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Relativity Media Breaks Records Acquiring Joseph Gordon-Levitt's 'Don Jon's Addiction' For Summer Release

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by Oliver Lyttelton
January 21, 2013 3:19 PM
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Now that the acquisitions floodgates are open, the buys keep piling up like it's Black Friday in studio shopping baskets, and this afternoon has brought news of the biggest deal yet at the festival, with Variety the first trade to report that Relativity Media are set to put down what may be a record-breaking sum for "Don Jon's Addiction," the raunchy comedy that marks the directorial debut of Joseph Gordon-Levitt. The film also stars the "Looper" actor as a modern-day New Jersey Casanova, who's unable to form real relationships with women due to his porn addiction, but begins to soften up after meeting two women, a younger girl (Scarlett Johansson) and an older classmate (Julianne Moore), and we'd picked it out as one of the films likely to spark a bidding war.

And despite the subject matter and content (which includes some shots of porn that some have speculated could get the film an NC-17 rating if left untouched), the move certainly found a lot of attention with CBS Films, Lionsgate/Roadside and The Weinstein Company all chasing the film. But it's Relativity who've won out, thanks to a $4 million pricetag and a commitment to a big push in theaters. Indeed, Deadline say that the company have promised a Sundance record-breaking $25 million in P&A for the film when they release it on at least 2000 screens in the summer, so it's clear this won't be some mere arthouse roll-out. And given hugely positive early reactions (read our review here) Relativity are confident this can find a wide audience.

The company recently has had mixed success as a distributor in their few short years of existence; "Limitless," "Immortals" and "Act Of Valor" all performed well, "Machine Gun Preacher," "The Raven" and "House At The End Of The Street" less so. But they've got a diverse and reasonably aggressive slate lined up for 2013, including this week's "Movie 43" (which seems to be being essentially buried), "Safe Haven," "21 And Over," "Paranoia," "Malavita" and "Out Of The Furnace," and they're clearly confident that the film's star power can even out any of the more controversial aspects of the film.

Elsewhere (via Deadline), a new company, ill-advisedly named Mundial (a join venture of IM Global and Latin American distributors Canana) have picked up the rights to "Who Is Dayani Cristal?," the Gael Garcia Bernal-produced documentary about the death of an immigrant in the Arizona desert, which opened the festival last Thursday. And Variety add that Paramount are chasing "Fruitvale" hard, while The Weinstein Company are said to have rights of refusal on "Ain't Them Bodies Saints," though nothing is confirmed as yet. What'll be the next film to get picked up? Make your guesses below.

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