Toronto 2011: Liddell Entertainment Picks Up U.S. Rights to William Friedkin's 'Killer Joe'

The film, a crime thriller starring Matthew McConaughey and Emile Hirsch, received a mixed reaction from audiences at the fest.

Liddell Entertainment has picked up the US rights to Killer Joe, the thriller from William Friedkin starring Matthew McConaughey and Emile Hirsch.

The movie had its North American premiere at TIFF Sunday to mixed reaction; the world premiere took place days earlier at the Venice Film Festival.

REVIEW: 'Killer Joe'

Despite a strong cast that also included Thomas Haden Church, Gina Gershon and Juno Temple, the adaptation of the Tracy Letts play wasn’t a slamdunk sale. The story is dark and centers on questionable characters: it follows a 22-year old drug dealer (Hirsch) who hires a killer (McConaughey) to off his mother to cash in on her life insurance policy. The dealer and his dad use their innocent sister (Temple) as sexual collateral but among the many turns is the sister falling for the killer.  The movie also features plenty of full-frontal nudity and has a much-talked about sexual act performed using a fried chicken bone.

The film was produced by Voltage Pictures’ Nicolas Chartier and Scott Einbinder of ANA Media, Inc., with Voltage Pictures, Christopher Woodrow’s Worldview Entertainment, and Picture Perfect Corporation providing financing.

CAA, which helped arrange financing for the project, repped the film. Voltage is handling foreign sales.