Sundance 2010: ‘Kids Are All Right’ comes into Focus
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In a move that would mark the second significant acquisition of the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, Focus Features appears to have closed a deal to acquire rights to Lisa Cholodenko’s family dramedy ‘The Kids Are All Right,’ according to a person familiar with the negotiations. Focus paid about $5 million for the film’s domestic rights, and also acquired some foreign territories, according to the person.
On Wednesday morning, Focus and the film’s sales agent Cinetic Media were ironing out some of the deal’s final terms, according to another person close to the film.
The movie, about a family headed by a lesbian couple (Annette Bening and Julianne Moore) and their complicated relationship with their sperm donor (Mark Ruffalo), premiered Monday night in Park City and sparked a spirited bidding war. Terms of the deal were not immediately available. [Updated at 10:40 a.m. Jan. 30: An earlier version of this post gave the wrong first name for actress Julianne Moore.]
Cinetic Media, which represented the filmmakers in the deal, spent much of the past 36 hours talking to interested distributors, including Summit Entertainment and Fox Searchlight, before finalizing terms of the deal on Wednesday morning. Representatives for Focus and Cinetic did not immediately return phone calls or e-mails seeking comment.
The sale would mark Focus Features’ first acquisition out of the Sundance Film Festival since it purchased the farcical comedy ‘Hamlet 2' two years ago. That movie was a box-office disappointment, but a range of distribution executives at Sundance were optimistic that ‘The Kids Are All Right’s’ poignant moments, comedic scenes and rich dialogue would help it become both an art house as well as a broader success, though some buyers worried the film’s candid sex scenes could limit its appeal outside major metropolitan areas.
Mia Wasikowska and Joshua Hutcherson star as the two children who meet their sperm-donor father, while all three adult actors have been earning raves that Focus will likely try to capitalize on come awards season.
-- John Horn and Steven Zeitchik