Sundance: Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquires International Rights to 'Whiplash'
PARK CITY -- Hours after Damien Chazelle's Whiplash opened the 30th annual Sundance Film Festival, Sony Pictures Worldwide has acquired rights to several international territories to the coming-of-age drama that stars The Spectacular Now's Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons.
Territories include the U.K., Scandinavia, Benelux, Eastern Europe (excluding CIS), Greece, South Africa, Spain, Italy, Portugal and Latin America.
The film centers on 19-year-old Andrew (Teller), a promising drummer who joins a cutthroat Manhattan conservatory where he comes under the harsh scrutiny of Terence Fletcher (Simmons), a brutal music instructor.
At the film's packed afterparty at Spur on Main Street, several domestic distributors were said to be interested in the drumming drama. The producers have carved out certain foreign territories as a lure for a domestic buyer. WME is handling domestic rights.
The film is written and directed by Chazelle, who expanded his award-winning 2013 Sundance short of the same name into a feature. Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook, Michel Litvak and David Lancaster produced Whiplash, while Jason Reitman, Gary Michael Walters and Couper Samuelson executive produced.
A source pegs the film's budget at $3.3. million.
The deal was negotiated by SPWA’s Michael Helfand, Jon Freedberg and Chan Phung. International sales agency Sierra/Affinity repped Bold Films, which financed the film.