New York, NY – May 4, 2012 – The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today that they have acquired U.S. and Latin American rights to Dustin Hoffman’s QUARTET from HanWay Films. The comedy stars Maggie Smith (HARRY POTTER franchise, GNOMEO AND JULIET), Billy Connolly (GULLIVER’S TRAVELS, THE LAST SAMURAI), Michael Gambon (HARY POTTER franchise, THE KING’S SPEECH) and Pauline Collins (ALBERT NOBBS, FROM TIME TO TIME). QUARTET, written by Sir Ronald Harwood, marks the directorial debut of Hoffman. QUARTET tells the story of Reggie (Courtenay), Wilf (Connolly) and Cissy (Collins) who reside in Beecham House, a home for retired opera singers. Each year they stage a concert to celebrate Verdi’s birthday, which also raises funds for the home. Reggie’s ex-wife Jean (Smith) arrives at the home and creates tension, playing the diva part but refusing to sing in the concert.
Said TWC Co-Chair Harvey Weinstein, “We decided to give an up-and-coming first-timer a chance. We’re excited to be working with Dustin on his directorial debut.”
Earlier this week, Weinstein and TWC COO David Glasser made a pre-emptive, take-it-off-the-table offer based on the script and HanWay promo, before planned LA & NY acquisition screenings scheduled for Thursday evening.
The deal was negotiated by HanWay Films Managing Director Thorsten Schumacher and CEO Jan Spielhoff, alongside WME Global’s Graham Taylor who co-repped the US rights. TWC SVP of Acquisitions Negeen Yazdi and business affairs executive Talia Houminer negotiated on behalf of TWC.
Quartet was produced by the Academy Award® and four-time BAFTA nominated Finola Dwyer (Finola Dwyer Productions) and Stewart Mackinnon (Headline Pictures). QUARTET is financed by BBC Films, DCM Productions and Decca. The Executive Producers are Jamie Laurenson (BBC Films), Dario Suter, Christoph Daniel and Marc Schmidheiny (all from DCM), Dickon Stainer (Decca), Xavier Marchand (Momentum) and Dustin Hoffman.
HanWay have completed deals with Momentum for the UK, Transmission for Australia / NZ, DCM for Germany, Lusomundo for Portugal, A Film for Benelux, Vertice for Spain, Odeon in Greece, Elite Film AG in Switzerland, MG Film in former Yugoslavia, Front Row in the Middle East, Lev Cinema for Israel, Ster-Kinekor in South Africa and Atom Cinema in Taiwan.
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