Cannes, FRANCE (May 21, 2010) – IFC Films, the leading American distributor of independent and foreign films, announced today that the company is acquiring U.S. rights to two films that are currently screening at the Cannes Film Festival: cult filmmaker and indie darling Gregg Araki’s KABOOM which is screening in the Official Selection Out of Competition, and Mexican filmmaker Jorge Michel Grau’s feature directorial debut WE ARE WHAT WE ARE which is screening in Director’s Fortnight. WE ARE WHAT WE ARE will be released by the company’s recently launched new genre and specialty IFC Midnight label.
Jonathan Sehring, President of IFC Entertainment said, "It’s a great thrill to continue our relationship with our friends at Wild Bunch with the two films that our entire team had the best time at. KABOOM and WE ARE WHAT WE ARE are the perfect films for us. We’ve always wanted to work with Gregg Araki and, with KABOOM, he’s delivered one of his best films to date. It’s also great to work with Andrea Sperling and continue our relationship with Pascal Caucheteaux and Sebastien Lemercier of Why Not Productions. We also look forward to introducing Jorge Michel Grau to American audiences with WE ARE WHAT WE ARE, one of the most original films at the festival."
A hyper-stylized Twin Peaks for the Coachella Generation, featuring a gorgeous, super hot young cast, KABOOM is a wild, sex-drenched, comical thriller that tells the story of Smith, an ambisexual 18-year-old college freshman who stumbles upon a monstrous conspiracy in a seemingly idyllic Southern California seaside town. Directed, written and edited by Araki, and produced by Araki and Andrea Sperling, the film stars Thomas Dekker, Juno Temple, Haley Benet, James Duval, Chris Zylka, Andy Fisher Price, Kelly Lynch and Roxanne Mesquida. The film was executive produced by Sebastien K. Lemercier, Pascal Caucheteux, and Jonathan Schwartz, and co-produced by Pavlina Hatoupis.
WE ARE WHAT WE ARE is a portrait of a family bound by a terrible secret hunger and driven by monstrous appetites. When a middle-aged man dies in the street, leaving his widow and three children destitute, the devastated family is confronted not only with his loss but with a terrible challenge – how to survive. The big issue at hand is that they are cannibals who have always existed on a diet of human flesh consumed in bloody ritual ceremonies… and the victims have always been provided by the father. Now that he is gone, they must detemine who will do the hunting. Written and directed by Grau, and produced by Nicolas Celis, the film stars Francisco Barreiro, Alan Chavez, Paulina Gaitan, Carmen Beato, Jorge Zarate and Esteban Soberanes.
The deals for both films were negotiated by Arianna Bocco, SVP of Acquisitions and Co-Productions for IFC Films, and with Carole Baraton at Wild Bunch, on behalf of the filmmakers.
A California native, Araki wrote, produced and directed his first film, THREE BEWILDERED PEOPLE IN THE NIGHT in 1987: a love story between a video artist, her lover and her gay friend. The film won three prizes at Locarno Film Festival. In 1989, he shot THE LONG WEEKEND (O’ DESPAIR) in black and white for less than ten thousand dollars. Garnering a strong reputation for his uncompromising, nonconformist attitude, Araki truly erupted from the underground in 1992 with THE LIVING END, a film about two HIV positive gay lovers which introduced a much more tragic element to his work. In 1994, he began his "Teen Apocalypse" trilogy with TOTALLY F****ED UP; the subversion continued with THE DOOM GENERATION, a road movie marked by a near-despairing black comedy. Araki completed the cycle in 1997 with NOWHERE, which he describes as "an episode of "Beverly Hills 90210" on acid". In 1999, Araki directed Kathleen Robertson, who had already appeared in NOWHERE, in the comedy SPLENDOR. After a period working in TV, the director was critically lauded for his treatment of the taboo subject of pedophilia in MYSTERIOUS SKIN (2005), an adaptation of Scott Heim’s eponymous novel. Araki’s film SMILEY FACE screened in Directors’ Fortnight in 2007. KABOOM marks Araki’s second selection in Cannes.
Born in Mexico City, Grau previously wrote and directed several short films including: YA NI PEDRO PABLO, MI HERMANO, KALIMAN, and MAS BONITA QUE TU. Grau makes his feature directorial debut with WE ARE WHAT WE ARE (SOMOS LO QUE HAY).
In addition to KABOOM and WE ARE WHAT WE ARE, IFC Films also picked up several other titles at this week’s Cannes Film Festival including Xavier Dolan’s HEARTBEATS, Antoine Blossier’s PREY, Abbas Kiarostami’s CERTIFIED COPY starring Juliette Binoche and Bertand Tavernier’s THE PRINCESS OF MONTPENSIER. Additionally, the company announced plans at the start of the festival to partner with Sundance Channel on a multi-platform release for Olivier Assayas’ epic portrait of renowned international terrorist Carlos the Jackal. Following a premiere on the Sundance Channel in October, IFC Films will distribute both the extended, three-part version of the film as well as a theatrical version nationally in theaters, with the theatrical version available nationally on video-on-demand.
About IFC Entertainment
A leader in the independent film industry, IFC Entertainment consists of multiple brands that are devoted to bringing the best of specialty films to the largest possible audience: IFC Films, Festival Direct, IFC Productions, and the IFC Center. IFC Films is a leading distributor of independent film. Its unique day and date distribution model, ’IFC In Theaters,’ makes independent films available to a national audience by releasing them simultaneously in theaters as well as on cable’s On Demand platform and through Pay-Per-View, reaching 50 million homes. ’IFC Festival Direct’ features a wide selection of titles acquired from major international film festivals and offers them exclusively through Video on Demand. IFC Center is a five screen, state-of-the-art cinema with luxurious seating and HD digital and 35mm projection that shows art-house films in the heart of New York’s Greenwich Village. IFC Entertainment’s companies are subsidiaries of Rainbow Media Holdings LLC.