EXCLUSIVE: Shout! Studios has secured all North American distribution rights to Misbehavior, the Philippa Lowthorpe-directed beauty pageant drama starring Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game, Pride & Prejudice), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (The Morning Show, Belle), Jessie Buckley (Judy, Chernobyl ), Keeley Hawes (Bodyguard, The Missing), Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread, Another Year), Rhys Ifans (The King’s Man, Notting Hill), and Greg Kinnear (Little Men, House of Cards). The Pathé International pic will get a theatrical day-and-date release sometime this year followed by a rollout across all major entertainment platforms.
Written by Rebecca Frayn and Gaby Chiappe, the film is based on a true story set in 1970 when the Miss World competition took place in London, hosted by the US comedy legend, Bob Hope. It follows the newly-formed Women’s Liberation Movement that achieved overnight fame by invading the stage and disrupting the live broadcast of the competition. Not only that, when the show resumed, the result caused uproar: the winner was not the Swedish favorite but Miss Grenada, Jennifer Hosten – the first black woman to be crowned Miss World. In a matter of hours, a global audience had witnessed the patriarchy driven from the stage by a crowd of angry women, and the Western ideal of beauty turned on its head.
“Misbehaviour radiates a joy all its own, and for a film about a long-forgotten seedling of the Women’s Liberation Movement, there is an undeniable currency. The first-rate ensemble delivers an endearing, funny, “stand-up-and-cheer” experience that will leave audiences immensely satisfied and deeply grateful to the real-life heroes of this story,” said Shout’s Vice President of Acquisitions Jordan Fields.
“The enthusiasm of Shout! for the film and their commercial ambition convinced us that they were the right home for us in North America,” added executive producer Cameron McCracken. “In the UK, the film has received 4-star reviews from publications as varied as the Guardian, the Financial Times and the Daily Express – it deserves to be seen by the widest possible audience.”
Suzanne Mackie and Sarah Jane Wheale produced the pic with executive producers Andy Harries and Rebecca Frayn of Left Bank Pictures, McCracken and Jenny Borgars of Pathé UK, Rose Garnett of BBC Films, Andrea Scarso of Ingenious Media, and Natascha Wharton of the BFI.
Fields brokered the rights deal with Marie-Laure Montironi and Amina Muneer.