IFC Films Buys Nicole Riegel’s ‘Holler,’ Plans June Release (EXCLUSIVE)
Courtesy of Deauville Film Festival
IFC Films has acquired “Holler,” a drama about a woman who joins a dangerous scrap metal crew in order to pay for her college education.
The deal is for North American right. IFC will release the film in June 2021. “Holler” received critical claim both for Nicole Riegel’s work behind the camera and for the lead performance of Jessica Barden. Variety‘s Peter Debruge praised the movie’s grit, writing, “‘Holler’ is honest, which is not always what people want from movies, but it isn’t your typical poverty porn. Riegel avoids the melodramatic gimmicks (e.g., a run-in with the police or the manipulative death of a loved one) that tellers of such working-class stories love to pull, trusting that audiences understand that the only happy ending — the only hopeful ending — is one that sees Ruth on her way out of Jackson.”
Riegel wrote the screenplay for the movie and is making her directorial debut. Barden starred in “End of the F*cking World” and recently appeared opposite Charlie Hunnam and Jack O’Connell in “Jungleland.”
“Holler” is set in Southern Ohio, an area hit hard by the collapse of manufacturing and a region with few opportunities to get ahead. That’s why Ruth Avery (Barden) is willing to accept a punishing job working in the scrap yards, and to augment that living by stealing valuable metal from factories by night. But Ruth’s plans to get her degree are complicated by the responsibility she feels to look after her troubled family.
Gus Halper (“Sing Street”), Pamela Adlon (“Better Things”), Becky Ann Baker (“Freaks and Geeks”), and Austin Amelio (“The Walking Dead”) co-star in the film. “Holler” is produced by Katie McNeill and Jamie Patricof of Hunting Lane Films, Christy Spitzer Thornton, Level Forward’s Rachel Gould, and Adam Cobb, with executive producers Adrienne Becker, Abigail E. Disney, Paul Feig, and Jessie Henderson. The film was selected by the Toronto International Film Festival, SXSW Film Festival, and Deauville Film Festival in 2020. Riegel was included in Variety‘s “10 Directors to Watch.”
“Nicole Riegel’s beautiful cinematic voice is an instant powerhouse – she has created a visually stunning, personal and singular vision of American life with empathy and passion,” Arianna Bocco, president of IFC Films, said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to partner with such an accomplished and innovative producing team to bring this tremendous debut to audiences nationwide.”
Riegel added” “‘Holler’ has been an enduring labor of love that I’ve poured many years of my life into, and I am so thrilled that my first film has found a passionate and caring home in IFC Films. Arianna and her amazing team have consistently taken chances on bold women and their stories, and I’m honored to be a part of that continuity.”
The deal for the film was negotiated by Bocco. The filmmakers were represented by ICM Partners, as well as Adrienne Becker and Roger Clark for Level Forward.
Variety's Brett Lang contributed to this post.