Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to Freakonomics, the filmed version of Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner's bestselling book.
Like the book, the film uses case studies -- some of them hilariously funny -- to examine incentive-based human behavior.
Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything, the book, has sold millions of copies worldwide. Freakonomics, the film, is team-directed by documentary filmmakers whose work is acclaimed worldwide:
- Alex Gibney (Taxi To The Dark Side) peers behind the façade of Japanese Sumo wrestling, exposing searing truths about the ancient and revered sport.
- Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing (Jesus Camp) provide an eye-opening profile of underachieving kids who are incentivized to learn with cold hard cash.
- Morgan Spurlock (Where in the World Is Osama Bin Laden?) riffs on the meaning, choice and repercussions of baby names.
- Eugene Jarecki (Why We Fight) looks at a troubling theory about why crime rates dropped in the early '90s.
- Seth Gordon (King of Kong provides the throughline and context with commentary from the authors.
Magnolia plans a fall theatrical release for the film. Meanwhile, Freakonomics will be presented as the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival's closing night gala on April 30. At the festival's May 1 screening at NYC's Directors Guild Theater, the filmmakers will be on board for a post-screening panel discussion.