Paramount Vantage acquires rights to Davis Guggenheim’s documentary


MUMBAI: Worldwide rights for the new documentary from director Davis Guggenheim and Participant Media have been acquired by Paramount Vantage.

The documentary had its world premiere on 22 January at the Sundance Film Festival. Paramount Vantage will release the movie in the fall of 2010 in the US with international release dates not yet determined.


The studio’s specialty division Paramount Classics released Guggenheim’s acclaimed An Inconvenient Truth in 2006. The influential documentary, financed and executive produced by Participant Media, received two Academy Awards, and was a worldwide box office hit, grossing more than $24 million in the US and nearly $50 million worldwide.


The new film, developed, financed and executive produced by Participant Media, examines the crisis of public education in the United States through multiple interlocking stories – from a handful of students and their families whose futures hang in the balance, to the educators and reformers trying to find real and lasting solutions within a dysfunctional system.


Recording artist, concert performer and philanthropist John Legend composed the end title song Shine. Legend’s own Show Me campaign uses education to break the cycle of poverty through sustainable development at the individual, family, and community levels.


Paramount Film Group president Adam Goodman said, "Our commitment to this movie and the issue of education is urgently important to all of us at Paramount. In collaboration with our partners, we hope to bring about a real solution."


Guggenheim said, "With these two great partners, Participant Media and Paramount Pictures, we have a chance to create public awareness around this issue, and this is the only way we can make real change in our children’s schools."


Participant Media CEO Jim Berk added, "The movie creates an emotional personal connection to an issue which underpins the very future of our country. By reuniting with our good friends at Paramount, we have the chance to build on our ground breaking partnership on An Inconvenient Truth to launch a national conversation from movie theaters, to kitchen tables all across the country."


"It’s wonderful to have Paramount as partners on this film," says the film’s producer, Lesley Chilcott, who was also a producer on An Inconvenient Truth. "It’s crucial to have experts like Paramount and Participant that understand the power of a film to create urgency about an important issue. We need to get the message out there. Millions of kids are waiting."


The film is directed and produced by Guggenheim. Lesley Chilcott is the producer, with Jeff Skoll and Diane Weyermann serving as executive producers. Written by Davis Guggenheim and Billy Kimball. The cinematographers are Erich Roland and Bob Richman. Greg Finton, Jay Cassidy, and Kim Roberts served as the editors.