MPAA gives ‘Killer Joe’ NC-17 rating

LD Entertainment to appeal the ruling

The MPAA has given an NC-17 rating to William Friedkin’s crime drama “Killer Joe,” prompting LD Entertainment to announce it will appeal the ruling.

“We will use our best efforts to overturn this decision,” said David Dinerstein, president of LD Entertainment. “We stand by our filmmakers and remain faithful to their visions.”

LD acquired U.S. rights in September at the Toronto Film Festival, a week after “Joe” had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival. Pic, starring Matthew McConaughey and Emile Hirsch, is due for its U.S. premiere at SXSW in March and a domestic launch this summer.

Supporting cast includes Thomas Haden Church, Gina Gershon and Juno Temple. The screenplay was written by Tracy Letts, on whose play the film is based.

Producers are Voltage topper Nicolas Chartier and Scott Einbinder of ANA Media Inc. Voltage Pictures, Christopher Woodrow’s Worldview Entertainment, and Picture Perfect Corp. financed.

Hirsch portrays a 22-year-old drug dealer who has his stash stolen by his mother and has to come up with $6,000 quick or he’s dead. Desperate, he turns to “Killer Joe” (McConaughey) when he finds out that his mother’s life insurance policy is worth $50,000.

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