Kino Lorber, Zeitgeist Films acquire N.A. rights to “Midnight Cowboy” doc

March 23, 2023

By Justin Anderson, Realscreen

Kino Lorber, in association with Zeitgeist Films, has announced that it has acquired North American distribution rights to the new doc Desperate Souls, Dark City and the Legend of Midnight Cowboy, a deep dive into the production of John Schlesinger’s classic film.

The documentary, directed by Nancy Buirski (The Loving Story), premiered at the 2022 Venice Film Festival and 2022 Telluride Film Festival.

The acquisition deal continues the relationship between Kino Lorber and Zeitgeist, with the latter opening the film theatrically at New York’s Film Forum in late June before expanding nationwide. A digital, educational and home video release on all major platforms by Kino Lorber will follow.

Inspired by author Glen Frankel’s 2021 book Shooting Midnight Cowboy: Art, Sex, Loneliness, Liberation and the Making of a Dark Classic, the film documents the creation of the unlikely Best Picture Oscar winner through inside stories of the film’s production from cast members including Jon Voight, Brenda Vaccaro and Bob Balaban, and also features interviews with cultural critics like J. Hoberman, Lucy Sante, Ian Buruma and Charles Kaiser, who provide insight and perspective on the period of the film’s original release.

Desperate Souls is produced by Nancy Buirski, Susan Margolin, Simon Kilmurry and Augusta Films in association with Cineflix Productions and Foothill Productions. Executive producers are James Costa, Geralyn Dreyfous, J.C Mills, Glen Salzman, Regina K. Scully, Nathalie Seaver, Mark Trustin and Jamie Wolf. The film was coproduced by Claire L. Chandler.

The acquisition deal was negotiated by Zeitgeist’s Emily Russo and Nancy Gerstman, and Kino Lorber’s Wendy Lidell with Jessica Lacy at Range Select.