NEON announced today that it has acquired global rights to Impact Partners’, RadicalMedia and Stacey Reiss Productions Spaceship Earth, directed by Matt Wolf, which made its World Premiere at Sundance where it was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize.
The documentary earned rave reviews out of the festival with critics hailing the film as “truly out of this world,” saying that it “has the excitement and involvement of a fictive sci-fi narrative.” Spaceship Earth was produced by Stacey Reiss and Wolf.
Using archive material and present-day interviews with surviving Biospherians, the documentary follows a group of counter-cultural visionaries who, in 1991, built an enormous replica of earth’s ecosystem called Biosphere 2. When eight “biospherians” went to live sealed inside, they faced ecological calamities and cult accusations.
Their epic adventure is a cautionary tale about the forces that threaten our planet, and also an inspirational tribute to what a small creative group can achieve.
Tom Quinn and Jeff Deutchman negotiated the deal for NEON along with John Sloss from Cinetic Media on behalf of the filmmakers. The executive producers are RadicalMedia’s Jon Kamen, Dave Sirulnick, and Stanley Buchthal, Impact Partners’ Dan Cogan, Jenny Raskin and Geralyn White Dreyfous, Paula Froehle, Steve Cohen, Pierre Hauser, Nion McEvoy, Leslie Berriman, Lessing Stern, Andrea van Beuren and Sarah Johnson.
Wolf’s previous feature documentaries include Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell, about the cult cellist and disco producer Arthur Russell; Teenage, about early youth culture and the birth of teenagers; and Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project, about the activist Marion Stokes, who recorded television 24 hours a day for 30 years.
NEON most recently made history with four Academy Award wins for Bong Joon Ho’s Parasite, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best International Feature.
The distributor’s other noteworthy releases include: Double Oscar nominee Honeyland; Todd Douglas Miller’s Apollo 11, 2019’s highest-grossing documentary with a worldwide gross of $16 million; Tim Wardle’s Three Identical Strangers, winner of the Sundance Special Jury Award for Storytelling which surpassed $13 million at the box office; and Craig Gillespie’s I, Tonya, which garnered multiple Academy Award nominations, one win for Allison Janney and amassed over $30 million in domestic box office.
Recent releases include: the critically-acclaimed Cannes hit Portrait of a Lady on Fire, which was nominated for Best Foreign Film at the Golden Globes and Independent Spirit Awards; and Tamara Kotevska and Ljubo Stefanov’s award-winning and record-breaking Honeyland, which is the first non-fiction feature to land Academy Award nominations for Best Documentary and Best International Feature Film in the same year.
NEON also released Alejandro Landes’ cinematic thriller Monos (the Colombian selection for the Academy Awards); Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz‘s horror film The Lodge starring Riley Keough; Julius Onah’s Luce starring Naomi Watts and Octavia Spencer; Tom Harper’s Wild Rose starring Jessie Buckley; John Chester’s The Biggest Little Farm; Chinonye Chukwu’s Clemency starring Academy Award nominee Alfre Woodard; and the electrifying documentary about Aretha Franklin, Amazing Grace.
After their successful collaboration on I, Tonya in January 2018, 30WEST (Dan Friedkin’s and Micah Green’s strategic venture) partnered with NEON’s Tom Quinn (Founder & CEO) and Tim League (Co-Founder) to become majority investors in the company.
Are you looking forward to the Spaceship Earth release? Let us know what you think in the comments.