In the past few years, upstart indie distributor A24 Films has had an uncanny ability in finding success in even the most outre of art house releases (like Spring Breakers, Under the Skin and the just-opened Swiss Army Man) and also in getting younger audiences to flock to theaters, something which is even rarer these days. Just today, A24 has set release dates for two buzzy indie titles: Cannes prize winner American Honey and Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight. Both will hit theaters this fall and may have hopes in being a part of the awards conservation – last year A24 took Room, Ex Machina and the documentary Amy all the way to the Oscars.
Andrea Arnold’s American Honey, which won the Jury Prize at Cannes this year, follows newcomer Sasha Lane’s Star, a young drifter who joins a troop of magazine sellers on a trip through middle America. Shia LaBeouf (Fury) and Riley Keough (Mad Max: Fury Road) also star in the film. The film will open in New York and Los Angeles on September 20th with expansions likely to set afterward. This date marks an opening that American Honey may be a part of the Telluride/Toronto film festival line-ups.
Moonlight, from Medicine for Melancholy director Barry Jenkins, is another indie to keep watchful eyes on. The film – an adaptation of Tarell McCraney’s play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue – is a Miami-set drama centering around queer black youth. Mahershala Ali (House of Cards and the upcoming Netflix series Luke Cage), André Holland (The Knick), Janelle Monáe and Naomie Harris (Spectre) co-star. The film is set to open in New York and Los Angeles on October 21st with expansion to follow. This title also looks to have a presence on the fall festival circuit.