'Push' lands deal via Oprah

'Push' lands deal via Oprah

As reported, Lee Daniels' Push won big at the Sundance Film Festival, but did not have a distribution deal.

Published February 3, 2009

PushAs reported , Lee Daniels ' Push won big at the Sundance Film Festival, but did not have a distribution deal. Recently, Lionsgate snatched up the film that according to Variety.com is the biggest deal to come out of the Sundance Film Festival. The deal was assisted with the help of Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry .

"Lionsgate reportedly paid north of $5 million. Studio intends to release the film, based on the 1996 book about a Harlem teenager, this year.

Winfrey's and Perry's support sweetened the deal for Lionsgate and the filmmakers. The pair will throw their marketing muscle behind the release of the pic through their respective companies, Harpo Films and 34th Street Films .

Directed by Lee Daniels from an adapted script by Damien Paul , 'Push' also stars newcomer Gabourey 'Gabby' Sidibe, Paula Patton , Mariah Carey and Lenny Kravitz . Project reteams Lionsgate and Daniels, who has signed with the William Morris Agency , for the first time since 'Monster's Ball.'

'Push' revolves around an overweight, illiterate African-American teen in Harlem who's about to give birth to her second child when she is accepted into an alternative school.

'I've never seen anything like it. The moment I saw Push: Based on the Novel by Sapphire , I knew I wanted to do whatever I could to encourage other people to see this movie. The film is so raw and powerful -- it split me open,' Winfrey said."

Written by Clay Cane


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