Sharmill Films acquires film adaptation of hit National Theatre musical
for Australasian theatrical distribution
Sharmill Films is proud to announce its acquisition of LONDON ROAD, the feature adaptation of Rufus Norris’ ground-breaking and highly-acclaimed National Theatre stage production of the same name, for Australasian theatrical distribution in 2015.
The original stage production of London Road at the National Theatre received 5 star reviews from all major UK press.
Written by Alecky Blythe and with music composed by Adam Cork, London Road documents the events of 2006, when the town of Ipswich in England was shattered by the discovery of the bodies of five women.
The ensemble cast includes Olivia Colman (Tyrannosaur, The Iron Lady) and Tom Hardy (Inception, Lawless, Locke). The film version is directed by Rufus Norris (Broken) who will take over as Director of the National Theatre in 2015. The film is now in post production.
David Sabel, the National Theatre’s Director of Broadcast and Digital, said:
“We are thrilled that Sharmill Films will be handling the release of London Road. Having built a great and loyal audience in Australia for our National Theatre Live captured live screenings, it seems fitting that they should now work on this exciting feature film adaptation of one of the National’s most innovative and celebrated works of recent years.”
As the local theatrical distributor of National Theatre Live, Natalie Miller AO, Executive Director of Sharmill Films, says that acquiring London Road for Australasian release is an exciting new step.
“We have seen National Theatre Live in Australian cinemas go from strength to strength over the past 5 years, especially in 2013 which saw the record-breaking $1 million cinema box office success of The Audience starring Helen Mirren.”
A Cuba Pictures/National Theatre production, London Road is produced by Dixie Linder, and executive produced by Nick Marston, Tally Garner and David Sabel. BBC Films, the BFI Film Fund, Arts Council England, and LipSync financed the project. World sales are handled by Protagonist Pictures.
The theatrical deal was brokered at the Cannes Film Festival by Protagonist Pictures’ Dave Bishop and Sharmill Films’ Natalie Miller.
From Executive Director Natalie Miller AO, National Distribution Manager Katharine Thornton and
Marketing Manager Kate McCurdy.
Sharmill Films acquires Un Certain Regard Top Prize Winner
The Missing Picture at Cannes Film Festival
Official Competition entrant & Palme d’Or nominee A Castle in Italy by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi and
Un Certain Regard selection My Sweet Pepper Land also acquired for Australian distribution
Sharmill Films is proud to announce The Missing Picture, winner of the prestigious Un Certain Regard top prize among its four acquisitions from the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.
The acclaimed autobiographical documentary by French-Cambodian director Rithy Panh uses clay animated figures to tell Panh’s recollection of the tragic events which lead to the deaths of his family, with first person narration by the filmmaker. Geoff Andrew in Sight & Sound praised the film as being “moving and remarkably resonant.”
Cannes Jury Prize winner Thomas Vinterberg presided over the announcement of the Un Certain Regard top prize, commenting:
“One of the finest achievements in filmmaking is to create unforgettable moments – moments that stay with us – as a collective memory – as a collective mirror of our existence…This selection was political, highly original, sometimes disturbing, diverse and first of all, very often – unforgettable.”
Vinterberg presented Rithy Panh with his prize, while Panh gave gratitude to the jury and all involved with the festival, as well as to cinemaphiles for supporting film. (The Hollywood Reporter)
The sole female director with a film nominated for the Palme d’Or in Cannes this year, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi draws inspiration from Anton Chekhov’s “The Cherry Orchard” for her third and semi-autobiographical feature, A Castle in Italy. Bruni Tedeschi stars as Louise, an actress in her early forties who has retired from the screen, but when her aging mother (played by Marisa Borini, Valeria’s Bruni Tedeschi’s mother in real life) can no longer afford to keep their Piermonte estate, the family is faced with the end of an era and an uncertain future. Working with her frequent collaborators on the screenplay, Tedeschi’s writing and direction has been praised as “inspired” as she “holds all of the film’s myriad tangents in a delicate balance” (Variety).
Also entered for the Un Certain Regard prize in Cannes was My Sweet Pepper Land by Hiner Saleem, one of the top filmmakers in Kurdish cinema, who successfully combines humour and hope for the future of his people in his new film set on the Iraqi/Turkish border. Featuring “a luminous performance” by Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani (The Hollywood Reporter), My Sweet Pepper Land is a quirky ‘Wild West’ inspired drama in which war hero Baran (Korkmaz Arslan) finds himself at odds with his job as police chief in the capital city in peacetime.
In Cannes Sharmill Films acquired another alternate content title, the new documentary Reaching for the Stars about the English/Irish pop phenomenon One Direction.
Sharmill Films Director Natalie Miller AO said that it was “a very successful Cannes this year, not only for our company but we will have many good films to look forward to in the art house market.”
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
Joss Whedon’s fresh take on William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing has received wide critical acclaim, praised for its humour and “inspired” interpretation of the Bard’s comedic play (Variety). Empire magazine described Whedon and Shakespeare as “a perfect match”.
Country of Origin: USA
Duration: 107 minutes
Director: Joss Whedon
Producers: Joss Whedon, Kai Cole
Starring: Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Nathan Fillion, Fran Kranz, Jillian Morgese, Sean Maher, Reed Diamond, Clark Gregg, Tom Lenk
Australian release: 11 July 2013
High resolution images available on request: firstname.lastname@example.org / 03 9826 9077
Joss Whedon’s (The Avengers, ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’, Cabin in the Woods, Toy Story) modern re-telling of Much Ado About Nothing stars Whedon film and television regulars Amy Acker (‘Angel’, ‘Dollhouse’), Alexis Denisof (‘Buffy’, ‘Angel’, ‘Dollhouse’), Clark Gregg (The Avengers), Fran Kranz (Cabin in the Woods, ‘Dollhouse’) and Nathan Fillion (‘Buffy’, ‘Firefly’, Serenity).
Using the original text, adapted by Joss Whedon, the story of sparring lovers Beatrice (Acker) and Benedick (Denisof) offers a dark, sexy, funny and occasionally absurd view of the intricate game that is love.
Much Ado About Nothing was shot in and around Joss Whedon’s own home in Santa Monica, California, while he was still working on the blockbuster superhero film The Avengers. Co-produced by Whedon’s wife Kai Cole, the film was made with close friends and a sincere love for the classic text.
Sharmill Films acquires SLEEPWALK WITH ME
A comedy by Mike Birbiglia
Produced by Ira Glass of This American Life
Sharmill Films is thrilled to announce their new acquisition, Sleepwalk With Me, a new comedy starring, written and directed by comedian Mike Birbiglia, and co-written and produced by Ira Glass of US radio program This American Life.
Winner of an audience award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, Sleepwalk With Me is based on Mike Birbiglia’s off-Broadway show and bestselling book.
Sleepwalk With Me will be released by Sharmill Films in select cinemas on April 4, 2013.
When an aspiring stand-up fails to express his true feelings about his girlfriend and his stalled career, his anxiety comes out in increasingly funny and dangerous sleepwalking incidents. Sleepwalk With Me stars writer and director Mike Birbiglia and features Lauren Ambrose (“Six Feet Under”), Carol Kane (“Taxi”), James Rebhorn (“Meet the Parents”), Cristin Milioti (star of Broadway’s “Once”), Grammy Award-winning folk singer Loudon Wainwright III, plus comedians Marc Maron, Kristen Schaal, Wyatt Cenac, Jessi Klein, Henry Phillips and David Wain.
Speaking about the April 4 release of Sleepwalk With Me by Sharmill Films, Ira Glass says:
‘I’m thrilled that Australian fans of our radio show can finally see our film. God knows they heard me talk about it enough on radio and podcast. And I’m very glad for the super-competent partners we have bringing it to them around the country.’
Mike Birbiglia first visited Australia two years ago with his one man show for the Sydney Festival.
‘It was the time of our lives,’ he says. ‘We visited the Opera House, the aquarium and I even went down to Bondi Beach and got smacked around by the waves. Most of all we loved the people of Australia. It was so exciting to see American comedy translate there. It was almost as though we spoke the same language. Wait, do we? Anyway, the point is I’m so proud of Sleepwalk With Me. I’m also excited that it won’t need subtitles. Wait, will it?’
Described as ‘one of the best films ever made on the subject of stand-up comedy’ (Movies.com), the film is a favourite of filmmaker Judd Apatow (Funny People), who called Sleepwalk With Me ‘a funny and insightful movie. I could have watched it for ten hours.’ Prominent US film critic Roger Ebert proclaimed ‘I like this movie. More important, I like Mike Birbiglia in it.’
Sleepwalk With Me was named among the Top 10 Independent Films of 2012 by the National Board of Review. In its opening weekend in the US, it was reported that no first-time American director had ever earned as high a per-screen average at the box office.
As a joke, Joss Whedon, director of blockbuster hit The Avengers declared ‘war’ on Sleepwalk With Me, in a YouTube video that went viral, for fear that the indie film would detract from The Avengers’ massive box office in the US. Ironically, The Avengers’ opening weekend per screen average was significantly lower than Sleepwalk’s!
In 2012, Sharmill Films distributed the special cinema event This American Life- Live! to sold-out audiences across Australia. Entitled ‘The Invisible Made Visible’ this event included performances by Mike Birbiglia, David Sedaris, Tig Notaro and the late David Rakoff.
This American Life is a weekly hour-long radio program which debuted in 1995 on WBEZ Chicago. Now distributed by Public Radio International, it is broadcast to more than 500 radio stations reaching 1.7 million weekly listeners in the US. In Australia, This American Life is broadcast on ABC Radio National on Sundays at 7pm, and is one of the most downloaded podcasts nationally. The show has won major broadcasting awards including the Peabody, duPont-Columbia and Edward R. Murrow Awards. In 2001, Time Magazine named Ira Glass the ‘best radio host in America’. Mike Birbiglia is a frequent contributor to This American Life.
Alain Resnais’ YOU AIN’T SEEN NOTHIN’ YET! (VOUS N’AVEZ ENCORE RIEN VU) screens as part of the 2013 Alliance Française French Film Festival across Australia in March-April.
To book tickets, click on the cinema links below, or visit the official website.
Wednesday 20 March 8:45pm
Tuesday 12 March 6:30pm
Monday 18 March 1:30pm
Sunday 17 March 8:30pm
Monday 11 March 6:00pm
Tuesday 19 March 6:00pm
Thursday 21 March 9:30pm
Wednesday 6 March 9:00pm
Wednesday 13 March 1:30pm
Monday 18 March 8:45pm
Friday 22 March 1:30pm
Monday 11 March 9:15pm
Wednesday 13 March 8:45pm
Monday 18 March 9:00pm
Monday 18 March 1:30pm
Thursday 21 March 8:30pm
Friday 22 March 1:30pm
Wednesday 20 March 9:00pm
Monday 25 March 1:30pm
Wednesday 27 March 8:45pm
Tuesday 2 April 6:45pm
Tuesday 19 March 9:00pm
Monday 25 March 8:45pm
Tuesday 26 March 6:30pm
Sunday 31 March 9:00pm
Tuesday 2 April 4:00pm
Sunday 17 March 9:00pm
Thursday 21 March 9:00pm
Wednesday 27 March 1:30pm
Thursday 28 March 9:15pm
Monday 1 April 9:15pm
Friday 22 March 11:30am
Thursday 28 March 11:30am
Saturday 30 March 4:00pm
Tuesday 2 April 6:30pm
Monday 25 March 6:30pm
Sunday 7 April 1:30pm
PARIS – Awards season officially kicked off in France on Friday when Aki Kaurismaki’s Le Havre won the 69th annual Louis Delluc Prize at a ceremony in Paris.
The whimsical modern day fairytale about a town coming together to reunite an immigrant child with his mother premiered at May’s Festival de Cannes in Competition. Le Havre is also Finland’s official entry for an Oscar this year.
The title was shot in French and stars Andre Wilms, Jean-Pierre Darroussin and Kati Outinen. Le Havre was produced by Kaurismaki’s Sputnik Oy with France’s Pyramide Productions and Germany’s Pandora Films. The Match Factory is handling international sales for the critic and crowd-pleasing film that has been a favorite on the festival circuit, taking prizes at the Chicago Film Festival, the Munich Film Festival and scoring a nomination at the European Film Awards.
Le Havre swam to victory in a pool of high-profile contenders this year including Golden Globes sweetheart The Artist, Festival de Cannes favorites Alain Cavalier’s Pater and Bertrand Bonello’s House of Tolerance and Bruno Dumont’s Hors Satan, France’s bid for an Oscar Valerie Donzelli’s Declaration of War, Robert Guediguian’s The Snows of Kilimandjaro, Celine Sciamma’s Tomboy and Pierre Schoeller’s politically-charged The Minister.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
June 01 , 2011 Press Release – For immediate release
Sharmill Films acquires Kaurismäki’s Le Havre
Sharmill Films is delighted to announce their new acquisition, Le Havre, a film by Aki Kaurismäki, which screened in the official competition at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.
Le Havre was a favourite among the critics, and was the winner of the FIPRESCI International Federation of Film Critics Award 2011. The film was given special mentions by the Ecumenical Jury, as well as by the Palm Dog jury for Laika the dog.
Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki shot the French-language film in the seaside town of Le Havre, France.
Sharmill Films has distributed previous Kaurismäki titles Man Without a Past and Leningrad Cowboys.
Le Havre follows Marcel Marx (André Wilms), a former author who has retreated into a voluntary exile in the port city of Le Havre to become a shoe-shiner. Marx’s life takes an interesting turn when fate suddenly throws in his path an underage immigrant refugee from Africa.
Le Havre features a principally French cast, including André Wilms, Jean-Pierre Daroussin and Jean-Pierre Léaud, as well as Kaurismäki regular Kati Outinen and newcomer Blondin Miguel.
‘One of the warmest responses [at Cannes] was for Aki Kaurismäki’s film Le Havre…it’s beautifully done, beautifully performed and it’s full of heart. He’s just such a lovely filmmaker.’
– Margaret Pomeranz, At The Movies
‘And then we had the well-nigh perfect film of this festival, from Aki Kaurismäki…Le Havre – half Ealing-style caper, half straight-faced Nordic irony, funny and touching by turns’ – Stephanie Bunbury, The Age
‘As always, some very good films were ignored by the jury. These included Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki’s Le Havre… As with all Kaurismäki’s films, this one is deeply humane…and thoroughly charming.’ – David Stratton, The Australian
‘New Kaurismäki is a cracker…superbly staged and composed and boasting a marvellous cast’
– Screen International
‘A total treat…Le Havre is a joy’ – Jonathan Romney, The Independent on Sunday
‘An intensely loveable film’ – Peter Bradshow, The Guardian
‘I loved Aki Kaurismäki’s Le Havre…a kind of faux-naif enchantment, a magical madness, the screen equivalent of a Chagall painting’ – Nigel Andrews, Financial Times
For more information please contact Kate McCurdy, Marketing Manager
03 9826 9077