ContentFilm, the New York independent recently formed by Edward R Pressman and John Schmidt, has acquired worldwide rights to Wendigo, a supernatural thriller starring Patricia Clarkson, and has enlisted Eamonn Bowles' brand new distribution outfit Magnolia Pictures to distribute it in the US.

Written, directed and edited by Larry Fessenden, a film-maker as well as an actor with credits such as Session 9, Bringing Out The Dead and Animal Factory, Wendigo is about a family (Clarkson, Jake Weber and Eric Per Sullivan) who accidentally trigger the spirit of a Native American myth which manifests itself in the imagination of the family's young son.

It is the first release for Magnolia which plans to open it in Feb 2002 in New York and Los Angeles before widening to other cities. Bowles most recently ran the distribution arm of defunct independent The Shooting Gallery, handling the successful release of Croupier as part of the ground-breaking film series.

ContentFilm acquired Wendigo from production company Antidote Films which was founded by Jeffrey Levy-Hinte last year and is currently in production on Lisa Cholodenko's new film Laurel Canyon starring Frances McDormand, Kate Beckinsale and Christian Bale. Fessenden's Glass Eye Pix was co-producer.

John Schmidt and head of business affairs Michael Roban negotiated on behalf of ContentFilm with Mary Jane Skalski of Antidote Films and Emerson Bruns of Rudoplph & Beer.