Lionsgate Nabs TIFF Films 'You're Next', Westfeldt's 'Friends with Kids'
Two good pick ups coming from the Toronto Film Fest today, both going to Lionsgate. The studio has acquired distribution rights to Jennifer Westfeldt's fun romantic comedy Friends with Kids, as well as Adam Wingard's home invasion horror favorite You're Next. Both are coming out of the fest with solid buzz, and You're Next is actually headed straight to Fantastic Fest down in Austin this weekend. Deadline confirms news on both, adding that You're Next was in a big bidding war all the way from its first screening until now when they finally closed it. "This project represents everything that we look for in a horror film."
You're Next will get a wide theatrical release from Lionsgate, "most likely occurring" in fall 2012. Some say they're hoping for it to be the break out Insidious-hit of next year. I think it's a smart pick-up for Lionsgate, they know horror and know how to release it, I think this should do well for them. Maybe they'll even start a franchise out if it? "It is a celebration of its genre, featuring top-notch performances from a sophisticated script, brilliantly directed, that will leave audiences on the edge of their seats when they’re not jumping out of them," says Acquisitions President Jason Constantine. Definitely a movie to keep an eye on coming up.
As for Friends with Kids, it's a great film and got solid reviews, but the release will actually be handled jointly by Lionsgate and partner company Roadside Attractions - who will be doing the theatrical release. The film stars quite a few big names: Kristen Wiig, Jon Hamm, Megan Fox, Maya Rudolph, Adam Scott, Chris O'Dowd, Jennifer Westfeldt herself and Edward Burns. "We are long time admirers of Jennifer, and this is an excellent directorial debut. She's made a high concept comedy that thoroughly entertains as it explores one of this generation's central quandaries, and everyone on the Lionsgate and Roadside teams who saw the film related to it not just as executives, but as parents or partners. This movie has comedy, heart and truth in equal measures, and it will be a delight to bring to audiences." That's all true.
Two solid pick ups for Lionsgate, they should fair well for the studio, and I'm glad to see more of the better films from Toronto finally getting distribution. We gave a quick video blog review of Friends with Kids from TIFF here, and while I didn't get to see You're Next, our friend Jordan from The Film Stage did and gave it a B rating. We'll be sure to keep you updated on release plans for both, or catch them at upcoming film fests.