Film News Roundup: Pam Grier, Alisha Boe Join Cheerleading Comedy ‘Poms’

Sierra/Affinity has added Pam Grier, Alisha Boe, Phyllis Somerville, Charlie Tahan, Bruce McGill, Rhea Perlman and Celia Weston to its cheerleading comedy “Poms.”

Diane Keaton and Jackie Weaver are already set to star in “Poms,” which has begun principal photography in Atlanta, Ga. Zara Hayes is directing from a script by Shane Atkinson based on a comedic story by Hayes and Atkinson about a group of women who form a cheerleading squad at their retirement community.

Grier is best known for starring in Quentin Tarantino’s “Jackie Brown” and “The L Word.” Boe plays Jessica Davis in the Netflix drama series “13 Reasons Why.”

Sierra/Affinity is producing, financing and handling international sales of the project, and co-representing U.S. rights with Endeavor Content. Producers are Kelly McCormick; Alex Saks; Mad as Birds Films’ Andy Evans, Ade Shannon, Celyn Jones, and Sean Marley; and Rose Pictures’ Rose Ganguzza. Keaton; Sierra/Affinity’s Nick Meyer and Marc Schaberg; and Will Greenfield are executive producing.

ACQUISITIONS

Abramorama is teaming with Cinereach to theatrically release the documentary film “Matangi/Maya/M.I.A.” in the U.S. starting Sept. 28.

Elevation Pictures will be distributing the film in Canada. Dogwoof will be releasing in the U.K. and handling international sales. The musician — best known by her stage name M.I.A. — is currently performing with Lauryn Hill in “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill 20th Anniversary Tour.”

The film covers her immigration from Sri Lanka to England as a young girl, her nomination as Maya Arulpragasam for an Academy Award for best song for “O…Saya” from “Slumdog Millionaire,” and winning a Grammy Award and The Mercury Prize. The film originally premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the World Cinema documentary special jury award, and has since screened at festivals across the U.S. The film is scored by Paul Hicks and George Harrison’s son, Dhani Harrison.

Abramorama’s chief executive officer Richard Abramowitz said, “This is a candid portrait of one of the most thoughtful and provocative artists of our time and we are looking forward to bringing it to audiences across the U.S. this fall.”

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Freestyle Digital Media has acquired North American rights to the thriller “Odds Are…” and set the movie for release on VOD and digital HD on Aug. 7.

The film tells the story of three college students who play a challenge game called “odds are” — a game that soon erupts into a nightmare as they find themselves caught in an unpredictable web of deceit and survival when the butt of their joke turns the tables on them. What begins as a conventional trapped-in-a-house tale morphs into a story that goes from the beaches of Santa Monica to the California desert and back again.

The cast includes Ron Eldard, Karyn Moore, Markus Silbiger, Alejandra Morin and James Adam Tucker. Based on a story by Lily Markle, “Odds Are…” was produced, written and directed by veteran film and television director Peter Markle. Jared Heins also produced. Executive producers are Melinda Culea, Graham Jones, and Dennis Passaggio.

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