“Dope” star Kiersey Clemons, “Euphoria” actress Barbie Ferreira and Oscar nominee Michael Shannon will star in a comedy-drama set among the drag king scene of 1990s Las Vegas for a film called, “The Young King.”
Larin Sullivan wrote the script for the film and will make her directorial debut on “The Young King,” which Mister Smith Entertainment is presenting to international buyers at the upcoming American Film Market. WME Independent is handling North American rights.
Clemons in “The Young King” will star as Jules, an aspiring drag king who comes to Las Vegas to reconnect with her estranged dad Mick (Michael Shannon) and to make her debut performance in America’s biggest drag king revue. Mick, a legendary gambler and part-time children’s party clown, is less than excited to see his daughter “Julia” presenting as masculine, wearing suits and chasing after Ronnie (Barbie Ferreira), the no-nonsense dancer who he regularly frequents. But during an unforgettable whirlwind weekend, Jules and Mick’s worlds collide.
The project has received support from GLAAD, Sundance Institute, IFP’s Project Forum, Tribeca Film Institute and Inside Out Toronto for depicting the lesser-seen world of drag kings. The film will start production early in 2023 in Las Vegas.
“We are delighted to present Larin’s fresh twist on a classic Vegas story by shining a light on the drag king scene, which has rarely, if ever, been explored on the big screen. Led by our stellar cast, this is an incredibly emotional father-daughter story that will resonate with buyers and audiences,” Mister Smith Entertainment’s CEO David Garrett said in a statement.
Justin Tranter, a Grammy nominated songwriter who has worked on “Happiest Season” and “A Star Is Born” and collaborated with Lady Gaga, Britney Spears and Justin Bieber, will serve as the executive music producer on the film, as well as create original music for the project.
Producers on “The Young King” are Corporate Witchcraft’s Kim Bailey and Isabel Marden.
Clemons most recently starred in the TIFF film “Susie Searches” and will next be seen in “The Flash,” reprising her role from “Justice League.” She also recently wrapped production on the FilmNation drama “The Young Wife” and is currently filming an untitled live-action Godzilla and the Titans series for Apple TV+ and Legendary.
Shannon will next be seen starring opposite Jessica Chastain in Paramount Network’s limited series, “George & Tammy.” He also recently wrapped his directorial debut, “Eric LaRue,” a film based on the Brett Neveu play of the same name. Other upcoming projects include Jeff Nichols’ “The Bikeriders,” Václav Marhoul’s “McCarthy,” Michael Maren’s “Shriver” and “American Tragedies: Waco – The Trials.”
Ferreira is known for her work in “Euphoria” and also recently starred in Jordan Peele’s “Nope.” She’s currently filming “House of Spoils” opposite Ariana DeBose for Amazon.
Shannon is represented at CAA, Range Media Partners, Yorn, Levine, Barnes, Krintzman, Rubenstein, Kohner, Endlich & Gellman and Narrative. Clemons is represented by UTA, Range Media Partners and Jackoway Tyerman. Ferreira is represented by Aperture Talent Agency, Authentic Talent and Literary Management and Felker Toczek.