It’s been over ten years since Brad Pitt’s Lt. Aldo Raine instructed audiences that the “Nazi ain’t got no humanity” in Quentin Tarantino’s Inlgourious Basterds. In the decade that followed, we watched as a quaint, yet uproarious tale of obliterating Nazis turned from celluloid fantasy to real-world nightmare. Various films have tackled the real-world threat of the revival of insidious ethnonationalist ideology, most notably Spike Lee’s BlackKklansman in 2018, which drew a direct parallel between the inability to fully extinguish the insidious threat of white nationalism in the 1970s to the 2017 neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville that claimed the life of Heather Heyer.

Whether past is prologue or merely an instruction manual to navigate recurring and unresolved social tensions, it was hard to ignore the spectre of Nazi Germany at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival. Václav Marhoul’s The Painted Bird, a bleak story of a young Jewish boy wandering Eastern Europe after being separated from his parents during World War II, reportedly prompted mass walkouts. Dan Friedkin’s Lyrebird, acquired by Sony Pictures Classics, made fewer waves with its story of how a member of the Dutch resistance investigated art stolen by the Nazis.

But by far the most notable films to grapple with the Third Reich came from Fox Searchlight’s two most pedigreed ponies for the fall season, Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit and Terrence Malick’s A Hidden Life. On the surface, these films could not appear more different. Waititi’s energetic, irreverent style is at one formal extreme, and Malick’s reverential, brooding aesthetic represents another. Yet the films share more than just their obvious similarity of depicting characters quietly resisting the authoritarian impulses of Nazi Germany. Both, in their own way, celebrate the power of the individual to make a difference in the fight against evil regimes.

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Searchlight Television

Fox Searchlight Pictures, the Fox Entertainment Group distribution company which specializes in releasing independent movies, has announced the creation of a new television division called Searchlight Television. What does this new company mean for the TV landscape in the coming years? Read More »

del toro fox searchlight

Fox Searchlight is obviously quite pleased with Oscar winner/monster maker Guillermo del Toro. So much so that they’ve signed a deal with the director that covers live action feature film projects to be written, produced and directed by del Toro. Searchlight will also develop a new label that will serve as a home for new horror, sci-fi and fantasy films, including those produced and curated by del Toro. More on the del Toro Fox Searchlight deal below.

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Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch has played a Marvel superhero, a genius detective, a dragon, a Star Trek villain, and Julian Assange, but he’s never played a straight-up con man before. That’s about to change, because the actor is in early talks to play a true-life swindler in the long-gestating film adaptation of The Man in the Rockefeller Suit.
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dannyboyle_foxsearchlight

Danny Boyle has drawn up a three-year production deal with Fox Searchlight and Pathe Pictures, according to Variety. Both companies were involved in Slumdog Millionaire; through this deal the two companies will co-finance and co-produce Boyle’s next project(s) over the next three years, with Pathe handing distribution in much of Europe and Fox Searchlight controlling the US and other territories. The filmmaker has a long history with Fox Searchlight, as the company produced and/or distributed 28 Days Later, Sunshine and Millions. Read More »