A24 Acquires Guerilla-Shot Sundance Favorite, MENASHE

Posted January 31, 2017 by Lee Golden in News

Joshua Z Weinstein’s new movie, Menashe has found a new home at A24. It’s the distributor’s first foreign language endeavor so this ought to be an interesting sell for moviegoers keen on low scale drama with compelling stories, and one such here inspired by an actor’s life in a secluded subculture of New York City.

The video below is from prior to the film’s premiere at Sundance to help provide a bit more insight on the film and its intentions. The official press release discussing A24’s acquisition is just beneath. Read on:

The film, shot in secret within the Hasidic Community, will be released later this year

(New York, NY) January 31, 2017– A24 announced today that it has acquired U.S. and Chinese Distribution rights to Joshua Z Weinstein’s compelling father/son drama Menashe, which premiered last Monday at the Sundance Film Festival and quickly became one of the most critically acclaimed and crowd-pleasing films of the festival. It will make its International Premiere at the Berlin Film Festival next week. Menashe marks Weinstein’s narrative directorial debut following previous work as a documentarian and cinematographer. This is the company’s first foreign language release, and A24 plans a traditional theatrical rollout later this year.

Menashe is one of the first films to be performed almost entirely in Yiddish in nearly 70 years, and was shot in secret within the New York Hasidic community in Borough Park, Brooklyn by Weinstein over the course of two years. The film is roughly based on the real life of actor Menashe Lustig, and sheds unusual light into this notoriously private community. A warm, life affirming look at the universal bonds between father and son, Menashe follows a loving but hapless single father as he tries to maintain custody of his son in a tradition-bound culture that requires a mother present in every home.

About the acquisition, A24 said, “Our entire company has fallen in love with this magical and beautiful film. Filmmaker Joshua Z Weinstein has done an incredible job of presenting the movie’s unique setting with great authenticity and fresh insights, but at the same time, this is a film whose warmth, tenderness, and heart-stirring depiction of family and love will resonate with audiences everywhere. Menashe is an absolute gem, and we are extremely proud to be putting it out in the world.”

Filmmaker Joshua Z Weinstein said, “Our cast took an extraordinary risk stepping outside the confines of their community to take part in this film, and our team couldn’t be more excited to collaborate with the daring A24 to release this unique movie.”

Weinstein wrote the script with Alex Lipschultz and Musa Syeed. Alex Lipschultz, Traci Carlson, Danny Finkelman, Weinstein and Yoni Brook produced Menashe, with Danelle Eliav, Adam Margules, Chris Columbus and Eleanor Columbus executive producing. David Hansen and Johnny Mac served as co-executive producers. The deal was brokered by A24 and Charlotte Mickie of Mongrel International. Mongrel International is the international sales agent for Menashe.

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