EXCLUSIVE: U.S. arthouse distributor Zeitgeist Films, in association with Kino Lorber, has acquired all rights in North America to new doc feature In Balanchine’s Classroom.
The two firms, which have a strategic alliance to partner up on a handful of movies each year, plan an autumn theatrical release starting with an exclusive engagement at Film Forum in New York City.
Director Connie Hochman’s film chronicles some of the students of legendary choreographer George Balanchine during the 1960’s and 1970’s. The film includes never-seen-before archival footage of Balanchine at work during rehearsals, classes, and in preparation for some of his seminal works, along with interviews with his most adored and adoring dancers and those who try to carry on his legacy today.
The North American deal was negotiated by Kino Lorber President Richard Lorber and The Film Sales Company President Andrew Herwitz.
Director Hochman, who danced as a child, said: “The story of Balanchine the Teacher and his brave dancer-disciples has lived in my head for many years. I’m thrilled that In Balanchine’s Classroom is in good hands with Zeitgeist, the home of so many unusually beautiful films. Their sterling reputation for both sales and release strategies sets us on a course for a successful launch, so audiences can soon walk through the door and enter the wonders of Balanchine’s classroom.”
Zeitgeist Films Co-President Nancy Gerstman said: “For all who enjoy beauty and art, this film will delight. Emily Russo and I knew that George Balanchine was one of the towering figures of the 20th century but the never before seen footage of him teaching is a revelation and the journey his dancers take with their master is profound and enlightening.”
Herwtiz added: “I am not a ballet aficionado and yet was totally enthralled by the intense human elements of this film; the discipline, the devotion, the talent were inspiring. And to think Connie Hochman is a first time filmmaker. Her accomplishment is extraordinary.”
The is slated for release in fall 2021, followed by digital release on Kino Now and home video.