Canadian distributor E1 is wading into the US theatrical market following its acquisition of world rights on Taylor Hackford’s Love Ranch.
E1 picked up the troubled title ten days ago in the wake of the David Bergstein debacle. Love Ranch was originally set up at Capitol Films and came under the control of Aramid Entertainment Fund after Bergstein and business associate Ron Tutor defaulted on a loan from Aramid to buy Capitol in which they had put up the film and one other project as collateral.
Aramid foreclosed on the loan and E1 was able to move in after international buyers lost rights initially acquired from Capitol.
Love Ranch is inspired by the husband and wife team who opened the first legal bordello in Nevada. Helen Mirren (Hackford’s wife) and Joe Pesci star and Mark Jacobson wrote the screenplay.
E1 filmed entertainment president Patrice Theroux told Screen International the release does not presage a wholesale shift into the treacherous US theatrical market.
“We’re not going into this like drunken sailors with 700 screens,” Theroux said. “We felt the film has a wider appeal so we will go in seven to ten markets. It’s strictly a platform release. It’s about profiling the movie, positioning it properly and to boost the international sales.”
Theroux said the release would be the first step in a larger initiative to distribute in the US. “We will be releasing one or two other pictures but we’re not going to blow our brains out.”
Bergstin is being sued by a group of creditors. Last week a US federal judge took the rare step of appointing an interim trustee to assume control of his portfolio of beleaguered companies, which includes THINKFilm.