Greg (Thomas Mann), a high school senior who is trying to blend in anonymously, avoids deeper relationships as a survival strategy for navigating the social minefield that is teenage life. He even describes his constant companion Earl (RJ Cyler), with whom he makes short film parodies of classic movies, as more of a ‘co-worker’ than a best friend. But when Greg’s mom (Connie Britton) insists he spend time with Rachel (Olivia Cooke) – a girl in his class who has just been diagnosed with cancer – he slowly discovers how worthwhile the true bonds of friendship can be.
Me & Earl & the Dying Girl is an upcoming American comedy-drama film, rated PG-13, directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon (Glee, American Horror Story) and written by Jesse Andrews, based on Andrews’ 2012 debut novel of the same name, which sold more than 7 million copies. It stars Thomas Mann, Olivia Cooke (Ouija) and Jon Bernthal (Fury, The Wolf of Wall Street, The Walking Dead) and premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival to a standing ovation (http://variety.com/2015/film/festivals/sundance-film-review-me-and-earl-and-the-dying-girl-1201414455/). The production budget was about $5.6 million.
It won the U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic and the Audience Award for U.S. Drama at the festival. The film is scheduled to be released on June 12 by Fox Searchlight, which acquired the rights from Indian Paintbrush for about $8 million plus profit participation winning the competition of many bidders including Focus Features, CBS Films, Lionsgate, A24, Miramax and TWC (http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/sundance-why-me-earl-dying-767545) and following a lot of media hype on the actual price tag (http://deadline.com/2015/01/me-and-earl-and-the-dying-girl-sundance-record-bidding-1201358903/).
Fox Searchlight, one of the best for taking care of this kind of films (see also Little Miss Sunshine) will follow the path traced by 20th Century Fox last year with the phenomenon The Fault In Our Stars, released on June 6, grossing $124 million domestically and $182 million internationally. The basic strategy is to counterprogram a sci-fi big-budget blockbuster: it was Edge of Tomorrow last year, it will be Jurassic World this year, leveraging on amazing reviews and positive word-of-mouth on social media (the film has currently 100% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, 8.3/10 on IMDb, 92/100 Metascore). It will start with a limited release but it is going to expand while consensus will grow and moviegoers will notice the quality of this little gem, which will hit the Summer market like a rain of sunshine after a rainstorm and gross at least $50 million domestically.