Lost Ones, a newly launched production company, is unveiling a North American distribution arm. The first film that the company will debut will be “Venus as a Boy,” an art culture romance that will premiere on video-on-demand on Sept. 24.
Utopia will handle worldwide sales of the film, which had its world premiere at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. The company’s head of sales David Betesh will oversee the process. “Venus as a Boy” was written, directed and stars Ty Hodges, who previously appeared on Disney’s “Even Stevens” and “Don’t Look Under the Bed.” He appears alongside actress and model Olivia Culpo (“I Feel Pretty”), Trace Lysette (“Transparent”), Bai Ling (“The Crow”), and musicians Estelle and Stacy Barthe.
The film follows Hunter (Hodges), a freewheeling artist navigating heartbreak, addiction, and L.A.’s gallery scene. After refusing to sell a painting to an eager buyer, a chance encounter leads him to Ruby (Culpo), a gorgeous and successful Instagram influencer reeling from the recent death of her father. Polar opposites attract and after spending an intimate weekend together, Hunter’s life is completely enmeshed with Ruby’s.
Lost Ones is a Black-owned production and distribution company that was established in 2020 by Gian Franco, producer and former lead of U.S. content acquisition and global content business development for Amazon’s Instant Video, and Hodges. The company has a commitment to “champion the authenticity of creative voices and strives for diversity of thought, expression and representation that is neither stereotypical, contrived, tokenized, nor safe.” Afropunk will support the film’s release.
“Completing this movie during a pandemic was such an unprecedented experience,” Hodges said. “It forced us to dig deep as a team and to figure out how to deliver a project that we believe is timely; and, now, do so in a way that reaches as many people as possible. The goal with the Lost Ones distribution arm is to put out films that share a similar DNA – to bolster independent films that have something meaningful to say. Our intention is to build a community around these types of projects so that when people see ‘Lost Ones,’ they know that these stories will be original and important.”
“Afropunk is committed to amplifying Black excellence. ‘Venus as a Boy’ is a great example of creative storytelling that cuts against the proverbial Black narrative,” said Afropunk. “We are happy to celebrate Ty and his exceptional work.”