Picturehouse, the recently named joint venture between HBO and New Line Cinema, has acquired worldwide distribution rights to “Fur,” an upcoming drama starring Nicole Kidman (“The Interpreter”) and Robert Downey Jr. (“Chaplin”).
The announcement of the “Fur” acquisition came at the Cannes Film Festival, where Picturehouse’s first release, Gus Van Sant’s “Last Days,” is screening in competition.
“Fur” is written and directed by Steven Shainberg (“Secretary”) and stars Kidman as legendary photographer Diane Arbus. Shooting on the film, which is set in New York City in the 1950s, began on Monday (May 9).
“Picturehouse allows us to bring a wide variety of films, large and small, to a diverse audience,” says Bob Berney. “We hope that by utilizing the strength, taste and independent spirit of the two parent companies we will forge a new and unique home for filmmakers.”
Picturehouse also released a statement saying the venture has picked up “The Thing About My Folks,” with Paul Reiser and Peter Falk, and “Ushpizin,” an Israeli drama from director Giddi Dar. The company hopes to have a release slate of 8-10 films a year, with four product streams: HBO Films productions, New Line productions, joint productions and acquisitions.
The name of the company is meant to recall the days of the silver screen when audiences went to ‘picture houses’ to be entertained and escape from their everyday lives,” say Colin Callender of HBO Films and Michael Lynne of New Line. “The diverse slate we are announcing today is representative of the type of projects we feel can foster those same emotional ties.”