*Updated with the official press release* A number of distributors were looking to acquire The Lords of Salem after its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, but it has been revealed that Anchor Bay emerged as the victor.
According to Deadline, Anchor Bay Films has acquired US rights to The Lords of Salem with a minimum guarantee bid of around $1.5 million. Other companies that were in the running included Image Entertainment, Millennium Entertainment, and Open Road Films.
There are no details on how or when the film will be released, but unless Anchor Bay is really looking to get this in front of audiences around Halloween, we don't expect to see it until next year. Traditionally, Anchor Bay is known for running very limited theatrical releases followed by a Blu-ray/DVD/VOD release right after. However, as Anchor Bay continues to expand it's portfolio and get involved in bigger horror productions, this might be a good film for them to push with. Rob Zombie has a built-in audience and we wouldn't be surprised if this becomes Anchor Bay's biggest release to date.
Official Press Release:
"TORONTO, ON – After much speculation and a heated bidding war, Anchor Bay Films emerged as the new home for Rob Zombie’s The Lords of Salem. Under the agreement, Anchor Bay will handle all U.S. distribution rights on the film. Written and directed by Rob Zombie, The Lords of Salem stars Sheri Moon Zombie (Halloween) as well as Bruce Davison (X-Men), Jeff Daniel Phillips (Halloween 2), Ken Foree (Dawn of the Dead), Patricia Quinn (The Rocky Horror Picture Show), Dee Wallace (E.T.) and Judy Geeson (To Sir, With Love). The film premiered last week at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival and received rave reviews from mainstream and genre critics alike. Anchor Bay Entertainment President Bill Clark made today’s announcement.
“We’re extremely excited to be working on this film with Rob,” commented Kevin Kasha, Executive Vice President, Acquisitions and Co-Productions. “It’s a perfect fit for Anchor Bay.”
“I have always been a fan of the care and respect Anchor Bay has put into their genre titles,” said Zombie. “I can’t wait to work together to bring this bizarre, special movie to the masses.”
The Los Angeles Times dubbed The Lords of Salem “his darkest most unnerving yet,” IndieWire declared it “Rob Zombie’s best film” and Dread Central said “fans couldn’t stop talking about the film” after its premiere in Toronto.
Rock star-turned-horror maven Rob Zombie conjures up a nerve-wracking chiller involving Heidi (Sheri Moon Zombie), a radio station DJ, who receives a wooden box containing a vinyl record, "a gift from the Lords." She assumes it’s from a band trying to promote themselves. Heidi and others listen but unbeknownst to them, the bizarre sounds within the grooves immediately trigger flashbacks of Salem's violent past. Is Heidi going mad or are the Lords of Salem returning for revenge on modern day Salem?
The deal was negotiated by Kevin Kasha, Marc Barson and Josh Thomashow for Anchor Bay Films and by Josh Braun of Submarine and Brian Kavanaugh-Jones for Alliance Films. Alliance Films financed the film which was produced by Andy Gould, Jason Blum, Oren Peli and Steven Schneider. Kavanaugh-Jones is the executive producer."
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