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By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com

40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks announces theatrical release plans for Spike Lee’s RED HOOK SUMMER; Will partner with Variance Films for August 10 theatrical release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Republic of Brooklyn, April 25, 2012 – 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks announced today that the company will undertake its first independent distribution effort with founder Spike Lee’s Brooklyn coming-of-age story, RED HOOK SUMMER. 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks will partner with New York-based Variance Films for the theatrical release, which will begin August 10, 2012 in New York City theaters, expanding to the top 30 markets throughout the month of August.

“From my very first joint back in 1986, SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT, I have been an independent filmmaker, and even today I still am,” said Spike Lee.  “I’m elated to join forces with Variance Films for the independent distribution of my new joint RED HOOK SUMMER.  We look forward to getting this film into the marketplace, where we believe 100 percent that there is a starving audience for American independent films like RED HOOK SUMMER.”

“Variance’s sole mission is to ensure filmmakers retain their rights and their power,” said Dylan Marchetti, founder of Variance Films, “and I can’t think of a filmmaker that would make better use of both than Spike Lee.  Spike is truly one of the godfathers of independent filmmaking, and RED HOOK SUMMER is an entertaining, yet thoughtful, film that says something we think needs to be said.  We couldn’t be more excited to work with Spike and his team to ensure that audiences across the country will be experiencing this fantastic film with their friends and family.”

The latest in Spike Lee’s Chronicles of Brooklyn (which also include SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT, DO THE RIGHT THING, CROOKLYN, CLOCKERS, and HE GOT GAME), RED HOOK SUMMER tells the story of Flik Royale, a sullen young boy from middle-class Atlanta who has come to spend the summer with his deeply religious grandfather, Bishop Enoch Rouse, in the housing projects of Red Hook.  Having never met before, things quickly get off on the wrong foot as Bishop Enoch relentlessly attempts to convert Flik into a follower of Jesus Christ.  Between his grandfather’s constant preaching and the culture shock of inner-city life, Flik’s summer appears to be a total disaster–until he meets Chazz Morningstar, a pretty girl his age, who shows Flik the brighter side of Brooklyn.  Through her love and the love of his grandfather, Flik begins to realize that the world is a lot bigger, and perhaps a lot better, than he’d ever imagined.

The deal was brokered by Dylan Marchetti of Variance Films with CAA and Robert Strent of Grubman, Indrusky & Hireon on behalf of 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.redhooksummer.com

ABOUT 40 ACRES AND A MULE FILMWORKS

40 Acres And A Mule Filmworks is the production company of Spike Lee. Founded in 1986 in his childhood neighborhood of Fort Greene, Brooklyn, New York, it has produced feature films, documentaries, commercials, music videos and short films. 40 Acres has been a training ground for young unknown black talent, both in front of and behind the camera, who have gone on to make their mark in Hollywood today.

ABOUT VARIANCE FILMS

Founded in 2008 in Brooklyn, Variance Films is a New York City-based theatrical distributor whose sole mission is to bring the best in independent cinema to theaters across the continent, while allowing filmmakers to retain all rights to their work.  Founded in 2008 by Dylan Marchetti, Variance distributes films using innovative release strategies that focus on collaborative, filmmaker-centric grassroots marketing to drive audiences to theaters.  Recent Variance Films releases include John Sayles’ Philippine-American War epic AMIGO, José Padilha’s ELITE SQUAD: THE ENEMY WITHIN (Brazil’s official submission for the 2011 Academy Awards™), Damien Chazelle’s jazz musical GUY AND MADELINE ON A PARK BENCH, and the highest-grossing film of all time in China, Jiang Wen’s hilariously dark action-comedy LET THE BULLETS FLY.  For more information, please visit www.variancefilms.com.

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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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