Toronto: Music Box Picks Up U.S. Rights to Arab Spring Doc 'We Are the Giant'

The distributor will release the film theatrically later this year for a qualifying Academy run

Music Box Films has acquired from Submarine all U.S. rights minus TV broadcast to Greg Barker's Arab Spring documentary We Are the Giant. Films We Like has acquired all Canadian rights.

Music Box Films will release the film theatrically later this year for a qualifying Academy run. Films We Like also will release the film in theaters later this year.

The deal was made at the Toronto Film Festival.

Directed by Greg Barker (Manhunt), We Are the Giant tells the stories of ordinary individuals who are transformed by the moral and personal challenges they encounter when standing up for what they believe is right. Since late 2010, more than a dozen nations have experienced popular uprisings that have collectively been called the Arab Spring. Protests, buoyed by predominantly young participants and social-media organizing, have exposed repression and led to regime changes. The film explores what it means to take part in a collective action that has the potential to unseat dictators and usher in new freedoms.

We Are the Giant is a Passion Pictures and Motto Pictures production and was produced by John Battsek, Julie Goldman and Barker. Razan Ghalayini co-produced.

"This week one of our film’s main characters, Maryam al-Kawaja of Bahrain and Denmark -- who drew standing ovations at Sundance for her brave, unwavering commitment to non-violence -- was arrested on spurious, trumped-up charges by her own government," Barker said. "And so I’m proud that this same week we can announce our partnership with Music Box, who are as committed as me and our entire production team to bringing these extraordinary, inspiring stories to American audiences, especially now, when the worst of humanity is getting so much attention. Maryam and others in We Are the Giant remind us of the enduring human spirit and the reason to persevere and retain hope even in the face of thuggery and chaos."

Added Battsek and Goldman: "Now is the perfect time to ramp up the visibility of the project. All the stories featured in our film mean a great deal to us, and crucially, with Maryam al-Kawaja currently languishing in prison, we know Music Box will put all their weight behind bringing her plight to the attention of the public at large."

The deals were negotiated by David Koh and Josh Braun of Submarine on behalf of the filmmakers along with Ed Arentz and William Schopf at Music Box as well as Ron Mann of Films We Like Canada

Email: Tatiana.Siegel@THR.com
Twitter: @TatianaSiegel27

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