EXCLUSIVE: After an all-night bargaining session, Amazon Studios has made a big splashy deal for You Were Never Really Here, the drama that Lynne Ramsay will direct with Joaquin Phoenix starring and production to begin early fall. Deal was in the $3.5 million range.
This is one of the big buzz titles of the festival, and Amazon’s victory comes after a trade got overexcited yesterday and declared prematurely that A24 had won the film. It was one of several bidders that chased this title well into Saturday morning, when the Amazon team closed the deal with CAA. Amazon is here at Cannes with five films playing the festival, but this is its first acquisition on the ground here.
Ramsay, who helmed We Need to Talk About Kevin, adapted the Jonathan Ames novel, and Phoenix plays a war vet who devotes himself to saving women exploited by sex traffickers. The subject is timely and topical, and the soldier’s methods are harsh — and lethal.
Amazon really wanted this one, and the deal was made with CAA by Amazon Studios chief Roy Price, worldwide head of Motion Pictures Jason Ropell, head of marketing and distribution Bob Berney and head of production Ted Hope.