Cinedigm said that its SXSW Audience Award pickup A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story will be released in select theaters September 25. The plan is to make the anti-bullying film find as wide an audience as possible, with the docu going day and date on Digital HD and On Demand. It will also be available immediately on pre-order via Tugg.com for educators, communities and organizations that want to host screenings.
A Brave Heart centers on Lizzie and her journey from cyberbullying victim to anti-bullying activist. Born with a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight, the 26-year-old, 65-pound Velasquez was first bullied as a child in school, then as a teenager when she discovered a YouTube video labeling her “The World’s Ugliest Woman.” The film chronicles her evolution as a motivational speaker and activist, as eventually she lobbied Congress for the first federal anti-bullying bill, the Safe Schools Improvement Act. Sara Hirsh Bordo made her directing debut on the pic, which features original music from Sara Bareilles.
“The best documentaries have heart, passion and aim to change the world for the better,” said Cinedigm chairman and CEO Chris McGurk. “This film has all that and the amazing Lizzie, too! Lizzie, Sara Bordo and the entire Women Rising team deserve huge credit for making this important film and we look forward to great success across all platforms.” (Check out a release-date announcement from Velasquez here.)
Gerilyn Shur has been appointed director at the National Publicity division of Allied Integrated Marketing. The specialty film veteran will work out of Allied’s New York office and lead the unit, which creates campaigns for film, TV, and other entertainment entities, as well as brands. She was most recently at Brigade Marketing, where she developed and executed campaigns for films including Your Sister’s Sister, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me, The One I Love, Jiro Dreams Of Sushi and filmmakers like the Duplass brothers. She previously workd at 42West, The Weinstein Company and Barlow Hartman Public Relations working with clients like Magnolia Pictures, IFC Films, Oscilloscope Laboratories and TWC-Radius.