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Kristen Bell Sundance Film Goes to Screen Media, Focus World

Kristen Bell stars as a woman in her late 20s who returns home and carries on an affair with a teenager

Focus World and Screen Media Films have partnered to acquire domestic distribution rights to “The Lifeguard,” a drama starring Kristen Bell that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January.

Screen Media will handle the theatrical release while Focus will handle digital, with the two outlets plotting a summer debut.

Written and directed by Liz W. Garcia, the film follows a New Yorker in her late 20s who returns home after her idyllic life crumbles. She picks up where she left off, living in her old house and taking her old high-school job as a lifeguard.

Then an affair with a teenager throws everything for a loop.

“We’re thrilled to team up with Focus World on Liz’s really special, unique film,” Screen Media President Suzanne Blech said in a statement. “I think the journey that Kristen’s character takes is one that so many can relate to, and both Focus and Screen cannot wait to share this with audiences around the country. Kristen’s fans, in particular, we believe are going to be thrilled to see her in new kind of role that’s at once fun, exciting, funny, and challenging.”

Bell, one of the stars of Showtime’s “House of Lies,” just helped launch a record-breaking Kickstarter campaign to turn her former show, “Veronica Mars,” into a movie.

Her co-stars in “The Lifeguard” include Mamie Gummer, Martin Starr and Amy Madigan. C Plus Pictures’ Mike Landry and Carlos Velazquez, La Pistola’s Harto and Garcia and Attic Light Films’ Milan Chakraborty all produced the film.

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