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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Chris Messina's Directorial Debut Set for Release Early Next Year



It's always a good thing when a festival has so many great films that picking which one to see seems as difficult as Sophie's Choice. Such is the case of ALEX OF VENICE, actor Chris Messina's (The Mindy Project, Damages) directorial debut which premiered at this year's Tribeca Film Festival. After opting to see another film playing at the same time, good word of mouth got around that Messina's newest effort--which stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Derek Luke and Don Johnson--was actually quite impressive. (I say actually because I've never been a huge Messina fan, so this especially piqued my interest).

Fast forward a few months later comes today's announcement that ALEX OF VENICE has been acquired by Screen Media Films for a theatrical release early next year. The film follows "workaholic environmental attorney, Alex Vedder (Winstead), who is forced to reinvent herself after her husband (Messina) suddenly leaves the family. Dealing with an aging father (Johnson) who still aspires to succeed as an actor, an eccentric sister (Katie Nehra) and an extremely shy son (Sklar Gaertner), Alex is bombarded with everything from the mundane to hilariously catastrophic events without a shoulder to lean on.  Realizing she will thrive with or without her husband, Alex discovers her hidden vulnerability as well as her inner strength as she fights to keep her family intact in the midst of the most demanding and important case of her career."

I will have to assume that it's more interesting than the synopsis describes, because it sounds like several other movies I've seen before. In any case, Messina seems thrilled about the acquisition. Per the press release, he says: “I am thrilled to work with Screen Media on the release of my directorial debut, ALEX OF VENICE. I'm grateful for their passion and commitment to our film and very excited to move ahead with them as our partners.”

Seth Needle, Director of Acquisitions & Marketing, at Screen Media said: “ALEX OF VENICE features some of the strongest performances we’ve seen in a long time, which speaks highly to Chris’ direction. The talent showcased in this terrific film will last with audiences for some time after the credits roll.”

Stay tuned for more updates. In the meantime, what are your thoughts on Messina's new film? Will you watch?

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