Phase 4 Films has acquired U.S. and Canadian rights to the Matt Johnson-directed The Dirties, which Johnson stars in with Owen Williams. The script is by Johnson, Evan Morgan and Josh Boles. The film was produced by Matthew Miller along with Johnson, Morgan and Jared Raab. The pic won the Narrative Grand Jury Prize at Slamdance, and Phase 4 will release the film later this year in theaters and on VOD via its distribution partnership with filmmaker Kevin Smith’s Kevin Smith Movie Club.

The Dirties follows two best friends as they film a comedy about killing the bullies in their school. One of them isn’t joking. Said Smith: “I’ve always wanted to say this about a movie I made and mean it, but never could. Now, thanks to The Dirties, I can: This is the most important film you will see all year. Matt Johnson has mashed-up the found-footage film and the faux-documentary genres and crafted the most original, hypnotic, and human movie about a monster-in-the-making you will ever see. Not only is The Dirties an astonishingly great first film, it has the stones to deal with some very real subject matter in a mature, important way”. Phase 4 Films negotiated the deal with Nate Bolotin and Aram Tertzakian of XYZ Films on behalf of the filmmakers.

Johnson is repped by WME, Management 360, and Akin Gump.