‘Another Year’ goes to Sony Pictures Classics

Posted by · 7:40 am · May 19th, 2010

Mike Leigh’s latest, easily the consensus critical darling of Cannes thus far, was never going to have trouble finding a U.S. distributor — the only question was whether it would be the equally plausible candidates Focus or Sony who got there first. As ScreenDaily reported earlier today, it’s the latter:

Sony Pictures Classics has acquired North American rights from Focus Features International (FFI) to Mike Leigh’s much fancied Palme d’Or contender Another Year.

FFI chief Alison Thompson concluded the deal with the Sony Pictures Classics team of Tom Bernard, Michael Barker and Dylan Leiner at around midnight on Tuesday [18].

Another Year will open towards the end of the year and Bernard and Barker are likely to give it an awards push.

I expect a Best Actress campaign for ensemble standout Lesley Manville will be at the front of said push, though if U.S. critics really take to the film — which is weightier and less abrasive than “Happy-Go-Lucky” — bigger things are not unforeseeable. (Plus, when is Leigh going to get his writing Oscar already?) Sony will want to handle this one with care.

Meanwhile, it will be a major upset, not to mention a source of mass critical vexation, if the film doesn’t land a prize of some sort this Sunday — though, as I suspected, early word from this morning’s screening of Korean entry “Poetry” suggests veteran actress Yoon Jeong-hee could give Manville a run for her money.

Meanwhile, at last night’s gala screening of “Certified Copy,” which ended with a five-minute standing ovation, there was a lot of love in the room for Juliette Binoche — whose astonishing final scenes in the film elevate the performance to the level of her best work.

Binoche has won every major international award in her career … except for the Cannes gong. Does the jury know that, and if so, would they care? Curiously, Best Actress is looking like one of the most heated contests of an otherwise lukewarm Competition.

→ 11 Comments Tags: , , , , , , , | Filed in: Daily

11 responses so far

  • 1 5-19-2010 at 7:53 am

    Nick Davis said...

    Well, as we know, Best Actress is always the most heated competition, everywhere, even when it technically isn’t.

    Really hoping you’re able to catch Poetry tomorrow. It’s the film of which I’ve been most eager to hear reports since the line-up was announced.

  • 2 5-19-2010 at 8:03 am

    Dean said...

    Well damn. That means I won’t see this movie for another year. SPC bought A Prophet and The White Ribbon last year and they still haven’t been released on DVD.

  • 3 5-19-2010 at 9:12 am

    linaf said...

    ‘Another Year’ goes to Sony Pictures Classics
    wich it means no one will ever see the film

  • 4 5-19-2010 at 1:01 pm

    MovieMan said...

    Here’s to hoping it’s better than “Happy-Go-Lucky.”

  • 5 5-19-2010 at 3:58 pm

    Chad Hartigan said...

    Sony Classics always does a good job of releasing their films across the country, albeit slowly. Unless you live in a tiny town in Minnesota, you should be able to see Another Year.

  • 6 5-19-2010 at 4:05 pm

    James D. said...

    Happy-Go-Lucky was brilliant! How dare you, MovieMan.

    Sony Picture Classics have generally been more available to my suburbs than other specialty divisions. I am pleased.

  • 7 5-19-2010 at 4:12 pm

    MovieMan said...

    My opinion: Sally Hawkins was brilliant in “Happy-Go-Lucky,” and everything around her was inconsequential fluff not worthy of half the praise it received. Not a terrible film in any respect, but not especially good either and hugely overrated.

  • 8 5-19-2010 at 4:40 pm

    James D. said...

    You didn’t think Eddie Marsan was great?

  • 9 5-19-2010 at 4:44 pm

    MovieMan said...

    He was fine, but he didn’t register with me as strongly as with others. He was underwritten, as was every other supporting character in the movie. It was just a barely-there movie with no real point or driving force.

  • 10 5-19-2010 at 5:53 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    You didn’t like Happy-Go-Lucky?!? How DARE…

    “My opinion: Sally Hawkins was brilliant…”

    All is forgiven.

  • 11 5-21-2010 at 4:55 pm

    MovieMan said...

    She definitely was. I was barely familiar with her, but she made an impact in a film that decidedly didn’t. She wouldn’t win best actress from me (that would be Anne Hathaway in one of 2008’s best films, “Rachel Getting Married,” which I saw the same day), but she’d certainly be in the running.