EXCLUSIVE: IFC Midnight has taken U.S. rights to Ryan Prows’ directorial debut Lowlife. The audacious black comedy, which premiered at Fantasia Film Festival, centers on a group of small-time criminals whose stories collide when an organ harvesting caper goes very, very wrong. The movie recently had its U.S. premiere at Chicago’s Cinepocalypse Film Festival where it won Best Film, Best Director and Best Actor (for Jon Oswald). IFC Midnight plans a theatrical release in March 2018.
Also starring Nicki Micheaux (Animal Kingdom) Mark Burnham (Wrong Cops) and Ricardo Adam Zarate (Deadly Sins), Lowlife was written by a Los Angeles based comedy collective founded in 2009 by Tim Cairo, Jake Gibson, Shaye Ogbonna, Maxwell Towson and Prows. Producers are Narineh Hacopian, Derek Bishé and Tim Cairo.
Reviews have linked Lowlife to early Tarantino. The story sees a twist of fate unite three of society’s forgotten and ignored: a disgraced Mexican wrestler working as hired muscle for a local crime boss, a recovering addict desperate enough to arrange a black-market kidney transplant to save her husband’s life and a lovable two-strike convict fresh out of prison, cursed with a full-face swastika tattoo and a best friend guilting him into a kidnapping scheme. As the sordid lives of these small-time criminals collide, they must fight to save a pregnant woman from a very certain, and surely gruesome death.
The filmmakers say, “When we made Lowlife, we couldn’t help but ask ourselves who in their right-mind would distribute a movie this crazy? Lucky for us IFC Midnight rose to the challenge, proving they’re just as insane as we are. We’re thrilled to be working with them!”
The deal was negotiated by Arianna Bocco of IFC Films and James Norrie of AMP International which is handling world rights. Inderpal Singh, Group Chairman of AMP and AMPI says, “We are incredibly proud to have discovered this talented group of producers and directors. They are a part of our stable moving forward, and we are providing infrastructure to support them in the future. This is our business ethos; to find the best of the best, and support and guide them through the notoriously choppy waters of the international marketplace. We are thrilled that their first feature has found such a perfect home”.
AMPI has further closed Lowlife deals in the UK (Signature Entertainment), German-speaking Europe (Meteor), Scandinavia (NonStop Entertainment), Canada (Raven Banner) and Taiwan (Moviecloud).
Prows, who won a Student Academy Award for his 2011 short film Narcocorrido, is currently developing it as a feature project. He’s repped by UTA.