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Sundance Selects has acquired North American rights to dark comedy Last Weekend, the debut of directors Tom Dolby and Tom Williams, starring Patricia Clarkson as the matriarch of a family that gathers for the weekend at their Northern California lake house. Clarkson last starred in the lead in IFC Films’ Cairo Time. Here she’s joined by Zachary Booth (Keep the Lights On), Chris Mulkey (Twin Peaks), Joseph Cross (Running with Scissors), Devon Graye (The Discoverers), and Jayma Mays (Glee). Pic was filmed in Lake Tahoe and premiered at the San Francisco International Film Festival. Sundance Selects is slotting a theatrical and VOD release for the summer. The Gran Via Productions, Greyshack Films, and Water’s End Productions co-production was produced by Mark Johnson and Mike S. Ryan. Sundance Selects/IFC Films’ Arianna Bocco negotiated the deal with Submarine’s Josh Braun on behalf of the filmmakers.
Xlrator Media has an appetite for Vision Films’ It’s So Easy And Other Lies, a new autobiographical documentary about the life of Guns N’ Roses, Loaded, and Velvet Revolver rocker Michael Andrew “Duff” McKagan. The distributor has taken North American rights to the official bio-doc which is currently in production under writer-director Christopher Duddy. McKagan is exec producer on the pic based on his bestselling 2011 autobiography, which tracks his rise from Seattle punk rock teen prodigy to founding member and 12-year bassist for Guns N’ Roses, and his struggles with substance abuse and addiction. Filming in part took place at Duff’s book readings at the Moore Theatre in Seattle. “I’m one of the fortunate ones who survived the trials of severe drug and alcohol addiction. I not only survived, but am blessed with seeing life from a whole different and brighter perspective. This film and stage show from the book, will hopefully expose some stark insight, knowledgeable commentary, and humor of this rock and roll life of mine.” Scatena & Rosner Films are financing the film. Daniel Zirilli, McKagan, Duddy, and Steven G. Kaplan of Rainstorm Entertainment are producing, with Lise Romanoff, Gato Scatena, Jordan Rosner, Birgit Stein, Hans Stangl and Katherine Thomson aboard as exec producers. Vision Films’ Lise Romanoff, Steven G. Kaplan and XLrator Media CEO Barry Gordon negotiated the deal.
Magnolia Pictures has taken North American rights to Ballet 422, the behind the scenes docu about the New York City Ballet from cinematographer and director Jody Lee Lipes (NY Export: Opus Jazz, HBO’s Girls). Pic debuted in competition at Tribeca last month and takes a fly-on-the-wall look at the inner workings of the NYC dance institution as 25-year-old rising choreographer Justin Peck preps the NYCB’s 422nd original piece from choreography to orchestration, lighting, costume design, and to opening night while performing as a dancer with the company. Ellen Bar and Anna Rose Holmer are producers. Lipes built a rep as a lenser on Girls and Tiny Furniture from Lena Dunham, as well as Martha Marcy May Marlene. He also shot Judd Apatow’s upcoming Trainwreck. Magnolia’s Dori Begley and John Von Thaden negotiated the deal with Film Sales Company’s Andrew Herwitz on behalf of the filmmakers.