Focus Features has closed its deal to acquire the worldwide rights to distribute Miranda July’s “Kajillionaire” out of the Sundance Film Festival, the distributor announced Thursday.
Evan Rachel Wood, Debra Winger, Richard Jenkins and Gina Rodriguez star. July wrote and directed the film.
Focus nabbed the movie in a competitive situation in which last week it was reported that A24 was a frontrunner to release the buzzy, absurdist comedy.
Focus will distribute “Kajillionaire” in the US, while Universal Pictures International will handle the international rollout.
While July has been actively working in short film and the art world, “Kajillionaire” is the her first feature film since 2011’s “The Future.” The film is only her third feature after “You and Me and Everyone We Know,” which won a U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Prize for Originality of Vision when it premiered at Sundance in 2005.
Her latest is an absurdist comedy described by Sundance as a “playful portrait of self-discovery” that stars Wood as a daughter to a family of con artists who has spent her entire life learning to steal and swindle from her parents, played by Winger and Jenkins. But a wrench gets thrown into their plans when they charm a kind stranger (Rodriguez) into their latest scheme.
Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner of Plan B Entertainment produced the film alongside Youree Henley. Brad Pitt and Annapurna’s Megan Ellison and Jillian Longnecker executive produced.
“In talking to Peter, Jason and Robert, it was obvious that their vision for ‘Kajillionaire’s’ release came from a really strong gut response to the movie; I’m so excited to collaborate with them,” July said in a statement.
“As cinema goers are ever more hungry for truly original experiences, it’s hard to imagine a more unique voice than Miranda’s. Her heightened worlds are full of humor, heartbreak and humanity, and ‘Kajillionaire’ doses those out in abundance. We couldn’t be more excited to be working with her, along with our good friends at Plan B and Youree to share this experience with audiences everywhere,” Focus chairman Peter Kujawski said in a statement.
July is represented by UTA, and UTA Independent Film Group handled the sale on July’s behalf.
Variety first reported the news.
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