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SXSW: Magnolia Nabs Rights to Alex Gibney’s Steve Jobs Documentary

Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to “Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine,” Alex Gibney’s critical look at the Apple co-founder and the cult of Mac he helped foster.

The picture had its world premiere at this year’s SXSW Film Festival, where it earned strong reviews for its look at Jobs’ prickly leadership style and the influence that he had in shaping Silicon Valley culture. In Variety, Justin Chang praised the film as a “coolly absorbing, deeply unflattering portrait” of Jobs.

Gibney, an Oscar winner for “Taxi to the Dark Side,” is also making headlines with “Going Clear,” his incisive look at Scientology that will air this spring on HBO.

Magnolia Pictures has acquired the theatrical, VOD and home entertainment rights to “Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine,” and CNN Films, which backed the film, retained the television broadcast distribution rights.

There’s a comfort level between filmmaker and distributor. This is the seventh film directed by Gibney to be distributed by Magnolia. Financial terms of the pact were not disclosed, but the deal was negotiated by Magnolia SVP of acquisitions Dori Begley with Josh Braun of Submarine on behalf of the filmmakers.

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