From the exciting world of movie distribution deals comes news that the latest films from directors Steven Soderbergh and Antoine Fuqua will both find their audiences. Fuqua’s already completed “Brooklyn’s Finest” will go out via Overture after an earlier deal for domestic distribution fell through. Meanwhile Steven Soderbergh’s “Knockout”, which begins shooting next January, has caught the interest of Lionsgate, the proud studio behind this week’s number one film “I Can Do Bad All By Myself.” More after the jump.
Way back in January director Antoine Fuqua’s “Brooklyn’s Finest” was the very first film to sell at the 2009 Sundance film festival. Back then the cop drama, starring Ethan Hawke, Richard Gere and Don Cheadle, went for a reported $4 million to a newbie distribution company called Senator. It seemed too good to be true because it was.
Senator didn’t have the extra funds to market “Finest” for a 2009 US release, as was stipulated in the original agreement with Fuqua. And so the film went back on the market. After seeing a new edit at the Venice Film Festival, Overture Films made an offer for “Brooklyn’s Finest”… an offer for just $2 million this time.
Variety’s article on the sale didn’t make it clear if Overture still plans to get “Brooklyn’s Finest” in front of audiences by the end of this year but – with award’s season a consideration for the director of “Training Day” – that is always an option.
The other big distribution news of the day concerns Steven Soderbergh and his upcoming ‘Not-an-Ocean’s’ movie – “Knockout”. We told you last week that Soderbergh had tapped mixed martial arts star Gina Carano to star in the film about a girl from the wrong side of the tracks who finds a new life in the boxing ring. This marks the second time this year that the director has picked a real-life pro to play his leading lady onscreen. Soderbergh also cast porn star Sasha Grey as the not-so happy hooker in 2009’s “The Girlfriend Experience”.
Unlike “Girlfriend”, however, “Knockout” is a film that actually has a chance to find a mainstream audience here in the US. Soderbergh’s deal with Lionsgate covers domestic distribution for “Knockout”, which is set to shoot this January. When a release date is announced we’ll let you know.