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Sundance: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Documentary ‘RBG’ Sells to Magnolia, Participant

RBG
Courtesy of Sundance Film Festival

RBG,” a look at the life and career of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, has sold to Magnolia Pictures and Participant Media.

Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed, but the deal is for worldwide distribution, which runs the gamut from theatrical distribution to home video and streaming platforms. CNN Films, which produced the movie, holds U.S. broadcast rights to “RBG.”

Ginsburg made the trek last weekend from Washington, D.C., to Park City, Utah, for the film’s Sundance Film Festival premiere. She received a hero’s welcome at the snow-caked mountainside resort. The 84-year-old Ginsburg held forth on the #MeToo moment and women’s rights in a question-and-answer session following the first showing of the film and in an interview with NPR’s Nina Totenberg (a longtime friend).

“RBG” uses archival footage to trace Ginsburg’s barrier-busting career, following her rise from a brainy Brooklynite to the highest court in the land. It also delves into her relationship with her husband, Martin Ginsburg, and catches the justice in private moments, following her on workouts and with her granddaughter. What emerges is a portrait of a person who used her legal career to fight for women and minorities.

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The doc is directed and produced by Betsy West and Julie Cohen of Storyville Films.

The deal was negotiated by Stacey Wolf, vice president of business affairs for CNN Worldwide, and and Kelly MacLanahan, senior counsel for CNN Worldwide. John and Eric Sloss of Cinetic Media also represented CNN Films. For Magnolia Pictures, the deal was negotiated by co-executive vice president Dori Begley, senior vice president of acquisitions John Von Thaden, and head of business affairs Sarah Hack. For Participant Media, the deal was made by Gabriel Brakin, general counsel and executive vice president of business affairs.