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Action Indie

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Action Indie

Insights from home entertainment industry experts. Home Media blogs give you the inside scoop on entertainment news, DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases, and the happenings at key studios and entertainment retailers. “TK's Take” analyzes and comments on home entertainment news and trends, “Agent DVD Insider” talks fanboy entertainment, “IndieFile” delivers independent film news, “Steph Sums It Up” offers pithy opinions on the state of the industry, and “Mike’s Picks” offers bite-sized recommendations of the latest DVD and Blu-ray releases.

May 17, 2010
Acquisitions: Cannes and Beyond

The following titles have been acquired for distribution on DVD in the United States, at the Cannes Film Festival and beyond.

-Grindstone Entertainment Group, distributed on DVD by Lionsgate, has acquired the U.S. distribution rights for the films Ecstasy of Gold and Open House, according to indieWIRE.

-ContentFilm International picked up the rights to The Numbers Station, an actioner directed by Kasper Barfoed (The Candidate) starring Ethan Hawke. Principal photography will start in September.

-Entertainment 7 has picked up the rights to the war epic Quiet Flows the Don, starring Rupert Everett and F. Murray Abraham.

-Film Movement has acquired two films: Silvio Soldini’s Italian erotic drama Come Undone and Russian existential thriller How I Ended This Summer. Both films will see limited theatrical runs and be released first through cable VOD in the fall.

By: Billy Gil

May 11, 2010
IFC Bows ‘Midnight’ Label

IFC Films is launching a genre label called IFC Midnight for independent horror, sci-fi, thriller, erotic arthouse and action films. 

The label will bow four new films every month on video-on-demand, while select titles also will be released in theaters at the same time they premiere through VOD. The films also will be branded with the IFC Midnight label when they are released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc (MPI Media Group releases IFC films on disc).
“Many of our most successful VOD titles are those that might fall under the Midnight label — not just films that are straight up horror, erotic arthouse or genre films but also ones that shock audiences, push boundaries and stir up controversy — so officially creating IFC Midnight was the logical next step,” said president of IFC Entertainment Jonathan Sehring. “While we as a company continue to focus on a diverse range of films, this is one particular area which we are going to heavily brand and promote.”
IFC Midnight films will be in the same vein as past IFC films Lars Von Trier’s controversial Antichrist, Nazi zombie film Dead Snow, and erotic dramas such as The Exterminating Angels. Upcoming IFC Midnight titles include the gruesome The Human Centipede, about a mad scientist who wants to create — you guessed it — a living centipede made of people; the film has been screened theatrically and hits VOD this month. Other films will include prison drama Cell 211, directed by Daniel Monzón and recipient of eight Spanish Goya Awards, including best picture, only on VOD, starting in June; Doghouse, a British horror film screening through VOD in June; and Don’t Look Back, a thriller starring Sophie Marceau as a woman whose body morphs into that of a woman played by Monica Bellucci (I can think of worse things to happen, Sophie).
Films screening in July include Viking action epic Valhalla Rising and thriller Exam. French zombie flick The Horde (La Horde) and revenge film Vengeance come in August. And September will see the VOD premiere of Gaspar Noe’s (of Irreversible infamy) Enter the Void.

By: Billy Gil

May 06, 2010
New Indie Titles, May 6: ‘Shinjuku Incident’ and More

Title: Shinjuku Incident
Genre: Action
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Street date: 6/8
Prebook date: 5/6
Price/Format: $24.94 DVD
Reserve for purchase
Reserve on Netflix

What’s a Jackie Chan movie doing in IndieFile? Well, this one is a throwback to his classics and has been nominated for four Hong Kong Film Awards, including best picture. Chan stars as a Chinese immigrant to Japan who rises through the ranks of a black market mob to become the head of the infamous Shinjuku district. Special features include commentary on select scenes with Chan, as well as a behind-the-scenes featurette. 

Title: Fuel
Genre: Documentary
Studio: Cinema Libre
Street Date: 6/22
Prebook Date: 5/11
Price/Format: $24.95 DVD
Reserve on Netflix

The Sundance Audience Award-winning doc about alternative fuels features Sheryl Crow, Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Larry David, Richard Branson and Robert Kennedy Jr.

Title: For My Father
Genre: Foreign/Thriller
Studio: Film Movement
Street date: 6/1
Price/Format: $24.95 DVD
Reserve for purchase
Reserve on Netflix

For My Father is an Israeli-German drama about a young Palestinian man on a suicide mission who finds forbidden love while awaiting the completion of his mission. It was nominated for seven Israeli Academy Awards. The Film Movement short film included on this DVD is Ali & the Ball, an Australian film about a young boy in a refugee detention center who must protect his mother and sister.

Title: Dark Arc
Genre: Dark Comedy
Studio: Vanguard
Street date: 8/24
Prebook date: 7/16
Price/Format: $19.95 DVD

A strange love triangle ensues when a visual performance artist and his muse stage visual events to influence the life of a down-to-earth graphic designer. Writer-director Dan Zukovic wrote and directed the ’90s cult film The Last Big Thing.

Title: Soundless Wind Chime
Genre: Drama/Gay/Lesbian
Studio: TLA
Street date: 6/22
Prebook: 5/25
Price/Format: $19.98 DVD
Reserve for purchase
Reserve on Netflix

This dreamlike film about a Swiss pickpocket and shy Chinese man falling in love has won numerous queer film festival awards, and it’s nice to see a low-key, atypical gay love story for a change.


By: Billy Gil

March 24, 2010
Sony Pictures Nabs Rights to ‘Red Hill’

Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions Group has acquired U.S. distribution rights to Berlin International Film Festival pick Red Hill.

The neo-western thriller stars Ryan Kwanten (Jason Stackhouse on “True Blood,” hubba hubba), as well as Steve Bisley (Mad Max) and Tom E. Lewis (The Proposition). The film was produced by Al Clark (Priscilla Queen of the Desert) and was written, produced and directed by Patrick Hughes, making his directorial debut. A release date hasn’t been set.
“Hughes has contemporized the revenge western with such style and adrenaline that we jumped at the opportunity to distribute such a badass movie,” said Scott Shooman, VP of acquisitions and productions for the group.
The film follows a young police office (Kwanten) who relocates to a small town with his expectant wife, only to face a nightmarish prison break. The film takes place over the course of one day and night. Sounds fun!

By: Billy Gil

August 11, 2009
IFC Films Continue to Screen On Demand This Summer

Five Minutes of Heaven

Independent film fans: Are you sad the recession has left you without the means to travel to your favorite film festival? IFC continues to make it easy to hold film-festival screenings in your living room, provided you subscribe to a major cable provider. Providers such as BrightHouse, Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox, Insight and Time Warner are among the participants, with Comcast and Cablevision showing films in high-definition.

The IFC in Theaters VOD platform offers critically acclaimed independent movies on demand at the same time they premiere theatrically. Movies this month include Five Minutes of Heaven, from Sundance (starts Aug. 19 on demand, in theaters Aug. 21), starring Liam Neeson in a thriller about a reformed killer in Northern Ireland who meets the father of his victim on a TV show (watch the trailer here: http://www.ifcfilms.com/videos/five-minutes-of-heaven-trailer); and Still Walking, from the Toronto Film Festival (starts Aug. 26 on demand, in theaters Aug. 28), a family drama from director Kore-Eda Hirokazu (After Life, Nobody Knows) (trailer: http://movies.nytimes.com/movie/453472/Still-Walking/trailers).
IFC Festival Direct is an electronic film festival, meaning that on-demand viewers get to see up to six films that have recently premiered at major film festivals. New films this month include Someone Else (now playing), a British romantic comedy from the Edinburgh Film Festival about a man torn between his safe girlfriend and a crazy, sexy crush (see the trailer here: http://www.ifcfilms.com/videos/someone-else-2); The Undeserved (starts Aug. 12), a psychological drama from the Mill Valley Film Festival about a quaint New England college town loaded with secrets; Cass (starts Aug. 5), a crime drama inspired by the true story of a boy who grows up to become a British crime boss (see the trailer here: http://www.ifcfilms.com/videos/cass-2); and Quiet Little Marriage (starts Aug. 19), from the AFI Film Festival and Slamdance, about the travails of young matrimony.
IFC Midnight collects new action, horror, sci-fi and genre independent films. New films include I Sell the Dead (starts Aug. 12), from Slamdance and the LAFF, about two bumbling grave robbers dealing with the undead, starring Dominic Monaghan, Ron Perlman and Larry Fessenden (see the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=psfPNVTZjzc).
Here’s where the films are available:

·       BrightHouse: Movies on Demand > IFC In Theaters

·       Cablevision: Movies On Demand > Independent Films > IFC In Theaters or Festival Direct

·       Charter (IFC IN THEATERS ONLY): Movies On Demand > Channel 1 > Movies > IFC In Theaters

·       Comcast (IFC IN THEATERS): Channel 1 > Movies & Events > Same Day as Theaters

·       Comcast (IFC FESTIVAL DIRECT): Channel 1 > Movies & Events > IFC In Theaters or IFC Festival Direct

·       Cox: Channel 1 > Movies On Demand > IFC In Theaters

·       Insight (IFC IN THEATERS ONLY): Channel 1 > Movies On Demand > IFC In Theaters

·       Time Warner: Movies On Demand > IFC In Theaters

By: Billy Gil


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