Saban Films and DirecTV have secured the North American distribution rights to Small Town Crime following the film’s world premiere at SXSW. The crime thriller, written and directed by Eshom and Ian Nelms, is slated for a theatrical and multi-platform release this year.

John Hawkes, Anthony Anderson, Robert Forster and Octavia Spencer star in the film about ex-cop Mike Kendall (Hawkes), who discovers the body of a young woman and, in an act of self-redemption, becomes hellbent on finding the killer. While his uncouth and quirky detective style helps break open the case, his dogged determination unwittingly puts his sister (Spencer) and best friend (Anderson) in danger.

Forster, Clifton Collins Jr, Michael Vartan, James Lafferty, Daniel Sunjata, Caity Lotz, Jeremy Ratchford, Don Harvey, Stefanie Scott and Dale Dickey co-star.

Avva Pictures financed and developed the film, with John J. Kelly, Brad Johnson and Parisa Caviani serving as producers alongside executive producers Spencer and Merhdad Elie.

Bill Bromiley, Ness Saban and Jonathan Saba negotiated on behalf of Saban Films, while Kevin Iwashina and Zac Bright of Preferred Content negotiated on behalf of the financier and filmmakers.