The 2021 Sundance Film Festival is in full swing since January 23 at Park City, Utah. The area is buzzing with moviegoers, artists, journalists, and celebrities. However, there was a certain quiet feeling in the air when it came to streamers.
The first few days went by without any buying offers by any of the online streamers, which included A24, Amazon Studio, Netflix, and Disney.
Andy Samberg rom-com “Palm Springs” seems to be breaking the ice with its acquisition by Neon and Hulu for a whopping $15 million. The pair are said to have a three-way war that also had A24 and Netflix in the bidding. The price is even more than what Amazon has paid for “Late Night” last year at the 2021 Sundance movies.
Samberg, who is a “Saturday Night Live” veteran star, also features in this alteration of the “Groundhog Day” formula. After befriending a maid of honor at a wedding, the pair hit it off at a cynic approach towards marriages, and the rest is just ugly havoc and devastation at the nuptials.
The rom-com was at the top of buyers’ list at the Sundance 2021 festival even before the festival began. The film which is produced by Samberg and his Lonely Island production house has been well-received at the festival. Other interested buyers in the title such as Netflix show the promising future this film holds.
Hulu is all gussied up after its Disney ownership and is looking forward to competing with Netflix in adult content. Hulu’s strategy in contending for possible big hits of the 2021 Sundance festival is evident from its recent purchase of Palm Springs.
While “Marriage Story” and “The Irishman” have been Netflix’s choices, Hulu is going bold, which also shows in its deals with Neon, Annapurna, Bleecker Street, Lionsgate, and IFC Films. We won’t be surprised if all the hidden gems of the Sundance 2021 festival land in Hulu’s pockets.
This trend will continue until 2022 when HBO’s output deal expires. Hulu’s corporate better half Searchlight seems to be closing a deal with David Bruckner’s thriller “The Night House”. Lionsgate is also in the news on a possible acquisition of Dominick Cooke’s “Ironbark”.