Drafthouse Films Nabs North American Rights For Sono Sion's WHY DON'T YOU GO PLAY IN HELL?

Associate Editor, News; Toronto, Canada (@Mack_SAnarchy)
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With only a couple weeks to go before Sono Sion's latest film Why Don't You Go Play In Hell? starts to bow at international festivals around the world, including here in Toronto during the Midnight Madness program at TIFF, Drafthouse Films has already got the jump on everyone and scooped North American rights for the film. 

We also have a small gallery of new images to share with you as well as a couple teasers. Expect to be able to see the film sometime in 2014 through a theatrical run and on VOD/Digital platforms. If you want to include Sono's film in your own festival there is contact information within the press release below. 


Venice 2014 World Premiere Film From Legendary Japanese Director Sion Sono Set For US Release In 2014 

AUSTIN, TX - August 22, 2013 - Drafthouse Films, the film distribution arm of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, announced today the acquisition of North American rights to award-winning Japanese director Sion Sono's (Suicide Club, Love Exposure) 31st feature film Why Don't You Play In Hell? 

Described by Sono as "an action film about the love of 35mm," and based on a screenplay he wrote nearly 15 years ago, the film follows the collusion of an amateur production crew and a yakuza boss as they attempt to make a movie amidst the decade-long war between two rival crime lords. 

Why Don't You Play In Hell? will make its World Premiere at the upcoming Venice International Film Festival and its North American premiere at this year's Toronto International Film Festival in the 'Midnight Madness' program. A VOD/Digital and theatrical release is planned for 2014. 

Why Don't You Play In Hell? is Sono at his most endearing and it's awesome," says Drafthouse Films COO James Emanuel Shapiro, "its a privilege to get to work with one of the best films of his career." The deal was negotiated by Tim League and James Emanuel Shapiro on behalf of Drafthouse Films and Yoshimura Yumiko of T-Joy Co, LTD.

For theatrical bookings contact Sumyi Khong Antonson, VP of Marketing and Distribution at sumyi.antonson[at]drafthouse.com. For festival bookings contact Jon Stobezki, Festival Director at jon.stobezki[at]drafthouse.com. 

About Why Don't You Play In Hell? (TIFF Program Guide) 

Hirata (Hiroki Hasegawa) dreams of being a movie director, and with his ragtag film crew, he intends to shoot a masterpiece. Meanwhile, a feud between Yakuza clans heats up after big boss Muto's wife massacres rival boss Ikegami's gang, jeopardizing her daughter Michiko's acting career in the process. Ten years later, and days before his wife's release from jail, Muto must somehow prove to her that Michiko has become a big-screen star. And so, the ruthless criminal underground and the happy-go-lucky film crew collide in an orgy of blood and B-roll. 

 Based on an early script by Sono, this extravaganza has autobiographical undercurrents in its tribute to the undying pursuit of one's cinematic dreams. It features a number of familiar Japanese character actors, including Jun Kunimura (Hard Boiled) and Shinichi Tsutsumi (Dangan Runner, Unlucky Monkey, Monday) as the feuding Yakuza bosses, and Tak Sakaguchi (star of RyĆ»hei Kitamura's Versus, which premiered at Midnight Madness) in a role that mirrors the actor's own discovery by a director back when he was a back-alley brawler. 

Why Don't You Play in Hell? is a rip-roaring tale of cinematic passions slashed and shredded into a bloody mess by Yakuza swords.

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BeyondFestAugust 23, 2013 10:28 PM

2013 is still young but this could be the best film of the year.

Martin WagnerAugust 29, 2013 6:30 PM

Well. Variety's just trashed this.


Todd BrownAugust 29, 2013 7:26 PM

Well, having seen it, a) I'm not surprised and, b) Variety are wrong.