There you have it, folks. One of the first films to bag a distribution deal at Sundance is the much buzzed aboutFruitvale. A report coming out of Park City, where the Sundance Film Festival is currently taking place, has said that Fruitvale is amongst one of the first films to receive a distribution deal. Not only that, but Weinstein Co. has decided to pick them up. Talk about an amazing feat!
A few months back we reported on the casting of Fruitvale, which currently stars Michael B. Jordan (Parenthood), Ahna O’Reilly (The Help) and Chad Michael Murray (One Tree Hill). Fruitvale is the true story of Oscar Grant (Jordan), a 22-year old Bay Area resident who was gunned down on New Year’s Day in 2009 by BART officers at the Fruitvale subway stop. In addition to the already famous names, is Oscar winner Octavia Spencer and Melonie Diaz.
Fruitvale, which premiered on Saturday night at the Sundance Film Festival also received interest from Fox Searchlight and Paramount as well, but in the end Bob and Harvey Weinstein won out with a hefty $2 million dollar deal. Not only is there interest from studios, but the audience’s reception has been quite positive following screenings. If Weinstein Co. has its way Fruitvale could be a great contender come Oscar season in 2013-2014.
According to a Variety review: “Even if every word of Coogler’s account of the last day in Grant’s life held up under close scrutiny, the film would still ring false in its relentlessly positive portrayal of its subject.”
The review went on to say about Michael B. Jordan’s performance:
“The actor is so convincing that there’s no need to stack the deck with scenes of Grant tending to a stray dog injured in a hit-and-run, phoning his grandma to help a stranger decide what kind of fish to fry for her boyfriend, and convincing a grouchy store owner to re-open his establishment so two women can use the bathroom.”
The duo police officers that were involved in Grant’s murder served their time. One served 18 months in prison, while the other was charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Are you excited to check out Fruitvale?