Studio nabs rights to quirky McGinley comedy

Magnolia Pictures has picked up domestic rights to helmer Sean McGinley’s “The Great Buck Howard,” starring John Malkovich, Colin Hanks, Emily Blunt and Steve Zahn. Quirky pic preemed at Sundance in January 2008 to anticipated hype without nabbing a buyer.

Malkovich plays Howard, a once-famous mentalist, who, by the hands of fate, is pushed from obscurity back into the limelight. Plans are for a fall rollout. Pic was produced by Bristol Bay Productions with Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman’s Playtone Pictures.

” ‘The Great Buck Howard’ is a rare find in the current marketplace — a charming, incredibly likeable film that has something for everyone,” said Magnolia prexy Eamonn Bowles.

Bristol and sister company Walden Media are owned by Anschutz Film Group. Magnolia is the theatrical arm of the Wagner/Cuban companies which include Landmark theaters, 2929 Productions and hi-def cablers HDNet and HDNet Movies.

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