Magnet to distribute a witch, an iron maiden, and the plague


Mark Cuban’s Magnet Releasing announced today that it has acquired U.S. rights to Christopher Smith’s medieval thriller Black Death. Starring Sean Bean (The Lord of the Rings), Black Death is described as a creepy, pitch perfect period film that expertly channels such UK classics as The Wicker Man and Witchfinder General. Christopher Smith’s cult hit Severence was distributed by Magnolia in 2007.
Black Death made its U.S. debut last week at L.A.’s Screamfest, where it took home several major awards: Best Director (Chris Smith),  Best Actor (Sean Bean), Best Cinematography (Sebastian Edschmid) and Best Musical Score (Christian Henson).
Bean stars as Ulric, a grim emissary from the Church, who leads a young monk (Eddie Redmayne) and a band of violent vigilantes and war veterans through the English countryside. Armed with blood-chilling torture devices, their mission is to stamp out suspected paganism in a village that remains untouched by the black plague, even as the rest of Europe grimly succumbs to the pestilence.

The film also stars Carice van Houten, David Warner, Kimberley Nixon, Johnny Harris, John Lynch, Tim McInnerny, Andy Nyman, Emun Elliott, Marianne Graffam, David Masterson, Tygo Gernandt, Martin Hentschel and Nike Martens.

“Black Death simmers with a kind of terror that’s all the more haunting cause it’s real,” said Magnet’s Tom Quinn. “It’s another great example of why Chris Smith is one of the most versatile directors working today.”

Magnet is planning to release Black Death in the Spring of 2011. The deal marks Magnet’s third major acquisition this week, following André Ovredal’s The Troll Hunter on Monday, and Brad Anderson’s Vanishing on 7th Street on Tuesday.

Check out two images from Black Death below.

Sean Bean in Black Death
Sean Bean in Black Death
Kimberley Nixon in Black Death
Kimberley Nixon gets a taste of the Iron Maiden in Black Death