Lionsgate Slates 'Bella'11 Feb, 2008 By: Billy Gil
Some movies are meant for an independent film audience, some are meant for Latin audiences, and some are meant for fans of inspirational or spiritual stories. Bella aims to hit all of these.
Lionsgate will release the independent film on DVD May 6 (prebook April 9) at $27.98. Although subject to change, the special features are slated to include a commentary track with director Alejandro Monteverde, a behind-the-scenes featurette, a “behind the journey of distribution” featurette and music videos.
“Overall there's a strong Latin cast, a Latin director and a soundtrack by Alejandro Sanz, who's won more Grammys than any other Latin artist, but it also shows a positive portrayal of Latinos in the film, which isn't something you always see in films,” said Anne Parducci, EVP of marketing for Lionsgate. “On the faith-based side, it's a family-friendly, faith-based but mainstream film, which is also something you don't always see.
“And the film centers around adoption. Pro-life advocates also feel this movie has an important message.”
Lionsgate also is positioning the film as a conventional drama, marketing it toward a mainstream female audience. Parducci said it helped to have positive reviews from such diverse avenues as film critic Roger Ebert and singer Tony Bennett to RottenTomatoes.com, which awarded the film the users' pick for best limited release in the 2007 Golden Tomato Awards.
“It's the people that are really driving this film,” Parducci said. “Over the last year, the producers have been able to garner enthusiasm of people not in the industry who enjoy movies and see this movie as important.”
The film stars Eduardo Verástegui (Chasing Papi) as a former soccer star with a dark past who now works at his brother's New York restaurant. Tammy Blanchard (The Good Shepherd) plays a beautiful waitress at the restaurant who finds she is pregnant. The two embark on a special journey that brings them together. Manny Perez (Illegal Tender), Ramon Rodriguez (“The Wire”) and Ali Landry (“Eve”) co-star.