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News

31 10 2017 - Media release

Lupita Nyong’o, Josh Gad and Alexander England to star in Abe Forsythe’s Little Monsters

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Lupita Nyong’o, Josh Gad and Alexander England

Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o and Beauty and the Beast’s Josh Gad are set to star opposite Australian actor Alexander England in the zombie comedy Little Monsters, from Australian writer/director Abe Forsythe. Keith & Jess Calder's Snoot Entertainment and Bruna Papandrea’s Made Up Stories are producing the film, with production having begun this month in Sydney. The film has received major production investment from Screen Australia in association with Create NSW.

The film follows Dave (England), a washed-up musician who volunteers to chaperone his nephew’s kindergarten class field trip after taking a shine to the plucky schoolteacher, Miss Caroline (Nyong’o). Dave’s intentions are complicated by the presence of the world’s most famous kids show personality, and competition for Miss Caroline’s affections, Teddy McGiggle (Gad). One thing none of them bargained for however, is a sudden zombie outbreak, from which Dave and Miss Caroline must protect the children.

Snoot’s Keith & Jess Calder are producing alongside Made Up Stories’ Papandrea, Jodi Matterson and Steve Hutensky, with Jeanne Snow executive producing.

“Jess and I are delighted to be working with Abe Forsythe and the whole team in Australia, as we’re huge fans of his first film Down Under,” said Keith Calder. “That we also get to work with Lupita Nyong’o and Josh Gad has turned a great experience into a total dream.”

Snoot Entertainment just premiered Morgan Spurlock’s Super Size Me 2: Holy Chicken at the Toronto International Film Festival, and recently finished production on Blindspotting starring Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal. Other Snoot films include Adam Wingard’s You’re Next, The Guest, and Blair Witch and Charlie Kaufman’s Academy Award nominated Anomalisa.

“Abe is a brilliant filmmaker and I can't wait for audiences to fall in love with this original film that is equal parts hilarious, heartwarming and terrifying,” said Bruna Papandrea. “We at Made Up Stories have been longtime fans of Lupita's and Josh's extraordinary work and we are thrilled that they have come on board alongside Alex."

Made Up Stories recently acquired Tina Brown’s upcoming book The Vanity Fair Diaries for development as a limited series, and just wrapped production on Jennifer Kent’s The Nightingale as well as the TNT pilot Deadlier Than The Male written by Harriet Warner and starring Amy Brenneman. Papandrea’s producing credits include Wild, Warm Bodies, Gone Girl, Milk, and HBO’s Big Little Lies, for which Papandrea won the Emmy for Best Limited Series.

Sally Caplan, Head of Production at Screen Australia said “Little Monsters is an utterly charming and seemingly-impossible meld of zombie horror with romantic comedy that we expect will have genuine crossover appeal for audiences. Building on the working relationship forged on Down Under, we are thrilled to see Abe Forsythe and Jodi Matterson team up with vastly experienced producers Bruna Papandrea and Steve Hutensky and offer our congratulations to the team for assembling this inspired cast.”

Create NSW CEO Michael Brealey commented, “Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong’o and the multi-talented Josh Gad are incredible choices for Little Monsters and we are delighted to welcome them and the rest of the impressive cast and crew to NSW. This is a major win for the state and we are especially excited that such an esteemed producing team, including Emmy Award winner Bruna Papandrea, is onboard for the shoot in and around Sydney.”

Nyong’o, who won an Oscar in 2014 for her performance in 12 Years a Slave, most recently wrapped production on Black Panther from Disney/Marvel.  She can next be seen in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which bows December 15 from Disney/Lucasfilm. Nyong’o is repped by CAA and Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein and Lezcano.

Gad, who previously starred in Disney’s Frozen was this year in Beauty and the Beast and Open Road’s Marshall. Next he will be seen in Murder on the Orient Express, releasing via Twentieth Century Fox. Gad is repped by WME, Lighthouse Management & Media and Ziffren.

Forsythe, coming off his previous film Down Under, is repped by CAA and Plattform.

England who starred in Forsythe’s Down Under, was in Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant and most recently Australian TV series, Offspring. England is repped by UTA and United Management.

Protagonist Pictures is handling international sales.

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