National Geographic Entertainment Acquires ’Blue Man Group: Mind Blast’ For Distribution
WASHINGTON — National Geographic Entertainment (NGE) has announced the acquisition of worldwide rights to the film “Blue Man Group: Mind Blast” for distribution to giant-screen, digital and IMAX® 3-D and 2-D theaters. The 3-D live-action comedy, slated for release in Spring 2011, will feature an original screenplay and score and will star the group’s original cast members. “Blue Man Group: Mind Blast” is the fourth major film acquisition for NGE this year, following the Sundance hit “Amreeka,” opening in select cities throughout September; “City of Life and Death,” which screened this week at the 2009 Toronto Film Festival; and “The Wildest Dream,” which will be released in 2010 on IMAX® and giant screens worldwide and on 35 mm screens in the United States.
Blue Man Group has been impressing live audiences since 1990 with its wildly popular theatrical shows and concerts that combine music, comedy and multimedia theatrics in producing a unique entertainment experience. It currently has permanent productions in nine cities, including New York City, Boston, Las Vegas, Orlando, Berlin and Tokyo, and frequently tours both domestically and internationally. The group was created by Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton, who will star as the trio of blue men in the film, the group’s first foray onto giant screens and into 3-D film. “Blue Man Group: Mind Blast,” which begins pre-production in early 2010, will follow the bald and blue trio as they travel through a visually stunning 3-D brain, exploring its neural pathways, synapses and gooey brain structures. Music, physical humor and Blue Man antics abound as they make art, collect scientific facts and turn our brains upside down.
While NGE has previously presented film projects on subjects as diverse as wildlife, music and ancient cultures, this will be its first cinematic foray into the function of the human mind itself. Blue Man Group’s live shows and concerts have long delved into the mysteries of human creativity and neurological function, which makes these blue explorers the perfect guides for NGE’s most ambitious journey yet.
The film will be directed by David Russo and executive produced by Barbara Darwall of Blue Man Productions. The original script was written by Lisa Robinson; Charlotte Huggins and Janice Doskey are producers. Distribution of the film will be led by Mark Katz, president of National Geographic Cinema Ventures Distribution, and overseen by National Geographic Cinema Ventures President Lisa Truitt.
“Our giant-screen film collaboration with Blue Man Group will continue National Geographic Entertainment’s foray into the distribution of an increasingly diverse array of films,” said Truitt. “The slate of films that we’ve acquired and are releasing this year and next are a reflection of National Geographic’s commitment to telling stories in engaging and groundbreaking ways.”
David Beal, president, NGE, said: “National Geographic constantly strives to be a window to the world and all that’s in it. Our collaboration with Blue Man Group presents a further opportunity to take that challenge to an ever widening audience.”
“Exhibitors around the world are increasingly thirsty to present new and exciting theatric experiences to their audiences,” said Katz. “Helping to bring Blue Man Group’s electric live performances to the giant screen in 3-D is an opportunity we could not pass up as we aim to stay on the cutting edge of the film business.”
Said Blue Man Group co-founder Matt Goldman, “Blue Man Group and National Geographic share a similar passion for curiosity, exploration and discovery. This alignment of values makes National Geographic Cinema Ventures the perfect distributor for ’Blue Man Group: Mind Blast’ — a film that aims to explore the inner workings of the human mind in the same way that National Geographic has long been exploring the workings of our world as a whole.”
About National Geographic Entertainment
National Geographic Entertainment combines into a single operating group National Geographic’s Cinema Ventures and National Geographic Films and World Films, along with Kids Entertainment, Home Entertainment and Music & Radio. In 2005, National Geographic Films (NGF) co-presented the 2005 Academy Award-winning “March of the Penguins, ” and National Geographic World Films co-presented the 2004 Oscar-nominated film “The Story of the Weeping Camel” as well as Lu Chuan’s “Mountain Patrol: Kekexili.” National Geographic Cinema Ventures (NGCV), released domestically and internationally the 3-D concert film “U2 3D” to critical acclaim and set giant-screen box office records with “Mysteries of Egypt” and “Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure.” Adam Leipzig is president of NGF, Lisa Truitt is president of NGCV and Mark Katz is president of NGCV Distribution.
NGE is part of National Geographic Global Media, bringing together all of National Geographic’s editorial platforms to streamline collaboration and support the Society’s mission. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” National Geographic works to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 375 million people worldwide each month through magazines, books, digital media, television, radio, music, film and live events. It funds over 250 scientific research, exploration and conservation projects each year and supports an education program promoting geography literacy. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com.
About Blue Man Group
Blue Man Group is best known for its widely popular theatrical shows and concerts that combine music, comedy and multimedia theatrics to produce a totally unique form of entertainment. The blissful party atmosphere created at the live events has become the trademark of a Blue Man Group experience. Currently, its theatrical shows can be seen in New York, Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Orlando, Berlin and Tokyo.
Blue Man Group’s satirical rock concert Megastar World Tour has toured arenas across the United States and has played extensively in Canada, France, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Korea. In fall and winter, Blue Man Group Megastar World Tour continued its international travels in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Portugal, England and Israel, and is currently heading to Taiwan. The company has applied its unique creative process to a wide variety of projects, the recording of five albums: the GRAMMY-nominated “Audio,” “The Complex,” “Live At The Venetian ® ¬- Las Vegas,” “How To Be A MegaStar Live!” and “Canta Conmigo.”
Blue Man Group has also ventured into scoring (“The Jury,” “Robots” and “Space Chimps”), commercial campaigns, television programs (including “Scrubs” and “Arrested Development”) and a children’s museum exhibit, “Making Waves,” which is currently touring the United States.
As the company grows, it remains true to its vision of providing exciting experiences in a variety of media that appeal to a broad range of age groups and cultural backgrounds. www.blueman.com
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