By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

PHASE 4 FILMS ACQUIRES SUNDANCE HIT ‘NEWLYWEEDS’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, PLEASE 

PARK CITY, UT, January 25 – Berry Meyerowitz, President & CEO of Phase 4 Films, announced today that the Company has acquired all North American rights to NEWLYWEEDS, the debut feature written and directed by Shaka King.  Produced by Jim Wareck, Michael Mathews, Shaka King and Gbenga Akinnagbe, with Andy Sawyer and Neil Katz serving as executive producers, NEWLYWEEDS just enjoyed its world premiere in the NEXT <=> section of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, which concludes this weekend.

 

Phase 4 is planning a day and date theatrical and VOD release for the movie this summer.  The deal was negotiated by Phase 4’s Larry Greenberg and Katharyn Howe with Glen Reynolds of Circus Road Films on behalf of the filmmakers.

 

“We are thrilled to be working with Shaka on his first feature.  NEWLYWEEDS is an audience pleaser and we are looking forward to exposing it to audiences nationwide,” said Meyerowitz.

 

In NEWLYWEEDS, a Brooklyn repo-man and his globetrotting girlfriend forge an unlikely romance. But what should be a match made in stoner heaven turns into a love triangle gone awry in this dark comedy that is part ballad of chemical dependency, part coming-of-age romance, part hallucinatory adventure. A bittersweet blend of comedy and drama NEWLYWEEDS is the story of Lyle (Amari Cheatom), a repo-man by necessity, who is also a preacher-man in his purple-hazed fantasy, who is also on the verge of becoming a family man unless he and Nina (Trae Harris), his beautiful young girlfriend, are done in first by their mutual adoration and voracious consumption of cannabis.  NEWLYWEEDS is also a clear-eyed portrait of a contemporary New York neighborhood vibrantly photographed by Daniel Patterson that makes great use of a supporting cast, which includes Tone Tank, Isiah Whitlock Jr. (“The Wire,” CEDAR RAPIDS), Tony award-winner Tonia Pinkins, Colman Domingo (LINCOLN), Hassan Johnson (“The Wire”), Adrian Martinez and Anthony Chisholm.

 

About Phase 4 Films
Phase 4 Films distributes feature films and special interest content across all traditional theatrical and new media platforms in North America. The company’s previous releases include the provocatively sexy road movie HICK, starring Chloë Grace Moretz, Blake Lively, and Eddie Redmayne; 2011 Sundance award-winner ANOTHER HAPPY DAY, Sam Levinson’s dark comedy about a dysfunctional family, starring Ellen Barkin, Demi Moore, and Ezra Miller; the Canadian tour of Kevin Smith’s RED STATE, starring Michael Parks, Melissa Leo and John Goodman; and Carrie Preston’s Sundance 2012 hit comedy THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID starring Anne Heche, Marcia DeBonis, and Alia Shawkat. Upcoming releases for the Company include Megan Griffith’s 2012 SXSW Audience Award Winner, EDEN, starring Jamie Chung and Beau Bridges, and Mark L Mann’s directorial debut GENERATION UM, starring Keanu Reeves (THE MATRIX, CONSTANTINE).

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Dear Irene Cho, I will miss your energy and passion; your optimism and joy; your kindness towards friends, colleagues, strangers, struggling filmmakers, or anyone who randomly crossed your path and needed a hand. My brothers and I have long considered you another sibling in our family. Our holiday photos – both western and eastern – have you among all the cousins, in-laws, and kids… in the snow, sun, opening presents, at large dinner gatherings, playing Monopoly, breaking out pomegranate seeds and teaching us all how to dance Gangnam style. Your friendship and loyalty meant a great deal to me: you were the loudest cheerleader when I experienced victories and you were always ready with sushi when I had disappointments. You had endless crazy ideas which always seemed impossible but you would will them into existence. (Like that time you called me and suggested that we host a brunch for newly elected mayor of LA, Eric Garcetti because “he is going to president one day.” We didn’t have enough time or funding, of course, only your desire to do it. So you did, and I followed.) You created The Daily Buzz from nothing and it survived on your steam in spite of many setbacks because you believed in a platform for emerging filmmakers from all nations. Most of all, you were a wonderful mother to your son, Ethan, a devoted wife to your husband, and a wonderful sibling and daughter to your family. We will all miss how your wonderful smile and energy lit up the room and our lives. Rest in peace, Irene.
~ Rose Kuo Remembers Irene Cho on Facebook

“You know, I was never a critic. I never considered myself as a film critic. I started doing short films, writing screenplays and then for awhile, for a few years I wrote some film theory, including some film criticism because I had to, but I was never… I never had the desire to be a film critic. I never envisioned myself as a film critic, but I did that at a period of my life when I thought I kind of needed to understand things about cinema, understand things about film theory, understand the world map of cinema, and writing about movies gave me that, and also the opportunity to meet filmmakers I admired.

“To me, it was the best possible film school. The way it changed my perspective I suppose is that I believe in this connection between theory and practice. I think that you also make movies with ideas and you need to have ideas about filmmaking to achieve whatever you’re trying to achieve through your movies, but then I started making features in 1986 — a while ago — and I left all that behind.

“For the last three decades I’ve been making movies, I’ve been living, I’ve been observing the world. You become a different person, so basically my perspective on the world in general is very different and I hope that with every movie I make a step forward. I kind of hope I’m a better person, and hopefully a better filmmaker and hopefully try to… It’s very hard for me to go back to a different time when I would have different values in my relationship to filmmaking. I had a stiffer notion of cinema.”
~ Olivier Assayas