EXCLUSIVE: Feminist western Thousand Pieces Of Gold (1990), starring Rosalind Chao and Chris Cooper, is getting a re-release via U.S. arthouse distributor Kino Lorber which has acquired world rights.
Nancy Kelly’s well-received film, about Chinese pioneer Lalu Nathoy, was recently given a 4K restoration by IndieCollect. Kino Lorber will give it a limited theatrical run after it launches at BAM Cinemas and it will then play on the buyer’s VOD platform.
Developed by the Sundance Institute and first unfurled at the 1990 San Francisco International Film Festival. Kino Lorber has also released a new trailer (above) for the film.
Set in a mining town in the 1880s, the movie dramatizes the real-life story of Nathoy, a young Chinese woman whose desperately poor parents sell her into slavery. Played by Rosalind Chao (Joy Luck Club), Lalu is trafficked to a nefarious saloonkeeper in Idaho’s gold country. But Charlie, the saloon’s owner — played by Oscar-winner Chris Cooper in his second movie after John Sayles’ Matewan — wins her in a poker game. Freed from one form of slavery, she won’t allow herself to be enslaved by another — marriage. The duo forge a wary relationship that eventually yields trust, love, and the independence she craves.
Sandra Schulberg, president of IndieCollect, said, “When Nancy Kelly made this brilliant first movie one critic compared her favorably to John Ford; yet she was never given another movie to direct. IndieCollect is dedicated to relaunching the careers of women directors who never got the chance they deserve, and we are thrilled that Kino Lorber has signed on to give Thousand Pieces of Gold a second chance.”
Kelly commented, “The first time I saw the gorgeous new 4K digital restoration projected in a theater, I was moved to tears because the restoration is beautiful, because Rosalind Chao and Chris Cooper are terrific as Lalu and Charlie and because the film’s themes resonate even more powerfully in the era of #MeToo. Kino Lorber Repertory gets it – a film directed by a woman with a woman in lead is something to be celebrated.”
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