Amazon Studios is putting the final touches on their incredibly successful run of Sundance Film Festival purchases by securing all U.S. rights to Clay Tweel's acclaimed documentary "Gleason." The company has bought all theatrical, On Demand and streaming rights and will partner with Open Road Films to co-release it in theaters this summer.
Following up last year's absurdist documentary crowdpleaser "Finders Keepers," Tweel turns his lens to Steve Gleason, a former defensive back for the New Orleans Saints who was diagnosed with ALS at age 34 and given only five years to live. Gleason became a local hero after he blocked a punt in the first Saints home game after Hurricane Katrina, and the doc uses his personal video journals to show just how inspirationally he lived following his diagnosis. The footage was shot over a four-year period.
"Gleason," which will reportedly cost in the $3 million range after the deal is completed, joins other Amazon Sundance pickups like "Manchester By the Sea," "Love & Friendship," "Complete Unknown," "Author: The JT Leroy Story" and "Wiener-Dog." The deal was first reported by Deadline.