Sony Classics Buys Robert De Niro's "The Comedian" With Sights on Oscar

October 7, 2016

Sony Pictures Classics has acquired North American rights to the Robert De Niro comedy “The Comedian” from Cinelou and plans an awards-qualifying run later this year.

Get ready to amend those early Oscar season handicapping odds! Sony Pictures Classics has acquired from Cinelou The Comedian and will set the picture for release in Oscar season. SPC bought North American rights to the Taylor Hackford-directed film stars Robert De Niro as an insult comic in career and personal crisis, and word is that it is the strongest performance in years for the two-time Oscar winning actor who most recently was nominated for Silver Linings Playbook in 2013.
The plan is to release early next year, with a qualifying run in late December. I’m hearing that a possible launch of the picture at the upcoming AFI is a strong possibility. Warner Bros International has foreign on The Comedian through its deal with Cinelou.
De Niro plays a toxic insult comic on the order of a Don Rickles (with whom De Niro starred in Casino), and this is a passion project he and screenwriter Art Linson have been trying to pull together for years. Leslie Mann, Edie Falco, Harvey Keitel, Danny DeVito, and Patti LuPone also star. It will be De Niro’s second time playing a stand-up guy, following his iconic turn as stalker/comic Rupert Pupkin in 1982’s The King of Comedy. The stand-up comedy material in the new movie was written by Jeffrey Ross, a staple of Friars and Comedy Central celebrity roasts. Stand-up comics in the film include Hannibal Buress, Gilbert Gottfried and Jim Norton. Linson and De Niro most recently worked together on the Hollywood-centric pic What Just Happened?, which starred De Niro as a harried producer.

Read the whole story at Deadline Hollywood:

DEADLINE HOLLYWOOD: Add Robert De Niro To Oscar Short List; Sony Classics Lands ‘The Comedian’