ScreenCrush’s Full Rundown of Sundance 2016 Deals (So Far)
The 2016 Sundance Film Festival is now in full swing, with masterpieces and disasterpieces alike having already screened for knife-sharpening critics. Sundance is where the indie breakouts of the year first capture critical attention and generate buzz, but in a more immediate sense, the festival provides free-agent films with a precious opportunity to secure distribution. Sundance acts as a bustling film marketplace, where studios eager to find the next Brooklyn or Diary of a Teenage Girl wheel and deal with producers to get the rights to the festival’s offerings. Below, we’ve compiled a full rundown of all the deals made at this year’s Sundance thus far — treat it like a preview of coming attractions, a guide to the future highlights of 2016 and beyond.
Upstart studio A24 has a strong track record at Sundance, having locked down The End of the Tour, Mississippi Grind, and next month’s The Witch at last year’s festival. This time around, they landed Morris From America, a multicultural coming-of-age story about an obese 13-year-old named Morris (Markees Christmas) who dreams of becoming the next Biggie Smalls. The Office’s Craig Robinson has been generating plaudits for his understated, sensitive performance as Morris’ single father, and Christmas has also been praised as a natural. Amazon has also struck at Sundance with a vengeance, snatching up streaming privileges for titles left and right. Their biggest acquisition was Kenneth Lonergan’s Manchester By the Sea, instantly hailed as a masterpiece upon its world premiere over the weekend. The emotional drama has earned Casey Affleck raves across the board, and Amazon’s move to stream the film (the theatrical rights are still up for grabs) represents a big get for the platform.
Read on for the full list:
- A24: Morris From America
- Amazon: Manchester By the Sea, Complete Unknown, Love & Friendship
- Beta Cinema: Sand Storm
- Brainstorm Media: Resilience
- IFC: Weiner
- Oscilloscope Laboratories: The Fits
- Netflix: Tallulah (VOD), Fundamentals of Caring (VOD), Under the Shadow
- Roadside: Love & Friendship (theatrical)
- Showtime: Weiner (television)
We’ll update this list with more acquisitions soon.