Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to “Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes.” The deal comes in advance of the documentary’s world premiere on Sunday at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.
The picture about the conservative cable news mogul was directed by Alexis Bloom, who previously oversaw HBO’s “Bright Lights,” a look at the relationship between Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds. Magnolia will release the picture on December 7 following a fall festival run. A&E Network, which financed the film, retains television rights.
Ailes founded Fox News, pushing it to the top of the ratings heap by promoting a brand of right-leaning commentary and by nurturing the careers of Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity, two hosts with a taste for the jugular. However, he was ultimately ousted from power after several women, including anchors Megyn Kelly and Gretchen Carlson, accused him of sexual harassment and misconduct. He became an advisor to Donald Trump’s campaign, but his health quickly failed. Ailes died in 2017 after suffering a subdural hematoma.
“Divide and Conquer” was produced by Bloom with Will Cohen of Jigsaw Productions. A&E IndieFilms’ Molly Thompson, Elaine Frontain Bryant and Robert Sharenow executive produced the project alongside Alex Gibney and Stacey Offman of Jigsaw Productions.
The deal for the film was negotiated by Magnolia SVP of Acquisitions John Von Thaden and EVP Dori Begley with Cinetic Media on behalf of the filmmakers.