Company buys distribution rights to soccer doc

Soccer documentary “Rise and Shine” – which received over $215,000 in Kickstarter contributions to fund production – has been picked up for U.S. and worldwide distribution by D&E Entertainment.

D&E announced Tuesday that it would launch a U.S. release on Nov. 3.

“Rise and Shine” was co-directed by filmmakers Ranko Tutulugdzija and Nick Lewis of Truth2Life Productions. The sports documentary follows Jay DeMerit’s transition from undrafted high school and collegiate athlete to professional soccer star.

Tutulugdzija and Lewis raised funds through the grassroots crowd-sourcing organization Kickstarter and exceeded a $215,000 goal by almost $10,000 as what’s touted as the top Kickstarter campaign ever for an indie film.

Contributions came mostly from soccer fans and the public at large but also included U.S. National Team member Stuart Holden, Rivers Cuomo of the band Weezer and Seth Meyers of “Saturday Night Live.”

“To have people reach out and volunteer their time and creativity has been something we didn’t expect,” Lewis says. “It really is a testament to Jay’s story. This film is not just for those who love soccer but for anyone who has a dream.”

The film was discovered and brought into D&E Entertainment by Jonathan Chaupin, D&E’s director of film marketing.

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