Netflix Acquires Anna Kendrick’s Directorial Debut “Woman of the Hour” at Toronto Film Festival

Netflix has made its first major acquisition deal at the Toronto Film Festival by closing in on “Woman of the Hour”, a fact-based thriller that marks the directorial debut of Anna Kendrick. The deal, reportedly worth $11 million, has created quite a buzz in the industry. This is a significant move for Netflix as it continues to expand its original content library and strengthen its position in the film industry.

Challenges Faced During the Festival

While some films signed SAG-AFTRA Interim Agreements to ensure that their cast members could attend the festival, many chose not to. This is because companies, especially streaming platforms like Netflix, were reluctant to make quick deals due to ongoing negotiations with both the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and SAG-AFTRA for a new contract. Interestingly, “Woman of the Hour” did not sign the IA, which explains why this deal was able to close during the festival’s first weekend.

“Woman of the Hour” is based on a true story that is stranger than fiction. It revolves around a young woman who won a date on the popular game show “The Dating Game”, only to discover that her chosen bachelor was a notorious serial killer. Rodney Alcala, who was convicted of murdering at least eight women but is believed to have killed as many as 130, was the charming and handsome man who managed to deceive both the show’s producers and the contestant herself. Despite choosing Alcala as her date, the contestant, Cheryl Bradshaw, wisely decided to cancel the date due to Alcala’s creepy behavior.

Anna Kendrick takes on the role of Cheryl Bradshaw in the film, while Daniel Zovatto portrays Rodney Alcala. The chemistry between the two actors is said to be electrifying, adding to the tension and suspense of the story. The script was written by Ian McDonald, and Kendrick herself produced the film alongside Roy Lee, Stephen Crawford, Andrew Deane, J.D. Lifshitz, and Raphael Margules. The project was financed by Stuart Ford’s AGC Studios. This impressive cast and production team have brought the chilling story of “Woman of the Hour” to life.

Netflix’s acquisition of “Woman of the Hour” at the Toronto Film Festival has undoubtedly caught the attention of the industry. This move signifies Netflix’s commitment to acquiring unique and captivating films that will further strengthen its original content library. With Anna Kendrick making her directorial debut in this fact-based thriller, and with a talented cast and production team behind it, “Woman of the Hour” has the potential to captivate audiences and become a standout film in the streaming giant’s roster.


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