You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Forest Whitaker’s ‘Repentance’ Lands at CodeBlack (EXCLUSIVE)

Lionsgate to release pic in the early spring

On the heels of the surprisingly strong launch for Kevin Hart’s “Let Me Explain,” CodeBlack Films has acquired U.S. distribution rights to Forest Whitaker‘s thriller “Repentance” for release by Lionsgate in the early spring.

The film, which also stars Anthony Mackie, is part of the multiyear distribution deal announced last year between CodeBlack’s Jeff Clanagan and Lionsgate under which the studio was aiming to expand its already strong urban biz.

“Repentances” centers on a life coach (Mackie) who’s  mysteriously abducted by a deranged client, played by Whitaker. Sanaa Lathan also stars. Philippe Caland directs from a script he co-wrote with Shintaro Shimosawa in a project produced by Whitaker’s  Significant Studios.

Let Me Explaingrossed $17.4 million at 876 theaters in its first five days and rang up the highest per-location average of films in wide release. Clanagan credited Hart’s promotional work and Lionsgate’s selection of venues for the box office success, adding, “The distribution plan worked like a charm.”

SEE MORE: How Kevin Hart’s Comedy Counter-Programmer Took on Tonto and Won

Clanagan also disclosed that the next CodeBlack-Lionsgate release will be coming of age story “The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete,” starring Jennifer Hudson, Anthony Mackie, Jordan Sparks and Jeffery Wright, in the first quarter. Story centers on two inner city youths, who are left to fend for themselves over the summer after their mothers are taken away by the authorities.

“Mister,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, is directed by George Tillman Jr. with Alicia Keys exec producing.

CodeBlack is also producing Hart’s next project, “Quick and Easy,” which Lionsgate disclosed in April during its presentation at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. Clanagan is also prepping for the U.K. and Canadian releases of “Let Me Explain” in September.

Clanagan said the CodeBlack remains on track to produce two to three features per year across a variety of genres. “We wanted to give ourselves time to build up our infrastructure rather than rushing out titles,” he added.

Prior to signing its deal with Lionsgate, CodeBlack worked on standup comedy specials for Steve Harvey, Cedric The Entertainer and Mo’Nique along with theatrical releases including Lee Daniels’ “Shadowboxer” and Hart’s documentary “Laugh at My Pain.”

SEE ALSO: Lionsgate, Clanagan team on film company

Deal for “Repentance” was negotiated by Nina Yang Bongiovi on behalf of Significant Productions with Quincy Newell of Codeblack and Jean Chi and Greg Snodgrass on behalf of Lionsgate.



Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Aaron Janus Lionsgate

    Lionsgate Hires 'A Quiet Place' Producer Aaron Janus as Senior VP of Production

    Lionsgate has hired Aaron Janus as its new senior vice president of production and promoted Meredith Wieck to the post of vice president of production.  Prior to Lionsgate, Janus served as Platinum Dunes’ head of development, where he oversaw filmmakers Brad Fuller, Andrew Form and Michael Bane. There, he brought in “A Quiet Place,” on [...]

  • Ang Lee Reveals First Look at

    Ang Lee on 'Gemini Man' and De-Aging Will Smith

    On paper, Ang Lee’s “Gemini Man” is a standard-issue, shoot ’em up with Will Smith playing a deadly assassin who must battle a younger clone of himself. The explosions and gun battles aren’t what drew Lee to the project, even if they’re the reason that most people will show up at theaters when it opens [...]

  • Hopper Reserve

    Dennis Hopper's Dying Wish: His Own Strain of Marijuana

    Even as celebrity brands are starting to flood the emerging Cannabis market, Hopper Reserve stands out. The brand was launched by Marin Hopper, Dennis Hopper’s daughter from his marriage to Brooke Hayward. Hopper Reserve is a gram of California indoor-grown flower, two packs of rolling papers, a pair of matches and a trading card either [...]

  • Sean Clarke Aardman Staff Photography Bristol.Pic

    Aardman Appoints Sean Clarke as New Managing Director

    Aardman, the Oscar-winning animation studio behind “Chicken Run” and “Early Man,” has appointed Sean Clarke as its new managing director, replacing co-founder David Sproxton, who is stepping down after 43 years. Clarke has worked at the British studio for more than 20 years, including heading the international rights and marketing department for over a decade. [...]

  • The Antenna

    Toronto Film Review: 'The Antenna'

    Jump scares, creepy noises and the tease of hidden-from-view dangers are all fine. But a truly frightening horror film unsettles with more than its crafts, but instead through the vulnerability of defenseless people stuck with bad options only. First-time writer-director Orçun Behram’s highly stylized and mildly disturbing “The Antenna,” a metaphor on Turkey’s current ruling [...]

  • Ad Astra Box Office

    Box Office Battle: 'Ad Astra' Takes on 'Rambo: Last Blood' and 'Downton Abbey'

    “Hustlers” and “Good Boys” proved that even in the age of Marvel dominance and remake mania, movies that don’t exist within an established franchise can still be box office draws. Can “Ad Astra” continue that trend? The space drama — starring Brad Pitt and directed by James Gray — arrives on the big screen this [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein Accuser Lucia Evans Breaks

    Harvey Weinstein Accuser Lucia Evans Breaks Silence After D.A. Dropped Charge

    Lucia Evans gave a wrenching account on Tuesday of her efforts to hold Harvey Weinstein responsible for sexual assault, saying she felt betrayed after the Manhattan D.A.’s office dropped her allegations last year. Evans spoke to Variety after giving a speech at a conference on influencer fraud in Manhattan, making her first public comments on [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content