Jon Stewart’s Directorial Debut ‘Rosewater’ Heading to Open Road Films

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Scott Rudin and Gigi Pritzker produced the movie, which stars Gael Garcia Bernal

Open Road Films has acquired domestic distribution rights to Jon Stewart’s directorial debut “Rosewater,” the studio announced Monday. Stewart took a hiatus from hosting “The Daily Show” to shoot the movie, which is based on BBC reporter Maziar Bahari’s book “Then They Came For Me: A Family’s Story of Love, Captivity and Survival.”

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Gael Garcia Bernal and Shohreh Aghdashloo star in the movie, which Scott Rudin produced with Stewart and Gigi Pritzker of OddLot Entertainment. OddLot financed the movie.

Story follows BBC journalist Bahari as he leaves his pregnant fiancee in London in June 2009 to cover Iran’s presidential elections. He’s quickly taken into custody and interrogated by a man whose defining trait was the faint scene of rosewater. Bahari’s ordeal lasted 118 days.

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Sierra/Affinity is selling foreign rights at the Cannes Film Market and the company is expected to host a private screening for international buyers.

Open Road recently acquired the Sean Penn-Javier Bardem movie “The Gunman,” so not only is the company now in business with Joel Silver, but should it close a deal for “Rosewater,” Open Road would be working with another super-producer in Rudin.

The news was first reported by Deadline.