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Justin Simien's Bad Hair

Annual Top Films Lists

Top 50 Most Anticipated American Independent Films of 2019: #38. Justin Simien’s Bad Hair

Top 50 Most Anticipated American Independent Films of 2019: #38. Justin Simien’s Bad Hair

Bad Hair

After the balayage that was Dear White People (the award-winning Sundance film that spawned a Netflix series), Justin Simien buzzed cut his way into his sophomore gig around summer’s end in Los Angeles. Bad Hair was mentioned back in 2017 with a producing team of Julia Lebedev, Eddie Vaisman, and Oren Moverman supporting the project. The U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent winner landed Laverne Cox, Vanessa Williams and Michelle Hurd for what is being coined a horror satire and wrapped up production in October before the trades mentioned his name in the studio film ring. Further commitments are perhaps the reason why we didn’t see it programmed in Park City this time out. Dear White People (trailer) was sharp-witted and shrewd, this might be closer to Get Out in its DNA.

Gist: Paralleling the rise of New Jack Swing in 1989, this follows an ambitious young woman from Compton who gets a weave in order to survive the image obsessed world of music television. Her professional success comes at a higher cost than anticipated, however, when she discovers her new hair may have a mind of its own.

Release Date/Prediction: Producers will be looking to showcase the film as an acquisitions friendly setting. Perhaps a SXSW or Tribeca Film Fest showing is in the cards.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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