EXCLUSIVE: Array Releasing continues to expand its inclusive slate of films and storytelling with the Black and LGBTQ-centric Jewel’s Catch One, the second feature from female filmmaker C. Fitz. Array Founder Ava DuVernay announced today that they have acquired the worldwide distribution rights documentary, which marks the film collective’s 18th feature film acquisition.
Array will debut Fitz’s film on May 1 with a national screening tour along with a simultaneous release on Netflix.
Jewel’s Catch One brings the story of one of America’s oldest Black-owned disco clubs in the spotlight. The doc explores the legacy and glitz of the Los Angeles-based Catch One club as well as the life of businesswoman and activist, Jewel Thais-Williams who has become a legend in her own right. She provided safe spaces for LGBTQ, Black and AIDS-impacted communities in Los Angeles for four decades.
“Through her film, documentarian C. Fitz shows how one woman created an inclusive venue and sense of belonging in a major U.S. city,” said Array’s Vice President Tilane Jones. “We’re excited to add this meaningful work to Array’s catalog and we look forward to building conversations with audiences worldwide about the story’s themes of activism and representation.”
Narrated by Emmy-nominated actress CCH Pounder, the mirror-balled doc takes a mirror-balled journey of Thais-Williams’ life and the club which was not only a hot spot in L.A. but also a nightclub where members of the Black LGBTQ community could be themselves amongst their peers. Set to a soundtrack spanning the last forty years, the doc includes exclusive interviews with numerous celebrities, musicians, activists, and icons such as Sharon Stone, Thelma Houston, Evelyn “Champagne” King, Madonna, Sandra Bernhard, Thea Austin, Jenifer Lewis, Representative Maxine Waters, and Bonnie Pointer.
The deal was negotiated by Gordon Bobb of Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcano on behalf of Array as well as Elsa Ramo and Tiffany Boyle of Ramo Law for the filmmakers.