New York, NY – February 8, 2013 – Kino Lorber is pleased to announce that it has acquired all U.S. rights to Andrew Bujalski’s Computer Chess, which premiered last month at the Sundance Film Festival. This fourth film from acclaimed indie auteur Andrew Bujalski (Funny Ha Ha, Mutual Appreciation, Beeswax) is an exceptionally inventive comedy that won the prestigious Alfred P. Sloan Award honoring a film whose theme is science or technology. It was also previously awarded a Tribeca Film Institute Sloan grant in 2012. Computer Chess will have its International Premiere next week at the Berlin Film Festival and will also be presented in the U.S. at the upcoming South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin. A national theatrical release is planned for mid summer or early fall.
The film, described as an “artificially intelligent comedy,” is set over the course of a weekend tournament for chess software programmers, circa 1980. It transports viewers to a nostalgic moment when the contest between technology and the human spirit seemed a little more up for grabs–back when the machines seemed clumsy and we seemed clever. But it’s the chance collision of this brainy bunch of A.I.’ers with another subculture of aging New Agers in a touchy-feely encounter therapy workshop, that wildly spins this wry portrayal into the stuff of a cult classic.
“I doubt I’ll ever make a weirder movie than this one–when we were shooting we really had no clue who would end up seeing it, or how”, director Andrew Bujalski said. “For a company with the history and pedigree of Kino Lorber to take us on feels like a great, unexpected victory, and we eagerly anticipate working with them to lure the unsuspecting into dark rooms for a strange experience.”
Computer Chess still 2
Richard Lorber, CEO of Kino Lorber commented: “It’s a delight to find a film that so deliciously tickles the brain. The more you think about it the funnier it gets. Yes, it’s a funhouse mirroring of the boomer generation but also a sweet-natured insight into an era of awkward intellectual innocence and aspiration. We’re going to have a blast bringing this to cross-over audiences of geeky tech lovers, young and old, as well as the indie art house crowd, who will never have seen anything quite like Andrew’s unprecedented fusion of form and content here.”
Kino Lorber CEO Richard Lorber negotiated the deal for the film with Andrew Herwitz, head of The Film Sales Company on behalf of the producers.
In addition, Canadian rights have been sold to Filmswelike and AMC/Sundance Channel Global previously announced taking Eastern European and Asian TV and VOD rights for its international TV networks.
Starring Patrick Riester, Myles Paige, James Curry, Robin Schwartz, Gerald Peary, and Wiley Wiggins, Computer Chess was produced by Houston King and Alex Lipschultz, and directed by Andrew Bujalski.