EXCLUSIVE: Oscilloscope Laboratories has taken North America on Flipside, a new documentary from filmmaker Chris Wilcha, which world premiered at last year’s Toronto Film Festival. Exec produced by Judd Apatow, the film is slated for release in theaters this year.
Flipside sees Wilcha revisit the New Jersey record store he worked at as a teenager, finding the once-thriving bastion of music and weirdness slowly falling apart and out of touch with the times. The film chronicles his tragicomic attempt to revive the store while revisiting other documentary projects he has abandoned over the years. In the process, Wilcha captures This American Life icon Ira Glass in the midst of a creative rebirth, discovers the origin story of David Bowie’s ode to a local New Jersey cable television hero, and uncovers the unlikely connection between jazz photographer Herman Leonard and TV writer David Milch. This disparate collection of stories coheres into something strange and expansive — a meditation on music, work, and the sacrifices and satisfaction of trying to live a creative life.
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Produced by Deep Cut, Every Other, and Exploded View, Flipside was written by Joe Beshenkovsky, Adam Samuel Goldman, and Wilcha. In addition to Apatow, exec producers include James P. O’Shaughnessy, Lance Acord, Jackie Kelman Bisbee, Sam Bisbee, and Justin Pollock. Beshenkovsky, Michelle Currinder, Alex Fisch, Goldman, James A. Smith, and Wilcha served as producers.
“I love so many of the films that Oscilloscope has distributed over the past fifteen plus years,” Wilcha told Deadline. “To now count myself among the extended Oscilloscope filmmaking universe is a genuine thrill. Kind of like being signed to your dream record label. I’m so happy that people will finally be able to see this film.”
Oscilloscope’s Dan Berger shared that the company’s whole team fell in love with Flipside the moment they saw it. “We’re a bunch of cynical pessimists and experiencing Chris’s incredible meditation on creativity injected us with a beautiful optimism that smacked us back down to earth,” he said. “The film is a feat in so many ways, but on top of everything, its ability to mine success out of, and to find the value and beauty in perceived failure, is a lesson everyone on this planet could stand to learn.”
An Emmy and IDA Award winner, Wilcha’s past credits include the TV adaptation of Ira Glass’s radio show This American Life, the concert film Another Day featuring music from the Coen brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis, stand-up doc Knock Knock, It’s Tig Notaro, and The Targaret Shoots First, a comedic doc examining his job in the music business during the early ’90s grunge gold rush.
UTA Independent Film Group reps his latest feature for worldwide rights and negotiated the deal on behalf of the film team.
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