William Friedkin's latest film ran afoul of the MPAA
LD Entertainment will release William Friedkin’s “Killer Joe” with an NC-17 rating, opting not to change its ending to placate the MPAA.
The ratings group slapped the film with an NC-17 rating in February and the filmmakers lost their appeal in March. LD Entertainment, formed late last year by Mickey Liddell and run by David Dinerstein, decided not to acquiesce and will screen the Friedkin-directed film as is starting July 27.
“As we support the artistic integrity of our filmmakers […] 'Killer Joe' will be released in theaters on July 27th in its original version as an NC-17 film," Dinerstein, president of LD Entertainment, said in a statement.
"The film has played to enthusiastic crowds at the Venice, Toronto and South-by-Southwest Film Festivals where many critics have noted this is Matthew McConaughey’s best performance to date. As our initial LD Entertainment release, we are excited to bring this very entertaining, funny and provocative film to audiences this summer.”
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tracy Letts wrote the script, which tells the story of a killer who befriends Chris Smith, a young man who wants his mother murdered.
McConaughey stars as the eponymous killer while Emile Hirsch plays Smith.
The last major film to bow with an NC-17 ratings was "Shame," which earned the vast majority of its grosses overseas.
Deadline first reported the news.