This is one of those “stories” that, no matter how you tell it, it will always sound like something straight from The Twilight Zone. Except this is no story — this is real life exposed through narrative. Meet Finders Keepers, Sundance 2015’s weirdest documentary (co-directed by Bryan Carberry and Clay Tweel) that follows the battle over an amputated leg, and just so happens to be our latest film acquisition.
The story begins just as it should: one of the documentary’s producers Ed Cunningham (Undefeated) overhears restaurant-goers talking about a severed foot that had been found in a barbecue smoker bought at an auction. Cunningham, his interest piqued, starts to dig. Ultimately, he uncovers John Wood’s tragic story — the leg was his, he’d lost it in a plane crash (the same one that killed his father), tried to save it for sentimental purposes, and lost it when his drug and alcohol addiction got the best of him, forcing him to sell almost everything he owned. Enter Shannon Whisnant, self-proclaimed entrepreneur and the lucky bidder who lands Wood’s locker-full-of-wonders. Whisnant seizes the “opportunity” to garner fame as “The Foot Man,” raking in his fortune by offering peeks of the severed leg. Ultimately (and perhaps as destiny would have it), the two go head to head in a custody battle over Wood’s leg, winding them up on sitcom-television in front of Judge Mathis‘s audience.
One of the more bizarre stories you’ll ever hear? Probably. Best part? It’s 100% fact. And we’ll be dishing out this stranger-than-fiction film experience to North American audiences later this year. We added the doc to our bag of Sundance goodies yesterday and will have it ready for you shortly! Check out more of the deal news in The Hollywood Reporter’s press coverage, and watch a snippet of the film below: