×

Cannes: Hirokazu Kore-eda’s ‘Shoplifters’ Sells to Magnolia (EXCLUSIVE)

Magnolia Pictures has picked up North American rights to “Shoplifters,” the acclaimed new drama from Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda, Variety has learned.

The film is in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and marks the director’s seventh time appearing at the prestigious French gathering for cinephiles. “Shoplifters” has garnered strong reviews for its humanist look at a family living on the margins. Variety’s Maggie Lee, for instance, wrote that Kore-eda “makes a mature and heart-wrenching return to his socially-conscious dramas,” while IndieWire’s David Ehrlich declared that “Shoplifters” is “the very best of the writer-director’s delicate, deceptive, and profoundly moving dramas about the forces that hold a family together (or don’t).”

The film follows a petty thief named Osamu who comes across a little girl who is struggling to survive in the freezing cold. He’s eventually able to convince his wife to take care of the child after learning of the hardships she faces. It’s a strain because of the family’s lack of money, but beyond having another mouth to feed, their bonds are tested after an unexpected event unearths devastating secrets.

“In a long career of incredible peaks, Hirokazu Kore-eda has delivered one of his best works,” said Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles in a statement. “‘Shoplifters’ is an incredible story that deals with familial bonds in a way I’ve never seen before.”

The pick-up comes as Magnolia is currently enjoying strong box office success with “RBG,” its documentary about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The company’s recent releases include the Oscar-nominated “I Am Not Your Negro”  and last year’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner “The Square.”

“I am very happy to hear that Magnolia has come on board the film,” Kore-eda said in a statement. “The reaction at Cannes has been much greater than we hoped and now that the strong Magnolia team is on board, I cannot wait to have the film shown to audiences in North America.”

Kore-eda wrote and edited the film in addition to directing it. “Shoplifters” was produced by Kaoru Matsuzaki, Akihiko Yose, and Hijiri Taguchi. Executive producers are Takashi Ishihara, Tom Yoda, and Yasuhito Nakae.

The deal was negotiated by Magnolia senior VP of acquisitions John Von Thaden, with Eva Diederix of Wild Bunch and CAA Media Finance representing the filmmakers.

More Film

  • Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller

    Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller 'Blackwing' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Voltage Pictures will produce and fully finance screenwriter David Loughery’s latest thriller “Blackwing,” Variety has learned exclusively. The company will introduce “Blackwing” to buyers at the upcoming European Film Market at the Berlin Film Festival, which opens Feb. 7. Nicolas Chartier and Dominic Rustam are producing, and Jonathan Deckter is executive producing for Voltage Pictures. [...]

  • ‘Metro Exodus’ Opens Up Post-Apocalyptic Russia

    ‘Metro Exodus’ Author On Film, Possible TV Series, Expansive New Game

    Since the launch of the post-apocalyptic survival first-person shooter “Metro 2033” in 2010, the series has kept its action confined to the tunnels running underneath Russia. “Metro Exodus,” due out next month, takes the gameplay to the surface for the first time, going above ground with sprawling levels against a changing backdrop of weather conditions [...]

  • Berlin Film 'The Ground Beneath My

    Berlin Competition Film 'The Ground Beneath My Feet' Sold to Germany's Salzgeber (EXCLUSIVE)

    Salzgeber has acquired the German rights for Berlin Film Festival competition title “The Ground Beneath My Feet” from sales agent Picture Tree International. Variety has been given exclusive access to the film’s trailer. Salzgeber will release the film, directed by Marie Kreutzer, mid-May. Picture Tree describes the movie as a “contemporary female-led drama touching on [...]

  • Donald Glover'Atlanta' TV show premiere, Arrivals,

    Childish Gambino Surprises Beverly Hills Crowd With Reimagined 'Redbone'

    Donald Glover made an unexpected appearance at Film Independent’s “An Evening With…” series tonight (Jan. 15), held at the Wallis Annenberg Center for Performing Arts in Beverly Hills and presented by the HFPA. Joining “Black Panther” composer and Childish Gambino collaborator Ludwig Göransson, who was the subject of a Q&A conducted by “The Treatment” host Elvis [...]

  • 76th ANNUAL GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS --

    Film News Roundup: Glenn Close Selected for Oscar Wilde Award

    In today’s film news roundup, Glenn Close gets an honor, AFI names its Directing Workshop for Women participants and Teri Polo gets cast in a Christmas drama. CLOSE HONOR Glenn Close will be honored on Feb. 21 by the US-Ireland Alliance at the 14th Annual Oscar Wilde Awards, held at J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot in [...]

  • Jason Reitman Ghostbusters

    Jason Reitman to Direct Secret 'Ghostbusters' Movie

    Sony Pictures is getting the wheels in motion for the next installment in the “Ghostbusters” franchise, and it knows who it’s going to call to direct: Jason Reitman. Sources tell Variety that Reitman, whose father, Ivan, directed the first two “Ghostbusters” movies, will direct the latest pic in the famous franchise. Reitman has also co-written a [...]

  • L.A. Teachers' Strike: Hollywood Studios, Unions

    Hollywood Studios, Unions Support Parents and Educators as L.A. Teachers' Strike Rages

    Hollywood unions and entertainment companies have stepped up to support the 31,000 Los Angeles teachers in the second day of a massive strike that’s affected nearly half a million students. More than 50 SAG-AFTRA members picketed at a Tuesday afternoon rally in the driving rain next to the Hollywood & Highland Center with secretary-treasurer Jane [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content