Documentaries continued to overshadow early Sundance business as HBO Documentary Films took all US rights to Marina Zenovich's Roman Polanski: Wanted And Desired. Click here to see review.
The high six-figure deal closed on Sunday a little over a day after The Weinstein Company pounced on international rights to the film, which argues that the exiled director was the victim of a miscarriage of justice and has been the best received film so far at a lacklustre Sundance.
HBO negotiated with Cinetic Media and Submarine Entertainment. Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Lila Yacoub produced the film and Steven Soderbergh and Randy Wooten were executive producers.
Several theatrical distributors such as Magnolia and Picturehouse were known to be vying for the film, and it is unknown at time of writing whether HBO will release the film in theatres although a theatrical release to qualify for the 2009 Academy Awards is likely.
With earlier sales already announced on the documentaries Kicking it and The Black List and intense interest surrounding Nanette Burstein's high school tale American Teen, with Fox Searchlight and Paramount Vantage believed to be in the chase, and Peter Galison and Robb Moss' Secrecy, Sundance awaits its first non-documentary deal.
Going into day five, buyers were expressing disappointment at the quality of the dramatic entries at the festival this year and no one dramatic film has yet been the subject of a bidding war, which is unusual by the end of the first weekend.
The Wackness, Sunshine Cleaning, What Just Happened and Sleep Dealer are all in play and all eyes now turn to buyer reaction to Sunday evening's world premieres of Rawson Marshall Thurber's The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh with Jon Foster, Peter Sarsgaard and Sienna Miller, Daniel Barnz's Phoebe In Wonderland with Elle Fanning, Felicity Huffman and Patricia Clarkson and Sharon Maguire's Incendiary, which stars Michelle Williams and Ewan McGregor.