Docs

Doc acquisitions: Neon nabs “Painter and the Thief”; FilmRise takes “Rewind”

Neon lands The Painter and the Thief Neon, the distributor launched by Tom Quinn and Tim League, has acquired the worldwide rights to Benjamin Ree’s Sundance-winning feature documentary, The Painter and the ...
February 25, 2020

Neon lands The Painter and the Thief

Neon, the distributor launched by Tom Quinn and Tim League, has acquired the worldwide rights to Benjamin Ree’s Sundance-winning feature documentary, The Painter and the Thief.

The 102-minute film (pictured) documents Czech painter Barbora Kysilkova who strikes up an unlikely friendship with alleged thief Karl-Bertil Nordland, one of the men who stole her paintings from an Oslo art gallery, in the hopes of learning what happened.

The Painter and the Thief held its world premiere at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the world cinema documentary special jury prize for creative storytelling. The film was produced by Ingvil Giske and executive produced by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville.

Jeff Deutchman negotiated the deal for Neon along with Salma Abdalla from Autolook on behalf of the filmmakers.

In other Neon news, the indie film distribution company has picked up the North American rights to Gunda, from Aquarela director Victor Kossakovsky.

The black-and-white documentary focuses on a mother sow, which shares its name with the film, two ingenious cows and a one-legged chicken, and uses their story to talk about our moral universe.

It debuted at the Berlinale ’20 and was nominated for the Berlinale Documentary Award.

Sant & Usant produced the film, which is a coproduction with Louverture Films. Anita Rehoff Larsen produced, with Joslyn Barnes and Susan Rockefellar on board as coproducers. Tone Grøttjord-Glenne and Joaquin Phoenix executive produce.

Cinephil is handling international sales.

Deutchman negotiated the deal for Neon along with UTA Independent Film Group on behalf of the filmmakers.

With files from Kelly Anderson

FilmRise takes Rewind

New York-based TV and film distributor FilmRise has acquired the video distribution rights to Sasha Joseph Neulinger’s directorial debut, Rewind.

The autobiographical 86-minute film, which world premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival, sees the director reconstructing his childhood via revealing family home video archives to expose cycles and consequences of child abuse.

Rewind also serves as an archive into Neulinger’s contemporary investigation to “find redemption through the criminal justice system and healing for himself and his family.”

The film will be released in select theaters in New York next month and enjoys its television premiere on PBS’ ‘Independent Lens’ on May 11.

Rewind was produced by Step 1 Films and Grizzly Creek Films in association with Cedar Creek Productions.

The deal was negotiated by Max Einhorn, VP of acquisitions at FilmRise, and Josh Braun, Ben Schwartz and Matt Burke of Submarine on behalf of the filmmakers.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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