Although they sometimes get a bad rap from writers, like me, who criticize Harvey Weinstein for being too hands on in the wrong kind of way (PG-13 version of The King’s Speech anyone?) he does manage to get a hold of some of the most interesting, and not necessarily the most profitable, projects in town. Today comes the news that The Weinstein Company have acquired the distribution rights to popstar Madonna‘s directorial debut.
The film is called W.E. and part of the film is a biopic about the love affair between Edward VIII of England and Wallis Simpson. Of course you may already be familiar with this story as it appeared as a sub plot in The King’s Speech, where Edward was played rather brilliantly by Guy Pearce. The film is completed and with this news, a release date will be announced imminently. It will also likely do the festival circuit. Read the press release below.
[toggle_box title=”Click to read the press release.” width=”Width of toggle box”]The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today that it has acquired U.S. distribution rights to W.E., Madonna’s directorial debut of a feature film. W.E. is a romantic drama co-written by Madonna and Alek Keshishian, produced by Madonna and Kris Thykier and executive produced by Scott Franklin (Black Swan). It stars Abbie Cornish (Limitless), Oscar Isaac (Drive), James D’Arcy (Master and Commander), Andrea Riseborough (Never Let Me Go), Natalie Dormer (The Tudors), Richard Coyle (Prince of Persia), James Fox (Sherlock Holmes) and Laurence Fox (Lewis). The announcement was made by TWC Co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein and President of Production Donna Gigliotti.
Spanning six decades, W.E. juxtaposes a contemporary love story with that of King Edward VIII and American divorcée Wallis Simpson.
“W.E. is about the nature of true love, and the sacrifices and compromises that are often made. I’ve wanted to tell this story for a very long time, and bringing it to life has been a great adventure for me. I’m looking forward to working with Harvey and The Weinstein Company on this film,” commented Madonna.
“Madonna has really come into her own as a filmmaker with W.E.,” said Weinstein. “She’s taken one of the most famous romances of the 20th Century and brought it to life in a smart, sexy and thoroughly modern way. It’s a terrific addition to our US release slate.”
Commented Gigliotti, “The advance footage for W.E. was some of the most impressive I’ve ever seen. I can’t wait for American audiences to have the opportunity to see this film.”
The deal was negotiated for TWC by Weinstein, COO David Glasser and Michal Steinberg, Senior Vice President Business Affairs and Acquisitions; and by CAA, on behalf of the filmmakers. (Deadline)