Shout! Studios, the multi-platform filmed entertainment distribution and production arm of Shout! Factory, and Ledafilms Entertainment Group announced a distribution alliance to bring the highly-anticipated family movie MIA AND THE WHITE LION to the home entertainment marketplace in the United States. Directed by Gilles de Maistre (César Awards-nominated feature Le Premiere Cri) and written by Prune de Maistre and William Davies (How to Train Your Dragon), MIA AND THE WHITE LION is a heartfelt story of an extraordinary friendship between a young girl and a white lion, and her incredible adventure across the South African Savanna to give her best friend a new home. Starring Daniah De Villiers (Zero is Not Nothing), Mélanie Laurent (Now You See Me, Beginners), Langley Kirkwood (Banshee, Black Sails), and Ryan Mac Lennan (Rumpelstiltskin), the film is co-produced by STUDIOCANAL, M6 Films, Film Afrika, and Pandora Film in collaboration with Canal +, Cine +, M6, W9, Film-und Medienstiftung NRW. The announcement was made today by Melissa Boag, Shout’s Senior Vice President of Kids & Family Entertainment, Jordan Fields, Shout’s Vice of President of Acquisitions, and Alejandro Leda, CEO of Ledafilms Entertainment Group.
Shout! Studios has secured U.S. home entertainment distribution rights to MIA AND THE WHITE LION, including transactional video-on-demand, and physical home video rights. MIA AND THE WHITE LION opened in U.S. cinemas on April 12, 2019 through Ledafilms Entertainment Group. Shout plans a strategic launch of this movie across multiple entertainment platforms this summer.
“There is a winsome combination of heart, soul, and animal adventure, and we believe this film will strongly resonate with the family audience,” stated Melissa Boag, Shout’s Senior Vice President of Kids and Family Entertainment. “We are delighted by this opportunity with Alejandro and Ledafilms, and look forward to presenting Mia and the White Lion to broad movie audiences through a wide variety of entertainment platforms very soon!”
“The film has had amazing results in the international box office so far, including in many of our territories in Latin America where it opened in the top 3 of the charts. It has now reached an outstanding 35M USD in the Worldwide Box Office. It’s been a surprise for us all” said Alejandro Leda, CEO of Ledafilms. “The film’s cinematography is amazing and the content truly emotional. It has been very well received by the audience, achieving 85% Rotten Tomatoes score and praise across a wide spectrum of audience segments. We are delighted to join forces with Shout Factory on the home entertainment side for the USA. They have proven to be very experienced in this field.”
Jordan Fields, Shout’s Vice President of Acquisitions added: “This film charts the emotional, inspiring and altogether extraordinary adventure of a girl and her pet lion. Did I mention this is a live action film? It’s a live action film!”
The deal was negotiated by Jordan Fields, and Vanessa Keiko Flanders, Shout’s Vice President of Business Affairs, for Shout! Studios, and Alejandro Leda on behalf of LedaFilms Entertainment Group.
Filmed over the course of three years, MIA AND THE WHITE LION centers on a willful young girl named Mia whose life is turned upside down when her family decides to leave London to manage a lion farm in South Africa. When a beautiful white lion, Charlie, is born, Mia finds happiness once again and develops a special bond with the growing cub. As Charlie grows to full size, Mia uncovers an upsetting secret kept hidden by her father. Distraught that Charlie could be in danger, Mia decides to rescue him. The two friends set out on an incredible journey across the South African savanna in search of a sanctuary where Charlie can live out his life in freedom.
Brought to life by French director, Gilles De Maistre, the expansive production was filmed at the Welgedacht Reserve in South Africa. De Maistre chose to shoot throughout a three-year period so that the film’s young stars Daniah De Villiers and Ryan Mac Lennon could bond and develop real relationships with the lions and other animals that appear in the film. Kevin Richardson, a lion expert also known as the “Lion Whisperer,” oversaw the entire production process and all interactions between the lions and the children ensuring the safety of the animals, cast and crew on set.