Beargrease lands sponsorship from LA film company.

The John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon will partner with P12 films, which will release “The Great Alaskan Race” in theaters Oct. 25, and a portion of the film’s proceeds will benefit the Minnesota race. The Beargrease, which will make its 36th run in January, has entered into a sponsorship agreement with P12 Films, which will release “The Great Alaskan Race” in October.

As part of the agreement, a portion of the film’s proceeds will benefit the race.

“We’re going to be broadcast internationally with this, so this is a game-changer,” Beargrease spokeswoman Monica Hendrickson said.

The film debuts in theaters Oct. 25 in at least 500 markets nationwide, including the Twin Cities. It tells the story of the 1924-25 “serum run” to Nome, Alaska, during which musher Leonhard Seppala and his team of sled dogs traveled more than 700 miles to bring medication to children affected by a diphtheria outbreak.

A special screening is scheduled in Duluth for sometime in mid- to late October, with details to come, Hendrickson said. The partnership initially began as a promotional one, after Hendrickson received a call from P12 earlier this year. A followup conversation about the Beargrease and P12’s shared mission of giving back to their communities led to an offer from P12’s CEO, Brian Presley, to sponsor the race as one of five nonprofit organizations it sponsors nationwide.

“We are thrilled that Brian Presley and P12 Films have chosen to showcase what we’ve been working on all these years, remembering important moments in history and giving tribute to the most important players,” Beargrease board president Carmen Schempp said.

Hendrickson said P12’s financial contribution will depend on film proceeds, as well as revenue from digital streaming services.

“Probably the thing I’m most excited about is (that) digital rights to the film — Netflix, Hulu, Amazon — all of that drops during race weekend,” Hendrickson said. “So, there’s going to be a lot of activity happening then, and we expect a few people from the film to be here (for the race).”


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