Samuel Goldwyn Films has acquired North American rights to Mapplethorpe, NYWIFT Member Ondi Timoner’s biopic which stars Matt Smith as artist Robert Mapplethorpe. The company is eyeing a late fall release date.
Mapplethrope had its LA Premiere at Ondi’s home theater, the DGA for Outfest, on Friday, July 13th, 2018!
Mapplethorpe revisits the titular photographer’s legacy, beginning at the moment just before he takes up residence in the Chelsea Hotel. There, Mapplethorpe begins to amass a portfolio of images—and, at the same time, to explore his formerly supressed attraction to men. But Mapplethorpe’s relentless ambition—as he says in one early scene, “I can’t just be Mapplethorpe the photographer,” fancying himself a “modern Michelangelo”—threatens to tear apart the relationships he cherishes the most. From the early 70s until his untimely death at age 42, the film explores the intersection of his art and his sexuality, his struggle for mainstream recognition, and, looming above it all, the specter of the emerging AIDS crisis.
Writer, director, producer, and editor, Ondi Timoner, explains her goals for the film, “I have been working to tell the story of Robert Mapplethorpe for the last 12 years in order to create an anthem for artists — to be visionary, to take on the impossible, to be uncompromising. He documented the gay sub-culture of the 1970s & 80s and turned that which society deemed obscene into fine art, while making photography a collectible art form and immortalizing a generation ravaged by AIDS with erotic portraiture.”
Ondi is an American film director, producer, editor and entrepreneur. She is the founder and CEO of Interloper Films, a full-service production company located in Pasadena, California. Beginning her film in the 1990s, Timoner has built a reputation in the documentary world, becoming the only two-time recipient of Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize for documentaries (DIG! and We Live In Public). Timoner’s most recent career achievement awards include: The Rogue Award (Ashland Film Festival, 2015), The No Limits Award (Sarasota Film Society, 2015), The Auteur Award (Kodak, 2017), and the Maverick Award (The Audience Awards, 2017).