100 Bloody Acres set for US debut
American audiences will get the chance to see Colin and Cameron Cairnes’ horror comedy 100 Bloody Acres before it opens in Australia.
The twisted tale of an organic fertiliser business whose sales rocket when its owners stumble across a secret ingredient that’s processed through a meat grinder, it will debut in the US on June 28.
Music Box Films’ genre label Doppelgänger Releasing will launch the film, which stars Damon Herriman and Angus Sampson as brothers who run the fertiliser enterprise, in 15 cinemas across the US and on Video-on-Demand platforms.
As they run short of raw material, Reg (Herriman) stumbles upon three travellers who are stranded on a remote country road. He cooks up a radical solution to their problem, aiming to gain the respect of his bossy big brother (Sampson).
Produced by Cyan Films’ Julie Ryan and Kate Croser, the film premiered at the Melbourne International Film Festival last year. It opens in Australian cinemas on August 1 via eOne Hopscotch. The Works Distribution will release the title in the UK in October and it’s just been acquired by MK3 in Germany.
Ryan and Croser first met the Cairnes brothers at the Australian Film Commission’s IndiVision Project Lab in 2008. “I just loved the script,” Ryan said. “The brothers kept developing it, it won first place in the horror section of the Slamdance screenwriting competition, and I kind of stalked them until we agreed to work together.”
The finance came from Screen Australia, South Australian Film Corporation, Film Victoria and the MIFF Premiere Fund. The cast includes Anna McGahan (who received the Heath Ledger Scholarship from the Australians in Film organisation in Los Angeles last year), Oliver Ackland, Jamie Kristian, John Jarratt and Chrissie Page.
Australian and US critics have lavished praise on the film. “A gory and funny riff on the trusty standby of city kids being menaced by rural types, 100 Bloody Acres reps a promising feature debut for Aussie brothers Colin and Cameron Cairnes,” opined Variety’s Richard Kuipers. “Pumping fresh juice into the formula by way of villains driven by economic imperatives rather than bloodlust, and victims more concerned with workshopping relationship issues than escaping certain death, the pic is primed to please gorehounds and has sufficient smarts to attract more upscale viewers.”
“I had a blast… it is a laugh riot and completely bizarre, and a welcome entry into the Australian film scene,” said Twitch Film’s Kwenton Bellette.
“Writer/director brothers Colin and Cameron Cairnes have created a well-scripted, frequently gory yet fun, dark comedy-horror film on what seems to be a smallish budget, and that’s no small feat,” said Film Threat’s Don R. Lewis.
Ryan and the Cairnes brothers are developing They Shoot Hostages Don’t They?, a comedy about a small-time crook who pretends to make a movie while concocting a ransom plea for a hostage that isn’t even alive. Screen Australia has funded the script development and Ryan says the project will be ready for financing in July.