EXCLUSIVE: CNN Films has picked up U.S. TV rights to Escape Fire: The Fight To Rescue American Healthcare. The two-hour film will air on CNN on March 10 at 8 PM and 11 PM, with encore broadcasts March 16. The 2012 Sundance Film Festival alumni about the flaws, failings and patchwork nature of the nation’s healthcare system was produced and directed by Matthew Heineman and Oscar-nominee Susan Froemke. “CNN Films is very pleased to bring this documentary to television. The physical health of our nation and the cost of healthcare, impact every current fiscal challenge we face. This compelling film gives us an explanation of some of the factors that have contributed to our broken system and explains why we urgently need to fix it,” said network Worldwide president Jeff Zucker in a statement Friday.
The cable news network plans to air a 30-minute discussion with chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta about the film and the issues it raises after Escape Fire’s on-air debut. Escape Fire premiered at Sundance in January 2012 and was acquired by Roadside Attractions for theatrical release in May of last year. Under its output agreement with Roadside, Lionsgate has all other rights. The film has also been screened at medical schools and various festivals, like the Newport Beach Film Festival, where it won awards for Outstanding Documentary and Outstanding Director. After a limited theatrical release last fall, the documentary is also now available on DVD, iTunes and Netflix.
Production and acquisition unit CNN Films was formed in October of last year and made its debut as a buyer at this year’s Sundance. At the festival, CNN Films picked up the killer whale doc Blackfish with Magnolia Pictures this year.