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Fatman – Mel Gibson is Santa Claus in the first image from a new dark comedy

Saban Films has announced that they have acquired U.S. rights to Fatman starring Academy Award® winner Mel Gibson (Braveheart, Lethal Weapon franchise), Emmy Award® nominated Walton Goggins (“Justified,” Ant-Man and the Wasp) and Academy Award® nominated Marianne Jean-Baptiste (Secrets & Lies, “Without a Trace”). The dark comedy, action film was written and directed by Eshom and Ian Nelms (Small Town Crime, Waffle Street, Lost on Purpose).

Fatman centers on a neglected and precocious 12-year-old who hires an unorthodox hitman to kill Santa Claus after receiving a lump of coal in his stocking.

Saban Films’ Bill Bromiley said, “This is our second collaboration with the Nelms brothers, and we couldn’t be more excited to bring another unique, thrilling movie of theirs to our audiences. Eshom and Ian are a talented duo, and we were hooked from script stage. This one is a fun ride.”

Jonathan Saba and Bill Bromiley negotiated the deal for Saban Films with Fortitude International’s Nadine de Barros on behalf of the filmmakers. Fortitude International is handling the international rights to the film. Bromiley and Saba are also executive producing along with financiers Hans Hufschmid and Todd Courtney in addition to Brandon James, Alastair Burlingham, The Film House’s Ryan R. Johnson, Windy Hill Pictures’ Buddy Patrick, Gary Raskin, Ben Rosenblatt, Kyle Stroud and Ingenious Media’s Peter Touche and Samantha Allwinton.

Fatman will be released by Saban Films, with plans to be announced at a later date.

It is produced by Fortitude International’s Nadine de Barros and Mammoth Entertainment’s Todd Courtney, with RBL Studios’ Michelle Lang, Zed Filmworks’ Robert Menzies, and Skywolf Media’s Lisa Wolofsky. The film marks Saban Films’ second collaboration with the Nelms brothers following modern noir hit Small Town Crime.

Saban Films continues to grow its presence in the industry, remaining active in the acquisition, production and distribution space. The company’s successes have run the gamut from critically acclaimed theatrical films such as The Homesman starring Hilary Swank, to two of the biggest Fathom events with horror icon and heavy metal mastermind Rob Zombie’s 3 From Hell last year and Kevin Smith’s Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, the sequel to the 2001 comedy Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back which the company partnered on after coming onboard at script stage.

Its upcoming slate includes: Daniel Roby’s crime-thriller Most Wanted starring Antoine Olivier Pilon with Jim Gaffigan and Josh Hartnett; the Alicia Silverstone wedding comedy Sister of the Groom; Robin Pront’s crime thriller The Silencing starring Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Annabelle Wallis and Hero Fiennes Tiffin; Nicol Paone’s Friendsgiving with Malin Akerman, Christine Taylor, Jane Seymour, Kat Dennings and Chelsea Peretti; John Suits’ Breach starring Bruce Willis; Twist starring Michael Caine, Lena Headey and Rita Ora; and Jamie Babbit’s The Stand-In with Drew Barrymore in a dual lead role.

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