Following screenings at Venice, Telluride and Toronto, Paul Schrader’s highly acclaimed new thriller, First Reformed has been officially acquired by A24 for U.S. distribution. A 2018 release is in tow for the film written by Schrader, best known for memorable screenplay credits like Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, and directing nods such as his 1978 directing debut, Blue Collar, and the 1997 Academy Award® winning Nick Nolte headliner, Affliction.
First Reformed centers its haunting thriller narrative on Ernst Toller (Ethan Hawke), a mysterious Reverend based in a small town in upstate New York. When Toller is approached by Mary (Amanda Seyfried), a pregnant woman struggling with a seemingly unstable, radical activist husband, he gets embroiled in a treacherous scenario that forces him to confront his troubled past and drives him to increasingly dangerous and shocking behavior.
About the acquisition, A24 said, “We are absolutely thrilled to be working with the brilliant, one-of-a-kind Paul Schrader on this deeply provocative and hypnotic new film. FIRST REFORMED is at once an intimate character study and an expansive and profound look at some of the most universal questions of our time, all told through one man’s riveting and unforgettable personal journey. We’re incredibly excited to bring this masterful achievement out into the world, and to draw attention to Ethan Hawke’s remarkable performance at its center.”
Filmmaker Paul Schrader said, “I have been watching A24’s inspirational progress and am excited for my film to join their company.”
From Killer Films, Fibonacci Films, Omeira Studio Partners and Arclight Films, First Reformed is produced by Christine Vachon, David Hinojosa, Frank Murray, Jack Binder, Greg Clark, Victoria Hill, Gary Hamilton, and Deepak Sikka. Arclight is handling international rights to the film with Creative Artists Agency (CAA) co-repping North America.