Screen Media Goes 'Off the Rails', Acquires North American Rights to Female-Led Comedy

New York, NY

Published on: November 9, 2020

Stars Kelly Preston in one of her final roles, alongside Jenny Seagrove, Sally Phillips, Ben Miller, with Franco Nero and Judi Dench


Screen Media, a Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment (Nasdaq: CSSE) company, announced today the acquisition of all US rights to Jules Williamson’s feature directorial debut, the comedy-drama Off The Rails starring Kelly Preston (For The Love of The Game, What a Girl Wants, Jerry Maguire), Jenny Seagrove (Local Hero, Another Mother’s Son, Don’t Go Breaking My Heart), Sally Phillips (Bridget Jones’s Diary), newcomer Elizabeth Dormer-Phillips, Ben Miller (Paddington 2, What We Did on our Holiday), with Franco Nero (Django Unchained, John Wick: Chapter 2), and Judi Dench (Philomena, Shakespeare in Love, Victoria & Abdul). Screen Media plans to release the film in theaters and on demand in the first half of 2021.


Off The Rails is inspired by Williamson’s own real-life events. Three friends, now in their 50s, recreate an interrail journey from their youth across Europe to fulfill the dying wish of their close friend. Taking her place is her daughter, 18-year-old Maddie. With lost passports, train strikes and romantic entanglements thrown their way, they must put old feuds aside to complete the journey within five days and remind themselves that age is only a number.


Off The Rails is a Bill Kenwright Films production in association with Black Camel Pictures and Palma Pictures, written by Jordan Waller, and produced by Bill Kenwright.


“I’m thrilled that Screen Media has come on board Off The Rails, with all their boundless energy and enthusiasm! I loved the story of these three friends who have lost their way from the moment I was pitched it. (I was brought up on Rio Bravo!!) Our commitment to it has only deepened since we lost our beloved Kelly. It’s about women reclaiming their true selves – and celebrates friendship, love, joy and freedom – a welcome antidote after a difficult 2020,” said Kenwright.


“We are so excited to be bringing a movie about fun, tradition, and love to audiences at a time when we can all use a little more of each of those. We know audiences will love seeing these incredible actresses tell this story. Tragically, Kelly Preston’s passing makes this film’s message of friendship especially poignant, but we are so proud to be able to present Off the Rails and Kelly’s performance in it,” said Screen Media in a statement.


The deal was negotiated by Seth Needle, SVP of Global Acquisitions and Co-Productions, for Screen Media with Natalie Brenner, Partner at Metro International, on behalf of the filmmakers. Metro is handling foreign sales at the upcoming American Film Market.


The announcement follows on the heels of Screen Media’s recent acquisitions of Simon West’s action disaster film Skyfire, and the Bella Throne thriller Girl, which premiered at Fantastic Fest. Screen Media recently released Blackbird, the Roger Michell-helmed drama starring Susan Sarandon, Kate Winslet and Mia Wasikowska and Jesse Quinones’ MMA action film Cagefighter, featuring Gina Gershon, Jon Moxley, and Chuck Liddell.  Rod Lurie’s feature film The Outpost, based on Jake Tapper’s New York Times Best Seller The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor, has been one of the top films across all platforms since its launch July 4th weekend. The company is in post-production on Willy’s Wonderland with Nicolas Cage.


About Screen Media Ventures, LLC

Screen Media Ventures, LLC, a Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment (Nasdaq: CSSE) company, acquires the rights to high quality, independent television series and feature films. Screen Media Ventures acquires worldwide rights for distribution through theatrical, home video, pay-per-view, free, cable and pay television, video-on-demand, and new digital media platforms. The company acquires AVOD rights for third party networks and is the main supplier of content for Crackle Plus and other Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment properties. With a library of over 1,500 television series and motion pictures, Screen Media Ventures is one of the largest independent suppliers of high-quality tv series and motion pictures to U.S. and international broadcast markets, cable networks, home video outlets and new media venues. For more information, visit:


About Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment

Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, Inc. (Nasdaq: CSSE) operates streaming video-on-demand networks (VOD). The company owns a majority stake in Crackle Plus, a company formed with Sony Pictures Television, which owns and operates a variety of ad-supported and subscription-based VOD networks including Crackle, Popcornflix, Popcornflix Kids, Truli, Pivotshare, Españolflix and FrightPix. The company also acquires and distributes video content through its Screen Media subsidiary and produces original long and short-form content through Landmark Studio Group, its Chicken Soup for the Soul Originals division and Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment is a subsidiary of Chicken Soup for the Soul, LLC, which publishes the famous book series and produces super-premium pet food under the Chicken Soup for the Soul brand name.



Bill Kenwright Films recently produced ANOTHER MOTHER’S SON, which was released in UK cinemas in March 2017 to critical acclaim. The company also co-produced BURDEN with US producer Robbie Brenner (Dallas Buyers Club). Starring Garrett Hedlund, Andrea Risborough, and Forest Whittaker, the film had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival 2018, where it won the Audience Award. Kenwright’s other recent productions include DIE MOMMIE which also won an Audience Award at Sundance, THE FANATIC starring John Travolta, and MY PURE LAND, directed by Screen International “Star of Tomorrow” Sarmad Masud, was the UK’s entry for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars 2018. The film was nominated for BIFA’s Discovery Award; BIFA Best Picture winner BROKEN (Rufus Norris) starring Tim Roth; and CHERI (Stephen Frears) starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Rupert Friend and Felicity Jones.

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Taylor Krafchik
Ellipsis IR

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RooneyPartners LLC
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