Young A24 exec eager to help distrib dive into production
Noah Sacco is exhausted.
(From the pages of the April 23 issue of Variety.)
The resourceful 26-year-old production and acquisitions executive has just returned to New York from a week in Los Angeles, during which time he squeezed 40 meetings with producers, agents, executives and other industry insiders into five days.
But that’s precisely what he signed up for a year ago when he joined startup A24, which has quickly made a name for itself on cult hit “Spring Breakers,” and has Sofia Coppola’s release “The Bling Ring” due out in June.
“The New York to L.A. (visits) are always sort of like calendar Tetris,” Sacco says. “You have to fill out every single slot to make the trip worthwhile.”
The boyish-looking executive, who lives in Brooklyn, started at the West Chelsea-based A24 not long after the company was founded last April by John Hodges, David Fenkel and Daniel Katz. Since launching, A24 has grown to two dozen executives from fewer than six.
Sacco’s role will also grow as the acquisitions-only outfit expands into production over the coming months, with an eye to eventually release 10 films a year.
Sacco already has some hands-on experience. Part of his job includes scouting potential projects to develop and identifying films to acquire, such as “Spring Breakers.” He’s scouring the Tribeca festival and prepping to spend 10 days at Cannes next month. So far this year, Sacco has spent 11 days at Sundance, 11 days in Berlin, and a week at SXSW.
Sacco says his bosses give him the opportunity to learn about all aspects of the business and to make his voice heard. A24’s open floor plan in the industrial 19-story building where it is housed, fosters an atmosphere of inclusion.
“Almost every job I’ve had has been a product of luck but also extreme warmth and generosity on the part of the people I’ve worked for,” says Sacco. “Daniel Katz has meetings with me one-on-one about dealmaking. David Fenkel includes me in the marketing conversations. The whole vibe at A24 is about sharing information.”
After graduating Colgate in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in English literature, Sacco interned at Focus Features before working for producer Daniel Rosenberg and then landing at the Weinstein Co.
Sacco suggests that while there may be more job opportunities in L.A. for young people, New York offers a unique sense of community and solidarity. And working in a city that has fewer film companies, is removed from the studio system and is tied into the literary and legit theatrical communities is also advantageous. “There’s a creative liberty in not chasing the same material that the bulk of people in the industry are chasing,” he says.
Companies like Weinstein and Focus, and such emblematic filmmakers as Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen and Darren Aronofsky also makes Gotham unique.
“I love New York, and think it is a very cinematic city,” says Sacco. “There’s something special about being part of the film community here.”
A Day in the Life of a Young Executive: