Sony Pictures Classics has acquired all rights to Aisling Walsh's Maudie. The deal covers all rights to the Maud Lewis biopic in the U.S. and multiple territories including Latin America, Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Portugal, Scandinavia, Turkey and the U.K. as well as parts of Eastern Europe, Asia and South Africa.
Written by Sherry White, the film stars Sally Hawkins and Ethan Hawke in the true story of an unlikely romance between recluse Everett Lewis (Hawke), who hires a fragile yet determined woman named Maud (Hawkins) to be his housekeeper. Maud yearns to be independent and to live away from her protective family. And she also yearns, passionately, to create art. Unexpectedly, Everett finds himself falling in love. Maudie charts Everett's efforts to protect himself from being hurt, Maud's deep and abiding love for this difficult man and her surprising rise to fame as a folk painter.
The film recently premiered at the Telluride and Toronto film festivals. CAA negotiated the deal on behalf of the filmmakers, while Mongrel handled international territories.
"Sally Hawkins and Ethan Hawke are astounding and surprising, making Maudie an illuminating film experience," said Sony Pictures Classics presidents Michael Barker and Tom Bernard.
Added Mongrel International president Charlotte Mickie: "Maud Lewis, the artist and the woman, triumphantly found her ideal home and true happiness within. Maudie, the movie, has done the same with our dear friends at Sony Classics and with independent distributors all over the world. We're so proud and we are looking forward to wonderful collaborations."
The film is produced by Bob Cooper, Mary Young Leckie, Susan Mullen and Mary Sexton and executive produced by Heather Haldane, Hussain Amarshi, Alan Moloney, Johanna Hogan, Mark Roberts, Sheldon Rabinowitz, Ross Jacobson, Tyler Mitchell and Ed Riche. Financiers included Telefilm Canada, the Newfoundland and Labrador Development Corp., Bell Media's Harold Greenberg Fund, the Ontario Media Development Corp. and the Irish Film Board. It was produced in association with Corner Piece Capital and Citadel Canadian Films. Maudie is a Rink Rat Prods./Screen Door/Parallel Films co-production.
"I am delighted that Sony Pictures Classics have come on board to distribute Maudie," Walsh said. "They have an amazing record of bringing indie films to the widest audience possible, and I am so excited to be working with them."