The classic Australian thriller Wake in Fright has been acquired by Drafthouse Films for release in the US. Drafthouse is planning to kick the US run off with screenings at Film Forum in NYC on October 5 followed by a LA screening at The NuArt on October 19th.
Wake in Fright, directed by Ted Kotcheff (Rambo: First Blood), is considered to be one of the “seminal films in the development of modern Australian cinema.” The film debuted at the Cannes Film Festival in 1971 where it picked up a Palme D’Or nomination, with a comprehensive restoration of the print screening at the festival in 2009 courtesy of guest curator Martin Scorsese. The 2009 screening made Wake in Fright one of only two films to be shown twice at Cannes.
“Kotcheff’s stunning and dreadfully creepy film inspired a generation of accomplished Aussie filmmakers,” stated Drafthouse Films Acquisition Director Evan Husney, “and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be the outfit that unleashes this masterwork to movie-lovers everywhere. I say without hesitation that this film is truly one of our all-time favorites.”
Thought to be lost forever until discovered in canisters marked for destruction in Pittsburgh, PA, Wake in Fright is the story of a “British schoolteacher’s descent into personal demoralization at the hands of drunken, deranged derelicts while stranded in a small town in outback Australia.”