Nicolas Winding Refn truly made a name for himself with Bronson in 2008, but really broke out with Drive in 2010 and his latest film, The Neon Demon, just got a very colorful and strange new poster. The poster comes with the news that Amazon has decided they will be releasing the film, which stars Elle Fanning in the lead, in theaters nationwide on June 24th before it is made available to Amazon Prime subscribers via instant streaming. Amazon Studios acquired rights to distribute the film in the U.S. in November of last year and they are partnering with Broad Green Pictures for the theatrical release of the film.
The film centers around Fanning, who stars as a model named Jesse who moves to Los Angeles with hopes of making it big, but her youth and beauty make her a target for a group of beauty and image obsessed models who will do whatever it takes to get what she has. The film serves as a follow up to Refn's 2013 film Only God Forgives, which paired Refn and Ryan Gosling together for a second time, but the film wasn't able enjoy the critical and financial success that Drive had. The Neon Demon represents a departure for Refn, who co-wrote the film with Mary Lewis, and discussed the change with Dazed last year.
"I decided that I'd made enough films about violent men, and I wanted to do a film with only women in the film, and so I did this story because my wife would only go to L.A. if we had to travel out of Copenhagen. She's like, 'I'm done with Asia. I will only do Los Angeles.' And so I came up with an idea and went to L.A., and I cast this woman called Elle Fanning who is absolutely fantastic, and she played the lead."
The film is set to premiere Friday at Cannes and will be competing for the Palme d'Or, which both Drive and Only God Forgives also competed for. Refn also re-teamed with composer Cliff Martinez for the film, who previously worked on the soundtrack for Drive. The movie was filmed last year in Los Angeles and had a reported budget of just $7 million, which made it an appealing get for Amazon, as the studio won't have to bring in a ton at the box office to break even, and horror films seem to always find some sort of audience.
Refn has yet to announced what his next feature directorial effort will be, but it was recently announced that he will be serving as a producer on a remake of the Vincent Price film Witchfidner General, which was retitled The Conqueror Worm in the U.S. The original film was directed by Michael Reeves, who helped to get Refn's debut film Pusher released. No word yet on who will be directing the film.
The Neon Demon stars Elle Fanning, Jena Malone, Abbey Lee, Christina Hendricks, Bella Heathcote and Keanu Reeves. The film will be available through Amazon and is getting a theatrical release on June 24, though it is unknown yet just how wide the release will be. The film's teaser trailer is out now and be sure to stay tuned for more updates as the release date gets nearer. Do you plan on seeing The Neon Demon?