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Sundance Special: We Go Deep with “Digging for Fire”

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 5.07.18 PMWhat would your first reaction be if you found a bone and revolver buried in the backyard of a person’s home you knew? That’s exactly what sparks debate and an entire movie plot in director and co-writer Joe Swanberg‘s (Drinking BuddiesHappy Christmas) latest flick Digging for Fire, which also happens to be our latest film acquisition at Sundance!

Husband and wife duo Tim (co-writer Jake Johnson) and Lee (Rosemarie DeWitt) find themselves in the above-mentioned dilemma, but can’t reach an agreement on what to do. Tim wants to play detective and keep digging, but Lee wants to keep everything as-is for the homeowner’s sake. A marriage tiff ensues: Lee heads away for the weekend and Tim stays behind. It’s here that the dynamite cast waltzes in, with appearances from Mike Birbiglia, Sam Rockwell, Anna Kendrick, Orlando Bloom, Brie Larson, Ron Livingston, Jenny Slate and tons of other faces you’ll recognize.

With this brief (and seemingly rare) separation from one another, Tim and Lee have their own bit of fun (think boozy night with the boys and night out on the town by way of motorcycle) without their significant other. Swanberg delights with his signature “hangout” storyline (shot entirely on 35mm film) and “digs” deep into questions about the skeletons that should and should not be left in the closet (or ground, for that matter) in one’s marriage.

What’s next for Swanberg and his cast of characters? We’ll be distributing Digging for Fire in North America, so be on the lookout for that release date. For more info on the deal, read our press release or check out press coverage from The Wrap and Indiewire.

We Go Up & Away With “Above and Beyond”

1779882_226268220904570_1655526331_nIsrael’s 1948 War of Independence has been well-documented in textbooks and feature films over the years, but one aspect of that war had yet to be uncovered. Until now. Director Roberta Grossman and Producer Nancy Spielberg (yep, that Spielberg) teamed up to create Above and Beyond, the story of a group of Jewish-Americans who risked their lives to support Israel’s fight for freedom.

The documentary sits down with the core group of men who comprised 90% of the Israeli air service, though none of them was actually from the country. Rather, they were the Machal, or “volunteers from abroad” who left their established lives in America to support their Jewish brothers in Israel the best way they thought possible. One such member of this band of brothers, Al Schwimmer, used his flight engineer expertise and WWII air transport experience to smuggle aircrafts and pilots into Israel. Upon reading about his death in the New York Times, Spielberg felt the need to tell his (and so many others’) story.

The documentary gives an account of a rarely-mentioned part of Israeli Air Force history — the foreign men who assisted in its creation — and the airmen give detailed accounts of how, through perseverance, they helped secure Israel’s independence.

We are thrilled to announce that we’ll be releasing the film to all North American audiences beginning this Friday, January 30th! Check out more press coverage from Variety, and watch the trailer below:

Welcome, Natalie!

January 14, 2015 Orchard News 1 Comment

natalie_mooallemIntroducing Natalie Mooallem, Director, Client Management, Film & TV

Hi, my name is Natalie and I’m thrilled to be joining the Film & Television team. I have a background in multimedia arts and film programming, development and production, and I’ve worked for a number of NYC institutions including Miramax, Vice and most recently, Tribeca Film Institute, where I managed feature programming. My favorite sports teams are predominantly Canadian, I enjoy reading about robots, fashion and disgruntled TV writers, and I saw Machete Kills! during its theatrical run.

Welcome, Julie!

December 17, 2014 Orchard News No Comments

JulieDanskerIntroducing Julie Dansker, Director, Sales & Marketing, Film/TV

Originally from the East Coast, I went to the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. I studied Film because I have always loved movies and storytelling in general, whether through film, music, podcasts, at a dinner party or around a camp fire. I interned at The Daily Show with Jon Stewart while in college but my first job in LA was at Endeavor, working in talent. After putting in my obligatory year in, racking up some crazy stories and making a few lifelong friends, I transitioned to work at New Line Cinema in Creative Development. This led me to the opportunity to work for the President of Spyglass Entertainment and when the senior management team was invited to re-manage MGM and bring it out of bankruptcy I joined MGM Studios. I quickly realized that I was interested in digital distribution and wanted to be part of this disruptive, fast changing business. I started as an Account Executive in the digital group and then became Worldwide Manager of Digital Sales, Marketing and Social Media.

I feel lucky to have found The Orchard and am confident we will flourish in our new LA office. As for hobbies, I love traveling (going to Thailand in December!), play tennis every week, into yoga and cardio barre, live at the beach and am a foodie who loves to share restaurant recommendations. Very excited to share this next new chapter with you all!

Welcome, Nick!

December 3, 2014 Orchard News No Comments

NickRosholtIntroducing Nick Rosholt, Sales & Marketing Coordinator, Film & TV

Between my Hulu, Netflix, YouTube, Vudu, Google Play and iTunes accounts, I have access to a wealth of quality, on-demand content that completely negates the need for cable or any other preselected viewing experiences. I, like many other millennials (and the technologically-inclined), am completely in control of the entertainment I consume. Digital distribution isn’t just the future, it’s the present. It’s not merely an ancillary revenue stream, but an engine for creating quality content that attracts A-list talent. At this point it can’t be ignored. When Diana [Ed. Wollach, Orchardite since 2011] asked me if I would be interested in joining The Orchard’s passionate, dynamic team in the most dynamic facet of the film industry I couldn’t give any other answer but “yes.”

I was born in New York but grew up in South Africa where I was a regular at the movie theater and my family’s living room TV. From a very early age I knew that I wanted to be on the cutting edge of the entertainment world. After earning my B.A. at Brown University I went on to earn my M.F.A. in Producing at the New York Film Academy in Los Angeles. While there I interned with production companies in the studio, independent and television spheres. These experiences gave me valuable insight into the creation of content and how important marketing is in helping content find an audience.

I’m beyond excited to be joining The Orchard, and am looking forward to meeting and working with you all.

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