Saturday's TIFF premiere of Derek Cianfrance's The Place Beyond the Pines came with a sold-out crowd and plenty of eager executives in attendance. Though nearly two-and-a-half hours in length and featuring some fairly bold structural choices, the likes of Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper offer potential for much wider commercial appeal -- not to mention a strong ensemble that also includes Eva Mendes, Rose Byrne, Ray Liotta, Chronicle's Dane DeHaan, Ben Mendelsohn, Emory Cohen, and Mahershala Ali. Following largely enthusiastic response (including this rave from The Playlist) and a wide array of vying distributors, The Place Beyond the Pines has found a home at Focus Features.
There's no telling yet what the Universal subsidiary has in mind for Pines. Will they open it within the next few months for an Oscar-qualifying run or hold onto it until 2013? Will they cut the film down to a slimmer, more accessible length or leave in all 140+ minutes of the sprawling epic (some, including Variety, called the film overlong)? Deadline provides some indication that producer Jamie Patricof and director Derek Cianfrance were "looking for a company who is most passionate about the film. Whether it gets out this year (in time for the Oscar race) or later is secondary to that." One can draw that Focus Features must have the best intentions.