Exclusive: Vertical Entertainment has picked up worldwide rights to the baseball drama Undrafted from writer-director Joseph Mazzello. A fictionalized take on the experiences of Mazzello’s brother, the story examines how one moves on from crushing disappointment as it follows a collegiate baseball star whose major league dreams are dashed when he’s skipped over in the draft. John comes to grips with missing out on a baseball career as he throws himself in with a misfit intramural baseball league.
First announced in 2013, Undrafted is Mazzello’s feature directorial debut. “I am thrilled to be partnering with Vertical to distribute Undrafted around the globe,” said filmmaker Mazzello. “I can’t wait for the world to see this film, and to love it the same way we all do,” he says. “Thanks to Vertical that will soon become a reality.”
Undrafted stars Aaron Tveit (recently seen on Fox’s Grease Live!) as John Mazetti, along with Chace Crawford, Joseph Mazzello, Tyler Hoechlin, Philip Winchester, Billy Gardell, and James Belushi. From Dead Fish Films and Parlay Pictures, it’s produced by by Eric Fischer, Brianna Lee Johnson, and Mazzello and executive produced by Crawford and Tony Romo. The deal was negotiated by Rich Goldberg, co-president, and Peter Jarowey, VP Acquisitions, at Vertical, with Kevin Iwashina and Adam Galen from Preferred Content and Eric Podwall from Podwall Entertainment on behalf of the filmmakers.
Undrafted is the fifth title for which Vertical has landed worldwide rights in the last few months, and the company has three other films on the way in 2016, including the sci-fi thriller Terminus, the pic Frank and Cindy directed by G.J. Echternkamp and starring Rene Russo and Oliver Platt, and the Babak Anvari’s Sundance horror hit Under The Shadow which is being released in partnership with XYZ.
Mazzello is repped by APA and Podwall.