Sundance: Lionsgate Gets ‘Cooties’

Acquisition marks the first narrative feature buy for the studio so far at the festival

UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.”

The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even with its share of detractors), takes place in an elementary school, where the students contract a strange virus that turns them into feral creatures.

Lionsgate has yet to solidify release plans.

Cooties” co-stars Alison Pill, Rainn Wilson, Leigh Whannell and Jack McBrayer. Pic was written by Ian Brennan and Whannell, who also wrote “Saw,” which coincidentally premiered at Sundance 10 years ago and was also distributed by Lionsgate.

“Leigh and Ian, along with all the filmmakers and cast of ‘Cooties,’ have created a project that we found ourselves laughing out loud throughout and we cannot wait to share it with moviegoers!” said Lionsgate prexy of acquistions and co-productions Jason Constantine, who negotiated the deal alongside Lionsgate’s Eda Kowan and Wendy Jaffe.

Ben Weiss of Paradigm brokered the deal on behalf of the filmmakers. Synchronicity Entertainment is handling overseas rights.

The distrib beat out a number of bidders, including Relativity, making “Cooties” the company’s second acquisition so far at Sundance. Lionsgate also acquired North American rights to docu “Dinosaur 13,” along with CNN Films.

More Film

  • King Cohen review

    Film Review: 'King Cohen'

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • 'The Equalizer 2' Review

    Film Review: Denzel Washington in 'The Equalizer 2'

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • Stan Dragoti 'The Last Boyscout' PremiereDecember

    Stan Dragoti, Director of 'Mr. Mom,' 'Love at First Bite,' Dies at 85

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • Jagged Edge

    Film News Roundup: Halle Berry's 'Jagged Edge' Remake Finds Writer

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • Kate Winslet Diane Keaton Mia Wasikowska

    Kate Winslet, Diane Keaton, Mia Wasikowska to Star in 'Silent Heart' Remake

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • (L to R) Young Tanya (JESSICA

    'Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again' Reviews: What the Critics Are Saying

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

  • Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

    'Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants' Stage Musical in the Works

    UPDATED: Marking its first narrative Sundance acquisition, Lionsgate has acquired helmers Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion’s “Cooties.” The horror-comedy ensemble led by Elijah Wood, who also produced the film, premiered Jan. 18 at midnight, drawing cheers and laughter from the audience. The film, which is one of the more commercial films of the festival (even […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content