Sundance Selects is acquiring North American rights to writer-director Kat Candler’s drama “Hellion,” which stars Aaron Paul, Juliette Lewis and newcomer Josh Wiggins, the company announced Monday.
“Hellion” premiered last month at the Sundance Film Festival, and Sundance Selects will release the film in theaters and on VOD later this year.
Kelly Williams and Jonathan Duffy produced “Hellion,” follows 13-year-old dirt bike racer Jacob Wilson (Wiggins in his feature film debut), whose delinquent behavior has begun to raise concerns around town, especially when it starts to involve his younger brother Wes (newcomer Deke Garner). While the boys’ father Hollis (Paul) loves his sons, he is still reeling from the loss of their mother, spending more time drowning his sorrows at the local bar and working on his damaged beach house than being an active parent.
When the local authorities catch wind of the increasingly volatile situation, Wes is taken into custody and placed with his Aunt Pam (Lewis), leaving Jacob and Hollis to fend for themselves. In Wes’ absence, Jacob becomes increasingly obsessed with two things: winning a local motocross championship and getting his brother back.
Discovered on YouTube, Wiggins was among the most acclaimed actors at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, with one publication comparing his performance to Leonardo DiCaprio‘s in “This Boy’s Life.”
“Hellion” was executive produced by Jeff Nichols (“Mud”), Sarah Green (“The Tree of Life”), Janice Beard, Tanner Beard and Suzanne Weinert, while Paul served as co-executive producer. The film features a soundtrack of classics from heavy-metal heavyweights including Metallica, Slayer and The Sword.
“Kat Candler has crafted an exquisite and beautiful drama featuring towering performances across the board. The entire cast here including Aaron Paul as we have never seen him before, and the remarkable arrival of young Josh Wiggins, make this film an absolute must watch for any serious filmgoer,” said Jonathan Sehring, president of Sundance Selects/IFC Films.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to find such a great home in Sundance Selects. It’s an honor to be in the company of so many of my favorite films that IFC Films and Sundance Selects have released over the years,” added Candler.
The deal for the film was negotiated by Arianna Bocco for Sundance Selects/IFC Films with UTA Independent Film Group on behalf of the filmmakers.