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Peter Weir’s The Way Back Just Entered Oscar Race

The press release just went out with the news that Peter Weir’s The Way Back will get its Oscar run this year. That is good news, possibly, for Ed Harris as a very very strong supporting actor contender. In fact, it may be a game-changer for that category. It also could be a strong contender to take one of the ten slots for Best Picture and Weir, a favorite of the film community and a non-winner as well, could be a contender for Best Director. Harris has never won and is WAY overdue. Funny thing that Scott Rudin is listed as executive producer for this film, but is producer on two rival films: The Social Network and True Grit. You have to choose, Sophie!¬† What a year for him, eh?

“After the positive reception and critical acclaim we received at Telluride, it was clear that THE WAY BACK should have an Oscar qualifying run. It was incredibly gratifying that audiences and critics responded so favorably to Peter Weir’s vision, the actors’ outstanding performances, and the stunning craftwork,” comment Sinclair and Daniel Battsek, president of National Geographic Entertainment.

Notes Ball: “As a new company, we are honored to have the Wrekin Hill name attached to such an acclaimed film as THE WAY BACK. We are extremely enthusiastic about bringing the film to audiences this winter.”

Nigel Sinclair, CEO and Co-Chairman of Exclusive Media Group (‚ÄúExclusive‚Äù) and Newmarket Films (‚ÄúNewmarket‚Äù)and Chris Ball, President and CEO of newly formed Wrekin Hill Entertainment (‚ÄúWrekin Hill‚Äù) announced today that their first joint Newmarket / Wrekin Hill release will be to give, six-time Academy Award nominee Peter Weir’s THE WAY BACK , an Academy Award qualifying run from December 29, 2010 in Los Angeles, followed by a theatrical release of upwards of 500 screens on January 21, 2011.

The film stars Ed Harris (Pollack, Gone Baby Gone), Jim Sturgess (Across the Universe, The Other Boleyn Girl), Saoirse Ronan (Atonement, The Lovely Bones), Mark Strong (Sherlock Holmes, Kick Ass) and Colin Farrell (In Bruges, Crazy Heart).

The Way Back is the first film produced under the Exclusive Films label to be distributed through Exclusive’s subsidiary, Newmarket in partnership with Wrekin Hill. National Geographic Entertainment and Imagenation Abu Dhabi co-produced the film as part of their joint production agreement.

The Way Back, which recently had its World Premiere at the Telluride Film Festival, is inspired by Slavomir Rawicz’s acclaimed novel The Long Walk: The True Story of a Trek to Freedom, as well as by other real life accounts. The film chronicles the escape of a small group of multi-national prisoners from a Siberian gulag in 1940 and their epic life affirming journey over thousands of miles across five hostile countries.

“After the positive reception and critical acclaim we received at Telluride, it was clear that THE WAY BACK should have an Oscar qualifying run. It was incredibly gratifying that audiences and critics responded so favorably to Peter Weir’s vision, the actors’ outstanding performances, and the stunning craftwork,” comment Sinclair and Daniel Battsek, president of National Geographic Entertainment.

Notes Ball: “As a new company, we are honored to have the Wrekin Hill name attached to such an acclaimed film as THE WAY BACK. We are extremely enthusiastic about bringing the film to audiences this winter.”

Producers are Joni Levin, Peter Weir, Duncan Henderson and Nigel Sinclair. Keith Clarke, John Ptak, Guy East, Simon Oakes, Tobin Armbrust, Jake Eberts, Edward Borgerding, Mohammed Khalaf, Adam Leipzig, Scott Rudin and Jonathan Schwartz are Executive Producers.

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