By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Magnolia takes North American rights to David Gordon Green’s PRINCE AVALANCHE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Park City, UT – January 23, 2013 – The Wagner/Cuban Company’s Magnolia Pictures announced today that they have acquired North American rights to PRINCE AVALANCHE after its rapturously received Sunday premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. The new film from writer/director David Gordon Green, PRINCE AVALANCHE stars Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch, and was produced by Lisa Muskat, Derrick Tseng, Craig Zobel (director of Magnolia’s 2012 release Compliance), James Belfer and David Gordon Green.

Driven by striking performances from Rudd and Hirsch, PRINCE AVALANCHE is an offbeat comedy about two men painting traffic lines on a desolate country highway that’s been ravaged by wildfire. Against this dramatic setting, beautifully shot by frequent Green collaborator Tim Orr, the men bicker and joke with each other, eventually developing an unlikely friendship. Funny, meditative and at times surreal, PRINCE AVALANCHE features a moving score by Explosions in the Sky and David Wingo, and was loosely adapted from an Icelandic film called Either Way

“All of us at Magnolia are huge fans of David Gordon Green, and it’s been a dream for a long time to work with him,” said Magnolia President Eamonn Bowles. PRINCE AVALANCHE is incredibly smart, funny, warm and engaging film, with indelible, iconic performances from both Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch.”

“Prince Avalanche was a strange joy to make and the reaction by audiences has been beautiful,” said David Gordon Green. “The pleasure continues as we join with Magnolia to distribute the movie. I couldn’t be more proud.”

The deal was negotiated by Magnolia SVP of Acquisitions Dori Begley with John Sloss and Cinetic. Magnolia is eyeing a summer theatrical release for the film.

PRINCE AVALANCHE was financed by Lankn Partners, Dogfish Pictures and Dreambridge Films.

About Magnolia Pictures

Magnolia Pictures (www.magpictures.com) is the theatrical and home entertainment distribution arm of the Wagner/Cuban Companies, a vertically-integrated group of media properties co-owned by Todd Wagner and Mark Cuban that also includes the Landmark Theatres chain and AXS TV. Recent releases include Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia, Kevin Macdonald’s biopic Marley, David Gelb’s Jiro Dreams of Sushi, Craig Zobel’s Compliance, Lauren Greenfield’s The Queen of Versailles, the exciting noir-thriller Deadfall, and Golden Globe nominee A Royal Affair. Magnolia’s upcoming releases include Terrence Malick’s To The Wonder, the thrilling killer whale doc Blackfish, Thomas Vinterberg’s The Hunt, the moving documentaries A Place at the Table and No Place on Earth, The Brass Teapot, Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me, Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Movie, and many more.

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Tsangari: With my next film, White Knuckles, it comes with a budget — it’s going to be a huge new world for me. As always when I enter into a new thing, don’t you wonder how it’s going to be and how much of yourself you are going to have to sacrifice? The ballet of all of this. I’m already imaging the choreography — not of the camera, but the choreography of actually bringing it to life. It is as fascinating as the shooting itself. I find the producing as exciting as the directing. The one informs the other. There is this producer-director hat that I constantly wear. I’ve been thinking about these early auteurs, like Howard Hawks and John Ford and Preston Sturges—all of these guys basically were hired by the studio, and I doubt they had final cut, and somehow they had films that now we can say they had their signatures.  There are different ways of being creative within the parameters and limitations of production. The only thing you cannot negotiate is stupidity.
Filmmaker: And unfortunately, there is an abundance of that in the world.
Tsangari: This is the only big risk: stupidity. Everything else is completely worked out in the end.
~ Chevalier‘s Rachel Athina Tsangari

“The middle-range movies that I was doing have largely either stopped being made, or they’ve moved to television, now that television is a go-to medium for directors who can’t get work in theatricals, because there are so few theatricals being made. But also with the new miniseries concept, you can tell a long story in detail without having to cram it all into 90 minutes. You don’t have to cut the characters and take out the secondary people. You can actually put them all on a big canvas. And it is a big canvas, because people have bigger screens now, so there’s no aesthetic difference between the way you shoot a movie and the way you shoot a TV show.

“Which is all for the good. But what’s happened in the interim is that theatrical movies being a spectacle business are now either giant blockbuster movies that run three hours—even superhero movies run three hours, they used to run like 58 minutes!—and the others, which are dysfunctional family independent movies or the slob comedy or the kiddie movie, and those are all low-budget. So the middle ground of movies that were about things, they’re just gone. Or else they’re on HBO. Like the Bryan Cranston LBJ movie, which years ago would’ve been made for theaters.

“You’ve got people like Paul Schrader and Walter Hill who can’t get their movies theatrically distributed because there’s no market for it. So they end up going to VOD, and VOD is a model from which no one makes any money, because most of the time, as soon as they get on the site, they’re pirated. So the whole model of the system right now is completely broken. And whether or not anybody’s going to try to fix, or if it even can be fixed, I don’t know. But it’s certainly not the same business that I got into in the ’70s.”
~ Joe Dante

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