Although Artisan Entertainment is in the process of choosing from a select handful of suitors looking to purchase the indie, it’s also in the process of producing its first slate of original features in nearly two years.
Among the titles are the Miramax Films co-production “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights”; “The Punisher,” a joint effort with Marvel Studios; and stage adaptation “Compleat Female Stage Beauty,” starring Billy Crudup and Claire Danes.
But there’s no telling what kind of strategy Artisan might have next year, since buyers want the shingle primarily for its library. “Until the time that we have some definitive answer as to who the buyer is, we continue as normal,” says Artisan topper Amir Malin. “There is potentially a new mandate if there is a new owner. That’s the privilege of a new owner. ”
In the meantime, Artisan plans to make “Iron Fist” the next title to be produced out of its Marvel relationship. Company also has high hopes for “Eulogy,” an ensemble comedy starring Ray Romano to be released next year.
Exec ranks: Amir Malin, CEO; Richard Saperstein, prexy, production; Patrick Gunn, exec VP
Recent pickups: Comedy “Boat Trip,” docu “Step Into Liquid,” Adrien Brody starrer “Dummy”
Year at B.O.: Top grosser: “Boat Trip” ($8.6 million); lowest grosser: “Roger Dodger” ($1.2 million)
Kudo watch: Unless Artisan finds something white hot at one of the fall festivals, the company should end the year kudo free. “Boat Trip” may have gone into the black, but it had critics seeing red. Upcoming zombie pic “The House of the Dead” is for gore hounds, not film buffs.