Anna Kendrick’s ‘Woman of the Hour’ Acquired by Netflix in TIFF Deal



Anna Kendrick’s directing debut “Woman of the Hour” is nearing a deal with Netflix after its Toronto premiere on Friday. The streamer is paying in the $11 million range for the ripped-from-the-headlines thriller, making it the first major sale of the festival.

Sources tell Variety that Netflix won out in a competitive situation after the film garnered multiple offers.

In the movie based on a true story, Kendrick plays a contestant on “The Dating Game” in 1978, who picks Rodney Alcala as her potential date. Alcala, who died in prison in 2021, turned out to be a serial killer of at least eight victims but possibly over a hundred. The “Dating Game” contestant, Cheryl Bradshaw, never went on the date with Alcala, who had already been convicted of being a sex offender. Daniel Zovatto plays the killer, who posed as a photographer in Los Angeles to take pictures of his victims.

The 8-figure deal brings “Woman of the Hour” back to Netflix after the streamer initially optioned the story and attached Kendrick to star; however, the project was scuttled due to a wave of cost-cutting at the streamer. When the original director also exited, Kendrick stepped behind the camera to helm the picture as well as star. Her bold move paid off and the film debuted to rave reviews at TIFF, many of which praised the Oscar nominee’s aptitude as a director.

“Woman of the Hour” did not receive a SAG-AFTRA interim agreement, so Kendrick did not attend the festival in solidarity. At the premiere, a statement from her was read by one of the producers, saying, “This film festival has proven time and time again that it is an artist-driven festival, and it has been my absolute honor to have TIFF as part of my career for the last 14 years. I truly can’t express how proud I am to have the world premiere of ‘Woman of the Hour’ at TIFF. It is more than a dream come true. I am heartbroken to not be with you all in this moment.”

The deal was made by CAA Media Finance, Range and AGC Studios. Netflix had no comment about reports of the sale, which was first reported by Deadline.


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