OWN: OPRAH WINFREY NETWORK ACQUIRES "LEE DANIELS' THE BUTLER" FROM THE WEINSTEIN COMPANY
Los Angeles, CA - OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network announced today that it has secured the network television rights to "Lee Daniels' The Butler," starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey. OWN has licensed the first broadcast window behind pay television beginning in 2017. The critically acclaimed Weinstein Company film, which opened nationwide on Friday, August 16, spent three straight weekends at #1 and recently surpassed $100 million at the box office.
"On the heels of the film's fantastic debut, we couldn't be more excited to showcase this incredible movie for our viewers," said Erik Logan, president, OWN. "This is a film that every American should see and we look forward to its debut on OWN," said Sheri Salata, president, OWN.
"OWN is the ideal broadcast home for this film, which has had such a tremendous response from theatrical audiences," commented TWC Co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein. "It's been an honor to work alongside Oprah Winfrey, whose performance and support on the picture have been second to none, and we're thrilled that her network has come on board."
"Lee Daniels' The Butler" tells the story of a White House butler who served seven American presidents over three decades. The film traces the dramatic changes that swept American society during this time, from the civil rights movement to Vietnam and beyond, and how those changes affected this man's life and family. Forest Whitaker stars as the butler and Oprah Winfrey stars as his wife, with Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower, James Marsden as John F. Kennedy, Live Schreiber as Lyndon B. Johnson, John Cusack as Richard Nixon, Alan Rickman as Ronald Reagan, and many more. Academy Award(R)-nominated Lee Daniels ("Precious") directs and Emmy(R) Award-winning Danny Strong ("Game Change") wrote the script.
About OWN: OPRAH WINFREY NETWORK
OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network is the first and only network named for, and inspired by, a single iconic leader. Oprah Winfrey's heart and creative instincts inform the brand - and the magnetism of the channel. Winfrey provides leadership in programming and attracts superstar talent to join her in primetime, building a global community of like-minded viewers and leading that community to connect on social media and beyond. OWN is a singular destination on cable. Depth with edge. Heart. Star power. Connection. And endless possibilities. OWN is a joint venture between Harpo, Inc. and Discovery Communications. The network debuted on January 1, 2011 and is available in 85 million homes. The venture also includes the award-winning digital platform Oprah.com. For more information, please visit www.oprah.com/own and www.press.discovery.com/us/own.
About THE WEINSTEIN COMPANY
The Weinstein Company (TWC) is a multimedia production and distribution company launched in October 2005 by Bob and Harvey Weinstein, the brothers who founded Miramax Films in 1979. TWC also encompasses Dimension Films, the genre label founded in 1993 by Bob Weinstein, which has released such popular franchises as SCREAM, SPY KIDS and SCARY MOVIE. Together TWC and Dimension Films have released a broad range of mainstream, genre and specialty films that have been commercial and critical successes. TWC releases took home eight 2012 Academy Awards(R), the most wins in the studio's history. The tally included Best Picture for Michel Hazanavicius's THE ARTIST and Best Documentary Feature for TJ Martin and Dan Lindsay's UNDEFEATED. THE ARTIST brought TWC its second consecutive Best Picture statuette following the 2011 win for Tom Hooper's THE KING'S SPEECH. Currently in release are UNFINISHED SONG and FRUITVALE STATION, LEE DANIELS' THE BUTLER, THE GRANDMASTER and SALINGER. Upcoming releases include MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM and AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY.