NEW YORK (October 5, 2016) - Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired North American rights to Academy Award® winner Taylor Hackford's comedy, THE COMEDIAN. Written by Art Linson, THE COMEDIAN stars Academy Award® winner Robert De Niro, Leslie Mann, Edie Falco, Harvey Keitel, Danny DeVito, Patti LuPone and Veronica Ferres. The film will have an awards qualifying run in 2016 and open officially in 2017. THE COMEDIAN is produced by Hackford, Cinelou's Mark Canton and Courtney Solomon, as well as Linson Entertainment's Art Linson and John Linson. The film is executive produced by Cinelou's Scott Karol, the Fyzz Facility's Wayne Marc Godfrey and Robert Jones, Mad Riot Entertainment's Mark Axelowitz and Lawrence Smith, as well as Iain Abrahams, Peter Sobiloff, Dennis Pelino and Fredy Bush.
An aging comic icon, Jackie (Robert De Niro) has seen better days. Despite his efforts to reinvent himself and his comic genius, the audience only wants to know him as the former television character he once played. Already a strain on his younger brother (Danny DeVito) and his wife (Patti LuPone), Jackie is forced to serve out a sentence doing community service for accosting an audience member. While there, he meets Harmony (Leslie Mann), the daughter of a sleazy Florida real estate mogul (Harvey Keitel), and the two find inspiration in one another resulting in surprising consequences.
"Robert De Niro is at his very best in THE COMEDIAN. Leslie Mann is a revelation. A rich supporting cast including Danny DeVito, Edie Falco, Patti LuPone, Cloris Leachman, and Harvey Keitel really delivers. Taylor Hackford is the accomplished ringmaster. It will be a pleasure bringing this satisfying movie to American audiences. It is great to be in business with our friends Art Linson, Courtney Solomon and Mark Canton," said Sony Pictures Classics.
"Being invited by Bob De Niro and Art Linson to join them in actualizing their long-gestating passion project was an opportunity I couldn't refuse," said director Taylor Hackford. "Passion was the key word for everyone on this film - with De Niro in the lead, and Mark Canton and Courtney Solomon's Cinelou making it happen."
Cinelou's Canton stated, "Robert De Niro has been nurturing this story for years, so we're incredibly honored to have been able to help bring it to life. Sony Classics is tailor-made to release the film, as Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have the perfect sensibility for it."
"There's amazing chemistry between Bob and Leslie. There are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, but both of these actors have a talent for injecting drama into all the right places creating a great balance between the humor and drama," added Solomon.
Warner Bros. International will be handling foreign distribution, under its deal with Cinelou.
Carmelo Pirrone
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