Longtime independent US filmmakers Jay and Mark Duplass have signed a deal giving Netflix worldwide rights to four of their upcoming projects.
The deal will kick off with the release later this year of an as yet untitled project starring Ray Romano and Mark Duplass. Described by Netflix as “a bittersweet bromance about friendship, mortality and made-up sports,” the film recently finished production.
Alex Lehman directed from a script he wrote with the Duplass brothers. Mel Eslyn, president of the Duplass Brothers company, is producing with Alana Carithers and Sean Bradley.
The Duplass’ relationship with Netflix goes back to 2005, when the brothers’ first feature, The Puffy Chair, was acquired and co-distributed by Netflix’s Red Envelope Entertainment operation.
In 2015 the brothers signed an SVOD deal with Netflix covering Lehman’s first feature Blue Jay, Take Me, Creep 2 and the upcoming Duck Butter and Outside In. The deal gave Netflix exclusive worldwide SVOD distribution rights following a short theatrical release window.
The brothers also executive produced Netflix’s upcoming documentary series Wild Wild Country, which premiered at Sundance.
In a statement, the brothers said: “Turns out when you make films for Netflix, millions of people all over the world watch them. This is not a terrible thing for an independent filmmaker. As Netflix continues to grow and develop new ways to reach viewers, we couldn’t be more thrilled to grow our partnership.”
Netflix director of independent film Ian Bricke added: “Jay and Mark are the most enterprising filmmakers in the business. They have embraced Netflix as much as our subscribers have embraced their films. Having worked with Mark and Jay for over a decade, we have huge admiration for their creative passion and filmmaking smarts. We are thrilled for this next chapter of our relationship.”