- Brian Chilson
- Bruce Sinofsky and Joe Berlinger
“Paradise 3: Purgatory,” Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky’s follow-up to their two previous films on the West Memphis Three, will debut internationally at the Toronto International Film Festival in September and nationally at the New York Film Festival in October. The New York Festival will be the first time the recut version screens, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The quick turnaround to theaters is about the Oscars, according to the HR.
HBO, which produced the new movie, originally planned to air it in November, but now has scheduled it to debut on air in January. That, in turn, opens up time to give it a qualifying Academy run, since docs looking to qualify for Oscar consideration must first be publicly exhibited in theaters before they appear on TV, home video or the Internet. HBO has not yet set the specific dates for the planned theatrical engagements.
Under the Academy’s documentary film rules, a doc must play one seven-day commercial run in Los Angeles and a second seven-day run in the borough of Manhattan before Dec. 31.
UPDATE: I see, also on the Hollywood Reporter, that Sheila Nevins, head of HBO’s documentary division, wants a fourth “Paradise Lost.”
THR: What’s the first thing you did when you heard about the release?
Nevins: You burst into tears. Then you say, “Shit, we better get this story. Get down there fast!” [She sent Berlinger and his team to Arkansas to witness the court hearing and interview the men.] Yet there’s still an irony. Under the law, they’re now “innocent but guilty.” Guilty but innocent? What the hell is that all about? Don’t tell Joe but maybe there’s another film there. I think we’re ready for Paradise Lost 4.
THR: Have you thought about what a fourth movie would look like?
Nevins: If you’re guilty, how can you be innocent? Something’s wrong with the system. They have to be free because they are innocent. We have to prove that, and I don’t know how we do that. We’ll have to really work on that.