FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Marina Nicola/Erika Pope
Vox Solid Communications
(702) 586-2137, (702) 249-2977
TIMELY NATIONAL SECURITY THRILLER “MAGNUM OPUS,” SECURES GRAVITAS VENTURES, SCREEN MEDIA AS DISTRIBUTION PARTNERS
- Topical spy thriller involves highly charged political and national security issues.
- VOD and DVD release dates set for November.
- Trailer available here.
LOS ANGELES (July 2017) The team behind the timely national security thriller “Magnum Opus” announces it has acquired domestic and international distributors. Gravitas Ventures will administer distribution domestically, while Screen Media International has been handling international sales, and will continue to present the film to foreign buyers at MIPCOM and AFM. The film will be released on VOD and DVD this November.
With the tagline, “Truth, Justice and Other Casualties of War,” the film’s plot explores of-the-minute political and national security issues, centering on the struggle between liberty and our need to be protected from our enemies. While providing subtle commentary about how the news media influences the perception of factual events, the film makes abundant references to the U.S. government spying on citizens and U.S. officials lying to win an election. Additional allusions to Edward Snowden and the suggestion of WikiLeaks-style activism give a realistic, “ripped-from-the-headlines” credence to the premise.
Encompassing a diverse cast, “Magnum Opus” features Muslim-American actor Pej Vahdat (“Sneaky Pete,” “Bones”) in a lead role portraying an American hero. As an Iranian-American actor whose parents fled Iran for the United States in the late 1970s, Vahdat acknowledges his early career found him typecast in terrorist roles. He says, “I played these roles and was miserable. Now, I’m lucky enough to say, ‘No,’ to these characters when they’re offered to me. If it was a really good role, I’d consider it—after all, no one says Robert de Niro is a mobster because of his roles. But I’d rather play the smart-guy art dealer in a spy thriller—not the terrorist.”
About “Magnum Opus”
Gradually uncovering the secrets concealed by Daniel Cliff, a principled Desert Storm vet turned reclusive artist, the script delves into multiple crises of conscience. Cliff’s artistic inspiration, Dante’s “Inferno,” reveals itself in a series of nine charged paintings. These artworks—some of them shocking—link the story thematically to the nine circles of Hell, but also give expression to the artist’s perspective on the people and situations around him.
Set primarily in Daniel Cliff’s loft—with flashbacks to Desert Storm—the action seethes with a sense of urgency. Gradually, the story conveys the unexpected interconnectedness of the main characters. In addition to the outwardly difficult Cliff and his gallerist, Sean Dabashi, the principal characters in “Magnum Opus” include: the inquisitive and aggressive female gallery curator, Monica Davenport; Private Sattler, a sadistic Desert Storm soldier whose actions cement Cliff’s commitment to expressing truth through art; and Robert Cochran, the former commanding officer whose conscience is divided between doing what is right and what is right. It’s this ambivalence cloaking contemporary issues of national intelligence, freedom and privacy that provides the thrust to the script’s narrative power.
About the Cast and Crew
“Magnum Opus” marks the debut of director Kevin Elliott and screenwriter Scott Stoddard and was filmed by award-winning cinematographer Bobby Lam (“Best Cinematography – Narrative Feature” for “A Leading Man” at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival). Newcomer Amanda Upson and TV and film production veteran Marc Newland serve as producers. It stars Louise Griffiths as Monica Davenport (“Unknown Caller,” “The Revenant,” “Chastity Bites”), Adam J. Harrington as Daniel Cliff (“TURN: Washington’s Spies,” “CSI,” “Training Day,” “NCIS: Los Angeles”), Clark Johnson as Robert Cochran (“The Wire,” “Alpha House”) and Pej Vahdat as Sean Dabashi (“A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night,” “Bones,” “Shameless,” “Sneaky Pete”). Norm Lewis will appear as Charlie Lutwidge (“Scandal,” 2012 Tony Award-nominated actor for his lead role in “Porgy and Bess”) and Dustin Ingram as Private Sattler (Martin Scorsese’s HBO series “Rock and Roll,” “Paranormal Activity 3”). In addition, the film features the signature “Oilgraph” paintings by artist Kevin Rolly and a score by composer Erik Aho, 2013 recipient of the ASCAP Foundation’s David Rose Award, whose film and TV credits include original music for “The Amazing Race” (ABC) and “The Bachelor” (CBS).
ABOUT GRAVITAS VENTURES
Gravitas Ventures is a leading all rights distributor of independent cinema. Founded in 2006, Gravitas connects independent filmmakers and producers with distribution opportunities across the globe. Working with more than 500 content partners, Gravitas Ventures has distributed thousands of films into over 100 million homes. Their most recent releases include Jonathan Hock’s “Fastball,” Colin Hanks’ “All Things Must Pass,” “Being Evel” from Academy Award® winning director Daniel Junge and producer Johnny Knoxville, “Backstreet Boys: Show ‘Em What You’re Made Of,” director Adam Nimoy’s documentary, “For The Love of Spock,” Richard Branson’s harrowing tale, “Don’t Look Down,” Katie Holmes’s feature directorial debut, “All We Had,” and the comic documentary “Dying Laughing.”
For more information, please visit gravitasventures.com, follow @GravitasVOD on Twitter and @gravitasventures on Instagram.
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