U.S. rights to writer/director Marc Forby’s Hawaiian biopic “Princess Kaiulani” have been picked up by Roadside Attractions. Roadside will release the film theatrically in late spring of 2010 and Lionsgate will release the film on DVD and other US ancillary markets through Roadside’s output deal. The film had its world premiere last fall at the Hawaii International Film Festival, where it won an Audience Award.
Roadside’s co-Presidents Eric d’Arbeloff and Howard Cohen negotiated the deal with Island Film Group founders Roy Tjioe and Ricardo Galindez on behalf of the filmmakers.
“Princess Kaiulani” stars Q’orianka Kilcher (The New World), as a turn-of-the-century princess caught up in the last days of the Hawaiian monarchy. Set in 1888, the Kingdom of Hawaii is divided by a civil war. Princess Kaiulani, the young heir to the throne, is suddenly forced to flee the home she adores and move to England where she finds an altogether different life – one where she is not considered royalty. As she grows up and adapts to her new life there, she falls in love with the rebellious but sweet-natured Clive. At the tender age of 17, she receives the devastating news that the monarchy has been overthrown and her aunt, Queen Liliuokalani, has been arrested. The young Princess must choose between her true love and the responsibility to her beloved islands and the Hawaiian people.
“This is a lovely film that tells the very moving story of the beginning of modern Hawaii,” said d’Arbeloff in a statement. “Most mainlanders don’t know the true story of this brave princess and will be fascinated by her.”