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Ashley Williams Sundance Short ‘Meats’ Gobbled Up for Streaming by Topic (Exclusive)

Sundance 2020: Streaming service from First Look Media acquired the film that made its world premiere as part of the shorts program

Topic, First Look Media’s new streaming service, has acquired the North American streaming rights to “Meats,” Ashley Williams’ short film that made its world premiere in the shorts program at the Sundance Film Festival, Topic announced Wednesday.

Topic also acquired a first look opportunity for any projects based on or related to “Meats.”

“How I Met Your Mother Actress” Williams starred in and directed “Meats,” which looks at how a pregnant vegan struggles with her newfound craving to eat meat. The story was inspired by the ideas of the ethics of eating food as posed by writers like Michael Pollan, Camas Davis and Jonathan Safran Foer.

Williams stars in “Meats” alongside a real-life master butcher named Giancarlo Sbarbaro. She also produced with Neal Dodson.

“There were many incredible shorts that premiered at Sundance this year, and ‘Meats’ was such a brilliantly unique, comedic look at human nature vs. choice and sacrifice,” Ryan Chanatry, general manager of Topic, said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to be sharing Ashley’s film with Topic’s subscribers later this year.”

“Having just seen audiences view my film at Sundance, I’m so happy that Topic loves the project and will grow the audience for ‘Meats.’ I’m flattered and proud,” Williams said in a statement.

“The team at Topic is smart and forward-thinking about what stories and storytellers they elevate. We’re looking forward to them distributing ‘Meats’ and to collaborating on future projects with them as well,” Dodson said in a statement.

Williams is currently forming projects for Hallmark and Lifetime, as well as a TV series based on Camas Davis’ memoir “Killing It: An Education” in development with Pam Fryman. Williams also received the Creative Coalition Spotlight Award at Sundance last week along with filmmaker Julie Taymor and actors Rachel Brosnahan and Jim Gaffigan.

Topic is the new streaming service launched by First Look Media last year that offers a curated collection of North American premieres and programming from around the world as well as original scripted comedies, dramas, talk shows, documentaries and features. Most recently Topic teamed up with ITV to release the latest series from Shane Meadows, “The Virtues” starring Stephen Graham, that will be available in North America for streaming on Topic in April.

The deal was negotiated by Topic GM Ryan Chanatry and acquisitions lead Dea Perez with CounterNarrative Films’ Neal Dodson on behalf of the filmmakers.