Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown Prepare to Make ‘The Ultimate Comeback’ in ‘Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul’ Trailer — Film News in Brief

Honk For Jesus Save Your Soul
Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Regina Hall stars in “Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul.” as Trinitie Childs, the first lady of a Southern Baptist megachurch who stands by her man, Pastor Lee-Curtis Childs (Sterling K. Brown), as the couple weathers a scandal that has driven away their congregation, which once numbered in the tens of thousands.

“This is going to chronicle the ultimate comeback,” Brown narrates as the clip opens.

The trailer follows Trinitie and Lee-Curtis’ attempt to reopen their church and rebuild their congregation by any means necessary — including “shaking it for the lord” — as a group of documentarians film their every move.

“I just want to clear a few things up before we get started. Every woman is not built for the great responsibility of being a First Lady,” Hall’s Trinitie explains. “Lee-Curtis and I, we’re gonna get to the other side.”

The two-and-a-half minute clip, which features a remixed version of Big Tymers’ 2002 hit “Stay Fly,” demonstrates Brown and Hall’s chemistry and comedic timing, while sharing a taste of the film’s satirical take on megachurch culture as the couple scrap with the community and each other on their fight to get back on top.

“I’m Rocky up in this fight,” Brown professes punching the air, during breakfast.

When Hall astutely asks, “But Rocky didn’t win?”, he reasons, “But he did win in ‘Rocky 2.’ Lord baby, how many times do I have to tell you? Get past the first movie. That was our setup!”

Winners already are the filmmaking siblings behind the film — writer-director Adamma Ebo and producer Adanne Ebo, known as the Ebo Twins — as they make their feature film debut with the “Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul“, which is adapted from their 2018 short film by the same name. After making its world premiere as an official selection at Sundance in Jan., rights to the movie sold to Focus Features, Peacock and Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw for $8.5 million.

The film is executive produced by Peele, with Daniel Kaluuya aboard as a producer through his production company 59% with Amandla Crichlow; alongside the Ebo twins; Pinky Promise’s Jessamine Burgum and Matthew Cooper; Rowan Riley; Kara Durrett; Hall and Brown.

“Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul.” debuts in theaters and launches on Peacock on Sept. 2.

Watch the full trailer below:

Unearthed Films Launches New Banner, Sets August Release Date for “The Old Man”

Unearthed Films has launched a new animation arm Unearthed Animation as part of the independent distributors 20th anniversary.

“Unearthed Films has successfully released numerous animation titles over the years,” Unearthed films CEO Stephen Biro said in a statement. “With our releases of ‘Rock & Rule,’ ‘Where The Dead Go to Die,’ ‘City of Rott,’ ‘Mecanix,’ and ‘Dead Fury,’ we decided to start a dedicated distribution arm called Unearthed Animation to showcase wonderfully demented and outrageous animation, glorious stop motion films, and to give the fans something unique and fun to watch over and over again.”

The banner will release its first project, “The Old Man: The Movie,” an Estonian stop-motion feature based on the popular web series by Peeter Ritso and Mikk Mägi. The film follows three kids from the city who spend their summer with the grandfather in a remote village and end up on a mad race to retrieve the man’s cow before it causes a milk-pocalypse. Unearthed Animation will release the film Aug. 9 on DVD and Blue-ray, in both the original Estonian and in a new English dub led by Jimmy ScreamerClauz. The film was directed by Ritso and Mägi, and produced by Mägi with Veiko Esken, Erik Heinsal and Tanel Tatter.

The distribution deal was handled by Biro for Unearthed Animation and by Marco Magni of Eurooscura for Bop Animation and Apollo Film Productions. Watch the trailer for “The Old Man: The Movie” below.

Tony Ahedo’s Coming of Age Film “Icon” Acquired by KDMG, Inc.

Kaczmarek Digital Media Group, Inc. (KDMG) has acquired the Pretty Sweet Films’ production of Tony Ahedo’s feature film debut “Icon.” KDMG, Inc. will release the film across all TVOD/digital and Blu-Ray/DVD platforms in North America on August 1.

“Icon,” a coming of age drama starring Parker Padgett and Devon Hales, follows a young man who is forced to face the brutal realities of adulthood and responsibility due to a surprise pregnancy. Things rapidly spiral out of control as he simultaneously tries to find the truth as to why his absent father hasn’t been in his life since he was one years old.

Inspired by a true story, “Icon” also stars Julia Denton, Tony Demil, Bryce Anthony Heller and the feature film debut of Ronald Sansone. The film was filmed in Ahedo’s hometown of Saint Petersburg, Florida, and it significantly pulls elements out of his own childhood in the 1990’s and early 2000’s as inspiration for the film’s story.

Cinematographer Harrison Stagner utilized different cameras, including a Canon C200 and a BMCC4K with a vintage 60’s lens, to embody the film’s evolving timeline. “Icon” also features an original score by Chris Carlone.

Apple TV+ Reveals Trailer for Original Animated Film “Luck”

Apple TV+ debuted the trailer for “Luck,” an Apple Original film premiering Aug. 5 on the streamer. The film follows the story of Sam Greenfield (Eva Noblezada), the unluckiest person in the world. When she accidentally stumbles upon the magical Land of Luck, she begins a journey to bring some good luck home for her best friend. But humans aren’t allowed in this new realm, so she has to team up with the magical locals to help her on her mission.

The film also features the voice talents of Jane Fonda, Whoopi Goldberg, Simon Pegg, Flula Borg, Colin O’Donoghue, John Ratzenberger and Adelynn Spoon. “Luck” is produced by Skydance Animation and is directed by Peggy Holmes from a screenplay by Kiel Murray, with John Lasseter, David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and David Eisenmann producing for Skydance Animation.

Watch the full trailer for the film below.


‘Devotion’ Delays Release to November

“Devotion,” the upcoming war film starring Jonathan Majors and Glen Powell, has altered its flight plan.

The film, which is produced by Columbia Pictures and distributed by Sony Pictures, will now open wide on Nov. 23, ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. It was previously slated for a platform release in October, opening in select theaters Oct. 14, expanding on Oct. 21 and releasing wide Oct. 28.

Based on the book by Adam Makos, “Devotion” tells the true story of Jesse Brown (Majors) and Tom Hudner (Powell), celebrated US Navy pilots during the Korean War. Christina Jackson, Joe Jonas and Thomas Sadoski co-star in the film, which is directed by J.D. Dillard from a screenplay by Jake Crane and Jonathan A. H. Stewart. Dillard and Powell executive produce while Molly Smith, Rachel Smith, Thad Luckinbill and Trent Luckinbill produce.

With the move, Majors’ fans will still get their fix of the actor on Nov. 23, which was the original release date for “Creed III.” Majors joins the boxing franchise — a spin-off Sylvester Stallone’s “Rocky” movies — as a mysterious new antagonist who faces off against Michael B. Jordan’s Adonis Creed. Jordan makes his directorial debut with the feature.

Documentary About Champlain Towers Collapse in Development

101 Studios, Grain Media and the Miami Herald are partnering on a documentary about the horrific collapse of the Champlain Towers South condo building in Surfside, Fla., that killed 98 people in 2021.

The film, about one of the deadliest building failures in modern history, will be based on the Herald’s Pulitzer Prize-winning reporting. “Surviving Surfside” will feature interviews with survivors, first-responders, relatives of the victims, and the journalists and engineers examining the event. It will reveal “the turbulent history of Miami” and examine the suspects that may have contributed to the collapse of the 12-story beachfront condo. The investigation finds that “this crisis might have been averted,” exposing “profound truths about how profit so easily trumps human life,” according to a press release. 

“As a newsroom, we poured our hearts into the breaking news and the ongoing daily coverage, and subsequent investigative coverage, of the Champlain Towers South condominium collapse story,” said Miami Herald Executive Editor Monica Richardson. “It was our story to tell because the people and the families in Surfside who were impacted by this unthinkable tragedy are a part of our community.”

The doc is the second project in the works about the tragedy. “Surfside,” a three-part documentary series about the collapse, is also in development from director Stephanie Soechtig and former “E! News” host Jason Kennedy.

David Hutkin, COO of 101 Studios, which produces “Yellowstone” and “Mayor of Kingstown,” said “Surviving Surfside” is a story “obviously about an unthinkable tragedy, but it is also one that is a testament to the power of the human spirit and the importance of tenacious journalism fighting for the truth. We are so proud to be partnering with the Herald and Grain Media to bring this high-stakes mystery to audiences in a way that has never been seen before.”

Indie Rights Acquire Nicola Rose’s ‘Goodbye, Petrushka’

Indie Rights has acquired the worldwide rights to the coming-of-age comedy “Goodbye, Petrushka,” and is set to give the film a rollout in theaters and on streaming.

The studio will partner with Parsley Productions for a one-week engagement at Cinelounge Sunset in Los Angeles from July 15 to July 21, as well as a one-night screaming on July 17 in New York. The film will then premiere on Amazon Prime in the United States and Canada, followed by other major streaming platforms. The deal was negotiated by Linda Nelson for Indie Rights and “Goodbye, Petrushka” Producer Tierney Boorboor.

Directed by Nicola Rose, “Goodbye, Petrushka” stars Lizzie Kehoe as Claire, a college student and puppeteer who impulsively moves to Paris from New York after meeting a French figure skater. The film is executive produced by Mark A. Baum, Ed Cuffe, Mike Reuten and Imraan Farukhi.