UPDATE: Sony Pictures Classics has firmed its deal for North American and other rights to Foxtrot, confirming a Deadline scoop that broke just as the film won eight Ophir Awards in Israel, including Best Picture and Best Director for Samuel Maoz. This comes on top of its Grand Jury Prize win at Venice and gives SPC a leading entry in the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar race. SPC’s release follows the original story.
EARLIER EXCLUSIVE, September 19, 1:46 PM PST: Foxtrot, the Samuel Maoz-directed Israeli film that won Grand Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival and was one of the most buzzed about films in Toronto, has been acquired by Sony Pictures Classics. SPC bought North American rights, just before the film today won eight Ophir Awards including Best Picture and Best Director for Maoz. That launches the film as Israel’s Oscar submission for Best Foreign Language Feature.
The film by the Lebanon director covers provocative subject matter in the dance with death, grieving and fate. The picture has created some controversy in Israel for its depiction of military service there. It is one of the most acclaimed foreign-language films of awards season.
It opens as an Israeli couple opens their door, only to see army officials on their doorstep who tell them their soldier son has been killed. Sarah Adler, Lior Ashkenazi and Yonatan Shiray star. Michael Weber, Viola Fugen, Eitan Mansuri, Cedomir Kolar, Marc Baschet and Michel Merkt are the producers. ICM Partners brokered the deal and The Match Factory is selling international.
Much of the film deals with the young soldier as he mans an isolated checkpoint, and here is a trailer for the film that deals with him:
SAMUEL MAOZ’S FOXTROT ACQUIRED BY SONY PICTURES CLASSICS
NEW YORK (September 21, 2017) – Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired all rights in North America, Latin America and Scandanavia to Samuel Maoz’s FOXTROT. The film is the official Oscar submission from Israel and has screened at the Venice, Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals to rave reviews. It won the Grand Jury prize at Venice, as well as eight Ophir Awards including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actor.
With biting humor and social satire, FOXTROT dances with fate. An Israeli couple opens their door, only to see army officials on their doorstep who tell them their soldier son has been killed. Much of the film deals with the young soldier as he mans an isolated checkpoint.
Having worked together previously on LEBANON, FOXTROT marks the second film between Maoz and Sony Pictures Classics. The Match Factory and Sony Pictures Classics have partnered together on a number of films including THE LUNCHBOX, WALTZ WITH BASHIR and most recently TONI ERDMANN.
“FOXTROT is a rare, fresh, suspenseful and important movie. Once you’ve experienced all of its surprises, you will never be the same. It is great to be in business with Samuel, Eitan Mansuri, and Michael Weber from The Match Factory once again,” said Sony Pictures Classics.
Said Samuel Maoz, “It was a huge compliment when Sony Pictures Classics took my first film LEBANON and now I’m proud and glad they did it again. I think it’s the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”
“The rhythm has changed, in 2009 it was the Waltz (with Bashir), this time its the Foxtrot, I’m delighted about dancing with my friends at Sony Pictures Classics again,” stated Michael Weber.
“We are happy and excited to go in the Oscar journey together with Sony Pictures Classics, it’s the best fit for our film,” added Eitan Mansuri.
FOXTROT is produced by Eitan Mansuri of Spiro Films, Michael Weber and Viola Fügen of Pola Pandora, Cedomir Kolar and Marc Baschet of A.S.A.P. Films and Michel Merkt of KNM and is co-produced by Jonathan Doweck of Spiro Films and Jamal Zeinal Zade of Bord Cadre films.
The deal was negotiated between Sony Pictures Classics and The Match Factory with ICM Partners, who co-repped the film.