Topic Studios and “The Climb” filmmakers Michael Angelo Covino and Kyle Marvin have wrapped production on their second collaboration, a pandemic-set comedy from filmmaker Daniel Antebi titled “God’s Time.”
The new project comes as part of Covino and Marvin’s first-look deal with Topic Studios after working together on the Cannes-winning hit “The Climb,” which is now in theaters, distributed by Sony Pictures Classics. The filmmakers serve as executive producers on “God’s Time” under their Watch This Ready banner, alongside producers Emily Korteweg, Andrew Hutcheson and Reid Hannaford. And the new project fulfills the element of the Topic Studios partnership that Covino previously told Variety excited him most — having the opportunity to promote other new talent.
“It’s exciting to work with a filmmaker like Daniel on his first film,” Covino said in a statement. “He has a distinct vision and point of view that we can’t wait for the world to see. We’re grateful to have partners in Topic Studios and Raven who are committed to supporting and fostering new voices.”
Topic Studios financed “God’s Time” with Raven Capital Management, the New York private equity firm that owns Open Road Films. Executive producers on the project are Topic Studios’ Michael Bloom, Maria Zuckerman and Ryan Heller; Raven Capital’s James Masciello and Matt Sidari; Eddy Vallante and Josh Peters.
“We are so thrilled to have safely wrapped this hilarious and uniquely New York film,” Topic Studios’ EVP Maria Zuckerman said. “Daniel managed to capture this moment with heart, vision and humor that is all his own, and we knew it had to be made right away. Daniel is a filmmaker we’re all going to be watching for years to come, and we couldn’t be more excited to produce his debut feature with our dear friends at Watch This Ready and our new friends at Raven.”
“Daniel is a unique and talented writer/director with a creative energy that literally jumps off the page and we are excited to be a part of bringing his work to the big screen,” Masciello added. “Hats off to our partners at Watch This Ready and Topic Studios for stepping up to meet the challenges of shooting through a pandemic.”
The pandemic itself plays a central role in the New York City-set film, which follows characters Dev (Ben Groh) and Luca (Dion Costelloe) as they race through the city to stop Regina (newcomer Liz Caribel), whom a synopsis describes as “a fellow addict in recovery who is likely on a righteous mission to murder her ex-boyfriend.” Antebi, a 2019 Sundance Ignite Fellow and 2020 Sundance Screenwriters Intensive Fellow who makes his directorial debut on the film, developed the story with its stars Groh and Costelloe.
“This ride has put me in a constant state of gratitude: from writing the story with Ben and Dion back in June to my collaborative relationship with Topic Studios, Raven, and Watch This Ready,” Antebi said. “When reality makes me want to bawl my eyes out, it is a privilege to make people laugh.“