Sundance '13 Sales: Full Recap - 'Kill Your Darlings,' 'Fruitvale' & More

January 30, 2013

Sundance 2013

The 2013 Sundance Film Festival may be over (check out all of our coverage right here), and now many are probably wondering when they can see some of the films that premiered in Park City. We've featured the sales of some of our favorite films including James Ponsoldt's The Spectacular Now being picked up by the new distribution label A24 and Richard Linklater's Before Midnight unsurprisingly landing at Sony Pictures Classics, but we figured a round-up of a bunch of the other big purchases of films with buzz at the festival was in order so you know which films you'll likely end up seeing throughout the year 2013. Read on!

And so without further adieu, here's a list of some sales along with the film's synopses (help via


Ain't Them Bodies Saints (Directed by David Lowery, starring Rooney Mara, Casey Affleck, Ben Foster, Keith Carradine) - The tale of an outlaw who escapes from prison and sets out across the Texas hills to reunite with his wife and the daughter he has never met. IFC Films bought the film for $1 million. [Read our review here.]

Austenland (Directed by Jerusha Hess, starring Keri Russell, JJ Feild, Bret McKenzie, Jennifer Coolidge) - Thirtysomething, single Jane is obsessed with Mr. Darcy, as played by Colin Firth in Pride and Prejudice. On a trip to an English resort, her fantasies of meeting the perfect Regency-era gentleman become more real than she ever imagined. Sony Pictures Classics bought the film for just over $4 million.

Before Midnight (Directed by Richard Linklater, starring Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy) - We meet Jesse and Celine nine years on in Greece. Almost two decades have passed since their first meeting on that train bound for Vienna. Before the clock strikes midnight, we will again become part of their story. Sony Pictures Classics bought the film for an unknown amount. [Read our review here.]

Concussion (Directed by Stacie Passon, starring Robin Weigert, Maggie Siff, Johnathan Tchaikovsky, Julie Fain Lawrence) - After a blow to the head, Abby decides she can't do it anymore. Her life just can't be only about the house, the kids and the wife. She needs more: she needs to be Eleanor. TWC-RADiUS bought the film for a low seven figure sum.

Crystal Fairy (Directed by Sebastián Silva, starring Michael Cera, Gabby Hoffmann, Agustín Silva) - Jamie invites a stranger to join a road trip to Chile. The woman’s free and esoteric nature clashes with Jamie’s acidic, self-absorbed personality as they head into the desert for a Mescaline-fueled psychedelic trip. IFC Films just bought the film for undisclosed amount after the festival. [Read our review here.]

Don Jon's Addiction (Directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Tony Danza, Julianne Moore) - In Joseph Gordon-Levitt's charming directorial debut, a selfish modern-day Don Juan attempts to change his ways. Relativity Media bought the film for $4 million and committed $25 million to market it for a wide release. [Read our review here.]

Fruitvale (Directed by Ryan Coogler, starring Michael B. Jordan, Melonie Diaz, Octavia Spencer, Kevin Durand, Chad Michael Murray) - The true story of Oscar, a 22-year-old Bay Area resident who crosses paths with friends, enemies, family and strangers on the last day of 2008. The Weinstein Company bought the film for just over $2 million. [Read our review here.]

Kill Your Darlings (Directed by John Krokidas, starring Daniel Radcliffe, Dane DeHaan, Michael C. Hall, Ben Foster and Jack Huston) - An untold story of murder that brought together a young Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs at Columbia University in 1944, providing the spark that led to the birth of an entire generation. Sony Pictures Classics purchased the film for roughly $2 million. [Read our review here.]

The Look of Love (Directed by Michael Winterbottom, starring Steve Coogan, Imogen Poots, Anna Friel) The true story of British adult magazine publisher and entrepreneur Paul Raymond. A modern day King Midas story, Raymond became one of the richest men in Britain at the cost of losing those closest to him. IFC Films bought the film for an unknown amount.

Lovelace (Directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, starring Amanda Seyfried, Peter Sarsgaard, Hank Azaria, Adam Brody, James Franco, Sharon Stone) - Deep Throat, the first pornographic feature film to be a mainstream success, was an international sensation in 1972 and made its star, Linda Lovelace, a media darling. Years later the "poster girl for the sexual revolution" revealed a darker side to her story. TWC-RADiUS bought the film for an unknown amount. [Read our review here.]

Milkshake (Directed by David Andalman, starring Tyler Ross, Shareeka Epps, Georgia Ford, Eshan Bay) - In mid-1990's America, we follow the tragic sex life of Jolie Jolson, a wannabe thug (and great-great-grandson of legendary vaudevillian Al Jolson) in suburban DC as he strives to become something he can never be – black. Phase 4 Films bought the film with a plan to release in theaters and on VOD this summer.

Newlyweeds (Directed by Shaka King, starring Amari Cheatom, Trae Harris, Tone Tank, Colman Domingo, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Adrian Martinez) - 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 coming-of-age comedy about dependency. Phase 4 Films bought the film for an unknown amount.

Prince Avalanche (Directed by David Gordon Green, starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch) - Two highway road workers spend the summer of 1988 away from their city lives. The isolated landscape becomes a place of misadventure as the men find themselves at odds with each other and the women they left behind. Magnolia Pictures bought the film for an unknown amount.

The Spectacular Now (Directed by James Ponsoldt, starring Miles Teller, Shailene Woodley, Kyle Chandler, Brie Larson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Mary Elizabeth Winstead) - Sutter is a high school senior who lives for the moment; Aimee is the introvert he attempts to "save." As their relationship deepens, the lines between right and wrong, friendship and love, and "saving" and corrupting become inextricably blurred. A24 bought the film for a low seven figure sum. [Read our review here.]

S-VHS (Directed by Simon Barrett, Adam Wingard, Edúardo Sanchez, Gregg Hale, Timo Tjahjanto, Gareth Huw Evans, Jason Eisener, Screenwriters: Simon Barrett, Jamie Nash, Timo Tjahjanto & Gareth Huw Evans, John Davies) - Searching for a missing student, two private investigators break into his abandoned house and find another collection of mysterious VHS tapes. In viewing the horrific contents of each cassette, they realize there may be terrifying motives behind the student's disappearance. Magnolia Pictures bought the film for just over $1 million. [Read our review here.]

Two Mothers (Directed by Anne Fontaine, starring Naomi Watts, Robin Wright, Xavier Samuel, James Frechevile) - This gripping tale of love, lust and the power of friendship charts the unconventional and passionate affairs of two lifelong friends who fall in love with each other's sons. Exclusive Releasing (distribution of of Exclusive Media) purchased the film for an unknown amount.

The Way, Way Back (Directed by Jim Rash and Nat Faxon, starring Liam James, Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Sam Rockwell, Maya Rudolph, Allison Janney) - Duncan, an introverted 14-year-old, comes into his own over the course of a comedic summer when he forms unlikely friendships with the gregarious manager of a rundown water park and the misfits who work there. Fox Searchlight bought the film for $9.75 million for one of the largest Sundance sales. [Read our review here.]

We Are What We Are (Directed by Jim Mickle, starring Bill Sage, Ambyr Childers, Julia Garner, Michael Parks, Wyatt Russell, Kelly McGillis) - A devastating storm washes up clues that lead authorities closer and closer to the cannibalistic Parker family. Entertainment One purchased the film for an unknown amount and will release later this year.

Note: Certain films like Upstream Color (being self-distributed), Stoker, The East, Life According to Sam, Jobs, The Gatekeepers, No, Sightseers and Mud already had distribution secured before the festival began.


Twenty Feet from Stardom (Directed by Morgan Neville) - Backup singers live in a world that lies just beyond the spotlight. Their voices bring harmony to the biggest bands in popular music, but we've had no idea who these singers are or what lives they lead – until now. TWC-RADiUS bought the film for an unknown amount.

The Summit (Directed by Nick Ryan) - Twenty-four climbers converged at the last stop before summiting the most dangerous mountain on Earth. Forty-eight hours later, 11 had been killed or simply vanished. Had one, Ger McDonnell, stuck to the climbers' code, he might still be alive. AMC Networks' Sundance Selects bought the film for an unknown amount.

Cutie and the Boxer (Directed by Zachary Heinzerling) - This candid New York love story explores the chaotic 40-year marriage of famed boxing painter Ushio Shinohara and his wife, Noriko. Anxious to shed her role as her overbearing husband's assistant, Noriko finds an identity of her own. TWC-RADiUS bought the film for an unknown amount to release the film sometime this year.

Dirty Wars (Directed by Richard Rowley) - Investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill chases down the truth behind America's covert wars. AMC Networks' Sundance Selects bought the film for an undisclosed amount.

History of the Eagles (Directed by Alison Ellwood) - Using never-before-seen home movies, archival footage and new interviews with all current and former members of the Eagles, this documentary provides an intimate look into the history of the band and the legacy of their music. Showtime bought the film for an undisclosed amount.

Pussy Riot - A Punk Prayer (Directed by Mike Lerner, Maxim Pozdorovkin) - Three young women face seven years in a Russian prison for a satirical performance in a Moscow cathedral. But who is really on trial: the three young artists or the society they live in? HBO Documentary Films bought the film for an undisclosed amount.

There's likely more purchases to come for films which premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, so stay tuned for anymore updates on that front. Check out our recap of our favorite films from the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, a collection of our friends telling us their favorite film, and the rest of our coverage from Park City, Utah right here. As always stay tuned for the latest on all these indie films and much more.

Find more posts: Movie News, Sundance 13



Interesting to see the Way, Way Back get such a high buy... Promising, as usually the most expensive buys are usually great (Little Miss Sunshine, Juno, ect.) I can't wait to see many of these!!!

Greg dinskisk on Jan 30, 2013


dude what about upstream color? please tell me you got to see it!

sahil on Jan 30, 2013


I did get to see it! I saw the world premiere... I was there! Unfortunately, I didn't like it much. Too weird and meaningless and odd, not enough story or characters. I just couldn't find much to say about it afterward. I really want(ed) to see it again and get into it more, but like Tree of Life, it's abstract. Some people will find a lot to like about it, others won't. That's why it's not showing up much. Also, it does have distribution already. Shane is self-distributing the film and it'll be released in limited theaters starting in April.

Alex Billington on Feb 4, 2013

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