Richard Bates Jr. Returns with TONE-DEAF to Explore the Dark Underbelly of Rural America

Whenever I see the name Richard Bates Jr. attached to a project I always get super excited. Bates blew my mind with his feature debut, Excision, a beautiful orgy of pure craziness and some of the most fucked up dreamy visuals ever put to screen. Add to that some black humor and a great, complex leading performance by AnnaLynne McCord that showed the world that she was so much more than the beautiful face most people had seen on 90210.

Bates followed that up with the underrated Suburban Gothic, where he took Criminal Minds Matthew Gray Gubler and paired him up with Kat Dennings (Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, Thor) for a weird and super fun ghost hunting adventure in suburbia. And last year he put out his best movie to date, the brilliant Trash Fire. a film about dysfunctional relationships, family and religion, in which we got to see Entourage's Adrian Grenier and The Final Girls' Angela Trimbur deliver some of their best performances I've seen.

The past week Deadline broke the news that the production company behind The Walking Dead, Circle of Confusion, has teamed up with Lightning Entertainment and Hindsight Media for a multi-year suspense/thriller genre slate deal with the purpose to produce two-three films a year. And we are happy to hear that the first film under this new deal will be Tone-Deaf from Richard Bates Jr.

“We couldn’t be more excited to be entering this new partnership with both Lightning Entertainment and Hindsight Media. Our hope is to combine our collective company’s many resources in launching a cutting edge slate of genre films created by unique filmmaker voices. Ricky Bates’ Tone-Deaf is the perfectly twisted film to start the whole thing off with a literal BANG.” says Circle of Confusion’s Matt Smith.

We at Ghastly Grinning could not be more excited either. There is no arguing that these are great times to be a fan of this genre.

“I love the synergy and collaboration among our three companies, and our shared passion to create original, entertaining, and commercially appealing films. This slate perfectly fits our new mandate of supporting promising storytellers and delivering to audiences the best of independent film,” said Lightning’s James Walker.

Tone-Deaf follows millennial Olive who, after a string of bad relationships and work failures, leaves the city for a weekend of peace in the country only to discover the shockingly dark underbelly of rural America. The film will start its shoot in Los Angeles spring of 2018.

Keep your eyes open here for the latest news and updates on this intriguing project. Stay spooky, y´all!

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