EXCLUSIVE: Noble Story Co. has secured the rights to New York Times bestselling author Andy Andrews’ The Heart Mender, with plans to develop it for film.
The historical fiction novel tells the story of Helen Mason, a young woman who is unable to abandon her resentment toward the Nazi war machine that took her husband’s life. In the summer of 1942, she comes upon German U-boat officer Lt. Josef Landermann, who has washed ashore after being abandoned and left for dead by the Kriegsmarine, and this moment ends up changing her life forever.
The project was brought to Andrew Teravskis and Adam Gregory’s Noble Story Co. by Edgar Struble, and will produce it alongside the duo. Noble Story Co. is a fan-owned production company with five other features and two series in the works, which is represented by by Arine Harapeti. Andrews is repped by Neely & Callaghan.
EXCLUSIVE: Gravitas Ventures today unveiled a trailer for actor Adrian Martinez’s feature directorial debut iGilbert, in which he stars alongside Dascha Polanco and Raùl Castillo, also announcing that it has acquired worldwide rights to Vinnie Tortorich’s latest documentary, Beyond Impossible. The former title will hit theaters and VOD on December 31, with the latter scheduled for VOD release on January 11.
iGilbert centers on Gilbert Gonzalez (Martinez), who lives with his mother in her Manhattan brownstone. Fearful of life and people, yet starving for human connection, he takes photos of women secretly, wherever and whenever he can. Enter Jana (Polanco), a tenant in the building and the source of innumerable fantasies, whose insecurities inhibit her from standing up to her ex-boyfriend Tony (Castillo), an Iraq war vet with PTSD. Gilbert dreams of rescuing her, but doesn’t believe she could ever love him, especially if she knew about all the secret photos.
Martinez produced the film alongside Cynthia Hargrave (Bottle Rocket), also exec producing alongside Jose Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries).
Beyond Impossible comes on the heels of Tortorich’s docs Fat: A Documentary and Fat: A Documentary 2, which Gravitas also released on VOD. It chronicles the “impossible” quest for the perfect non-meat burger, also examining how the vegan diet might not be all its cracked up to be.
Gravitas Ventures Executive Vice President & General Counsel Brendan Gallagher negotiated the Beyond Impossible acquisition deal with the filmmakers. Check out the iGilbert trailer below.
EXCLUSIVE: Freestyle Digital Media has acquired U.S. rights to Titus Heckel crime thriller Chained, along with global rights to Paula Rhodes’ drama Delicate State. The digital film distribution division of Byron Allen’s Allen Media Group/Entertainment Studios will release the former title across internet, cable and satellite platforms on December 28, releasing the latter for on-demand viewing on January 4.
Chained tells the story of Taylor (Marlon Kazadi), a boy who finds the criminal Jim (Aleks Paunovic) chained inside a deserted factory, beginning to abuse his captive in order to find out where the man has hidden stolen money, so that he can escape his abusive homelife.
Adrian Hlmes, Leia Madu, Roark Critchlow, Andrea Agur and Emily Holmes also star in the film written and directed by Heckel, which My Precious Pictures’ Rachelle Chartrand produced with Chester Sit of Dynastic Entertainment.
Rhodes and Charlie Bodin shot Delicate State in 2015, over the course of the former’s pregnancy, doubling as the film’s leads and its two-person crew. With it, they document their impending parenthood during a time of extreme political division. Their heads remain in the sand about the greater world around them until it upends their privileged life. Now they must navigate the loss of a loved one, the destruction of their home, and the ruins of the health care system at their, and their nation’s most vulnerable moment.
Delicate State also stars Glenn Morshower, Cathy Baron, Charles Halford, Yuri Lowenthal and more. Finishing funds for the film came when it won The Chimaera Project’s To.Get.Her Award, which champions films shining a spotlight on social change and empowering women and non-binary filmmakers. Pic premiered at Dances with Films, where it received the Audience Choice Award.
Freestyle Digital Media negotiated the Chained acquisition deal with Chartrand and My Precious Pictures, negotiating the deal for Delicate State with Glen Reynolds at Circus Road Films.
The trailers for Chained and Delicate State can be found below.
The Chimaera Project has announced Vickie Toro, Teresa Jusino, Julia Monahan, Kristina James, Jade Grace, Michelle Grey and Alisha Sweeting as the recipients of its inaugural Support.Her mentorships for women and non-binary filmmakers.
The first cycle of mentorships will begin virtually, with plans to expand to and develop in-person mentorships, scholarships and shadowing opportunities for future cycles. Creatives participating as mentors include showrunner Maurissa Tancharoen, writer Marc Bernardin, director Alexis Ostrander, composer Bear McCreary, Passionflix founder and director Tosca Musk, and compositing supervisor Joe Censoplano.
Actor-producer Casey McKinnon serves as the mentorship chair for Support.Her and oversaw the process of selecting its participants, with executive producer Ana de Diego also contributing to it.
More information on The Chimaera Project can be found here.
NYU Production Lab has unveiled the slate of projects its supporting in 2021, which includes Elizabeth Nichols’ Flying Lessons, Tim Delaney’s The Plutonians, Adrian Cardenas’ The Story of the Whale, Inés Gowland’s Calma Chicha and Jarreau Carrillo’s The Last to Survive in America.
The university’s lab is a creative content incubator, which looks to bolster emerging student filmmakers through in-kind support and financial investments, helping them to navigate the transition from the classroom into the entertainment industry at large. Since 2015, it has helped launch the careers of such notable filmmakers as Chloé Zhao, Michael Larnell, Cathy Yan and A.B. Shawky.
More information on this year’s supported projects can be found at this link.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.