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Festival Predictions

2014 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Jeff Baena’s Life After Beth

A huge ensemble cast of indie vets (Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza, Matthew Gray Gubler, Dane DeHaan, Alia Shawkat, John C. Reilly, Cheryl Hines, Paul Reiser, Molly Shannon). Check. A promising directorial debut from someone who previously made a name for himself with a cult screenplay (I Heart Huckabees). Check. Zombies. Check. You can always count on a horror-comedy to crack the Park City at Midnight line-up and Life After Bet certainly fills in that gap. Filming on Jeff Baena’s debut occurred in July, and recent AFM art proves that they’re deep into the post production phase, so chances are relatively good for a possible January showing. If so, this will be a hot sales item ticket for several indie distribution companies.

Gist: DeHaan plays Zach, who is devastated by the unexpected death of his girlfriend, Beth. But when she miraculously comes back to life, Zach takes full advantage of the opportunity to share and experience all the things he regretted not doing with her before. However, the newly returned Beth isn’t quite how he remembered her and, before long, Zach’s whole world takes a turn for the worse.

Production Co./Producers: Elizabeth Destro (The End of Love) and Michael Zakin (The Bling Ring)

Prediction: Comic relief recommendation for Park City at Midnight.

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, 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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