Sundance Comedy Brian And Charles Lands At Focus Features

As Sundance winds down over its final weekend, the distribution deals just keep coming. After picking up the Noomi Rapace witch saga "You Won't Be Alone" ahead of the festival, Focus Features is closing out the fest with another investment. Variety reports that the distributor bought the rights to quirky comedy "Brian and Charles" on Friday.

"Brian and Charlies" is an offbeat comedy by first-time feature director Jim Archer. The film captures an unlikely friendship between a lonely Welsh inventor named Brian (David Earl) and his washing machine turned artificially intelligent companion, Charles. /Film's own review by Ethan Anderton calls the film "an endlessly charming, funny, and delightfully lo-fi British comedy" that "follows a path not unlike 'The Iron Giant' and 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestial,'" except with lower stakes.

And Now, Some Acquisition Humor

The warm-hearted "Frankenstein" riff is based on Archer's Cannes award-winning short film of the same name, which David Earl and Chris Hayward wrote. The feature, which was co-funded by the British Film Institute's National Lottery program and Film4, retains the short's original writers. Focus Features has purchased domestic rights to the movie, while Film4 will keep UK television rights and Universal Pictures will handle international distribution.

Archer and producer Rupert Majendie shared a joint statement about the film's deal, one that captures the hilariously zany end-of-fest state of mind anyone who's made it through Sundance can attest to. The pair thanks Sundance audiences and the companies involved in the film's funding and sale (which was handled by Bankside Films), before adding:

"We are incredibly excited to have found a partner in Focus who truly get this story and are as passionate about it as we are. We are still a little worried that they will wake up and realize they've just bought a film about a walking washing machine, but the ink is dry now so it's too late!"

Kiska Higgs, Focus' president of production & acquisitions, went along with the bit, officially responding, "Wait, what?!" A little press statement humor goes a long way, and we're thankful to these jokesters for helping to close out this year's unusual virtual edition of Sundance on a silly note.

"Brian and Charles" also stars Chris Hayward, Louise Brealey, Jamie Michie and Nina Sosanya. Focus Features has not yet announced release date information for "Brian and Charles."