May 3, 2011 - Santa Monica, CA

Lightning Entertainment, the Santa Monica-based sales, production and distribution company, announced today that it has acquired international sales rights to Kerry Prior's breakout hit festival film THE REVENANT, a horror comedy about two slacker best friends who become zombies, and then use their newfound powers to become vigilante crime fighters -with hilariously mixed results. Lightning will introduce the film to buyers at Cannes, with a new trailer and one special invitation-only market screening.
A horror comedy in the vein of SHAUN OF THE DEAD and ZOMBIELAND, the film tells the story of a soldier (David Anders, from TV's 24 and Vampire Diaries) who is killed in Iraq and then finds himself resurrected as a "revenant," or one who has returned from the dead. He turns to his slacker best friend (Chris Wylde, of Descent and The Ten) to help him manage his newfound thirst for blood, and the duo quickly realize that this zombie-fied state is a perfect opportunity to become vigilante crime fighters. However, their adventure quickly becomes more complicated and bloody than they expected as the movie escalates into a series of unexpected and horrifying twists.
The film has garnered incredible reviews and won eighteen awards on the international festival circuit, including the Best Director and Audience Awards at Fantastic Fest and Zompire (the Undead Film Festival), and the Audience Award at CineVegas; and has played to packed houses at top festivals like Sitges, the Brussels International Film Fest, and the Fantasia Film Festival.

"We're thrilled to bring THE REVENANT to Cannes for our buyers," said Mathilde Aupetit, VP of Worldwide sales for Lightning Entertainment. "This film is one of the coolest, funniest and scariest horror movies we have seen in a long time, and we know our buyers will love it- it's a nonstop ride of scares and action."

"Joe was one of the original champions of the movie when it debuted in the festival circuit" says Prior. Everybody at Lightning completely gets the movie; and they and have been totally supportive of my vision for the theatrical release, so it's really the perfect match. I'm psyched."

THE REVENANT's director Kerry Prior wrote the original screenplay and produced the film with Liam Finn, and Jacques Thelmaque. . Lightning's Joseph Dickstein, SVP of Acquisitions for Lightning Entertainment, negotiated the deal with WME's Graham Taylor, who represented the filmmakers.

About Kerry Prior/ Production co
Kerry Prior, critically acclaimed independent filmmaker, cut his teeth in Hollywood as a visual effects artist working on such films as Starship Troopers, Airforce One, Bubba Ho-Tep, and the Phantasm series. With THE REVENANT he has received worldwide critical accolades, and a legion of fans who have christened the movie a cult classic even before its release. Prior is a graduate of UCLA Film School and a founding member of the seminal punk band, The Shaggies.

Over at Hitfix, Aaron Morgan writes:

Overall this movie is a real gem and deserves a wide release here in the states to shake us out of this remake/retread horror trend. “Revenant” is clever and hilariously dark, and movie fans are starving for this kind of originality to cleanse the pallet [sic] from all the bland genre meals we’ve been served in theaters over the last few years.

Joblo, Brian Kelley raves:

This is the kind of film that deserves to be seen in a large crowd and I hope and pray it doesn’t fall victim to the type of distribution hell that landed TRICK R TREAT into the direct-to-DVD road after two years of fan anticipation. Make noise about wanting to see this film and I promise you won’t be disappointed when given the opportunity to experience it for yourself. THE REVENANT is flat-out fantastic horror-comedy that is safely mentioned in the same breath as masterpieces such as RE-ANIMATOR.

Andrew Mack at Twitchfilm praises the director’s work in the film, saying:

The chemistry of the lead actors David Anders [Bart] and Chris Wylde [Joey] and Kerry Prior’s comedic writing are key to any success this film musters up. Very much a labor of love of Prior he wrote, produced, edited and directed this feature. Mostly known for his work in special effects on films such as the Phantasm franchise, Bubba Ho-tep and a Nightmare on Elm Street film, too name a few, he’s only had one other opportunity to write and direct and that film was called Roadkill, way back in 1996. But here it is his comedic timing and writing that are the big pay off.


Since its debut on the film festival circuit, The Revenant has won the following awards:
Xanadu Sci Fi and Horror Convention 2009: “Best Feature Film”
Zompire, The Undead Film Festival 2009: “Best Feature,” “Best Director” Kerry
Prior; “Audience Award”
CineVegas 2009: “Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature”
Toronto After Dark Film Festival 2009: “Feature Film, Silver”
Fantastic Fest 2009: “Best Director,” Kerry Prior; “Audience Award (4th Place)"
ScreamFest, Los Angeles 2009: “Best Make Up,” “Best Special FX”
Vampire Film Festival, New Orleans 2009: “Outstanding Vampire Film” (1st Place)
Falstaff International Film Festival 2009: “Best of the Festival Award”
NYC Horror Film Festival 2009: “Best Picture,” Kerry Prior; “Best Director,” “Best Actor” (Tie: Chris Wylde, and David Anders), “Audience Choice”
Omaha Film Festival 2010: "Best Off the Edge Film"
A Night of Horror International Film Festival 2010: "Best Film", Best Director" (Kerry Prior)
The film was also an "Official Selection" of the following film festivals:
Sitges 42nd International Film Festival 2009: Official Selection (10/09)
Chicago International Film Festival 2009: Official Selection (10/09)
Grimm Up North- UK 2009: Official Selection: (10/09)
Mar Del Plata International Film Festival 2009: Official Selection (11/09)
Leeds International Film Festival- UK 2009: Official Selection (11/09)
Starz Denver International Film Festival 2009: Official Selection (11/09)
Stockholm International Film Festival 2009: Official Selection (11/09)