Movies can take many paths out of a festival. But few have traveled as long and winding a road as “Live-In Maid.”
Jorge Gaggero‘s Argentine pic bowed to strong reviews at Sundance in 2005, even winning a special jury prize.
In the two-and-a-half years since, the story of a wealthy woman and her maid during the country’s early-century economic crisis has played fests and garnered many plaudits, including from the New York Times’ A.O. Scott (“remarkably assured”) and New York Magazine (“terrifically understated, magnificently well-acted.”)
But the pic never found a distributor. So sales agent Andrew Herwitz bought rights to the movie and is distributing it himself.
He financed the buy with sales to the Sundance Channel for TV and Netflix for homevid, and this week it debuted at the Film Forum in Gotham. It will soon get playdates in about 20 cities, Herwitz says, including many Landmark outlets.
So what’s been the most difficult part of the transition? “When you’re selling you can just sit back and say, ‘I think we should do this,” he says. “When you’re distributing you have to create the ‘this.’ “