Though he helmed the documentary/mockumentary “I’m Still Here” about his brother-in-law Joaquin Phoenix, Casey Affleck had never directed a narrative feature until recently. “Light of My Life,” his second effort behind the camera, had a debut at the Berlin Film Festival recently, getting some good notices. That caught the attention of Saban Films, who picked up the movie for release.
A press release today from Saban Films announced that they’ve acquired Affleck’s “Light of My Life.” Affleck not only wrote and directed this one, he starred in it too, alongside Elisabeth Moss and Anna Pniowsky. Dubbed a dystopian survival drama, it’s a bold new step for the Academy Award winner.
From the press release:
Saban Films has acquired U.S. rights to Academy Award® Winner Casey Affleck’s narrative feature debut, Light of My Life. Written, directed by and starring Affleck (Manchester by the Sea, Interstellar), the dystopian survival drama also stars breakout star Anna Pniowsky (“PEN15”) and Golden Globe® Winner Elisabeth Moss (“The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Mad Men”). Light of My Life made its World Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in the Panorama section.
Light of My Life follows a father (Affleck) and child (Pniowsky) who journey through the outskirts of society a decade after a pandemic has wiped out half the world’s population. As a father struggles to protect his child at all costs, their bond, and the character of humanity, is tested.
“This has been a passion-driven project for the filmmakers, who have crafted a beautiful and sophisticated film, grounded with superb performances,” said Saban Films’ Bill Bromiley. “We couldn’t be more honored to be part of such a dedicated team. Our audiences will fall in love with the intensity and sincerity of this character-based survival drama, focusing on a strong father-daughter bond.”
The film, fully financed by Black Bear Pictures, was produced by Black Bear’s Teddy Schwarzman and Affleck on behalf of Sea Change Media. John Powers Middleton also produced. Executive producers are Black Bear’s Michael Heimler and Ben Stillman, and Sea Change’s Whitaker Lader.
“On behalf of everyone involved in the making of Light of My Life, I’d like to thank Saban Films for their passion, commitment and support,” said Schwarzman. “Light of My Life has been a labor of love for the entire cast and crew, and we look forward to working with Saban to bring Light of My Life to audiences across America.”
Bill Bromiley and Jonathan Saba negotiated the deal for Saban Films, with Endeavor Content on behalf of the filmmakers. Sierra / Affinity is handling international rights.
Saban Films most recently announced their partnership with Kevin Smith’s highly-anticipated Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, coming on board from script stage for the sequel to the 2001 comedy Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. The company remains active in the acquisition and distribution space, with upcoming titles including:Richard Bates Jr.’s horror thriller Tone-Deaf, which just made its World Premiere at SXSW and stars Robert Patrick and Amanda Crew; Danny A. Abeckaser’s Mob Town starring David Arquette; The Haunting of Sharon Tate starring Hilary Duff; Derrick Borte’s American Dreamer starring Jim Gaffigan; The Professor, the Wayne Roberts-directed drama starring Johnny Depp; and Sarah Daggar-Nickson’s A Vigilante starring Olivia Wilde.
Affleck is a terrific actor, with an Oscar to prove it. It will be fascinating to see how a dramatic effort behind the camera turns out for him. Saban will be figuring out a release date soon for this one.