EXCLUSIVE: In competitive bidding, Netflix closed a deal to acquire U.S. rights to Gunpowder Milkshake from STX Films. The female-driven action film is directed by Navot Papushado, and produced by Studiocanal and The Picture Company. Studiocanal fully financed and will retain the international rights where they plan to distribute the film in their home territories with a planned international theatrical roll out around the world. I’ve confirmed that a sequel is already in early development.
As part of a substantial 8-figure deal, STX retains Canada, Latin America, and Chinese distribution rights. Studiocanal will release in the UK, France, Germany, AUZ/NZ. The film sold out worldwide.
The film will add to the summer lineup that Netflix disclosed earlier in the week. The female-centric action film stars Karen Gillan. Lena Headey, Angela Bassett, Paul Giamatti, Carla Gugino, Michelle Yeoh and Chloe Coleman also star. The action-heavy film’s focus is three generations of female assassins who fight to stop a vicious cycle of violence that has haunted their lives. The action takes place over the course of one night.
That Studiocanal and The Picture Company are already working on a sequel gives Netflix a shot at another franchise, this after it recently paid around $450 million for two Rian Johnson-directed Knives Out sequels with Daniel Craig. Gunpowder Milkshake also fits with Netflix’s action films like the Charlize Theron-starrer The Old Guard and the Chris Hemsworth-starrer Extraction, latter of which has another film in the works after bowing as the most watched film on Netflix.
This hybrid release plan with both a streamer and theatrical combined release is becoming the new normal, most recently occurring on Mortal Kombat and Godzilla Vs. Kong, which played in theaters and on HBO Max.
Papushado, who wrote the film with Ehud Lavski, previously co-wrote and co-directed the breakout genre bending thriller Big Bad Wolves. That film was a sensation at film festivals and Quentin Tarantino called it the best movie of the year. This is the first English language film for the Israeli writer/director, and The Picture Company partners Andrew Rona & Alex Heineman produced under their overall deal at Studiocanal.
UTA represents the filmmakers, and also brokered the deal for U.S. rights on behalf of STX and Studiocanal.