTERS is “the very best of the writer-director’s delicate, deceptive, and profoundly moving dramas about the forces that hold a family together.”
Magnolia Pictures has acquired the North American rights to writer-director Benedikt Erlingsson’s buzzy Cannes dramatic comedy WOMAN AT WAR, the company announced Friday.
The film, a unique modern day fable about an Icelandic activist taking on big industry, recently premiered in Cannes Critics’ Week to high acclaim and won the SACD prize, which recognizes a screenplay from the French writers guild, and also won the Critics’ Week Grand Rail d’Or.
In WOMAN AT WAR, Halla (Halldóra Geirharesdóttir) declares a one-woman-war on the local aluminum industry. She is prepared to risk everything to protect the pristine Icelandic Highlands she loves… until an orphan unexpectedly enters her life.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to LOVE, GILDA, the documentary about comic icon and Saturday Night Live original Gilda Radner that is coming off its world premiere as the opening-night film of the Tribeca Film Festival. A 2018 theatrical release is in the works.
Director Lisa D’Apolito used rare personal recordings and journal entries to tell Radner’s story in her own voice. Interviewees includes Michael Radner and SNL alumni Chevy Chase, Lorne Michaels, Alan Zweibel, Laraine Newman and Martin Short. Radner’s writings are read by the likes of Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Cecily Strong and Bill Hader.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to SUPPORT THE GIRLS, the comedy from Computer Chess writer-director Andrew Bujalski. The deal comes as the pic readies for its world premiere Friday in the Narrative Spotlight section at SXSW. Magnolia, which released Bujalski’s 2015 pic Results, will releases SUPPORT THE GIRLS later this year.
Regina Hall stars as a restaurant manager at the Double Whammies sports bar who may not love her job but loves her employees like family. Haley Lu Richardson and Shayna McHayle co-star alongside Brooklyn Decker, Jana Kramer, James Le Gros, Dylan Gelula, AJ Michalka and Lea DeLaria.
Magnolia Pictures is doubling down with director Crystal Moselle. After releasing her 2015 Sundance award-winning documentary, The Wolfpack, the company has scooped up the North American distribution rights to her latest Sundance film entry, SKATE KITCHEN. Written by Moselle, Aslihan Unaldi, and Jen Silverman, the pic, which was inspired by the real-life group of New York City female skateboarders, will get its theatrical release this summer.
Starring actual skateboarder Rachelle Vinberg as well as Jaden Smith, the story follows an introverted 18-year-old skateboarder Camille (Vinberg), who discovers “The Skate Kitchen,” a subculture of girls whose lives revolve around skating, and bravely seeks them out.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to KUSAMA – INFINITY, the Heather Lenz documentary about famed Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. The pic premiered over the weekend in the U.S. Documentary Competition at the Sundance Film Festival.
Kusama, who grew up up in Japan during World War II, overcame life in a dysfunctional family that discouraged her creative ambitions, sexism and racism in the art establishment, mental illness in a culture where that was a particular shame, and eventually growing old and continuing to pursue and be devoted to her art full time.
Her legacy of artwork spans painting, sculpture, installation art, performance art, poetry, and novels and continues today — her installation “Infinity Mirrors” recently sold out its run at L.A.’s The Broad museum, and she’s considered the world’s top-selling artist.
RBG, the 2018 Sundance Film Festival sensation produced by CNN Films and Storyville Films about the consequential life and legal legacy of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, has been acquired from CNN Films by Magnolia Pictures and Participant Media for worldwide distribution, including theatrical, home video, SVOD, and international television. CNN Films has U.S. broadcast rights to RBG. The film is directed and produced by award-winning filmmakers Betsy West and Julie Cohen of Storyville Films.
“RBG is an incredibly inspirational film about a supremely inspirational woman,” said Eamonn Bowles, president of Magnolia Pictures. “Betsy and Julie have done a phenomenal job highlighting Justice Ginsburg’s tremendous effect on all of our lives. I cannot wait to show it to my daughters.”
Magnolia Pictures has made a winning plea for North American rights to THE GUILTY, director/co-writer Gustav M?ller’s drama that premiered Sunday in the World Dramatic Competition at Sundance.
In the film, alarm dispatcher and former police officer Asger Holm (Jakob Cedergren) answers an emergency call from a kidnapped woman. When the call is suddenly disconnected, the search for the woman and her kidnapper begins. With the phone as his only tool, Asger enters a race against time to save the endangered woman. But soon he realizes that he is dealing with a crime that is far bigger than he first thought. Jessica Dinnage, Johan Olsen, Omar Shargawi and Katinka Evers-Jahnsen also star.
Anna Wintour, Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford all appear in the fashion documentary.
Ahead of its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, The Gospel According to Andre has been picked up by Magnolia Pictures in North America.
The fashion documentary from director Kate Novack chronicles the life and career of Andre Leon Talley, from Andy Warhol's Factory in the 1970s to the pages of Vogue magazine as editor-at-large. Anna Wintour, Marc Jacobs, Tom Ford and Valentino are among those who give interviews in the feature, which also includes archival footage.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to “Boom for Real: the Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat,” a documentary about the late American artist that premiered at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.
The film focuses on the artist’s life in New York City during the late 1970s, and how that city influenced his work. It includes writings, art and photographs never seen before.
Sara Driver directed the film, which she produced alongside Rachel Dengiz. The movie is a production of Hells Kitten Productions, Faliro House, Le Pacte, Leopardo Filmes and Bunny Lake Films. Christos V. Konstantakopoulos, Jean Labadie and Paulo Branco are executive producers.
Magnolia Pictures has acquired the North American rights to Raoul Peck’s “I Am Not Your Negro,” a documentary based on James Baldwin’s unfinished book, “Remember This House.”
“Remember This House” is considered one of the great incomplete works of American literature, in which Baldwin attempted to recount the lives and successive assassinations of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. The author’s notes and the unfinished manuscript were entrusted to filmmaker Peck by the Baldwin estate.
The film is Swedish director Ruben Ostlund's follow-up to his Golden Globe-nominated 'Force Majeure.'
Magnolia Pictures has acquired the U.S. rights to writer-director Ruben Ostlund's The Square, which stars Elisabeth Moss, Dominic West and Claes Bang.
Set in the art world, The Square follows a museum manager in charge of an exhibition space where an artist places a new installation meant to promote altruism. The manager hires a ruthless PR firm to promote the new exhibition, and the publicity gets out of hand, sparking a public uproar. Moss plays a reporter covering the exhibition.