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'Manchester by the Sea' gets awards season theatrical release date

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After picking up the rights to Manchester by the Sea at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, Amazon has partnered with Roadside Attractions for a theatrical release in the middle of awards season.

Amazon first picked up theatrical and streaming rights to Kenneth Lonergan’s family drama in January, after its world premiere at Sundance sparked a bidding war. Trade reports placed the company’s deal around $10 million, one of the biggest sales of this year’s festival, with Amazon planning to team up with another studio to coordinate a theatrical release. Under the new deal with Roadside Attractions, Manchester by the Sea will debut on Nov. 18, with a nationwide theatrical expansion planned for the middle of December.

Manchester by the Sea earned rave reviews at Sundance, with EW’s own Chris Nashawaty calling it a “masterpiece,” and critics have universally praised star Casey Affleck for his role as Lee Chandler, a working-class Massachusetts man. When his brother (Kyle Chandler) unexpectedly dies, Lee reluctantly returns to his hometown, where he learns that his brother has named him guardian of his 16-year-old nephew (Lucas Hedges).

Roadside and Amazon previously partnered with Lionsgate on the theatrical release of Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq.