EXCLUSIVE: Christopher Backus (Big Little Lies, Mindhunter) & Skye P. Marshall (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) have signed on to star in Daft State, a psychological thriller from director Chad Bishoff, which heads into production in Omaha, Nebraska this month.
The film scripted by Bishoff and Sam Harter charts the mysterious psychological destruction of Easton (Backus), who is driven to the edge of sanity, and possible self-harm, by those that love him most—his wife (Marshall) and daughter. Will Easton succumb to their increasingly traumatizing pressure, or will he conquer the dark forces at play in his addled psyche?
The Syncretic Entertainment production is produced by Bishoff and Erich Hover. Its exec producers include Inny Clemons (Straight Outta Compton, Netflix’s Sneakerheads), Lisa Crnic (Paramount’s Clifford the Big Red Dog), Brett Cullen (Joker) and Jonas Roeser (It Snows All the Time).
“I’ve always been inspired by great psychological thrillers. Mental health is also a central figure in our film, and with everything that’s happening in the world right now, we have to shed light on this important topic,” said Bishoff. “I’m grateful for our creative team and our amazing actors who will bring this story to life. It’s so important.”
Backus’ credits include HBO’s Big Little Lies, Netflix’s Mindhunter, Showtime’s Roadies, from creator Cameron Crowe, Apple TV+’s Truth Be Told, and apocalyptic thriller Blackout, in which he appeared opposite Oscar winner Rami Malek. He’s also appeared in acclaimed FX series It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Sons of Anarchy, among other projects.
Marshall will be seen next year on CBS’s new medical drama, Good Sam, starring alongside Sophia Bush and Jason Isaacs. The actress is perhaps best known for her portrayal of powerful Haitian Voodoo Priestess, Mambo Marie on Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and for playing Ms. Fowdy for two seasons on The CW/DC’s superhero series Black Lightning. Additional guest star/recurring credits include This Is Us, 9-1-1, NCIS, The Rookie, Grey’s Anatomy, Shameless, and The Fix.
She’s appeared on the film side in Lionsgate’s Misconduct, opposite Anthony Hopkins and Al Pacino, as well as in rom-com A Nice Girl Like You, and A Lot of Nothing, an upcoming thriller from director Mo McRae.
Backus is represented by Kris Heller at APA and Colton Gramm at Brillstein Entertainment Partners. Marshall is repped by Affirmative Entertainment and Meyer & Downs.