EXCLUSIVE: Production has begun and the lead cast has been set on Mean Dreams, a new thriller from director Nathan Morlando. The coming-of-age tale follows Casey and Jonas, two teenagers desperate to escape their broken and abusive homes. Stealing a bag full of drug money from Casey’s corrupt police officer father, they band together to learn to con, fight and bribe their way to survival. The thriller examines the desperation of life on the run and the beauty of first love.

Newcomers Sophie Nélisse (The Book Thief) and Josh Wiggins (Max, Hellion) play Casey and Jonas, with Bill Paxton as Casey’s father, along with Colm Feore, and Kevin Durand.

Morlando directs from a script by by Ryan Grassby and Kevin Coughlin. William Woods of Woods Entertainment is producing, with Allison Black, Patrice Théroux, Jonathan Bronfman, Rob McGillivray, Ben Stranahan, Mark Gingras, Andre Bharti and Tom Spriggs executive producing. Mean Dreams is jointly financed by Tip Top Productions, Project AMB, Vigilante Productions, Telefilm Canada, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, and Ontario Media Development Corporation. Canadian distribution is being handled by Elevation Pictures, with all other territories currently available. The film is currently shooting in Northern Canada.

Morlando is repped by Meridian Artists and Gang, Tyre, Paxton by UTA, Feore by Greene & Associates and Coronel Group, Durand by WME and Alchemy Entertainment, Nélisse by CAA and Wiggins by UTA and Leverage Management.