The sports documentary Unicorn Town will be released in select theaters and on VOD Aug. 19 from Gravitas Ventures.
Directed by Nick Alfieri, the film follows a handful of American professionals on a team of German amateurs. Despite having just 40,000 residents and limited financial resources, the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns have been able to compete at the highest level of football in all of Europe. But as more money floods into the sport, coaches and fans must face the question: Has this team become a relic of the past or can their remarkable culture propel them beyond the constraints of reality?
The documentaries Fair Play, Fittest on Earth: Next Gen and Sh*t Saves the World, as well as the drama Bundles and the thriller Endangered, are available on DVD and VOD from Gravitas Ventures in July.
Due on July 5 is the documentary Fittest on Earth: Next Gen. Directed by Mariah Moore, the film explores the CrossFit Games. When Mat Fraser declared he would retire from competition after the 2020 season, he opened the door to a new wave of challengers. In 2021, new and seasoned competitors marked the 15th year of the Games with 15 events designed to test the limits of human potential and their worthiness to be called the fittest. Amid the surprises, upsets, and staggering displays of incomparable athleticism, Tia-Clair Toomey ticked on with consistency, all while shattering records and securing her place as the most unbeatable athlete in CrossFit Games history. At the 2021 Games, viewers witnessed the return of some of the sport’s greats and the rise of the new initiates — those who will carry the mantle of the Fittest on Earth for the next generation.
In the documentary Fair Play, available July 8, inspired by her New York Times best-selling book of the same name, Eve Rodsky takes viewers on her journey to change the unbalanced care dynamic in her home and society at large. Written, produced and directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom (Miss Representation, The Mask You Live In) and in partnership with Hello Sunshine, Fair Play follows three families on their journeys to better balance their home life, illustrating how fights about dirty dishes are actually linked to systemic issues affecting millions of families across the globe. Featuring interviews with Melinda Gates, Ai-jen Poo, Tony Porter and U.S. Representative Katie Porter, Fair Play demonstrates how private lives are public issues and that when the invisible care work historically held by women is made visible, we will achieve a more equitable future for all.
In the drama Bundles, available July 22, when senior picture day takes a turn for the worse, high school senior Morgan Davis, with the help of her friends, is forced to confront her old elementary school bestie and current rival Maria Sanchez. Together, they concoct a plot to exact revenge against Maria — an involuntary, impromptu haircut. In an attempt to get rid of evidence, the girls decide to sell the severed hair. They quickly discover that hair is in very high demand. Before long, what was supposed to be a one-time retribution quickly escalates into a get-rich-quick scheme, and the girls find themselves in a bundle of trouble. Directed by Ryan Jordan and Jeffery Leslie, the film stars Yovanna Harris, Tanisha Cardwell, Naysa Young, Alexis Jacquelyn Smith, Layla Khepri, Imonte Ford, Lisa Renee’ Marshall, Kevin Tan, Nick Scalise, Burke Vidnovic and Karen Culi.
The thriller Endangered debuts July 26. The film follows Alison, a down-on-her-luck young professional who spends her evenings trying to make ends meet as a ride-share driver. Wrapping her shift, she decides to take on one last passenger — only to find herself in unexpected danger when she discovers the mysterious stranger is not what he appears to be. Alison is cajoled into taking the fare against her better judgement, and when she discovers blood-stained jewelry and a gun in his bag, she begins to fear that she may not make it out of the trip alive. Through a twisted turn of events, Alison turns to her enigmatic passenger for help. In over her head, she must get through the night covering her tracks, avoiding the police and discovering who her inscrutable passenger truly is. Directed by Drew Walkup, the film stars Lizzie Zerebko, Michael Olavson, Edward Craig, Ryan Forrestal and Sam Lukowski.
The documentary Sh*t Saves the World is available July 5. Directed by Troy Hale, the film is a humorous take on our impact on the Earth, exploring serious topics in an environmental documentary format. The project brings to light subjects that are not often discussed — at least not at the dinner table.
The heist thriller The Score, the documentary followup The House in Between Part 2, and the comedy Green Ghost and the Masters of the Stone are among the titles available on VOD and DVD in June from Gravitas Ventures.
Available June 10 on VOD and DVD is The Score. Starring Will Poulter, Naomi Ackie and Johnny Flynn and directed by Malachi Smyth, The Score combines heist-thriller suspense with offbeat romance. In the film, two small-time crooks, Mike (Flynn) and Troy (Poulter), are on a mission — the “score” — that they both expect will transform their circumstances. At a roadside café, as they wait for a rendezvous hand-over, Troy falls in love with the waitress, Gloria (Ackie), and begins to question his life choices while the threat of real danger is driving to meet them.
The House in Between Part 2 is being released June 21 on VOD and DVD. The film takes up after Alice Jackson left her home due to a profound paranormal experience and world renown paranormal investigator Steve Gonsalves takes on the case making it his personal mission to help her face her fears so she can move back into her home.This film is the much anticipated follow up to the documentary The House in Between. The continuation of the story shows a detailed look at one of the most haunted homes in America and the real-life struggles of Jackson and the team working to help her get back into her home.
In Harmony, due June 24 on VOD and DVD, Sophia, a wounded soldier, suspects the medical facility the military placed her in isn’t really for her recovery, but something far more devious. Codenamed Harmony, the facility is in fact a government program to create telepathy. The film stars Marili Mejias, Jessica Inzeo, Mark Frazier, Pry’ce Jaymes, Jessica Gondwe and Elliot Bales.
In the comedy Green Ghost and the Masters of the Stone, available on VOD June 28, in a Texas border town, car salesman Charlie (Charlie Clark) moonlights as a masked Lucha libre wrestler going by the name “Green Ghost.” When unknown assailants arrive seeking an otherworldly emerald, Charlie discovers that he has super powers. As he learns to fight from the unconventional Master Gin (Danny Trejo), Charlie is told that he’s part of a secret warrior “triad of light” with his childhood friend Marco (Kuno Becker) and Marco’s sister Karina (Sofia Pernas) led by La Nana (Renee Victor). Together, they’ve been chosen to protect humanity from Drake (Marko Zaror), the embodiment of the Mayan apocalypse. As a stargate is opened in a Mexican pyramid, Drake seeks the power to destroy humankind — and Charlie, linked to the power of the emerald, is the only one who can stop him.
The drama A Beautiful Curse, available June 28 on VOD and DVD, a whole island affected by an unexplainable sleep phenomenon is closed off from the mainland. Photographer Samuel heads there, undetected to document the events, whereupon he finds Stella deep in slumber, and his attraction grows. He soon discovers the sleep affliction is more dangerous and personal than expected.
Gravitas Ventures, an Anthem Sports and Entertainment company, has appointed film veteran Chris Horton senior director of business development.
Horton reports to Gravitas president Michael Murphy.
In his newly-created role, Horton will be responsible for developing original IP to further bolster the content libraries of Gravitas and Anthem properties — driving the media companies’ mission to create and distribute content across multiple platforms. The new IP will be produced for AVOD and FAST channel platforms, complementing the company’s already-existing roster of FAST channels that includes AXS TV Now, IMPACT! Wrestling, Gravitas Movies, Gravitas Documentaries, Gravitas Adrenaline, Fight Network, Unexplained and Inside Sportfishing.
Horton has more than 20 years of experience across every facet of the independent film landscape — ranging from financing and production to sales and distribution. Before joining Gravitas, he spent nine years with the Sundance Institute, where he founded and led the Creative Distribution Initiative. While there, Horton also spearheaded the marketing and distribution efforts for more than 200 films, including Columbus,Unrest and Thunder Road. Prior to joining Sundance, Horton served as the head of acquisitions for independent distributor FilmBuff, where he acquired more than 300 films. He spent his early career working with John Sloss’ Cinetic Media.
“It’s thrilling to be working with Nolan, Michael, and the rest of the Gravitas team,” Horton said in a statement. “I’ve known and admired them for years, and am excited to implement and drive new content strategies to help the company grow.”
“As we continue to produce new FAST channels in a dynamic global environment, adding senior talent with strong experience as entertainment executives with a solid foundational understanding of how to connect the dots becomes more and more crucial,” Murphy said in a statement. “If you know Gravitas, you know Chris was cut from a similar cloth, making him the perfect complement to our team. It’s great to have an immediate shorthand with a new teammate and it’s been fun to watch Chris triangulate on viable commercial opportunities right out of the gate. We could not be more excited to have him onboard.”
Gravitas Ventures has acquired North American rights to distribute Hello Sunshine’s documentary Fair Play and will release it in select theaters and on demand on July 8.
About the unequal division of labor in the home, the documentary is based on the New York Times bestselling book of the same name from author Eve Rodsky.
Directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom and featuring interviews with Melinda Gates, C. Nicole Mason and Congresswoman Katie Porter, Fair Play takes viewers into the homes of real families that are on a journey to balance their home life. It doesn’t take long to realize that they aren’t really fighting about dishes in the sink. They are fighting about much bigger issues, problems that affect millions of couples and families across the globe. Immersed in these couples’ lives, the viewer sees their struggles, but also their triumphs. They learn how communication and a plan can have a life-changing impact, creating more connectedness with the most important people in their lives — their families.
“The home presents so small but it speaks to a much larger issue which is about reframing the value of time,” said the book’s author Rodsky in a statement. “Is an hour holding your child’s hand in the pediatrician’s office as valuable as an hour in the boardroom? We believe it is. This film aims to spark a conversation that fosters true fairness and healthy partnerships, starting with our most important organization, the home.”
“Gravitas is proud to partner with Hello Sunshine in the release of Fair Play in theaters and on VOD this summer,” Bill Guentzler, senior director of acquisitions, said in a statement. “We feel that this documentary can be a game-changer for many people by smartly and entertainingly digging into the dilemma facing many households today, balancing tasks and responsibilities.”
Gravitas Ventures has acquired North American rights to the documentary The Quest: Nepal and will release it on TVOD/digital platforms May 24 timed to International Everest Day May 29.
It follows filmmaker and host Alex Harz’s personal journey through the culture of Nepal, including his harrowing climb of Mt. Everest. The film is a quest to deeper understand and climb the most iconic mountain in the world while unveiling the fascinating culture, history and nature of Nepal. Viewers visit one of the most surreal cities on earth, Kathmandu, before embarking with the climbers on the expedition in the film.
“I summited at 12:30 p.m. Nepal time on May 21, and had the whole summit to myself for 45 minutes alongside my climbing partner and Sherpa brother, Tashi Sherpa (as seen in The Quest: Nepal),” filmmaker and climber Harz said in a statement. “This is not only unheard of to have the whole upper mountain and summit to yourself, but was completely unexpected and unplanned for as well. The opportunity to bring this first-hand, life changing experience to audiences is a gift I’m truly grateful to offer.”
International Everest Day commemorates the first time Everest was successfully summited on May 29, 1953, by Sir Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay of Nepal, which is referenced in the film. Tashi and Harz were all alone like Hillary and Norgay were back in 1953.
The Quest: Nepal has won awards at the Buenos Aires International Film Festival, New York International Film Awards, Santa Monica Film Festival, Accolade Competition, Barcelona International Film Festival, Europe Film Festival U.K. (EFFUK), Las Vegas International Film & Screenplay Festival, Silk Road Film Awards Cannes and the Vegas Movie Awards.
Gravitas Ventures has acquired worldwide rights to distribute Most Guys Are Losers and will release the film in theaters and on demand on July 1.
Written and directed by Eric Ustian, the romantic comedy stars Andy Buckley, Keith David, Mira Sorvino, Grace Fulton, Paul Sorvino and Belmont Camelli.
In the film, over Thanksgiving weekend in Chicago, a college kid from California seeks approval from his girlfriend’s dad, a bar owner and author of a dating book titled Most Guys Are Losers.
“Most Guys Are Losers is a classic romantic comedy that fans of the genre are sure to love. Gravitas is thrilled to be able to share it with audiences this summer,” said Brett Rogalsky, Gravitas Ventures manager of acquisitions, in a statement.
“To work with the Oscar Winner Mira Sorvino and her dad, Paul, was an honor,” Ustian said in a statement. “Andy Buckley combines the comedic timing from his role in ‘The Office,’ with a heartfelt and nuanced performance. Thank you to the ensemble cast that includes the iconic Keith David, along with young rising stars Grace Fulton, Belmont Camile and Michael Provost. When you work with actors with such experience and talent, it is a joy to be on set, and it transcends to our heartwarming film.”
The feature documentary End of the Line will be released on digital and cable on demand June 14 from Gravitas Ventures.
The film, from award-winning filmmaker Emmett Adler, is about the New York City subway crisis and a long overdue reckoning on infrastructure. Establishing the vital economic importance and grandeur of New York City’s historic subway system, the film dives into its dire modern-day troubles picking up in the late 2010s when flooding, overcrowding, power failures and derailments have become commonplace. After a particularly bad spate of disasters in the summer of 2017, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo proclaims a state of emergency and hires a new international wunderkind executive named Andy Byford to save the subways. Byford, an earnest Briton with an impressive resume, enters as a charismatic would-be hero.
As the political turmoil behind the subway’s decline comes into sharp focus, scenes in barbershops, bodegas and bakeries show the frustration and devastation among business owners and residents who are caught in the middle. Ultimately, the COVID-19 pandemic makes things worse and brings to light America’s need to shore up its infrastructure in cities across the country and the inequality struggles that are central to this debate.
The film is dedicated to the heroic New York City transit workers who lost their lives to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Gravitas Ventures has acquired worldwide rights to the thriller Glimpse, which will be released in theaters and on demand on May 6.
Written and directed by Theresa Rebeck, the film stars Janet McTeer, Raul Esparza, Erin Darke, Carrie Preston, Jonathan Preston, Michael Emerson, Alysia Reiner, David Alan Basche, Ashley Nicole Black, Krysta Rodriguez, Van Hughes and Joseph Collins.
The ensemble thriller explores a sinister world where corporate espionage reaches into the homes and minds of its employees. Panic rises as lives are compromised and controlled by a ruthless oligarch who manipulates reality with unsettling pleasure.
“We actually shot the movie on an iPhone during the early days of the pandemic, when everyone in this amazing cast was under quarantine, so the shoot itself was a bit of a high-wire act,” Rebeck said in a statement. “I am in awe of my cast, and also, my iPhone.”
Glimpse was produced by Andrew Carlberg (Academy Award-Winner Skin, Feeling Through) and Rebeck. Alysia Reiner and David Alan Basche executive produced the film with Roxanne Donovan, Mêlisa Annis and Peter Tadros as co-producers.
The drama Home, the romantic comedy Funny Thing About Love and the apocalyptic sci-fi drama Last Words are being released in February on DVD and Blu-ray Disc from Gravitas Ventures.
Directed by Franka Potente, Home, available Feb. 1, follows an ex felon who returns home from prison and must confront the demons of his past. It stars Jake McLaughlin, Kathy Bates, Aisling Franciosi, Lil Rel Howery and Stephen Root.
Also due Feb. 1 is Funny Thing About Love, directed by Adam White. The story follows Samantha Banks, who is a successful businesswoman with a handsome fiancee. Over one crazy Thanksgiving holiday with her scheming family, her whole world is thrown into a tailspin when they invite her ex-boyfriend, “the one that got away.” The film stars Jon Heder, Barry Corbin, Summer Bellessa, Kevan Moezzi, Jason Gray, Brooke White, Pat Finn, Alaina Beauloye, Taylor Moriarty, Brady Ellsworth and Landen Adams.
Available Feb. 15 is Last Words, directed by Jonathan Nossiter and starring Nick Nolte, Stellan Skarsgard and Charlotte Rampling. In the film, it is 2085, and a young man, one of the few survivors of the human community of old, embarks on a long voyage to find others.