Screen Media has acquired “Best Sellers,” a comedy with Michael Caine and Aubrey Plaza about a pair of misfits that has a literary twist. The deal is for all U.S. rights, and the company plans to release the film theatrically and on-demand in September.
Directed by Lina Roessler (“Little Whispers: The Vow”), “Best Sellers” centers on an ambitious young editor (Plaza) who decides to try to save the flailing publishing house her father left her by going on a book tour with the bitter, hard-drinking author (Caine) who helped establish the company several decades and an ocean of booze ago.
Cary Elwes, Scott Speedman, Ellen Wong and Veronica Ferres co-star in the film. The screenplay, written by Anthony Grieco, won a 2015 Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting award.
“Not since ‘As Good as it Gets’ have we seen such a mismatched pair take to the road,” said Screen Media in a statement. “Aubrey Plaza’s humor and charm paired with Michael Caine’s endearing curmudgeon-ism really captivated us. We know audiences will be drawn to their improbable friendship as much as we were.”
“Best Sellers” was produced by Jonathan Vanger for Wishing Tree Productions and Pierre Even under Item 7 in Canada, Arielle Elwes, Cassian Elwes and Wayne Marc Godfrey in the U.K., and executive produced by Petr Jákl, Martin Barab, Jere Hausfater, Mark Damon, Hussain Amarshi, Sashi Arnold, Kevin Bernhardt, Paul-E. Audet, Adam Goldworm, and Joe Sisto.
“We are thrilled to work with Screen Media on the release of ‘Best Sellers,’” said the producers of the film. “The team there loves this fantastic movie, and we are looking forward to promoting the release alongside them. The pairing of Michael Caine and Aubrey Plaza is unexpected but the two of them absolutely shine together on screen. Lina Roessler directed them with a masterful balance of comedy and poignancy. She’s certainly a director to watch.”
“This film is a tour-de-force for Michael Caine and Aubrey Plaza, who brilliantly play off each other throughout this effervescent comedy. But the real kudos go to first-time director Lina Roessler for having the ability to get the most out of these seasoned comedians. She is a fresh young talent with an assured future,” said Mark Damon.
The film was funded by Petr Jákl and Martin J. Barab’s RU Robot, National Bank of Canada and Telefilm Canada. Foresight Unlimited is handling foreign sales for the film. The deal was negotiated by Seth Needle, Screen Media’s SVP of global acquisitions and co-productions, on behalf of the company with Elwes, Barab, and CAA Media Finance representing the filmmakers. Mark Damon of Foresight Unlimited brought the film to Screen Media and facilitated the transaction between the parties.
Screen Media’s recent releases include mafia thriller “The Birthday Cake” starring Shiloh Fernandez, Ewan McGregor, and Val Kilmer, and the comedies “Eat Wheaties!” starring Tony Hale, and “Senior Moment” starring William Shatner, Jean Smart and Christopher Lloyd.