Sony Pictures Classics Acquires John Prine Documentary

NEW YORK (February 10, 2019) – Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired all rights worldwide to the John Prine documentary tentatively titled JOHN PRINE: HELLO IN THERE.

Currently in post-production, JOHN PRINE: HELLO IN THERE tells the story of the iconic singer/songwriter who has notoriously been very mysterious to much of the public. Prine broke through with an album he wrote as a mailman in the Chicago suburbs, and went on to create some of the strangest, funniest, most surreal and most enduring songs of our time including "Angel from Montgomery." The movie began filming John as he prepared to release his first album of new songs in 13 years, and follows him throughout a remarkable resurgence that has taken him from Radio City Music Hall to the Songwriters Hall of Fame. With the complete support of the Prine family, the filmmakers conducted extensive interviews with Prine’s friends and peers; including young songwriters he helped shape, such as Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell and Margo Price.

The film was co-written by Zachary Fuhrer and Patrick Doyle, produced by Doyle and directed by Fuhrer. RadicalMedia is a production partner on the film.

Said Sony Pictures Classics, "Zachary Fuhrer and Patrick Doyle are beautifully capturing the story of one of the world's most original musicians. We are thrilled to give fans the opportunity to discover John Prine more intimately through this remarkable film."

Said Patrick Doyle, "Spending time with John Prine over the last year, we’ve learned that he is just as insightful — and hilarious — in everyday life as he is in his songs. From playing at pubs in western Ireland to the Ryman Auditorium, there is nobody better at spellbinding a room. For the last 50 years, he's been a voice for the overworked, underpaid and forgotten, and our current political times have made his songs even more relevant. He is a Johnny Cash-level talent we are lucky to still have performing, and he was kind enough to let us in on his life: making breakfast at home in Nashville, preparing for the biggest show of his life at Radio City and more. Zach and I couldn’t be happier to work with Tom Bernard, Michael Barker and the Sony Pictures Classics team on what we want to be the definitive portrait of an American songwriting legend."

Added Zachary Fuhrer, "Patrick and I can’t think of a better partner than Sony Pictures Classics for our film. As John’s band members like to say, 'There are two types of people: those who love John Prine and those who haven’t heard of him yet.' John’s philosophy on life — finding comedy in tragedy — is the heart of the film; his stories a daily reminder that there’s always a way to laugh at your own misfortune. None of this would be possible without the endless support of John, Fiona, Jody and the Prine family, a crew of dear friends, Peter Shapiro, and the team at Radical."

A theatrical release is planned

The deal was negotiated directly between the filmmakers and SPC. The filmmakers are represented by Bianca Grimshaw of Gray Krauss Sandler Des Rochers LLP.

Michael Barker and Tom Bernard serve as co-presidents of Sony Pictures Classics—an autonomous division of Sony Pictures Entertainment they founded with Marcie Bloom in January 1992—which distributes, produces, and acquires independent films from around the world.  Barker and Bernard have released prestigious films that have won 39 Academy Awards® (35 of those at Sony Pictures Classics) and have garnered 173 Academy Award® nominations (151 at Sony Pictures Classics) including Best Picture nominations for CALL ME BY YOUR NAME, WHIPLASH, AMOUR, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, AN EDUCATION, CAPOTE, HOWARDS END, AND CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON.

Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 142 countries. For additional information, go to