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Film Acquisition Rundown: Grasshopper Film Picks Up ‘The Human Surge,’ Factory 25 Buys Peru’s Oscar Contender

Keep up with the wild and wooly world of indie film acquisitions with our weekly Rundown of everything that’s been picked up around the globe.

Human Surge

“The Human Surge”

Keep up with the wild and wooly world of indie film acquisitions with our weekly Rundown of everything that’s been picked up around the globe. Check out last week’s Rundown here.

– EXCLUSIVE: Grasshopper Film has announced the acquisition of all U.S. distribution rights to “The Human Surge,” the electrifying debut from Argentine filmmaker Eduardo Williams, which was recently awarded the Golden Leopard at the Locarno Film Festival from a jury led by Dario Argento. The film will open in theaters next year.

The film follows Buenos Aires resident “Exe, 25 years old, has just lost his job and is not looking for another one. His neighbors and friends seem as odd to him as they always do. Online, he meets Alf, a boy from Mozambique who is also bored with his job and who is about to follow Archie, another boy who has run away into the jungle. Through the dense vegetation of the forest, Archie tracks ants back to their nest. One of them wanders off course and comes across Canh, a Filipino, sitting on top of a giant heap of earth and who is about to go back to his strange, beautiful home town.”

“It’s impossible to describe the ingenuity and sheer excitement of watching Eduardo Williams’ ‘The Human Surge,’” said Grasshopper Founder and President Ryan Krivoshey in a statement. “Easily among the most virtuoso debuts in recent memory, we look forward to bringing this amazing film to U.S. audiences so they can experience it for themselves.”

– Factory 25 has announced that it has acquired the rights to Peru’s 2017 Academy Award Submission for best Foreign Film, “VIDEOFILIA (and Other Viral Syndromes).” The International Rotterdam Film Festival award winner for best international film is the second feature directed by Juan Daniel F. Molero, whose 2005 film “Reminiscencias” was an international festival favorite.

The film “begins with a teenage misfit spending her first days out of school slacking, experimenting with drugs and cyberspace. She meets Junior online. He’s an aspiring amateur porn dealer, who’s into conspiracy theories and is convinced that the Mayan Apocalypse is happening. Once they meet in the ‘real world,’ a series of bizarre events unfold in this contemporary non-love story portraying postmodern Lima as a glitchy computer virus full of corruption, psychedelia and ancient ruins.”

Factory 25 will premiere the film theatrically December 2 – 8 in New York City at Spectacle Theater, followed by weeklong runs on December 7 in Los Angeles at Arena Cinema and January 6 in San Francisco at The Roxie, followed by screenings across the country throughout the winter.

"VIDEOFILIA (and Other Viral Syndromes)"

“VIDEOFILIA (and Other Viral Syndromes)”

– Kino Lorber has acquired all North American rights to “A Small Good Thing,” a documentary by Pamela Tanner Boll that “explores the disparity between material wealth and personal happiness, by following several individuals as they seek to lead more meaningful lives, forming strong bonds with their families, communities, and the natural world around them.”

The film will be released by Kino Lorber’s Alive Mind Cinema label, specializing in documentaries in the areas of enlightened consciousness, secular spirituality and culture. The film will become available on VOD platforms including iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Vudu on December 20, to be followed by a DVD release early next year

– IFC Midnight has announced the acquisition of a psychological thriller feature from Alpine Labs and director Tony E. Valenzuela, “The Axe Murders of Villisca,” starring Robert Adamson, Jarrett Sleeper, Alex Frnka, Conchata Ferrell and Jon Gries. The film is Valenzuela’s feature-length directorial debut and was written by Owen Egerton, story by Kevin Abrams and Valenzuela.

The film “focuses on the paranormal repercussions of what many consider to be the most horrifying unsolved murders in the United States. Now used as a tourist destination, the Villisca Axe Murder House has terrified visitors from around the world and is considered one of the most haunted houses in America. The film follows the present day story of three troubled teens who decide to break in and spend the night at the house, forever changing who they are and what is known about the original murders.”

– Screen Media Films acquired U.S. rights for the horror feature “The Void,” which is written and directed by Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski and stars Aaron Poole, Ellen Wong, Kathleen Munroe, Stephanie Belding, and Kenneth Welsh. The film will be released in theaters day-and-date in Q1 2017. The film previously made its world premiere at Fantastic Fest earlier this year, followed by additional festival screenings at the London Film Festival, Toronto After Dark Film Festival, Stockholm International Film Festival, and Abertoir Horror Festival.

In the film, “officer Daniel Carter (Aaron Poole) happens upon a blood-soaked figure limping down a deserted stretch of road while he’s in the middle of a routine patrol.  He rushes the young man to a nearby rural hospital staffed by a skeleton crew, only to discover that patients and personnel are transforming into something inhuman. As the horror intensifies, Carter leads the other survivors on a hellish voyage into the subterranean depths of the hospital in a desperate bid to end the nightmare before it’s too late.”

"Kills on Wheels"

“Kills on Wheels”

– Kino Lorber has picked up the North American rights to Attila Till’s “Kills on Wheels,” Hungary’s official submission to the 2017 Academy Awards. The film debuted at Karlovy Vary earlier this year, later going on to win the Golden Alexander award at the Thessaloniki International Film Festiva and the Roger Ebert Award at the 2016 Chicago International Film Festival.

The dark comedy “stars non-professional disabled actors in the lead roles and focuses on two twenty-something close friends and roommates at a disabled care facility. When they meet the ex-fireman and wheelchair-user, the trio decides to strike a unique partnership and sell their services to the mafia as a gang of hired assassins.” Kino Lorber will open the film theatrically in the spring, before rolling it out on demand and home video in the fall. The news was first reported by Variety.

– Good Deed Entertainment has picked up North American rights to “The Runaround,” a comedy starring J.K. Simmons and Emile Hirsch. GDE will release the film theatrically next year. Analeigh Tipton, Taran Killam, Kristen Schaal and Shannon Woodward also star in the film.

The film is directed by Gavin Wiesen and written by Seth W. Owen, it “follows a workaholic father (Simmons) as he attempts to visit his daughter during a layover in Los Angeles, only to discover that she’s disappeared. In order to find her, he’s forced to team up with her awkward ex-boyfriend (Hirsch) and they end up having a life-changing night.” The news was first reported by Deadline.

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