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Kristen Bell Is On a Roll: Focus World, Screen Media Slate 'The Lifeguard' for Summer

Photo of Ryan Lattanzio By Ryan Lattanzio | TOH! March 23, 2013 at 4:11PM

It's a good year so far for Kristen Bell, as the Kickstarter campaign to reboot "Veronica Mars" reached its goal last week. Focus Features' alternative distribution outlet Focus World has partnered with Screen Media Films in acquire U.S. rights to Sundance entry "The Lifeguard."
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It's a good year so far for Kristen Bell, as the Kickstarter campaign to reboot "Veronica Mars" reached its goal last week. Focus Features' alternative distribution outlet Focus World has partnered with Screen Media Films in acquire U.S. rights to Sundance entry "The Lifeguard."

The directorial debut of TV writer Liz W. Garcia, "The Lifeguard" stars Bell ("House of Lies"), Mamie Gummer ("Side Effects") and Martin Starr (who previously collaborated with Bell on TV's late "Party Down"). Also joining the cast is Oscar-nominee Amy Madigan (1985’s "Twice in a Lifetime").

Almost-thirtysomething Leigh (Bell) uproots her life as a reporter in New York and returns hometown Connecticut. There, she resumes the suburban life she left behind: living with her parents, hanging out with old friends who never left (Starr and Gummer), working as a lifeguard like she did in high school, where she was once the valedictorian. But her simple life takes a twisted turn as she begins an affair with a 16-year-old boy (David Lambert).

Read an Indiewire review with Bell from Sundance here. Indiewire interviewed writer/director Garcia at the festival in January.

Focus World and Screen Media Films will distribute "The Lifeguard" in theaters and on digital platforms this summer.


This article is related to: Kristen Bell, Sundance Film Festival, Liz W. Garcia, The Lifeguard


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.