Film News Roundup: Dania Ramirez’s Romantic Comedy ‘Off the Menu’ Set for 2018 Release

Off the Menu
Courtesy of Vision Films

In today’s film news roundup, Vision Films has bought romantic comedy “Off the Menu,” Fantastic Fest expands to satellite locations, and IndieFlix announces “Angst: Breaking the Stigma Around Anxiety.”

ACQUISITIONS

Vision Films has acquired romantic comedy “Off the Menu” for 2018 domestic release, Variety has learned exclusively.

“Off the Menu” stars Dania Ramirez, Santino Fontana, Makenzie Moss, Maria Conchita Alonso, Jen Lilley, and Kristen Dalton. Ramirez plays a chef in a New Mexico town who falls for an arrogant but lovable heir to a fast-food chain, portrayed by Fontana.

“Off the Menu” was filmed in Taos, N.M., with a cast that was over 50% female and Hispanic, qualifying the production for the SAG diversity agreement. Jay Silverman directed from a Jennifer Goldson screenplay. Producers are Bethany Cerrona and William Newman for Jay Silverman Productions.

Silverman’s previous film “Girl on the Edge” is currently airing on Showtime. “When we began developing ‘Off the Menu,’ I was inspired by Michael Pollan’s novel ‘The Omnivore’s Dilemma’ to show that food plays a huge role in our lives,” he said.

Vision Films will exhibit the film for worldwide sales at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and MIPCOM in Cannes.

FILM FESTIVALS

Austin-based Fantastic Fest is expanding with satellite locations for its upcoming festival at Alamo Drafthouse theaters in New York, San Francisco, and Denver during the Sept. 29-Oct. 1 weekend.

“For too long Austin has had all the Fantastic fun,” said Fantastic Fest creative director Evrim Ersoy. “We’ve long wanted to share these brilliant films with the widest audience possible. By opening up these three satellites it’s our first step in expanding their exposure and having them embraced by new audiences.”

Titles include S. Craig Zahler’s “Brawl in Cell Block 99,” Takashi Miike’s 100th film “Blade of the Immortal,” Marc Myers’ “My Friend Dahmer,” and a secret mystery movie courtesy of American Genre Film Archive.

DOCUMENTARY RELEASE

Online streaming company IndieFlix is aiming to start a global conversation about anxiety through its documentary “Angst: Breaking the Stigma Around Anxiety.”

The film features interviews with kids and young adults and includes an interview with Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps. “Angst” has a particular focus on people under the age of 21 who suffer, or have suffered, from anxiety and what they’ve learned about it –- as well as experts discussing the causes, effects, and how to best manage it.

The organization behind the project, the IndieFlix Foundation, works with a network of schools, groups, and organizations to host screenings across the country, along with providing corresponding curriculum for youth.

The foundation is planning to host 25,000 community and school screenings. “Angst” will open in theaters on Sept. 25.

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