Sundance 2023 Winner Lands Sony Movie Release  

Sony Pictures Classics has nabbed the North American rights to the Sundance award-winning film The Persian Version, a mother-daughter dramedy written, directed and produced by Maryam Keshavarz.

The film’s critical acclaim at Sundance, where it earned the Audience Award in the U.S. Dramatic Competition and The Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award in the same sidebar, brought buyer attention to the film and a subsequent bidding war where Sony Pictures Classics prevailed.

Keshavarz’s film about Iranian immigrants in New York and New Jersey feeling neither at home in America or Iran stars Layla Mohammadi, Niousha Noor, Kamand Shafieisabet, Bijan Daneshmand, Bella Warda, Chiara Stella, Tom Byrne and Shervin Alenabi.

The film centers on Iranian-American Leila, played by Mohammadi, who comes from two countries at odds with each other, and strives to find balance and embrace her opposing cultures, while boldly challenging the labels society is so quick to project upon her.

“Maryam Keshavarz’s The Persian Version is an eloquent film about family and freedom while at the same time grand entertainment. We are excited to bring the movie to audiences everywhere and to be working again with our colleagues at Stage 6 Films,” Sony Pictures Classics said in a statement.

Sony Pictures Classics is partnering with Stage 6 Films on the film’s release. Sony Pictures Releasing International will handle the film internationally. The indie is produced by Keshavarz for Marakesh Films, Anne Carey for Archer Gray Productions, Ben Howe and Luca Borghese for AGX, and Peter Block and Cory Neal for A Bigger Boat.

Keshavarz added in her own statement: “After two-plus years of watching everything at home and in our PJs, I am excited to bring The Persian Version to theaters where we can experience the joy and humor of this big rowdy immigrant American family together in a communal setting. Having grown up watching and loving SPC films, I’m stoked to partner with them to reach the widest possible audience for this crazy film.”

UTA Independent Film Group represented the U.S. rights with Stage 6 Films. Keshavarz is represented by UTA, Anne Damato and Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz.

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