IFC Films swoops in on 'Loop'


With typical patience and frugality, IFC Films added another Sundance Film Festival acquisition to its roster Thursday when it picked up U.S. distribution rights to the political farce "In the Loop."

On Wednesday, IFC purchased U.S. rights to the Park City at Midnight selection "Dead Snow," a Norwegian horror comedy about zombie Nazis. These late-in-the-fest pickups are not unusual for the indie distributor, necessarily more budget-conscious than some of the bigger specialty outfits.

"Loop," which stars James Gandolfini, Steve Coogan, Peter Capaldi, Tom Hollander and Anna Chlumsky, is a comedy about what happens when politicians, military officials and other bureaucrats clash with war on the table. The screenplay was written by Jesse Armstrong and Armando Iannucci, who also directed.

The deal was negotiated by Arianna Bocco and Betsy Rodgers for IFC Films with Cassian Elwes of William Morris Independent and Ben Roberts of Protagonist Pictures on behalf of BBC Films, Aramid Capital and the U.K. Film Council.

" 'In the Loop' is one of those rare movies that you know is destined to be a classic," IFC Entertainment president Jonathan Sehring said.

The out-of-competition film had been garnering positive word-of-mouth among potential buyers for days despite the fact its first public screening (and world premiere) was not until Thursday night. A press-and-industry screening sparked interest earlier in the week.

IFC plans to release "Loop" this year through its IFC in Theaters program and on DVD through IFC Entertainment's exclusive deal with Blockbuster. (partialdiff)