Robert Beaumont’s Santa Monica-based sales-financing company Ultramedia is bringing Helen Hunt’s “Ride” onto the international market at the American Film Market, selling the comedy with Marina Fuentes’ Madrid-based 6 Sales. Ultramedia and 6 Sales will introduce the title to buyers in Santa Monica, where it has its market premiere, receiving two screenings.
Written and directed by Helen Hunt, and produced by L.A.-based Sandbar Pictures, Abandon Features, Big Block Ventures and @The Movies Entertainment, “Ride” reps the first movie sold by Ultramedia, which Beaumont, the former president of Lightning Ent., launched in 2013. Ultramedia also raised part of the financing for “Ride” via private equity.
Hunt plays the lead role in “Ride” – starring with Luke Wilson (“The Royal Tenenbaums,” “Legally Blonde”) and Brenton Thwaites (“Maleficent,” “The Giver”) – limning a New Yorker Magazine editor who moves to L.A. after her son drops out of college to find himself. There, she embarks on her own journey of self discovery, letting go as she befriends a limo diver (David Zayas), re-discovers her sexuality with a younger surf instructor (Wilson) and begins to mend her fractured relationship with her son (Thwaites).
“I made this movie for mothers, sons, fathers, daughters, surfers and people who fall apart and come back together,” Hunt has said of “Ride.”
“Helen Hunt and the production team have done a wonderful job creating a film which is artfully done and also a great commercial picture with broad audience appeal,” said Beaumont, who met Fuentes at film school at the University of Colorado, in Boulder.
“’Ride’ is a feel-good film about how people- here an achiever and very controlling mother – go more with the flow, ride the wave,” added 6 Sales founder Fuentes.
Lizzie Friedman, Greg Little, Karen Lauder, Hunt and Moon Blauner produce “Ride.” Beaumont takes an exec producer credit.
In a previously reported deal, in early September Screen Media Films acquired North American rights to “Ride,” in a deal with CAA and Preferred Content, which represented North American rights. Screen Media plans a second-quarter U.S. release in theaters nationwide.
Hunt’s sophomore outing as a director, “Ride” follows on her 2007 behind-the-cameras debut, “Then She Found Me,” “an exceptionally deft and self-assured debut as a multi-hyphenate, a smart, subtle and seriously funny dramedy bound to find favor with sophisticated auds,” according to its Variety review.
“Then She Found Me” screened at the Toronto Festival and won Palm Springs Festival’s Audience Award. Hunt took a best actress Oscar for 1997’s “As Good as It Gets”; 2012’s “The Sessions” won an Academy Award nomination for a best actress in a supporting role.
Ultramedia has also co-financed Michael Thelin’s psychological thriller “Emelie,” starring Sarah Bolger (“In America,” ABC’s “Once Upon a Time”), produced by Andrew D. Corkin at New York’s Uncorked Productions, and sold by Ultramedia and 6 Sales. CAA is handling U.S. sales.
A psychological thriller from the original screenplay written by Richard Herbeck, “Emelie,” the directorial debut of acclaimed music video director, Michael Thelin, has just wrapped shooting in Buffalo, New York.
It begins when, on the eve of their thirteenth wedding anniversary, Dan (Chris Beetem) and Joyce (Susan Pourfar) head into the city to celebrate leaving their three children – adorable Christopher (Thomas Bair), curious middle-child Sally (Carly Bair) and big brother Jacob (Joshua Rush) – at home. As the night creeps along, the kids slowly realize that their new babysitter Anna (Bolger) is not who she claims to be. Jacob must quickly grow up to protect his siblings from the nefarious intentions of Emelie, a psychologically unstable woman.
Robyn Bennett serves as co-producer; Greg Little and Lizzie Friedman executive produce along with Beaumont. Bolger next stars in with Olivia Wilde in “Lazarus” for Lionsgate and remains a character on “Once Upon A Time.” She is repped by CAA and Mosaic.
Ultramedia intends to provide development and financing support for at least six pictures a year, as well as worldwide sales services for independent and studio films, focusing on U.S. movies, Beaumont said.