EXCLUSIVE: Lionsgate is set to partner with MRC and distribute worldwide Knives Out, the contemporary murder mystery that Looper and Star Wars: The Last Jedi helmer Rian Johnson wrote and is directing. Daniel Craig stars as a detective trying to solve a murder and the killer ensemble cast includes Chris Evans, Michael Shannon, Lakeith Stanfield, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette, Ana de Armas, Christopher Plummer, Katherine Langford and Don Johnson.
Lionsgate has dated the film for nationwide release on November 27, 2019 for the Thanksgiving holiday corridor.
The film became possible when director Danny Boyle exited James Bond 25. While that film regrouped — Cary Fukunaga is directing it — Craig suddenly had an open slot, and Johnson and his producing partner Ram Bergman took full advantage with an Agatha Christie-style murder mystery that Johnson wrote and was able to squeeze in before he and Bergman drill down on a new trilogy in the Star Wars universe. It was shopped at Toronto by CAA Media Finance and FilmNation, and MRC stepped up and acquired all rights and agreed to finance the picture.
Knives Out becomes a big title for Lionsgate, which already had the next iteration of Hellboy, John Wick: Chapter 3, and the Roland Emmerich-directed WWII action adventure Midway.
Lionsgate and MRC confirmed the deal, and, no mystery here, everyone is excited.
Said Johnson and Bergman: “MRC put their trust in us when they first partnered with us on this film and Lionsgate truly champions and empowers the artist to tell the story they want to tell so we couldn’t be in better hands.”
Said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group chairman Joe Drake: “Knives Out redefines the detective movie genre in a cool and original way With a superstar filmmaker, an amazing ensemble cast and the perfect partner in MRC, we can hardly wait to bring this big, crowd-pleasing property to a global audience next Thanksgiving.”
Said MRC co-presidents of film Brye Adler and Jonathan Golfman: “The entire Lionsgate team was incredibly impressive and could not have been more passionate about the project. We’re looking forward to working together to help bring Rian’s original and highly entertaining movie to the world.”