A24's turning into a burgeoning film giant
The selection of films chosen by distribution company company A24 to distribute or produce all have one thing in common, taste. The company, founded by Daniel Katz, David Fenkel and John Hodges, has had a film nominated for best picture at the Oscars in each of the past three years, winning one with Moonlight.
The company’s momentum doesn’t seem to be slowing down. It’s flagship film for this award season was Lady Bird, a beautiful coming of age story about a 17 year old girl living in Sacramento, directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Saorise Ronan. The film is warm and affectionate and depicts the complexities of a mother-daughter relationship. The company has churned out films like Room, Amy, Ex Machina, and one of my personal favorite films of last year The Disaster Artist. They seem to continuously provide viewers with content unusual to the typical Hollywood studio and are taking off. An atmosphere has been created in which talented people can be talented without obstruction and cater content for those who are looking for something more in films.
A24’s taste level and championing of indies has led them to be compared with the great Miramax that did Reservoir Dogs, City of God, and Trainspotting. The philosophy of A24 is to invest in ideas, not to change them or make them their own. Barry Jenkins, the director of Moonlight, says that although the company may not know what a film means, they just care how it made them feel. They take films and handle each of them specifically to their needs. They tailor mesmerizing marketing campaigns and make it where it’s almost impossible for the viewer to not be interested in the film.
The idea of challenging conventions and maneuvering around structures to give the viewers something new and refreshing is beautiful. The company is in the business of taste and emotion. Every film they have produced and distributed is beautiful and strikes a cord emotionally with the viewer. In The Disaster Artist you get themes of camaraderie and triumph, in Spring Breakers you get vice and depravity, and in Room you get sexual assault and hopelessness.
What the company has done in five short years is simply remarkable. With seven Oscar nominations this year with Lady Bird, The Florida Project, and The Disaster Artist, the film company has officially arrived.