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Magnolia Pictures has acquired global rights to “Peter and the Farm,” a documentary about an organic farmer in Vermont.

The studio is planning a 2016 theatrical release. Tony Stone directs the film, which follows Peter Dunning, who has spent 37 years working the 187-acre Mile Hill Farm, slowly peeling back his jovial outer shell to reveal a man in the throes of a personal crisis. Dunning has had to endure over the course of four decades and dozens of harvests the departures of three wives and four children, leaving him isolated.

Magnolia previously collaborated with Stone on his film “Severed Ways: The Norse Discovery of America,” a look at a Viking expedition gone awry. He shot “Peter and the Farm,” as well as produced the picture.

“Tony has crafted a fascinating, moving character study with ‘Peter and the Farm,’ and has reaffirmed himself as a singularly talented filmmaker,” said Magnolia President Eamonn Bowles. “We’re thrilled to be working with him again. Peter Dunning is one of the most compelling characters I’ve seen in a film in years.” 

The film was produced by Melissa Auf der Maur, and Jake Perlin and Andrew Adair of Cinema Conservancy. The deal was negotiated by Magnolia Senior Vice President of Acquisitions Dori Begley and Magnolia Vice President of Acquisitions John Von Thaden with Perlin on behalf of the filmmakers.



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Magnolia’s Head of Worldwide Sales Christina Rogers and Vice President of International Sales Scott Veltri will be selling international rights to the film at the Cannes Film Festival next month.

Upcoming Magnolia films include the Tom Hiddleston thriller “High-Rise,” the Terence Davies drama “Sunset Song” and the coming-of-age drama “Viva.”