Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Thrillers and docs populate the Specialty newcomers this weekend with genre (and genre-esque) fare ranging from a gang of highway killers who kidnap a couple to a soft-spoken couple who go on a road trip and find themselves embarking on a killing spree among the limited release titles opening in theaters. Anchor Bay Films will follow up its Rob Zombie rollout in April with No One Lives, while IFC Films will bow its British twisted comedy Sightseers. Paladin is hoping to capitalize on its North American opening of And Now A Word From Our Sponsor to shore up its international rollout, while Gravitas Ventures is banking on the story of an aspiring actress who steals a script to make a movie, in He’s Way More Famous Than You, to charm audiences. Magnolia Pictures will open Toronto doc Venus And Serena as the French Open makes its way to sports fans and Zeitgeist’s doc One Track Heart: The Story Of Krishna Das makes its way to the spiritually inclined this weekend.
Anchor Bay Films picked up No One Lives out of the Toronto International Film Festival last year. The thriller centers on a gang of highway killers who kidnap a wealthy couple traveling across the country, but then things aren’t exactly what they seem. “It has one of the best scenes with one of the top 10 scenes in a horror film ever,” boasted Bill Lewis, SVP Theatrical Marketing and Distribution at Anchor Bay. “We [released] the clip of the scene Wednesday. It’s such a great shot.” The company partnered with WWE Studios, the production subsidiary of World Wrestling Entertainment, which produced the film. “Their biggest fan base is also where we decided to target theatrical locations,” said Lewis. “They’re a tremendous partner with great assets and they’re behind their film 100% and lucky they have the assets to push it.” (more…)