Cinematical's Indie Roundup

Indie Roundup reviews the past week of news from the independent film community and provides a peek at what's coming soon.

Openings. James Gandolfini is the most notable cast member in the highly-praised, acerbic political / military comedy In the Loop, which James Rocchi wrote warmly about when he saw it at Sundance. Reclusive author Jeff Daniels is pursued for advice by single mother Lauren Graham in the comedy The Answer Man. Kevin Spacey is a celebrity Shrink facing serious problems of his own. Highly-recommended thriller The Hurt Locker expands into 200 theaters.

I'm singling out Tommy Davis' very good doc One Minute to Nine, which gets a one-week run in New York and Los Angeles starting on Friday, because I saw it last year and it's stayed with me. Wendy Maldonado, single mother of four, is headed to prison, and it's not immediately apparent why. Davis tells the story of Wendy's life, so by the time you figure out the why, you're fully invested in the real-life drama and the injustices that unfold. *

Deals. Phase 4 Films acquired U.S. distribution rights to Kari Skogland's Fifty Dead Men Walking and plans an August 21 release. Ben Kingsley, Jim Sturgess, and Rose McGowan star in the controversial thriller, set in the 1980s and based on real-life events: McGowan stirred up more talk with her comments about the IRA. [indieWIRE] Fox Searchlight picked up Scott Cooper's drama Crazy Heart, starring Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Colin Farrell, and Robert Duvall. Release is scheduled for next spring. [Variety]

After the jump: Indie Weekend Box Office, Wild Seven and more on Babelgum, Toronto Fest's doc lineup, Adam Yauch's illness and Oscilloscope Pictures.