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Netflix Kicks Off Sundance Early By Acquiring Ellen Page-Starring ‘Tallulah’

Netflix Kicks Off Sundance Early By Acquiring Ellen Page-Starring 'Tallulah'

READ MORE: 9 Hidden Gems from the 2016 Sundance Lineup

The 2016 Sundance Film Festival is still about a week away from kicking off, but that’s not stopping Netflix from arriving to the party early and getting straight down to business. Variety reports the streaming giant has acquired worldwide VOD rights to Sian Heder’s feature debut, “Tallulah.” The film is adapted from the director’s 2006 Cannes-nominated short film, “Mother,” and stars Ellen Page and Allison Janney.

Page stars as an aimless drifter who takes in a baby from a negligent mother. Further plot details and deal specifics are being kept under wraps, but the reunion of “Juno” co-stars Page and Janney makes this title one of the most anticipated of the festival. Indiewire had previously included it on our list of nine hidden gems from the Sundance lineup.

“Sian Heder is an exciting new voice in cinema and I am so proud to see her work continue from writing on the groundbreaking ‘Orange is the New Black’ to writing and directing this heartfelt crowd-pleasing film ‘Tallulah,'” said producer Russell Levine, CEO of Route One Entertainment, to Variety. “Audiences worldwide are now going to be able to see Sian’s amazing growth as an artist through the support of Netflix.”

No release date information has been finalized. The 2016 Sundance Film Festival takes place January 21-31.

READ MORE: Haunting First Look at ‘The Eyes of My Mother’ Makes This Sundance Premiere a Must-See

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It’s a wonderful film, crackling script and great performances. Congrats to Sian Heder and all her talented team. Don’t miss it! …and yes, this an excellent deal for any indie film. Well done.

Django T. Rothbone

And even though this article isn’t entirely clear on the matter, this deal was for VOD rights only. Meaning the mid-seven figures (per Variety) that Netflix paid almost certainly covers the film’s budget, and yet North American theatrical rights (a.k.a. gravy) are still available.


Actually, Netflix coming in with a pre-emptive bid is a tremendous sign for the movie. There are about 60 other films there that wish this had happened to them.


Also, calling a film that you pre-sell to Netflix a "crowd pleaser" is the equivalent of trolling your own press release


Netflix pre-buy before the festival premiere. Doesn’t bode well.

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