In today’s film news roundup, “Guest of Honour” and “Skin Deep: The Battle Over Morgellons” have found distribution and Screen Gems is developing “Urban Legend.”

ACQUISITIONS

Kino Lorber has acquired U.S. rights to Atom Egoyan’s drama, “Guest of Honour,” starring David Thewlis, Laysla De Oliveira and Luke Wilson.

The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2019 and was an official selection at the Toronto, Vancouver, London, and Busan International Film Festivals. The film will have its U.S. premiere on Feb. 13 as the opening night selection of the Canada Now 2020 event at IFC Center in New York.

Thewlis portrays a health inspector in Hamilton, Ontario and De Oliveria plays a  high school music teacher who has been incarcerated for inappropriate behavior with students. She rebuffs his efforts to secure an early release, convinced she needs to be punished for crimes she committed earlier. The daughter also confides the secrets of her past to a priest played by Wilson.

Egoyan’s credits include “The Sweet Hereafter,” “Adoration” and “Remember.” The deal was negoiated by Kino Lorber’s Wendy Lidell with Nicolas Brigaud-Robert.

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Gravitas Ventures has acquired rights to Pi Ware’s documentary “Skin Deep: The Battle Over Morgellons” and set it for a March 31 release.

“Skin Deep: The Battle Over Morgellons” explores the controversy surrounding Morgellons, in which patients believe they are suffering from a skin condition while some in the medical industry assert that the patients are delusional.

Besides Ware, producers are Levon Mergian, Patrick Belton, Gary Leva, and Laura Stoddard. Executive producers are Denise James and Jerry James.

“’Skin Deep’ sheds a light on a very controversial subject matter in the medical community, while simultaneously informing and entertaining its audience,” said Brett Rogalsky, acquisitions coordinator at Gravitas Ventures.

PROJECT LAUNCH

Colin Minihan will direct the thriller “Urban Legend” from his own script for Sony’s Screen Gems division.

“Urban Legend” will revolve around a group of college students as they attempt to understand a series of bizarre deaths that resemble urban legends.

Mike Medavoy and Benjamin Anderson will produce for Phoenix Pictures. Eric Paquette and Michael Bitar will oversee for Screen Gems.

Minihan directed micro budget feature “What Keeps You Alive,” which premiered at SXSW in 2018. He is repped by Marc Manus at Zero Gravity, CAA, and Barry Littman at Hansen Jacobson. The news was first reported by Deadline.

https://variety.com/2020/film/news/atom-egoyan-guest-of-honour-us-distribution-1203500234/