Sundance 2019: All the Deals

by IMDb-Editors | last updated - 6 months ago

We're keeping track of who is buying which movies and series at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival — and when we might expect to see them.

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Alfre Woodard and Alex Castillo in Clemency (2019)


Buyer: Neon

Release date: N/A

Neon acquired U.S. rights to Chinonye Chukwu's prison warden drama starring Alfre Woodard. The movie received the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, and garnered early Oscar buzz for Woodard’s emotional performance.

Honeyland (2019)


Buyer: Neon

Release date: N/A

Neon acquired North American rights to this documentary, which won three jury prizes at Sundance. The film features a rural beekeeper who is challenged when a family of nomadic beekeepers invade her land and threaten her livelihood.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in Knock Down the House (2019)

Knock Down the House

Buyer: Netflix

Release date: N/A

Netflix paid a reported $10 million to acquire worldwide distribution rights for Festival Favorite Award-winner Knock Down the House, a documentary chronicling the 2018 campaigns of numerous political hopefuls — including U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.

Hilary Swank in I Am Mother (2019)

I Am Mother

Buyer: Netflix

Release date: N/A

I Am Mother, the directorial feature debut of Grant Sputore that's based on a Black List script, has landed with Netflix, which secured North American and some international rights. The film stars Clara Rugaard as a girl raised by a robot mother (voiced by Rose Byrne) whose routine is uprooted by a mysterious visitor, played by Hilary Swank.

Zac Efron in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile (2019)

Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile

Buyer: Netflix

Release date: Second half of 2019

Already home to director Joe Berlinger's documentary series "Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes," Netflix reportedly has secured U.S. and some international rights to Berlinger's dramatization Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile, starring Zac Efron as serial killer Ted Bundy. It is planning a release date to coincide with 2019 awards season.

Watch our interview with Berlinger, Efron, and the cast

Sea of Shadows (2019)

Sea of Shadows

Buyer: National Geographic Documentary Films

Release date: N/A

National Geographic Documentary Films acquired the winner of the Sundance Audience Award for World Cinema Documentary in a $3 million worldwide deal. The film, whose executive producers include Leonardo DiCaprio, is presented like a thriller as it follows environmental activists, the Mexican navy, and undercover investigators. Together, they go up against Mexican cartels and Chinese mafia, which are harvesting the valuable totoaba fish and, in doing so, are destroying the habitat of the world's smallest species of whale.

One Child Nation (2019)

One Child Nation

Buyer: Amazon Studios

Release date: N/A

Amazon picked up One Child Nation, the Grand Jury Prize-winner for best U.S. documentary at Sundance 2019, for a sum reportedly in the high six figures. The documentary from Zhang Lynn and Nanfu Wang looks at China's one-child rule and the impact of population control.

Keira Knightley in Official Secrets (2019)

Official Secrets

Buyer: IFC Films

Release date: 2019

IFC reportedly has purchased rights to Official Secrets. It stars Keira Knightley as U.K. whistleblower Katharine Gun, who leaked documents that pointed to a U.S./U.K. spying operation prior to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. A release date in 2019 is planned.

Noah Jupe in Honey Boy (2019)

Honey Boy

Buyer: Amazon Studios

Release date: N/A

Amazon acquired this coming-of-age drama, inspired by Shia LaBeouf's troubled relationship with celebrity. LaBeouf wrote the movie, which centers on a child actor who works to mend the relationship with his hard-drinking, law-breaking father. The global rights deal is reportedly worth $5 million.

Nell Williams, Aaron Phagura, and Viveik Kalra in Blinded by the Light (2019)

Blinded by the Light

Buyer: New Line/Warner Bros.

Release date: 2019

In a $15 million deal, New Line and Warner Bros. secured worldwide rights (with the exception of a few territories) to this British drama packed with Bruce Springsteen songs. Directed by Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham), the story is set in 1987 England where a Pakistani teenager is inspired by Springsteen's working-class anthems to stand-up against racists and his father. eOne previously secured U.K., Australia, and New Zealand rights.

Rob Haerr and Wong He in American Factory (2019)

"American Factory"

Buyer: Netflix

Release date: N/A

Netflix spent a reported $3 million on worldwide rights to this culture-clash documentary. It focuses on post-industrial Ohio, where a Chinese billionaire opened a new factory in an abandoned General Motors plant, hiring 2,000 blue-collar Americans. But early optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashed with working-class America.

Tim Roth, Naomi Watts, and Kelvin Harrison Jr. in Luce (2019)


Buyer: Neon/Topic Studios

Release date: N/A

The drama Luce has landed with Neon and Topic Studios, which bought U.S. distribution rights but did not announce a release date at time of the acquisition. The film reunites Funny Games pair Tim Roth and Naomi Watts as adopted parents of son from Eritrea (Kelvin Harrison Jr.), whose life takes an unexpected turn.

Check out our interview with the cast

Shefali Shah and Richie Mehta in Delhi Crime (2019)

"Delhi Crime"

Buyer: Netflix

Release date: March 22, 2019

Netflix acquired worldwide rights to stream this seven-episode anthology series. The police procedural is inspired by a real-life rape and assault case in Delhi in 2012.

The Amazing Johnathan in The Amazing Johnathan Documentary (2019)

"Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary"

Buyer: Hulu

Release date: N/A

Hulu reportedly purchased rights to an as-yet-untitled documentary on magician The Amazing Johnathan for $2 million.

Jillian Bell in Brittany Runs a Marathon (2019)

Brittany Runs A Marathon

Buyer: Amazon Studios

Release date: 2019

Amazon has acquired global rights to this comedy-drama starring Jillian Bell in a reported $14 million deal. The story centers on a 27-year-old New Yorker (Bell) who trades an unhealthy lifestyle for running with eye-opening results. It marked the third major Sundance deal for Amazon at this year's festival, after picking up Mindy Kaling's comedy Late Night for $13 million and political thriller The Report for $14 million.

Merata: How Mum Decolonised the Screen (2018)

Merata: How Mum Decolonised the Screen

Buyer: ARRAY

Release date: N/A

Ava DuVernay's distribution company ARRAY secured U.S., Canadian, and U.K. rights to the documentary Merata: How Mum Decolonised the Screen, chronicling the life of late New Zealand filmmaker and former Sundance Institute adviser Merata Mita. No release plans were shared at the time of the announcement. ARRAY's Ayanda and Out of My Hand have streamed on Netflix.

Walton Goggins, Alice Englert, Ramona Schwalbach, and Roger Petan in Them That Follow (2019)

Them That Follow

Buyer: The Orchard/1091 Media (North America) and Sony Pictures Worldwide (non-North America)

Release date: N/A

North American distribution rights for this Appalachian religious drama, starring Olivia Colman and Walton Goggins, went to the company previously known as The Orchard, under new owner 1091 Media, with Sony Pictures Worldwide securing remaining rights. No release date was set at the time of the announcements.

David Crosby in David Crosby: Remember My Name (2019)

David Crosby: Remember My Name

Buyer: Sony Pictures Classics

Release date: N/A

The Cameron Crowe-produced documentary David Crosby: Remember My Name, focusing on the 50-year career of the Crosby, Stills & Nash singer, landed with Sony Pictures Classics. Sony acquired rights in the U.S. and seven other regions. No release date was announced at the time of the deal.

Geraldine Viswanathan in Hala (2019)


Buyer: Apple

Release date: N/A

Hala — chronicling a 17-year-old's plight to balance her traditional Muslim household with her modern schooling — has landed with Apple, which secured worldwide rights. No release date has been set for the film, of which Jada Pinkett Smith is an executive producer.

Adam Driver in The Report (2019)

The Report

Buyer: Amazon Studios

Release date: Fall 2019

Amazon Studios has closed a $14 million deal for global rights to this political thriller about the CIA's use of torture after 9/11. The cast includes Adam Driver, Jon Hamm, and Annette Bening. It marked the second major Sundance deal for Amazon at this year's festival, after picking up Mindy Kaling's comedy Late Night for $13 million.

Lupita Nyong'o, Caliah Pinones, Vivienne Albany, Kim Doan, and Diesel La Torraca in Little Monsters (2019)

Little Monsters

Buyer: Neon/Hulu

Release date: N/A

Lupita Nyong'o and Josh Gad star in this horror comedy, which Neon and Hulu have sunk their teeth into as part of a joint deal. It will see the movie receive a theatrical release alongside promotion on Hulu, where it will be streamed. The story follows a washed-up musician who teams up with a teacher (Nyong'o) and a kids show personality (Gad) to protect kindergartners from a sudden outbreak of zombies.

The Lodge (2019)

The Lodge

Buyer: Neon

Release date: 2019

This horror thriller starring Riley Keough and Alicia Silverstone has been picked up by Neon in a reported six-figure deal, with theatrical release expected in 2019. The story centers on a soon-to-be-stepmom who becomes snowed in with her fiancé's two children at a remote holiday village, with strange and frightening consequences.

Han Chen, Aoi Mizuhara, Diana Lin, and Awkwafina in The Farewell (2019)

The Farewell

Buyer: A24

Release date: N/A

A24 reportedly closed a six-figure deal to secure worldwide rights for The Farewell, based on the real-life story of director Lulu Wang, after the film premiered at Sundance.

Roy M. Cohn in Where's My Roy Cohn? (2019)

Where's My Roy Cohn?

Buyer: Sony Pictures Classics

Release date: N/A

This documentary about the lawyer best known for assisting with Sen. Joseph McCarthy's investigations of suspected Communists, and as a top political fixer, has been picked up by Sony Pictures Classics in a multi-territory rights deal, which includes U.S. rights and a theatrical release.

Monos (2019)


Buyer: Neon

Release date: N/A

Neon purchased U.S. distribution rights for this Latin American survival thriller shortly after its Sundance screening.

Halston and Liza Minnelli in Halston (2019)


Buyer: The Orchard

Release date: Spring 2019

This documentary about American fashion designer Halston was picked up by The Orchard for theatrical distribution and home entertainment. CNN Films, which produced the doc, will retain all North American broadcast rights and is set to air the film later in 2019, after it receives a theatrical release this spring.

Graham Greene, Amanda Plummer, and Jack Falahee in We Are Boats (2018)

We Are Boats

Buyer: Breaking Glass Pictures

Release date: March 8, 2019

After riding the festival circuit, We Are Boats landed with Breaking Glass Pictures at Sundance. The drama will see a limited release on March 8, 2019, with a VOD release to follow soon after.

Rhianne Barreto in


Buyer: HBO Films

Release date: 2019

The second Sundance film that HBO plucked from A24, Share — a "cautionary internet tale" based on a 2015 short film of the same name — reportedly will air on the cable network in 2019.

Mindy Kaling in Late Night (2019)

Late Night

Buyer: Amazon Studios

Release date: N/A

Amazon acquired North American rights in a $13 million deal for this comedy about diversity in a late night talk show writers room. The movie is written and produced by Mindy Kaling, who also stars. Emma Thompson co-stars as a late-night host who adds a new writer (Kaling) to her staff after being shamed into hiring more women and minorities.

Michael Urie in Lavender (2019)


Buyer: Fox Searchlight

Release date: N/A

Fox Searchlight acquired this 11-minute LGBTQ short film with an intent to distribute it via social media.

Peter Sarsgaard in The Sound of Silence (2019)

The Sound of Silence

Buyer: Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions

Release date: N/A

Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions picked up international rights to this drama starring Peter Sarsgaard ahead of its premiere at Sundance, according to reports. The story follows a "house tuner" in New York City, who calibrates the sound in people's homes in order to adjust their moods, and meets a client with a problem he can't solve. North American rights have yet to be acquired.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Sanya Malhotra in Photograph (2019)


Buyer: Curzon (U.K.), Le Pacte (France), NFP (Germany), BIM (Italy), Vertigo (Spain), Madman (Australia/NZ), Seven (Greece), Cirko (Hungary), Filmcoopi (Swiss), Filmarti (Turkey)

Release date: March 8, 2019

This Hindi-language romantic drama from Ritesh Batra (The Lunchbox, Our Souls at Night) secured several international deals ahead of the movie’s world premiere in Park City. Set in Mumbai, the story centers on a struggling street photographer who, under pressure from his grandmother to get married, convinces a shy stranger to pose as his fiancée. Amazon Studios has U.S. rights.

Jeff Goldblum and Tye Sheridan in The Mountain (2018)

The Mountain

Buyer: Kino Lorber

Release date: Summer 2019

Ahead of its Sundance premiere, Kino Lorber picked North American rights to this film from director Rick Alverson — his first feature since Entertainment in 2015 — for a summer release.

Check out our interview with the director and stars

Ashton Sanders in Native Son (2019)

Native Son

Buyer: HBO Films

Release date: 2019

Hours before the premiere of Native Son at the Sundance Film Festival, HBO Films picked up the latest adaptation of the Richard Wright novel, starring Ashton Sanders (Moonlight) as a modern-day youth on Chicago's South Side, from A24. The film will debut on HBO later this year.

See highlights of our panel with the cast and crew

Steve Bannon

The Brink

Buyer: Magnolia Pictures

Release date: Spring 2019

Touted as featuring behind-the-scenes footage of media executive and former White House strategist Steve Bannon, the documentary The Brink landed with Magnolia Pictures ahead of its premiere at Sundance. Magnolia is planning a theatrical release in the spring.

Aisling Franciosi in The Nightingale (2018)

The Nightingale

Buyer: IFC Films

Release date: Summer 2019

IFC nabbed The Nightingale, the latest feature from The Babadook director Jennifer Kent, prior to its Sundance premiere. The movie is set in 1825 Tanzania and stars Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games franchise) and Aisling Franciosi ("Game of Thrones").

Method Man and Wu-Tang Clan

"Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men"

Buyer: Showtime

Release date: Spring 2019

Sacha Jenkins' docuseries on seminal hip-hop collective the Wu-Tang Clan landed with Showtime before its first two episodes screened at Sundance. A spring release is planned.


The Souvenir | The Souvenir: Part II

Buyer: A24

Release date: N/A

A24 has purchased Joanna Hogg's two movies, The Souvenir and The Souvenir: Part II. The first will premiere at Sundance and features Honor Swinton-Byrne, daughter of co-star Tilda Swinton, as a young woman entangled in a relationship with an untrustworthy man (Tom Burke). The second will be filmed this summer and is set to add Robert Pattinson to the cast.

Ruth Westheimer in Ask Dr. Ruth (2019)

Ask Dr. Ruth

Buyer: Hulu/AGC International

Release date: N/A

Hulu acquired streaming and theatrical rights to this documentary on sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer prior to its screening at Sundance. The streaming service has partnered with Magnolia Pictures on a theatrical release. AGC International has foreign rights. No release date was announced at the time of the screening.

Blythe Danner and John Lithgow in The Tomorrow Man (2019)

The Tomorrow Man

Buyer: Bleecker Street

Release date: May 17, 2019

Bleecker Street picked up North American rights to The Tomorrow Man prior to the Sundance premiere of Noble Jones' directorial debut. The movie centers on the relationship between a doomsday prepper (John Lithgow) and Blythe Danner's similarly minded character.

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