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Sundance: ATO Blows Up With ‘Shadow Dancer’; Indomina Learns ‘The Art of Rap’; Madmen Buy ‘Marina Abramovic’

Written by on January 29, 2012 

One of the only films I looked forward to before Sundance kicked off was Shadow Dancer, the latest narrative feature from Man on Wire and Project Nim helmer James Marsh. If you can’t see why, consider it this way: Are you going to take a topic I have an inherent fascination with (IRA/British conflict), give it a period setting, put talented performers in the center (Clive Owen and Andrea Riseborough), and let a talented filmmaker take the reigns? Then I’ll want to see it.

And, according to Variety, ATO will let me do so. The (small) distributor has gained North American rights to the film, which centers on “a widowed mother [who] is arrested in an aborted bomb plot [and] must make hard choices to protect her son”; that, for those who don’t know, is based on a novel by Tom Bradby, who also penned Shadow Dancer‘s screenplay. Reviews from the past few days have, for the most part, been highly complimentary, a final touch that cements it as my most anticipated film to come out of the festival this year.

Further acquisition news comes from Deadline, who report that Indomina have bought Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap, a hip-hop documentary from Ice-T and Andy Baybutt that sees the former travel the country and talk to acclaimed artists in the field, all in an attempt “to trace the inspiration for an American art form.” Anyone who wants to see it — and signs say you might be right to invest interest — will be able to do so when Indomina gives a “meaningful” (whatever that means) theatrical release at the beginning of this summer.

Finally, THR informs us that Madmen Entertainment also got into the documentary business this Sundance, having bought Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present. Matthew Akers‘ work profiles the titular performance artist, who — by “using her body as a medium, and pushing herself beyond her physical and mental limits” — has accrued a fanbase over nearly 40 years, one that includes James Franco and David Blaine. (The actual documentary, however, is said to do the typical documentary thing: focus on her career and life.) Someone who doesn’t know anything about the woman or her work (like myself) will be relieved — first word makes Abramovic sound like a strong introduction to her art.

Do you plan on seeing any of these films when they come your way?

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