I don’t find film acquisitions to always be interesting, but the press release announcing Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures has purchased the U.S distribution rights for Harmony Korine‘s Spring Breakers is of particular interest considering we’re talking about the production house responsible for helping finance Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master, Andrew Dominik’s Killing Them Softly, John Hillcoat’s Lawless, Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty and Wong Kar Wai’s The Grandmasters. Clearly they have an interest in, what they describe in their press release as, “mature, adult dramas.” I’m all for that as all of the film’s mentioned here have captured my attention.
Spring Breakers stars James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Benson, Rachel Korine, Heather Morris and Gucci Mane and will have its worldwide premiere at the Venice Film Festival on Tuesday, September 5 followed by a North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on Friday, September 7, which is when I’ll be catching it.
The film tells the story of four sexy college girls as they plan to fund their spring break getaway by burglarizing a fast food shack. But that’s only the beginning… At a motel room rager, fun reaches its legal limit and the girls are arrested and taken to jail. Hungover and clad only in bikinis, the girls appear before a judge but are bailed out unexpectedly by Alien (Franco), an infamous local thug who takes them under his wing and leads them on the wildest Spring Break trip in history. Rough on the outside but with a soft spot inside, Alien wins over the hearts of the young Spring Breakers, and leads them on a Spring Break they never could have imagined.
Should Annapurna continue on their current trajectory it could make for an interesting experiment as “mature, adult dramas” don’t necessarily always mean big bucks at the box-office. They clearly have a lot in common with The Weinstein Co. when it comes to taste as three of the films mentioned above are being distributed domestically by the brothers Weinstein so it will be interesting to see how things work out when Ellison and group venture out on their own.