- CULVER CITY, Calif.
Production house Superprime has signed filmmaker Sean Baker to its roster for U.S. commercial representation.
Baker is a director, cinematographer, producer, screenwriter and editor best known for his independent films Tangerine and The Florida Project. Tangerine, shot entirely on an iPhone 5S, premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and was released by Magnolia Pictures. It was nominated for four Independent Spirit Awards including Best Feature and Best Director, and four Gotham Awards including Best Feature (it won the Audience Award). His next film, The Florida Project, premiered at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival and was released by A24. The film was nominated for Independent Spirit Awards for Best Feature and Best Director, a Gotham Award for Best Feature, Willem Dafoe earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor and Baker was awarded Best Director of the Year by the New York Film Critics Circle.
The Florida Project introduces us to itinerant families living in Orlando budget motels a stone’s throw from Walt Disney World. The film’s POV, though, is in large part through the eyes of children—in particular a six-year-old girl named Moonee (portrayed by Brooklynn Kimberly Prince)—and their challenged existence becomes at times a fun-filled adventure akin to what might be worthy of exploits in the Magic Kingdom. The kids’ POV brings a light-hearted, almost magical entertainment to the story. But a remarkable balance is struck by Baker in that too much fun could have trivialized the plight of the working poor. Conversely a focus on these struggling families would run the risk of becoming preachy, making for an unsatisfying movie experience. Somehow Baker—who directed, produced, edited and co-wrote (with Chris Bergoch) The Florida Project—maintains the proper perspective, making an entertaining, wonder-filled film that at the same time creates an underlying empathy for those who are marginalized and vulnerable.
Baker is a graduate of New York University and wrote, directed and edited his first feature film Four Letter Words in 2000. His films Take Out (2008) and Prince of Broadway (2009) were both nominated for the John Cassavetes Independent Spirit Award, and Starlet (2012) was the recipient of the Robert Altman Independent Spirit Award, as well as another Cassavetes nominee. Baker was also the co-creator of the long-running American comedy series Greg the Bunny.
John Lesher, managing director of Superprime, described Baker as “a brilliant filmmaker, who delivers uniquely funny and deeply moving characters that always stun and inspire what’s truly human in all of us.”