By Peter Knegt | Indiewire October 6, 2010 at 6:18AM
Paladin has picked up the rights to Tom Shadyac's "I AM" for a 2011 release, it was announced by the company's President and CEO, Mark Urman. Beyond a February 2011 theatrical release, Paladin has already laid the groundwork for an intensive months-long screening program that includes major film festivals as well as a broad range of college and university campuses throughout the country.
The film - screening at the Hamptons Film Film Festival this weekend - is Shadyac's first foray into non-fiction after work on studio titles like "Ace Ventura," "Liar Liar," and "Bruce Almighty." It recounts what happened to the filmmaker after a cycling accident left him incapacitated, possibly for good.
"Though he ultimately recovered, Shadyac emerged a changed man," Paladin described of the film in a press release. "Disillusioned with life on the A-list, he sold his house, moved to a mobile home community, and decided to start life anew. Armed with nothing but his innate curiosity and a camera crew, Shadyac embarks upon a journey to discover how he as an individual, and we as a race, can improve the way we live. Appearing on-screen as character, commentator, guide, and even, at times, guinea pig, Shadyac meets with a variety of thinkers and doers--remarkable men and women from the worlds of science, philosophy, and faith--including such luminaries as David Suzuki, Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Lynne McTaggart, Ray Anderson, John Francis, Coleman Barks, and Marc Ian Barasch. An irrepressible Everyman who asks many questions but offers no easy answers, he takes the audience to places it has never been before, and presents even familiar phenomena in completely new and different ways."
Shadyac first met Urman when several film companies expressed an interest in "I AM."
"Mark spoke so eloquently about the film, was so passionate and detailed about a release plan, Paladin quickly became our first choice," says the filmmaker in a statement. "Mark believes, as do we, that the film has the potential to reach a wide audience, and we are confident in his abilities and expertise to realize that potential."
"I am proud to be partnered with Tom on 'I AM,' a film that is at once interesting, intensely personal, and truly important," Urman added. "Because Tom, first and foremost, is a terrific entertainer, the film is also great fun, and I have no doubt that I AM will be as popular in its own way as anything Tom has done before."
All proceeds derived from the release of 'I AM,' in all media, will go to THE FOUNDATION FOR I AM, a not-for-profit established by Shadyac to fund various worthy causes and to educate the next generation about the very issues and problems explored in the film.
The deal was negotiated by CAA, who represent Shadyac.