Negotiations to pick up the best new films are underway at Sundance, and 1091 Media (previously The Orchard) has just made its second acquisition with Them That Follow.
After a night of negotiation, 1091 secured North American rights to the Appalachian religious drama directed by Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage in their directorial debut. The cast of the film includes Oscar-nominee Olivia Colman, Walton Goggins, Alice Englert, Kaitlyn Dever, Jim Gaffigan, and Thomas Mann.
Them That Follow dives into the culture of Pentecostal snake handlers, who are part of a long-standing tradition of using venomous snakes in church services to prove their dedication to God in a corrupt world of nonbelievers. In the film, Pastor Lemuel (Goggins) prepares his daughter Mara (Englert) for marriage to his choice of suitor. He enlists the help of Hope (Colman) to keep her in line, but little do they know Mara is hiding a secret that threatens to destroy her father’s life and reputation.
Some reviews have come in since the festival debut and the results are looking good. The film has a slow burn that keeps audiences unsettled and the documentary-esque camera work gives the story a gritty, realistic tone. It delves into the dangers of blind faith and outdated tradition, but still views the community they are depicting with respect.
This is one of many films to successfully find a home after premiering at Sundance, so be on the lookout for more news throughout the festival.