Rita Ora, Marshawn Lynch and Jack O’Connell Join Cast of HE BLED NEON for XYZ Films

Rita Ora, Marshawn Lynch and Jack O’Connell are set to join Joe Cole in the action thriller HE BLED NEON from award-winning music video director Drew Kirsch, who came to prominence co-helming videos “You Need to Calm Down” and “Lover” with Taylor Swift. Written by Tim Cairo and Jake Gibson (LowlifeNight Patrol) with a story by Nate Bolotin, the film will be Kirsch’s feature debut.

XYZ Films (BlackBerry, Skywalkers: A Love Story, The RaidMandy) will produce alongside frequent collaborator Two & Two Pictures (Under the ShadowI Came By). The companies are in post on HALLOW ROAD, directed by Babak Anvari and co-starring Rosamund Pike and Matthew Rhys. XYZ will be handling world sales, with WME Independent co-repping domestic.

After his estranged brother’s (Jack O’Connell) mysterious death, Ethan’s (Joe Cole) journey to Las Vegas for the funeral unravels a dark web of crime, forcing him to confront his past as he delves into the city’s gritty underworld to uncover the truth, risking everything he holds dear in the process. 

The original story by Nate Bolotin was inspired by his early experiences growing up in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

Rita Ora is an international critically acclaimed singer-songwriter and actress who rose to prominence with her chart-topping hits and captivating stage presence. Beyond her musical achievements, she is currently a panelist on The Masked Singer and has showcased her talent on the silver screen, with notable acting credits in films such as Fifty Shades of Grey, Twist and Pokémon Detective Pikachu. In addition, Rita will soon star in Descendants 4: The Rise of Red on Disney+.

Marshawn Lynch is a former All-Pro NFL running back & Super Bowl Champion for the Seattle Seahawks. Since retirement he has acted in a number of projects, most recently Bottoms, with appearances in the series No ScriptWestworld and Murderville. He also stars & directs the N’ Yo’ City segments on Thursday Night Football for Amazon Prime Video.

Jack O’Connell has recently been seen in the films Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Ferrari and is about to be seen in Sam Taylor-Johnson’s Back To Black.

Kirsch is a prolific music video and commercial director who won MTV Music Video of the Year award for co-directing the video for Taylor Swift’s “You Need to Calm Down” and has worked with artists such diverse artists Imagine Dragons, Jack Harlow, and J Cole.

GRAMMY nominated artist ZHU will compose the score, marking his debut feature film, in collaboration with Joseph Trapanese (TRON: LegacyThe RaidStraight Outta Compton).  ZHU released his new album GRACE on March 15 via Capital/Astralwerks Records.

Current titles from the XYZ Films studio include Sundance title SKYWALKERS: A LOVE STORY, which sold to Netflix and BLACKBERRY starring Gotham and Independent Spirit-award nominee Glenn Howerton, which was released by IFC Films, Atom Egoyan’s TIFF selection SEVEN VEILS starring Amanda Seyfried, ASH starring Eiza González and Aaron Paul and directed by Flying Lotus, recent TIFF acquisition BACKSPOT starring Devery Jacobs and Evan Rachel Wood, the Netflix Original HAVOC, directed by Gareth Evans and starring Tom Hardy and Forrest Whitaker and DANIELA FOREVER directed by Nacho Vigalondo and starring Henry Golding and Beatrice Grannó. Other recent releases include the Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead film SOMETHING IN THE DIRT which premiered at Sundance 2022. The company’s classic titles include THE RAID franchise, 2017 Sundance winner I DON’T FEEL AT HOME IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE, Panos Cosmatos’ psychedelic revenge thriller MANDY, and Karyn Kusama’s THE INVITATION.

Ora is repped by CAA and Untitled Entertainment.  Kirsch, Cairo and Gibson are repped by XYZ Films and Ginsberg Daniels Kallis. Lynch is repped by WME and Ziffren Brittenham. O’Connell is repped by is repped by Conway van Gelder Grant in the UK, United Talent Agency in the US and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern LLP.

About XYZ Films:  

XYZ Films is an independent studio whose mission is to empower visionary storytellers from every corner of the planet. As a producer, financier, and distributor, the company is uniquely suited to identify talented filmmakers and bring their stories to life. XYZ recently expanded into talent management, working with a global roster of filmmakers. XYZ was founded in 2008 by Nate Bolotin, Nick Spicer, and Aram Tertzakian.

About Two & Two Pictures:

Two & Two Pictures is a London and Los Angeles based Production Company, founded by Babak Anvari and Lucan Toh. The duo first worked together on Anvari’s debut feature film, UNDER THE SHADOW, which won the BAFTA for Outstanding Debut in 2017. Two & Two produced Anvari’s follow up feature, WOUNDS, for Annapurna, the anthology horror series MONSTERLAND for Hulu, and Anvari’s, I CAME BY, for Netflix. The Company premiered Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire’s ASPHALT CITY in competition at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival and most recently, Yorgos Zois’ ARCADIA at the 2024 Berlin Film Festival. Two & Two is currently in post-production on Max & Sam Eggers’ THE FRONT ROOM for A24, and Anvari’s HALLOW ROAD, starring Rosamund Pike and Matthew Rhys.

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