EXCLUSIVE: NBA All Star and TNT analyst Chris Webber is powering forward into movies with Unexpected, the Cobie Smulders drama from director Kris Swanberg that debuts in competition this month at Sundance. He’s joining his Emmy-winning producing partner Peter Gilbert as executive producer on the film, about a Chicago inner-city teacher (The Avengers’ Smulders) who discovers she’s pregnant and forms a bond with a student (newcomer Gail Bean) who’s in a similar, but very different situation.
Unexpected is written by Swanberg and Megan Mercier and produced by Andrea Roa. It’s set to premiere in the U.S. Dramatic Competition category, marking a Park City first as Swanberg’s filmmaker-husband Joe Swanberg also has a film debuting in the festival – Digging For Fire, starring Orlando Bloom and Rosemarie DeWitt.
The film is the first from the Webber/Gilbert Media Group, which Webber and Gilbert formed in 2012 after meeting during the making of the 1994 basketball documentary Hoop Dreams, which Gilbert shot and produced. The shingle is focused on producing features and documentaries as well as live events, cultural exhibitions, and music projects.
“I’ve been excited about the movie Unexpected since I first read the script,” said Webber. “I’m proud to support a great mind like Kris Swanberg on this project. I’m also proud that the Webber/Gilbert Media Group’s first film project is at Sundance. We are thrilled that the film entertains but also deals with subject matter that is relevant in our society today.”
Short Term 12 producer David Kaplan is repping sales alongside Dark Arts’ Andrea Roa.