Gravitas Ventures has acquired North American rights to Dying Laughing, the stand-up comedy doc that includes appearances by Jerry Seinfeld, Kevin Hart, Amy Schumer, Jamie Foxx, Billy Connolly, Steve Coogan, Cedric The Entertainer, Mike Epps, Eddie Izzard, Jerry Lewis, Chris Rock, Sarah Silverman, Keenen Ivory Wayans and the late Garry Shandling.
Directed by Paul Toogood & Lloyd Stanton, Dying Laughing premiered at this year’s Los Angeles Film Festival, and will hit theaters and on demand during the first quarter of 2017.
“Over two years, as the film began to emerge from the thousands of miles traveled and hundreds of hours or interviews, we learned about the physical and emotional dedication that it takes to become a stand-up comedian, and that the prospect of failure haunts even the most experienced and celebrated practitioners,” said co-directors Toogood and Stanton. “We hope that the audience will find the final piece as touching, thought-provoking, inspirational and as funny as we do.”
Said Nolan Gallagher, Founder and CEO of Gravitas Ventures: “It’s rare that we, as fans, get such transparency into this industry from such amazing comedy legends. This compelling documentary evokes not just laugher, but truly runs the gamut of emotion for the viewer.”
Gravitas describes the film as “a startling level of intimacy in a series of riveting interviews with many masters of the comedy universe, allowing in-depth access to the emotional and psychological highs and lows of answering the call to become a stand-up comedian.”
Previous projects by Toogood & Stanton include the feature Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap and, on television, Songbook and 30 Years Of Monty Python, among other docs and films.
In addition to directing, the duo also produced Dying Laughing, along with producer Suli McCullough and co-producers Samantha Phillips and Daphne Wayans. Keith Haviland, Adam Longworth and John Thomson are the Executive Producers.
The deal was negotiated by Nolan Gallagher for Gravitas and ICM Partners on behalf of the filmmakers.