Netflix has risen to the top of the pile when it comes to festival season acquisitions, the streaming giant cleaning up at this year’s Sundance, and poised to do the same at TIFF after causing Cannes to go into a tizzy. One of the funniest and most rave-reviewed films out of Sundance this year was Jack Black’s The Polka King, which starred Black as real-life Pennsylvania polka legend Jan Lewan, and Netflix has just snatched it up.
Deadline reports that the streaming service was one of a number of Polka King suitors, but sweetened the deal during the past few months. There’s no word yet on when we can expect to see it pop up in the Instant queue, but, according to Deadline, the movie will hit Netflix before the year is out. There’s also no word on whether we can expect a theatrical release, something that Netflix has faced pressure to do, especially recently. Netflix does have a deal at iPic, a luxury chain hawking “the ultimate theater experience” complete with painted murals in the bathrooms and seats that practically turn into beds, but for the rest of us plebes, we’ll probably just have to wait until Netflix starts rolling out the promotional material.
The Polka King is a stranger than fiction tale of Jan Lewan, a swindler known for his insanely opulent polka parties who developed all kinds of get-rich-quick schemes that had him promising field trips for polka fans to meet the Pope. In getting his schemes to work out, he ended up spending way more money than he actually made off of them. When our Matt Singer saw the film at Sundance, he called it “an incredible tale of ambition, greed, and dancing bears.” This is one of those things that has to be seen to be believed.