New York, NY – June 6, 2012 – IFC Midnight announced today that the company is acquiring U.S. rights to ANTIVIRAL, directed by Brandon Cronenberg. The film, also with a screenplay by Cronenberg, stars Caleb Landry Jones, Sarah Gadon, Douglas Smith and Malcolm McDowell. The film was produced by Niv Fichman of Rhombus Media. ANTIVIRAL, which made its world premiere recently at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival’s Un Certain Regard section, is Brandon Cronenberg’s first feature film.
ANTIVIRAL follows the story of Syd March, an employee at a clinic that sells injections of live viruses harvested from sick celebrities to rabid fans who wish to partake in the ultimate form of communion. Syd supplements his income by selling illegal samples of these viruses on the black market, smuggling them out of the clinic in his own body. When he becomes infected with the disease that kills superstar Hannah Geist, Syd becomes a target for collectors and obsessed fans. He must unravel the mystery surrounding the starlet’s death before he too meets a morbid end.
Jonathan Sehring, President of Sundance Selects/IFC Films, said: "ANTIVIRAL is a stunningly smart debut from Brandon Cronenberg, who is greatly aided by his strong stars Caleb Landry Jones and Sarah Gadon, as well as Karim Hussain’s cinematography. The film manages to skewer our culture’s obsession with celebrity while also delivering more than a fair share of chills and gruesome body horror. We look forward to working with Brandon and his team."
Of the acquisition Brandon Cronenberg commented: “I’m so thrilled that IFC picked up ANTIVIRAL for distribution in the U.S. This is my first film so it’s kind of surreal to be listed in their roster amongst the coolest filmmakers in the world. Looking forward to working with the team on all aspects of the release and taking note of how it all gets done.”
Niv Fichman noted: “Feels great to be working with Jonathan Sehring and IFC once again. And there couldn’t be a more perfect home for the film. Brandon is fortunate to be introduced to the world by a team that truly understands his unique cinematic vision.”
The deal for the film was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films with Gregory Chambet of TF1 International on behalf of the filmmakers.
ANTIVIRAL was produced by Rhombus Media with the participation of Telefilm Canada and the OMDC. The film will be released in Canada by Alliance Films and in the UK by its subsidiary Momentum Pictures.
IFC Midnight is a sister label of IFC Films and Sundance Selects, and is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc.
About IFC MIDNIGHT
Established in 2010 and based in New York City, IFC Midnight is a leading U.S. distributor of genre entertainment including horror, science–fiction, thrillers, erotic art house, action and more. Its unique distribution model makes independent genre films available to a national audience by releasing them in theaters as well as on cable’s Video On Demand (VOD) platform, reaching nearly 50 million homes. Some of the company’s successes have included Tom Six’s controversial horror film THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE (FIRST SEQUENCE), Johnnie To’s Hong Kong revenge thriller VENGEANCE, James Gunn’s SUPER starring Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page and Kevin Bacon, Ben Wheatley’s unconventional hitman thriller KILL LIST, Justin Kurzel’s unsettling THE SNOWTOWN MURDERS, and Bertrand Bonello’s sensually dazzling HOUSE OF PLEASURES. Upcoming IFC Midnight releases includeAlexandre Courtes THE INCIDENT, Adrian and Romero Garcia Bogliano’s PENUMBRA, Rodney Ascher’s acclaimed documentary ROOM 237 (which showed at the 2012 Cannes and Sundance film festivals) and Im Sang–Soo’s erotic drama THE TASTE OF MONEY (which made its world premiere at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival). IFC Midnight is a sister label to Sundance Selects and IFC Films, and is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc.