Focus Features, Peacock and Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions together have acquired the worldwide rights to “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.,” the satire about mega churches that premiered at Sundance 2022 and stars Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown.
Adamma Ebo wrote and directed the film and worked alongside producer and twin sister Adanne Ebo for their feature film debut. The Ebo twins based “Honk for Jesus” on their short film of the same name.
Focus Features plans to release the film theatrically for a release date to be set later, but the film will also debut day-and-date on the streaming service Peacock, marking it as the first time Focus will be debuting a film day-and-date on Peacock in this way.
And as part of the acquisition, Jordan Peele is also joining “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.” as an executive producer. Monkeypaw along with Universal also previously snagged the rights to the next film by Nikyata Jusu, the director of “Nanny” whose film won the Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance.
“Honk for Jesus” is a comedy and satire filmed partially as a faux-documentary, and it follows Pastor Lee-Curtis Childs (Brown) and his wife, First Lady Trinitie Childs (Hall), as the heads of a Southern Baptist mega church as they try and bounce back from a scandal that’s forced them to shut their doors and led their congregation to leave in a mass exodus. The film picks up in the aftermath as the Childs, still insanely wealthy, try and host an Easter service and drum up attention for the community with a feeble attempt telling passers by on the highway to “Honk for Jesus.”
The movie satirizes the culture of for-profit religion and the corruption, back biting and ego that goes on behind the scenes. And “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.” also features compelling and layered, dramatic work from both Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown in addition to its comedic trappings.
Oscar-winner Daniel Kaluuya produced “Honk for Jesus” through his production company 59% with Rowan Riley and Amandla Crichlow, alongside Adamma Ebo, Adanne Ebo, Kara Durrett, Matthew Cooper and Pinky Promise’s Jessamine Burgum, and Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown.
“We’re so unbelievably blessed and hyped to be partners with Focus and Monkeypaw on our first feature film. Their commitment to our vision as filmmakers and bolstering the film as a whole is amazing and we cannot wait to bring it to the world with this team,” the Ebo twins said in a statement.
“Adamma and Adanne’s fresh, unique voices deliver such an authentic, hilarious and searing experience. Their vision coupled with the talents of Regina and Sterling deserved all the acclaim Sundance audiences gave it,” Focus Features chairman Peter Kujawski said. “I am so thrilled that we get to bring the film to worldwide audiences with Peacock and Monkeypaw.”
“We are excited to partner with Focus Features and Monkeypaw to bring ‘Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.’ to Peacock customers day-and-date with its theatrical release,” said Val Boreland, EVP Content Acquisition, NBCUniversal Entertainment, Television and Streaming. “We continue to expand the Peacock catalog with fresh stories from new creators like the Ebo twins, whose feature film debut already has Sundance audiences buzzing and is certain to delight viewers everywhere with its magnetic mix of satirical humor and drama.”
“Central to Monkeypaw’s mission is working with emerging filmmakers who are telling fresh and disruptive stories in mischievous new ways. We are so fortunate that the brilliant Adamma and Adanne Ebo have chosen to partner with us on the release of their hilarious ‘Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.’ They’re master satirists and have found both humor and heart in this fierce and provocative critique of hypocrisy,” Monkeypaw president Win Rosenfeld said.
“I am thrilled to collaborate alongside Adamma and Adanne Ebo and see that their creative vision has been realized. Focus Features and Monkeypaw Productions have an eye for incredible storytelling and for them to appreciate the nuances of ‘Honk for Jesus,’ truly makes for the best partnership I could have ever imagined,” Burgum said. “Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown delivered unforgettable performances that I can’t wait for audiences to witness; I’m giddy just thinking about it!”
The deal was negotiated on behalf of the filmmakers by UTA Independent Film Group, CAA Media Finance, and ICM Partners. UTA represents the Ebo Twins and Pinky Promise. Monkeypaw is represented by CAA and Jared Levine.