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Sundance 2013: Weinsteins' Radius Nabs 'Twenty Feet From Stardom' Doc

The documentary about background singers premiered at Eccles Theatre on Jan. 17.

Twenty Feet From Stardom
"Twenty Feet From Stardom"

The Weinstein Co.'s Radius label has acquired the documentary Twenty Feet From Stardom. The deal is for low seven figures for all rights in North America, and a late summer 2013 theatrical release is planned. IFC and Magnolia were bidders for the film, according to sources.   

The documentary follows the career of the backup singers to industry legends including Bruce Springsteen and Bette Midler. Director Morgan Neville brings to light the uncelebrated artists and the role they've played in popular music.

Twenty Feet From Stardom premiered at Eccles Theatre on Jan. 17 and received multiple standing ovations from the crowd. A handful of the featured background singers -- Judith Hill, Tata Vega and Merry Clayton -- spoke during the post-screening Q&A and broke out into song.

“We were overwhelmed by this beautiful film that focuses on the underdog -- these incredible artists who -- until now -- have been largely unknown," said Radius co-presidents Tom Quinn and Jason Janego in a statement. "We've been coming to Sundance for more than 15 years and we've rarely, if ever, seen an audience reaction like we did last night." 

Radius is the Weinstein Co.'s specialty label that often handles day-and-date and VOD releases. 

Twenty Feet From Stardom is screening in Sundance's U.S. Documentary Competition section.

"I'm so happy that these amazing singers who have spent their careers supporting stars are finally going to get their moment in the spotlight," said Neville in a statement. "We're thrilled to be working with Radius and TWC -- it means their voices will finally be heard."

Submarine Entertainment's Josh Braun and David Koh represented the filmmakers in the sale.

Email: Daniel.Miller@THR.com; Tatiana.Siegel@THR.com

Twitter: @DanielNMiller; @TatianaSiegel27