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By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com

IFC FILMS TAKES NORTH AMERICAN RIGHTS TO STEPHEN ELLIOTT’S CHERRY

New York, NY (March 22, 2012) – IFC Films announced today that the company is acquiring North American rights to acclaimed author Stephen Elliott’s directorial debut CHERRY. The film stars Ashley Hinshaw, Dev Patel, Heather Graham, and James Franco. Produced by Jordan Kessler and Elizabeth Destro, in association with Enderby Entertainment, Elana Krausz, Gordon Bijelonic/Datari Turner Films, and Kink.com, CHERRY premiered earlier this year at the 2012 Berlin Film Festival. It will have its North American premiere on April 24 at the San Francisco International Film Festival.

CHERRY is about Angelina (Hinshaw), an 18-year-old girl on the verge of finishing high school. One morning her boyfriend (Jonny Weston) suggests she take naked pictures for money. She balks at first but then does the photo shoot, using the money to run-off with her best friend (Patel) to San Francisco. In San Francisco, while cocktailing in a strip club, Angelina meets Frances (Franco) a well-off lawyer who offers to introduce her to a different kind of world, a place full of expensive dresses and fancy parties. At the same time Angelina, using the moniker Cherry, has begun exploring the San Francisco porn industry under the direction of Margaret (Graham) a former performer turned adult film director.

CHERRY was shot in the San Francisco Armory, home of Kink.com. At 250,000 square feet, the armory is the largest adult film studio in the world. Elliott is a former sex worker and the author of seven books including The Adderall Diaries. The movie was written by Elliott and Lorelei Lee, a porn performer who is also a writer and lecturer at New York University.

CHERRY challenges assumptions about porn, sexuality, and success, and faces the difficult question of where you need to be in order to find yourself.

“I’m thrilled to be working with IFC,” Elliott said. “This is an independent movie that looks at the adult industry in a way it’s never beenlooked at before. We needed a company that wasn’t afraid and really understood independent cinema. Nobody fits that bill better than IFC.”

The deal for the film was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films and Jeff Deutchman, Director of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films with ICM on behalf of the filmmakers. ICM represents Hinshaw, Taylor, Weston and Gordon Bijelonic/Datari Turner Films.

IFC Films is a sister division to IFC Midnight and Sundance Selects, and is owned andoperated by AMC Networks Inc.

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About IFC FILMS

Established in 2000 and based in New York City, IFC Films is a leading U.S. distributor of quality talent-driven independent film.  Its unique distribution modelmakes independent films available to a national audience by releasing them in theaters as well as on cable’s Video On Demand (VOD) platform, reaching nearly 50 million homes. Some of the company’s successes over the years have included My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Y Tu Mama Tambien, Touching the Void, 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, Gomorrah, Che, Summer Hours, Antichrist, In the Loop, Antichrist, Wordplay,Cairo Time, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, Tiny Furniture and Carlos.  Over the years, IFC Films has worked with established and breakout auteurs, including Steven Soderbergh, Gus Van Sant, Spike Lee, Richard Linklater, Miranda July, Lars Von Trier, Gaspar Noe, Todd Solondz, Cristian Mungiu, Susanne Bier, Olivier Assayas, Jim McKay, Larry Fessenden, Gregg Araki, Jacques Rivette, Claude Chabrol, as well as more recent breakouts such as Andrea Arnold, MiaHansen Love, Corneliu Porombiou, Joe Swanberg, Barry Jenkins, Lena Dunham, Aaron Katz, Daryl Wein and Abdellatif Kechiche. IFC Films is a sister division to Sundance Selects and IFC Midnight, and is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc.

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“Chad Harbach spent ten years writing his novel. It was his avocation, for which he was paid nothing, with no guarantee he’d ever be paid anything, while he supported himself doing freelance work, for which I don’t think he ever made $30,000 a year. I sold his book for an advance that equated to $65,000 a year—before taxes and commission—for each of the years of work he’d put in. The law schools in this country churn out first-year associates at white-shoe firms that pay them $250,000 a year, when they’re twenty-five years of age, to sit at a desk doing meaningless bullshit to grease the wheels of the corporatocracy, and people get upset about an excellent author getting $65,000 a year? Give me a fucking break.”
~ Book Agent Chris Parris-Lamb On The State Of The Publishing Industry

INTERVIEWER
Do you think this anxiety of yours has something to do with being a woman? Do you have to work harder than a male writer, just to create work that isn’t dismissed as being “for women”? Is there a difference between male and female writing?

FERRANTE
I’ll answer with my own story. As a girl—twelve, thirteen years old—I was absolutely certain that a good book had to have a man as its hero, and that depressed me. That phase ended after a couple of years. At fifteen I began to write stories about brave girls who were in serious trouble. But the idea remained—indeed, it grew stronger—that the greatest narrators were men and that one had to learn to narrate like them. I devoured books at that age, and there’s no getting around it, my models were masculine. So even when I wrote stories about girls, I wanted to give the heroine a wealth of experiences, a freedom, a determination that I tried to imitate from the great novels written by men. I didn’t want to write like Madame de La Fayette or Jane Austen or the Brontës—at the time I knew very little about contemporary literature—but like Defoe or Fielding or Flaubert or Tolstoy or Dostoyevsky or even Hugo. While the models offered by women novelists were few and seemed to me for the most part thin, those of male novelists were numerous and almost always dazzling. That phase lasted a long time, until I was in my early twenties, and it left profound effects.
~ Elena Ferrante, Paris Review Art Of Fiction No. 228

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