We've been excited for Daily Dead readers to see Villains since Heather Wixson gave it a 4.5 star review at SXSW, and it looks like we won't have to wait long, as Gunpowder & Sky picked up the US rights to the dark comedy from BRON Studios' The Realm, with a release planned for this summer.

We have the official press release with full details below, and in case you missed it, read Heather Wixson's interview with co-writers and co-directors Dan Berk and Robert Olsen, as well as co-star Jeffrey Donovan.

Press Release: NEW YORK, NY – April 18, 2019 -- Gunpowder & Sky, the global content studio, announced today it has acquired the US rights to Dan Berk and Robert Olsen’s SXSW crowd-pleasing comedic thriller, VILLAINS, from BRON Studios genre arm, The Realm.

Bill Skarsgård (Deadpool 2, It) and Maika Monroe (It Follows, The Fifth Wave) star as a pair of amateur criminals who break into a suburban home where they stumble upon a dark secret that the two sadistic homeowners (Jeffrey Donovan (Sicario) and Kyra Sedgwick (TNT’s The Closer)) will do anything to keep from getting out. The Playlist describes the film as “a Hansel and Gretel style thriller that’s high in energy, deliriously fun, rich in character and delicious in its scene-chewing performances”, with Bloody Disgusting calling it “sick, twisted, and absolutely bonkers.” Gunpowder & Sky is partnering with MoviePass Films on the release, which will happen this summer.

VILLAINS was produced by Trevor White, Tim White and Allan Mandelbaum of Star Thrower Entertainment, and Garrick Dion of The Realm, the genre division of BRON Studios. The film marks the second collaboration between Gunpowder & Sky and The Realm, following the release of the sci-fi adventure PROSPECT last year. Executive producers are BRON’s Aaron L. Gilbert, Creative Wealth Media’s Jason Cloth, plus Kevin Turen, Chadd Harbold, and Per Melita.

Directors Dan Berk and Robert Olsen said, "Our brilliant cast and crew worked tirelessly to make this movie something special, and there's no better affirmation of that goal than finding a home at Gunpowder & Sky. They have a track record of putting out bold and audacious movies, and we're incredibly proud that Villains will land among that company."

The deal was negotiated by Janet Brown and Jake Hanly of Gunpowder & Sky with BRON’s Anjay Nagpal and Endeavor Content. MoviePass Films Acquisitions President Zac Bright negotiated on behalf of MoviePass Films.

The filmmakers are represented by UTA and Kaplan/Perrone Entertainment.

Gunpowder & Sky currently has HER SMELL, starring Elisabeth Moss, in theaters - ranking the #1 PSA for its opening weekend. The studio also recently released 20th Century Fox and VICE Films’ LORDS OF CHAOS.

MoviePass Films recently pivoted to production and financing, receiving a production credit on the Olivia Wilde thriller A VIGILANTE, and is currently shooting AXIS SALLY with Al Pacino.


Gunpowder & Sky is an award-winning independent global studio, dedicated to creating, marketing and distributing video content unrestricted by form, genre or platform. Gunpowder & Sky collaborates with both emerging and established talent to generate premium video content ranging from 90-second to 90-minute stories on all platforms. With in-house development, production, marketing and distribution capabilities, the company operates as a full 360-studio and oversees a library of more than 1500 titles.

In 2018, Gunpowder & Sky released 15 films including Brett Haley’s (I’ll See You In My Dreams, The Hero) critically acclaimed feature, Hearts Beat Loud, and Summer of 84 from award-winning directors RKSS - both premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Gunpowder & Sky also debuted Cam on Netflix, winner of Best First Feature and Best Screenplay at Fantasia Festival. The company also produced “Too Stupid To Die”, MTV’s next generation stunt series.

Gunpowder & Sky is also committed to building modern entertainment brands that super-serve global audiences in key genres. Each brand creates, distributes and markets compelling short films, series and feature films across theatrical, TVOD, traditional networks and new platforms such as Roku, YouTube, Facebook, Twitch, DirectTV and Samsung. DUST is the first premium sci-fi entertainment brand that reaches passionate fans across all platforms, giving voice to emerging, diverse and established filmmakers.

In 2018, DUST theatrically released its first feature film, the sci-fi western Prospect (starring Pedro Pascal and Jay Duplass), winner of SXSW’s Adam Yauch Hörnblowér Award, and also debuted “Glimpse”, an original series on Facebook Watch. Gunpowder & Sky’s newest brand, Alter focuses on horror films and series which explore the human condition through warped perspectives from the most innovative minds in the genre. Also, the company remains invested in CUT, a viral content pioneer and leader with multiple hit franchises and content brands.

Headquartered in Los Angeles, with offices in NY and London, Gunpowder & Sky was founded by Van Toffler and Floris Bauer, in partnership with The Chernin Group and AT&T.


BRON is a worldwide media and entertainment company committed to furthering the art and craft of meaningful commercial storytelling. Focused on the strategic development, production and financing of original live-action and animated features, television and digital media content, BRON has been instrumental in more than 60 productions and has built a robust slate of upcoming projects across all platforms. The company’s filmmaker-first approach, built on inclusion, innovation and respect, has helped BRON solidify creative relationships with elite talent from an array of backgrounds. Its roster of acclaimed releases includes Academy Award® Best Picture nominee FENCES, from director Denzel Washington, as well as Clint Eastwood’s THE MULE, Debra Granik’s LEAVE NO TRACE, Jason Reitman’s THE FRONT RUNNER and TULLY, the Rebel Wilson comedy ISN’T IN ROMANTIC and many others. BRON is currently in production on the eagerly anticipated JOKER, starring Joaquin Phoenix; Barry Levinson’s HARRY HAFT, starring Ben Foster; Taylor Sheridan’s THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD, starring Angelina Jolie; Lena Thwaite’s QUEEN & SLIM, starring Chloe Sevigny and Daniel Kaluuya; and David Lowery’s THE GREEN KNIGHT, starring Dev Patel. Founded in 2010 by Aaron L. Gilbert and Brenda Gilbert, BRON Studios is headquartered in Vancouver, with offices in Los Angeles, New York and Toronto. It is financially backed by Creative Wealth Media.

  • Derek Anderson
    About the Author - Derek Anderson

    Raised on a steady diet of R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps books and Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Derek has been fascinated with fear since he first saw ForeverWare being used on an episode of Eerie, Indiana.

    When he’s not writing about horror as the Senior News Reporter for Daily Dead, Derek can be found daydreaming about the Santa Carla Boardwalk from The Lost Boys or reading Stephen King and Brian Keene novels.

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