July 23, 2003 – IFC Films will finance and distribute Ethan Hawke’s THE HOTTEST STATE, to begin shooting in January 2004. The plan was announced by Jonathan Sehring, President of IFC Entertainment. The screenplay is Hawke’s adaptation of his best selling novel of the same title. Hawke will direct. A cast has not yet been named.
” We are thrilled to be doing Ethan’s next film,” stated Caroline Kaplan, Senior Vice President of Production and Acquisitions for IFC Films. “Chelsea Walls marked the debut of a significant director and we feel honored to be involved in his next project. We’ve had an ongoing relationship and regard for Ethan. THE HOTTEST STATE is really honest, really fresh, really exciting.”
In THE HOTTEST STATE, we meet two young adults as they discover intense love. Aspiring performers William and Sarah grapple with their own self-definitions and a passion that provokes the questions and emotions neither is prepared to handle. As William reaches his twenty-first birthday, he desperately seeks a connection with Sarah and with his past. In many ways similar, Sarah longs for independence, approval and a balance she is unable to negotiate.
Set in New York City, the script breathes with an intense, urban heat. THE HOTTEST STATE captures those relentless, desperate, consuming rushes that accompany the first hints, and the inevitable disintegration of young love.
This will mark Mr. Hawke’s second directorial effort. His debut, Chelsea Walls, was an Indigent Production (part of IFC Entertainment), which premiered in Directors Fortnight at Cannes and was released domestically by Lion’s Gate. IFC Films will release THE HOTTEST STATE. A date has not yet been determined.
“I’ve been thinking about making this movie for a number of years and have now found the perfect place with IFC Films, “said Mr. Hawke.
The film will be produced by Jason Blum (Hysterical Blindness, Hamlet, Easy Six) of Blumhouse Productions who last collaborated with Hawke on Hamlet. Blum is currently in production on The Fever written by Wallace Shawn and starring Vanessa Redgrave. THE HOTTEST STATE will be co-produced by Anthony Katagas and Callum Greene of Keep Your Head Productions (Happy Here and Now, This so Called Disaster) who are currently in post production on Second Best starring Jennifer Tilly and Joe Pantoliano.
Blum and Hawke were represented by George Sheanshang in the deal with the IFC Films. Hawke is represented by Bryan Lourd at CAA and Irwin Stoff of 3 Arts.
HOTTEST STATE reinforces a commitment by IFC Entertainment to distribute the films they produce. Todd Graff’s Camp and John Sayles’ Casa de Los Babys, both IFC Productions, are being released by IFC Films this year. Camp will be in theatres starting this Friday, July 25 and Casa will be released on September 19.
IFC Entertainment is the film production and film distribution arm of IFC Companies and is committed to providing bold independent films to theater audiences nationwide.
IFC Entertainment consists of:
IFC Productions, a production company that provides financing for select independent feature films. It offers filmmakers unusual creative freedom to realize their personal cinematic visions.
Notable films include Kimberly Peirce’s Oscar