One of the more offbeat movies that was poised to premiere at the upcoming Toronto International Film Festival was Maggie, which stars Arnold Schwarzenegger as a father who struggles to come to terms with the fact that his daughter (Abigail Breslin) is slowly becoming a zombie. I say “was” because Lionsgate announced today that it has acquired distribution rights to the film and, per THR, will be pulling it out of TIFF. Instead of debuting at the festival, the studio has set a Maggie release date for early 2015, though a specific theatrical bow has not yet been determined. It’s a bit of an odd move to pull the film out of TIFF, and not exactly a great sign if Lionsgate wants to control the flow of reviews for the pic.
The Black List script was penned by John Scott 3 and directed by Henry Hobson, with Joely Richardson taking on a supporting role in the film. Read the full press release regarding the acquisition after the jump.
Santa Monica and Los Angeles, CA, August 26, 2014 – In a preemptive deal prior to the start of the Toronto International Film Festival, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, has acquired the North American distribution rights to the apocalyptic thriller Maggie, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger (the Terminator andExpendables franchises, Total Recall, Batman and Robin), Academy Award-nominated Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine, Ender’s Game) and Joely Richardson (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, the hit TV series The Tudors and Nip/Tuck). The announcement was made by Lionsgate Co-Chief Operating Officer and Motion Picture Group President Steve Beeks and Bill Johnson and Jim Seibel, Co-Chairs of Lotus Entertainment, who produced and handled international sales.
The Black List script by John Scott 3 is directed by Henry Hobson. Bill Johnson and Ara Keshishian produced alongside Colin Bates, Joey Tufaro, Pierre-Ange Le Pogam, Matthew Baer and Schwarzenegger. Claudia Blumhuber and Jim Seibel are executive producers. Silver Reel and Gold Star Films financed the film which Lionsgate plans to release theatrically in North America in early 2015. CAA brokered the deal.
“Maggie” has all the ingredients that spell commercial excitement – a compelling script and an “A” list superstar surrounded by a world-class cast,” said Beeks. “We’re delighted to continue our relationship with Arnold Schwarzenegger, who turns in a performance that marks a dramatic departure from his action persona, and partner with our friends at Lotus Entertainment on a film that will resonate with thriller aficionados everywhere.”
“Lionsgate is a world-renowned brand, and we’re pleased to collaborate with Steve Beeks, Rob Friedman, Patrick Wachsberger and a motion picture team that has established a superb track record with this kind of material,” said Johnson and Seibel. “’Maggie’ takes the zombie genre in exciting new directions, and it offers something for everyone – star power, horror, suspense and riveting performances that will keep moviegoers on the edge of their seats.”
The film tells the story of a deadly zombie virus that has put a plague on the world. When Maggie, a vivacious young woman becomes infected, her father brings her home to let her be with their family. As Maggie’s condition worsens, their relationship is tested, a father’s love holding on stronger than the disease. This heart-wrenching twist on the zombie apocalypse puts a human face on an inexplicable horror.
Schwarzenegger is repped by Patrick Knapp at Bloom Hergot and CAA.