Critically-Acclaimed Film Explores the Controversial Critic’s Life and Legacy

Juno Films has acquired the exclusive North American distribution rights to Rob Garver’s What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael. The film had its world premiere at Telluride and will premiere theatrically at Landmark's Nuart Theatre in Los Angeles on Decemebr 13th followed by Film Forum for two weeks opening December 25th  in NYC.   

Tagged by Roger Ebert as the most influential film critic of the late twentieth century, the film tells the story of Pauline’s turbulent life and work, through never-seen archival footage, her published writing and personal letters, and interviews with both friends and foes of her pen. Pauline is voiced by Sarah Jessica Parker, and participants include Quentin Tarantino, Camille Paglia, David O. Russell, Molly Haskell, Francis Ford Coppola, and daughter Gina James.  

Pauline Kael (1919-2001) was likely the most powerful, and personal, movie critic of the 20th century. Writing for The New Yorker and publishing a dozen best-selling books, she ruthlessly pursued what made a movie or an actor’s performance work, or not, and why. Her passion made her both admired and despised amongst her readers and her subjects. Pauline’s own story is one of struggle and obsession: the fight to establish her voice and have it heard, and to raise a daughter on her own in a time when the obstacles were high. The latter golden age of movies of the 1960s and 1970s are the focus of this film that pursues the question of what made Pauline Kael’s work so individual, so controversial — and so damned good.  

New York-based director and editor Garver also produced for 29Pictures LLC, alongside Glen Zipper, producer of the Academy-Award winning documentary Undefeated, and co-producer Doug Blush (20 Feet From Stardom). Composer Rick Baitz (The Vagina Monologues) wrote original music for the film, and visual effects were created by Minbomb/LA.    

The deal was negotiated between Elizabeth Sheldon, Juno’s CEO and co-founder, and Eric Sloss of Cinetic. “Pauline Kael was a badass female film critic at a time when women were fighting for equality and respect,” says Sheldon. “She remains an icon and iconoclast for film lovers today. We are thrilled to be working with Rob Garver to bring the film to American audiences.” Garver adds, “I think Pauline would be amused (and maybe worried) that a movie had been made about her. And she’d get a kick out of it being distributed by another woman. I am very excited to work with Elizabeth and Juno Films on a 5-year labor of love.”


Award-winning Film Profiles Five Poets Slamming Truth to Power

Juno Films has acquired the exclusive world-wide distribution rights to Director  Max Power’s Don’t Be Nice. The vérité documentary film had its world premiere at Hot Docs and will premiere theatrically at IFC Center September 20th followed by Los Angeles before it broadcasts on FuseTV in early October. Don’t Be Nice has won numerous awards including Best Documentary at Vail Film Festival, Macon Film Festival, Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival, and Atlanta Docufest, the Audience Award at Roxbury International Film Festival, and directing awards at Port Townsend Film Festival and River Bend Film Festival.

The film chronicles the upstart Bowery Slam Poetry Team, made up of five African-American, Afro-Hispanic and queer poets in their 20s, preparing for the national championships. Their coach pushes them past personal boundaries to write from a painfully honest place, and the poets break down, break through, and ultimately write their masterpiece. Will their soul-searching pieces about police violence and the whitewashing of Black culture be able to compete against choreographed crowd-pleasers for the title? The team braves their inner demons and bucks societal expectations to write truthful poems, and to ultimately celebrate black joy. 

The deal was negotiated between Elizabeth Sheldon, Juno’s CEO and co-founder, and Producer Nikhil Melnechuk on behalf of Radio Drama Network. “Don’t Be Nice is a documentary that shows the intersection between the personal and the political as expressed by the five poets and their tireless coach,” says Sheldon. “We are thrilled to be working with Max Powers, Nikhil Melnechuk, and Radio Drama Network to bring the film to American audiences.” Melnechuk adds, “there’s never been a better time for a film about the power speaking the truth has to change one’s life. The poets in Don’t Be Nice take big personal risk to share their stories with the world, and we can’t wait for audiences to hear what they have to say.


Barbara Rubin and Bob Dylan

Chuck Smith's "Barbara Rubin and The Exploding New York Underground" will open in New York at IFC on May 24th and in Los Angeles at Laemmle on June 12th. 

The NY Times Critic's Pick


Endzeit Ever After

ENDZEIT - EVER AFTER will open in New York at IFC on June 21st and in Los Angeles at Laemmle on June 28th.


Announcements
BLOWIN UP is A NYTimes' Critic's Pick
April 04, 2019

Blowin Up

Go catch Stephanie Wag Breal's documentary BLOWIN' UP at the Quad this weekend. It is a New York Times Critic's Pick:

Filming from 2015 to early 2017, Wang-Breal and her cinematographer, Erik Shirai, immerse us in the cheery bustle of the courtroom and the busy hallways outside. Discreetly eavesdropping on counseling sessions as clients divulge often heartbreaking personal details, the filmmakers eschew narration in favor of a more fragmented, naturalistic approach.

This can be as frustrating as it is fascinating. Yet “Blowin’ Up” (the term is used to describe the act of leaving a pimp) suggests that, in a compassionate society, this is what justice would look like — a hopeful tone that’s ultimately tempered as the Trump presidency begins and ICE starts to apprehend clients.

“It’s just too big,” one weary counselor says of the trafficking business that claims so many victims. “It’s too big.”

Show times at the Quad can be found here: https://quadcinema.com/film/blowin-up/


Announcements
The Beast in the Jungle US Premier
March 21, 2019

The Beast in The Jungle

THE BEAST IN THE JUNGLE will premier in US at San Francisco Film Festival on April 16th and 17th.


Melding archival material from the last 100 years—from grainy newsreel footage to images of the English countryside—with an original soundtrack from Adrian Utley (Portishead) and Will Gregory (Goldfrapp), Arcadia takes us on a visceral journey through the contrasting seasons, exploring the beauty and brutality, the magic and madness, of our changing relationship to the land and one another.

Friday, February 22,
4:00 p.m.
Discussion with the filmmakers
The Museum of Modern Art,
Floor T2, Theater 2

Wednesday, February 27,
7:00 p.m.
The Museum of Modern Art,
Floor T2, Theater 2


Barbara Rubin and Andy Warhol

We are thrilled to announce that Barbara Rubin and The Exploding NY Underground will have its European Premier at Rotterdam International Film Festival in the Regained section, a perfect home for Chuck Smith's award-winning film. Congrats Chuck!


Boutique distribution company Juno Films has acquired exclusive U.S rights to “Ever After” (“Endzeit”), a feminist zombie apocalypse road movie hailed as delivering a fresh take on the walking dead cannon.

The deal was negotiated between Elizabeth Sheldon, Juno’s CEO and co-founder, and Andreas Rothbauer, founder of Berlin-based Picture Tree International, “Ever After’s” sales agent.

Read more in Variety


South African Director Jahmil X.T. Qubeka weaves a breathless Western-style epic from the life of legendary Apartheid outlaw John Kepe.

Juno Films has acquired the exclusive North American rights to Sew The Winter To My Skin by South African director Jahmil X.T. Qubeka (Of Good Report). The film premiered at TIFF and is South Africa’s Best Foreign Film contender. The film will open in NYC in 2019 followed by a national rollout in theaters across the US, digital, educational and home video.Based on a true story, John Kepe was an Apartheid-era folk hero who proclaimed himself the  “Samson of the Boschberg.” For decades, Kepe stole livestock and other goods from white colonist farmers and shared his spoils with the impoverished Indigenous population. He inevitably became a political threat to the very fabric of the ruling colonial society. He escaped capture for 12 years before he was brought before a court and sentenced to death for a murder that he might or might not have committed. Sew the Winter to My Skin is a keenly observed epic-adventure drama that captures the horrors of South Africa’s racist colonial regime. Rejecting dialog, Jahmil X.T. Qubeka relies on an immersive score and visual cues and through his evocative formal choices, probes, as he says, "mankind’s inherent need to feed into mythologies that conveniently suit the order of the day.".

The deal was negotiated between Elizabeth Sheldon, Juno’s CEO and co-founder, and Philipp Hoffman, founder of Rushlake Media. “Jahmil X.T. Qubeka’s film weaves the best formal elements of a thriller with the universal themes of oppression, poverty and the quest for freedom and dignity,” says Elizabeth Sheldon. “This is a powerful film that audiences will remember.” Philipp Hoffman comments, “I’m very happy that Sew The Winter To My Skin found a home in North America with Juno Films and that Elizabeth and her team will pave the way to big screens across the country.” Qubeka adds that, “Elizabeth understands the power of film to bring new stories to an American audience. She will be a strong advocate for the story of John Kepe.”