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Sundance: Fox Searchlight Acquires 'Way, Way Back' For Almost $10 Million; Stars Carell, Collette, Janney, Rudolph and Rockwell

Thompson on Hollywood By Anne Thompson and Jay Fernandez | Thompson on Hollywood January 22, 2013 at 1:31PM

Fox Searchlight has picked up the rights to Nat Faxon and Jim Rash's "The Way, Way Back," which premiered at Sundance on January 21. The acquisition is a big buy, reportedly just under $10 million...
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Sam Rockwell in 'The Way, Way Back'
Sam Rockwell in 'The Way, Way Back'

Fox Searchlight has picked up the rights to Nat Faxon and Jim Rash's "The Way, Way Back," which premiered at Sundance on January 21. The acquisition is a big buy, reportedly just under $10 million. Clearly, Searchlight expects to take the movie out in a wide commercial release, as this is more than they paid for Sundance hit and Oscar-winning Steve Carell-starrer "Little Miss Sunshine."

"The Way Way Back" stars Carell, Toni Collette, Allison Janney, Maya Rudolph and Sam Rockwell, and centers on a teenager who takes a summer job at a run-down water park. Faxon and Rash, Oscar-winning co-writers of Searchlight's 2011 release "The Descendents," make their directorial debut.

Here's the synopsis via Sundance:

The Way, Way Back tells the story of 14-year-old Duncan’s awkward, funny, and sometimes painful summer vacation with his mother, Pam, her overbearing boyfriend, Trent, and his daughter, Steph. Although Duncan has a tough time fitting in and finding his place, he does find an unlikely ally and mentor in Owen, a carefree employee at the local water park where Duncan gets a job. Over the course of the summer, as his mother drifts further away, Duncan—with encouragement from Owen—begins to open up and come into his own.

This article is related to: News, Sundance Film Festival, Fox Searchlight, Steve Carell, News, Festivals


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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.