Open Road celebrates U.S. preem of 'Watch'

After celebrating the world preem of their police pic “End of Watch” at Toronto last week, director David Ayer and the Open Road Films team led by Tom Ortenberg headed downtown for the U.S. preem and after-party at the Ritz-Carlton in Los Angeles.

Ayer is no stranger to dramatizing the LAPD, though “End of Watch” is a change of pace for the helmer due to its “positive portrayal” of the police. “I’ve never really showed the home side (of officers) before,” said Ayer, who has screened the film for multiple law enforcement agencies. “It’s almost eerily the same response, which is, ‘finally, someone got it right.'” Introducing the pic, Ayer thanked Sheriff Lee Baca “and pretty much everybody from the command staff all the way down to the P-2 dogs who police our communities for letting me see the heart behind the badge.”

Producer Nigel Sinclair, CEO of Exclusive Media, praised star Jake Gyllenhaal, who picked up his first exec producer credit on the project. “He was so involved in the preparation, and he came to every test screening. John Lesher and I and the others really wanted to recognize his contribution. He really was part of the producing team.”

Co-stars Michael Pena, Anna Kendrick, America Ferrera and Frank Grillo attended the preem, but Gyllenhaal was unable to make the afterparty, jetting back to Gotham after a simultaneous SAG screening to return to Off Broadway’s “If There Is I Haven’t Found It Yet.”

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