Academy Award winner William H. Macy’s directorial debut ‘Rudderless’, Starring Billy Crudup, Anton Yelchin, Felicity Huffman, Jamie Chung, Selena Gomez and Laurence Fishburne, has been acquired by Paramount and Samuel Goldwyn for North America distribution.
The film which closed this years Sundance Film Festival in January centers on Sam a former high-profile advertising executive whose life has been torn apart by the tragic death of his son. Off the grid, living on a docked sailboat, he drowns his pain in alcohol. When Sam discovers a box filled with his son’s demo tapes and lyrics, his own child’s musical talent is a revelation for him, a grieving father who felt he’d been absent from his son’s life. Communing with his deceased son’s dashed dreams, Sam learns each song and eventually musters the will to play one at a local bar. When Quentin, a young musician in the audience, is captivated by the song, the unlikely duo form a rock band that becomes surprisingly popular and changes both of their lives.
The distributors both commented on the news with Senior Vice President of Samuel Goldwyn Films, Peter Goldwyn saying “William H. Macy has always been a true talent in front of the cameras and now also proves to be a major force behind the scenes. Billy Crudup, Felicity Huffman and the rest of the cast deliver stellar performances. We are excited to again partner with Paramount Home Media Distribution in bringing Macy’s remarkable first feature to theaters.” and Paramount Home Media’s Senior Vice President of Marketing and Acquisitions, Syrinthia Studer saying “Rudderless is an incredibly powerful and moving film and we are extremely excited to bring it to audiences around the world, William H. Macy has delivered a terrific first feature with extraordinary performances by his stellar cast, a compelling story and wonderful original music. We feel confident that it will be embraced by audiences both in the U.S. and internationally.”
The collaborative acquisition will progress on terms as Samuel Goldwyn Films will control the film as it has its domestic theatrical release and then Paramount Home Media will take the reins for the features home distribution via a VOD release. Paramount is also to handle international distribution in Canada, the UK, Russia and certain territories in Asia.
William H. Macy talked about the films response at Sundance and the rights acquisition saying “After seeing such a fabulous response at Sundance, we are thrilled to be partnering with two of the most prestigious distributors in our business on my directing debut, When I first moved to LA, many years ago, I lived just off of Melrose, and I passed those beautiful gates to Paramount almost every day. Seeing them become our partner on Rudderless and adding the storied Goldwyn Company into the mix excites me to no end.”
The deal was negotiated by Paramount Home Media Distribution, WME Global and Peter Goldwyn, Senior Vice President of Samuel Goldwyn Films, with Radiant Films handling international.
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