Greg Kinnear and Alan Arkin in the locally-filmed "Thin Ice." Photo: ATO Pictures

Greg Kinnear and Alan Arkin in the locally-filmed "Thin Ice." Photo: ATO Pictures

 

Remember "The Convincer," the darkly comic thriller starring Greg Kinnear as crooked insurance agent that was filmed in the Twin Cities last year? It's got a new title, a trimmer running time, and a distributor bringing it soon to theaters in the nation's top markets.

ATO (Art Takes Over) Pictures announced today that the movie, now called "Thin Ice," will be a fall release.

Kinnear plays a slippery, self-confident insurance salesman looking for a quick killing. He hits pay dirt with a lonely retired farmer (Alan Arkin) who is unaware that he is sitting on a rare violin worth a fortune. Kinnear schemes to swindle the old man, but the plot thickens when he encounters an ex-con locksmith (Billy Crudup) who traps him in his own game of deceit.

Minneapolis-based Werc Werk Works’ Elizabeth Redleaf and Christine Walker and Spare Room Productions’ Mary Frances Budig produced. Jill Sprecher ("Thirteen Conversations About One Thing") directed, and co-wrote with her sister Karen Sprecher (of TV's “Big Love”).

The film premiered at January's Sundance Film Festival to positive reviews. Redleaf said the film's new re-edit moves the story along even faster, "so you have to keep up with the plot; that's one of the pleasures of a caper." It also introduces new comic-threatening scenes for Crudup, whose volatile character is a real scene stealer.

Redleaf said she plans to hold a local premiere. "If I had my druthers I'd bring people in" from the cast and crew, she said, but added that the details of such an event are in the hands of the ATO publicity staff now. "It'll be a nice whoop-de-do in any case," she said.

Upcoming releases for Werc Werk Works are the European art film "The Turin Horse," which will be featured at the Toronto International Film Festival and the New York Film Festival, and the dramedy "Darling Companion," starring Oscar-winners Kevin Kline and Diane Keaton as a troubled couple whose marriage sputters when their beloved dog goes missing. Both films are due in theaters "hopefully in 2011" Redleaf said.

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