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By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com

Screen Media Films Acquires Award-Winning Festival Favorite “SHUFFLE”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

New York, March 29, 2012 – Suzanne Blech, president of Screen Media Films, has announced the acquisition of North American distribution rights to Kurt Kuenne’s thriller SHUFFLE with an eye towards a release in 3Q of 2012.  The film stars TJ Thyne as a man who wakes up at a different age in his life each morning and is seemingly helpless to stop it until he starts to see a pattern that could lead him out of the madness.

“SHUFFLE is a wonderfully imaginative thriller with twists that will challenge audiences and we are excited to introduce the film into the marketplace,” says Blech.  “Kurt Kuenne is a talent to take notice of right now.”

Filmmaker Kurt Kuenne says about the acquisition: “I’m thrilled to be working with Screen Media in bringing this film to the widest possible audience.  Suzanne Blech and her colleagues recognized and embraced this film prior to its recent shower of accolades, and that kind of belief and enthusiasm is something I respect tremendously.”

SHUFFLE is the tale of a man who begins experiencing his life out of order; every day he wakes up at a different age, on a different day of his life, never knowing where or when he’s going to be once he falls asleep.  He’s terrified and wants it to stop – until he notices a pattern in his experience, and works to uncover why this is happening to him – and what or who is behind it.

The film has received numerous awards on the festival circuit – including the Audience Award at Sedona International FF, the Director’s Spotlight Award at the Cleveland International FF, and the New Visions Award at Cinequest – in addition to playing at the following film festivals: Santa Barbara, Hollywood, Heartland (closing night film), St. Louis, Garden State (opening night film), and Atlanta. SHUFFLE will screen this weekend at the Phoenix FF and at the Vail FF, and will have its international premiere at the Brussels International Festival of Fantastic Film on April 6.

Part Twilight Zone-style mystery, part Frank Capra fantasy, SHUFFLE stars TJ Thyne, co-star of the hit TV show “Bones.”  The film’s voluminous prosthetic old age make-up was done by Barney Burman, winner of the 2010 Academy Award® for Best Make-up for “Star Trek.”  SHUFFLE was written, directed and scored by Kurt Kuenne, filmmaker of the acclaimed documentary “Dear Zachary” and the hit short film “Validation” (also starring TJ Thyne).  For more information about the film, please go to http://www.shufflethemovie.com/.

The deal was negotiated by Suzanne Blech and Seth Needle from Screen Media, and Josh Braun from Submarine on behalf of the filmmakers.

ABOUT SCREEN MEDIA

Screen Media acquires the rights to high quality, independent feature films for the US and Canada.  Screen Media’s theatrical releases include “La Mission,” starring Benjamin Bratt; “The City of Your Final Destination,” starring Anthony Hopkins and Laura Linney; “Lymelife,” starring Alec Baldwin, Emma Roberts and Cynthia Nixon and “The Private Lives of Pippa Lee” starring Robin Wright and Keanu Reeves. Since 2001, Screen Media Films has released more than 250 titles including “Noel,” starring Penelope Cruz and Susan Sarandon; “Sherrybaby,” starring Maggie Gyllenhaal; Kevin Bacon’s directorial debut, “Loverboy;” and Emmy nominated “Dog Whisperer” with Cesar Milan.

Screen Media Films is a division of Screen Media Ventures, LLC.  With a library of over 1,500 motion pictures, Screen Media Ventures is one of the largest independent suppliers of high quality motion pictures to U.S. and international broadcast markets, cable networks, home video outlets and new media venues. For more information, visit www.screenmediafilms.net.

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“The core fear is what can happen to you, personally. Your body. That’s what horror films deal with, precisely. We are a very thin skin wrapped around a pumping heart and guts. At any given moment it can come down to that, be it diseases, or somebody’s assault, or war, or a car wreck. You could be reduced to the simple laws of physics and your body’s vulnerability. The edged weapon is the penultimate weapon to disclose that reality to you.”
~ Wes Craven, 1996, promoting Scream

MAMET
Well, that, to me, is always the trick of dramaturgy; theoretically, perfectly, what one wants to do is put the protagonist and the audience in exactly the same position. The main question in drama, the way I was taught, is always what does the protagonist want. That’s what drama is. It comes down to that. It’s not about theme, it’s not about ideas, it’s not about setting, but what the protagonist wants. What gives rise to the drama, what is the precipitating event, and how, at the end of the play, do we see that event culminated? Do we see the protagonist’s wishes fulfilled or absolutely frustrated? That’s the structure of drama. You break it down into three acts.

INTERVIEWER
Does this explain why your plays have so little exposition?

MAMET
Yes. People only speak to get something. If I say, Let me tell you a few things about myself, already your defenses go up; you go, Look, I wonder what he wants from me, because no one ever speaks except to obtain an objective. That’s the only reason anyone ever opens their mouth, onstage or offstage. They may use a language that seems revealing, but if so, it’s just coincidence, because what they’re trying to do is accomplish an objective… The question is where does the dramatist have to lead you? Answer: the place where he or she thinks the audience needs to be led. But what does the character think? Does the character need to convey that information? If the answer is no, then you’d better cut it out, because you aren’t putting the audience in the same position with the protagonist. You’re saying, in effect, Let’s stop the play. That’s what the narration is doing—stopping the play… It’s action, as Aristotle said. That’s all that it is—exactly what the person does. It’s not what they “think,” because we don’t know what they think. It’s not what they say. It’s what they do, what they’re physically trying to accomplish on the stage. Which is exactly the same way we understand a person’s character in life—not by what they say, but by what they do. Say someone came up to you and said, I’m glad to be your neighbor because I’m a very honest man. That’s my character. I’m honest, I like to do things, I’m forthright, I like to be clear about everything, I like to be concise. Well, you really don’t know anything about that guy’s character. Or the person is onstage, and the playwright has him or her make those same claims in several subtle or not-so-subtle ways, the audience will say, Oh yes, I understand their character now; now I understand that they are a character. But in fact you don’t understand anything. You just understand that they’re jabbering to try to convince you of something.
~ David Mamet

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