"Starlet," starring newcomer Dree Hemingway, will be available on DVD and VOD on March 19, 2013, Music Box announced.
"A thrillingly, unexpectedly good American movie"—Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
"This is confident, engrossing storytelling, and the actors are terrific"—Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader
Chicago, IL (January 09, 2013) – An unlikely cross-generational friendship develops between a young aspiring actress and an elderly woman when their two worlds collide in California's San Fernando Valley in "Starlet," the astute and emotional drama directed and co-written by Sean Baker and starring Dree Hemingway, one of the screen’s most exciting new talents in her breakthrough performance.
Ms. Hemingway (great granddaughter of Ernest and daughter of Mariel) stars as Jane, a sweet-smiling, blond-tressed 21-year-old looking to become an actress, who generally spends most of her time hanging around, getting high with her dysfunctional roommates, and taking care of her Chihuahua, Starlet. Drifting and driving contentedly around the sun-dappled San Fernando Valley, Jane one day finds a pile of cash stashed inside an old thermos she’s purchased at a yard sale held by the elderly Sadie (Besedka Johnson). After treating herself to a manicure and Starlet to a sparkly new halter, Jane returns to the house where she bought the thermos and, prompted by a growing sense of morality and guilt, begins a tentative friendship with Sadie, a sad woman who seems to be as isolated as Jane. Secrets emerge as Jane and Sadie’s relationship grows, revealing that nothing is ever as it seems.
Music Box Films Home Entertainment will release "Starlet" on DVD and VOD for the first time on March 19, 2013 (prebook February 12, 2013) following its theatrical rollout to theaters in the U.S.’s top 25 markets in 2012 and 2013. The "Starlet" DVD will include a host of bonus features and carry the suggested retail price of $29.95.
The winner of the Special Jury Prize at the 2011 SXSW Film Festival and the Fipresci Critics' Award at the 2011 Reykjavik International Film Festival, "Starlet" recently garnered a nomination for the John Cassavetes Award at the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards, along with being the sole nominee for the Independent Spirit’s Robert Altman Award. For her starring role, Dree Hemingway picked up the Breakthrough Performer prize at the 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival, while Variety Magazine named her an “Actor To Watch” in 2012. Additionally, director/co-scripter Sean Baker was nominated for a Golden Leopard Award at the 2012 Locarno International Film Festival.
At Rotten Tomatoes, "Starlet" holds an outstanding rating of 92%, based on 38 published reviews, with Sean Baker receiving much praise for continuing the naturalistic directing style that he was touted for in his earlier films, the Independent Spirit Award-nominated Prince of Broadway and Take Out. Dree Hemingway, in particular, is being universally lauded for her star-making turn in "Starlet" as the beautiful young wannabe actress whose fateful encounter with a saddened, elderly woman sparks a moral awakening and her first tenuous steps into true adulthood.
“Ms. Hemingway gives Jane an offbeat charm that steers 'Starlet' away from sentimentality, and a generosity that is of a piece with its gentle humanist vision” said Dennis Lim of The New York Times, while the Los Angeles Times’ Mark Olsen declares that “Dree Hemingway gives a performance of flaky charm, and tender sensitivity.”
"Starlet" is at once provocative, haunting, unpredictable, and surprisingly sweet…and it demands to be seen!
An unlikely friendship develops between 21-year-old aspiring actress Jane (Dree Hemingway) and elderly widow Sadie (Besedka Johnson) after their worlds collide one sunny day in California's San Fernando Valley. The two women are very different people—with Jane spending most of her time getting high with her dysfunctional roommates and taking care of her Chihuahua Starlet, and Sadie passing her days alone, tending to her garden. After a confrontation between the women at Sadie's yard sale, Jane uncovers a hidden stash of money inside a relic from Sadie's past. Her curiosity piqued, Jane tries to befriend the caustic older woman in an effort to solve her seeming dilemma. Secrets emerge as Jane and Sadie’s relationship grows, revealing that nothing is ever as it seems.
About Music Box Films:
Founded in 2007, Music Box Films has quickly established itself as one of the leading distributors of non-English language feature films in the US in theatres, on DVD/Blu-ray and via Video-on-Demand. Music Box’s release of Guillaume Canet’s Tell No One was the most popular foreign-language film of 2008. in 2010, the film adaptations of Stieg Larsson’s trilogy of international mega-sellers dominated the foreign-language film market. The first in the series, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, was one the most popular international releases of the decade, earning more than $10 million at the U.S. box office. Additionally, Music Box’s recent US release of Monsieur Lazhar earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. Music Box Films is rapidly expanding into English-language programming, having acquired and released Terence Davies’ period romantic drama The Deep Blue Sea, starring Rachel Weisz. Music Box Films is independently owned and operated by the Southport Music Box Corporation, which also owns and operates The Music Box Theatre, Chicago’s premiere venue for independent and foreign films.