Miramax Films has made it first Sundance acquisition under theDaniel Battsek regime, paying in the region of $3m for North American rights toPatrick Stettner's Armistead Maupin adaptation The Night Listener.
"Night Listener is a smart thriller with commercial appeal that is bothfascinating and topical and fits perfectly with Miramax's intention todistribute quality films," Battsek said.
"I am a huge fan ofPatrick Stettner and we are thrilled to be work with such a talentedfilmmaker."
The picture received its world premiere here at the weekend andstars Robin Williams as a late night radio host who develops an intenserelationship with a young listener who may not exist. Toni Collette and RoryCulkin also star in the Hart Sharp and IFC Films co-production which is basedon a novel by Armistead Maupin.
"I am looking forward to working with Daniel and everyone atMiramax," Stettner said. "Their passion and vision for the projectwill surely make it an exciting collaboration."
"We are excited to be a part of the new chapter of MiramaxFilms, who are clearly the right home for our film," Hart Sharp's RobertKessel added.
Miramax executive vice president of business affairs Michael Luisiand acquisition executives Kristin Jones and Peter Lawson negotiated the dealwith Kessel and Mike Hogan of Hart Sharp and UTA's Richard Klubeck.
Kessel, Jeff Sharp, John Hart and Jill Footlick produced andMaupin, Hogan, Terry Anderson, JonathanSehring and Caroline Kaplan served as executive producers. IFC Films has anequity stake in the film.
Maupin adapatedthe screenplay from his own novel with Anderson and Stettner.