The streamer comes on board a package that included director Ian Samuels (“Sierra Burgess Is a Loser”), and Variety can exclusively report the film’s just-appointed leads: Kathryn Newton (“Big Little Lies,” “Blockers,”) and Kyle Allen (“American Horror Story,” the forthcoming “West Side Story”).
Shooting is currently underway with FilmNation, run by Glen Basner, and Goldsman’s Weed Road Pictures. The feature film is based off the short story by Lev Grossman, who also adapted the screenplay. Additional cast members include Jermaine Harris (“Ballers”), Anna Mikami (“Birds of Prey,” “Instinct”), Josh Hamilton (“Eighth Grade,” “Ray Donovan”) and Cleo Fraser (“The Unicorn,” “Transparent”).
The film follows a teenager contentedly living the same day in an endless loop who gets his world turned upside-down when he meets a girl who’s also stuck in the time warp. What follows is a love story with a fantastical twist, as the two struggle to figure out how – and whether – to escape their never-ending day. The plot is similar to the adult-skewing “Palm Springs,” which just broke the record for biggest film sale in the history of the Sundance Film Festival.
Aaron Ryder and Ashley Fox are running point for FilmNation, with Greg Lessans and executive producer Scott Lumpkin alongside Goldsman for Weed Road.
“We believe this fun, hilarious story will resonate with our global Prime Video audiences and we’re looking forward to director Ian Samuels bringing the story to life,” said Matt Newman, film co-head at Amazon Studios. “We’re also thrilled to be working closely again with our friends at FilmNation Entertainment and excited to be working with Weed Road Pictures.”
Writer-director Samuels’ resume includes the MTV-produced short “Myrna the Monster,” which played at major festivals including Telluride and SXSW. He holds an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in film directing, and a BFA from Bard College in writing.
Newton is an alumni of Variety‘s Power of Young Hollywood impact list. Her credits also include the leading role on Netflix’s survivalist drama “The Society,” “Ben Is Back” with Julia Roberts and a two-season arc as Reese Witherspoon’s willful eldest daughter on HBO’s “Big Little Lies.”
Allen just wrapped the Universal feature “All My Life” from director Marc Meyers. For three seasons he played the son of Aaron Paul and Michelle Monaghan on Hulu’s “The Path.” Allen is also a world-class athlete, competing on the Jr. Olympic National team in the area of sports acrobatics. He trained from the age of 13 at the Kirov Academy of Ballet.
Samuels is represented by CAA, Newton is represented by WME and Management 360 and Allen is represented by UTA and Management 360.