Red State

October 19th 2011
  • Horror/Thriller,
  • R,
  • 88 min,
  • Other
  • Cast: Michael Angarano, Deborah Aquila, Nicholas Braun, Ronnie Connell, Kaylee DeFer, Joey Figueroa, Kyle Gallner, Anna Gunn, Matt L. Jones, John Lacy, Catherine McCord, Alexa Nikolas, Stephen Root, Cooper Thornton, Betty Aberlin, Kerry Bishé, Ralph Garman, Melissa Leo, Molly Livingston, James Parks, Michael Parks, Haley Ramm, Jennifer Schwalbach Smith
  • Director: Kevin Smith
  • Writer: Kevin Smith
  • Producer: Jonathan Gordon
  • Executive Producers: Victor Choy, Jason Clark, Harvey Cohen, Philip Elway, Shea Kammer, Nhaelan McMillan, Elyse Seiden
  • Art Direction: Susan Bolles
  • Castings: Deborah Aquila, Tricia Wood
  • Costume Design: Beth Pasternak
  • D.O.P.: David Klein
  • Editor: Kevin Smith
  • Makeup: Elisabeth Fry
  • Production Design: Cabot McMullen
  • Set Decoration: Dorit Hurst


RED STATE begins by following three horny high-school boys who come across an online ad from an older woman looking for a gang bang. Boys being boys, they hit the road to satisfy their libidinal urges. But what begins as a fantasy takes a dark turn as they come face-to-face with a terrifying "holy" force with a fatal agenda.

Basic Information

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Filming Locations: Los Angeles, USA
  • MPAA Warning: Strong violence/disturbing content, some sexual content including brief nudity, and pervasive language
  • Production Budget: $4 million
  • Production Companies: The Harvey Boys
  • Production Schedule: 21 September 2010 - 28 October 2010

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2011 Guide Analysis: "Making more headlines at Sundance than anything else this year, Kevin Smith's $4 million independent horror film certainly has more awareness than practically any other film of the same size hitting this year. Awareness however doesn't always translate into sales, and while the Smith faithful will certainly show up, how many beyond that remains the big question. How said faithful will react to this quite different style of film from him, one that's a straight up serious horror movie with no sex-related humor, will also be an interesting question.

Inspired by infamous pastor Fred Phelps, Smith first announced the project almost five years ago now and was intending to shoot it in early 2008, but his comedy "Zack and Miri Make a Porno" ended up taking precedence. It took a while, but Smith finally locked in his financing early last year and the cast was quickly assembled. Smith edited the film throughout production, which allowed him to show a rough cut of the film at the production's wrap party.

The film really hit the headlines though when he managed to secure a world premiere slot at Sundance and began a very public campaign, via social media platforms like his podcast and twitter account, to not only auction off various promotional material from the film, but to sell the film itself right after the screening. As the event took place, the blog-o-sphere lit up with reports that things didn't go as expected - Smith ultimately sold the film to himself for $20 and announced plans to self-release it. First it will be screened as part of a traveling roadshow beginning March 5th at Radio City Music Hall and will tour across North America. Then it will hit cinemas through his Smodcast Pictures label on October 19th.

Media reports from the screening slammed the dog-and-pony show of the seemingly phoney auction which, combined with Smith's anti-critics rants and media behavior of late, has caused many to wonder what's going on with him. Indeed, though it seemed the self-distribution idea was planned from the start, comments from those involved on the film indicate that right up until the screening they were seriously looking for a distributor to pick up the rights. Trouble is the word-of-mouth from the screening wasn't the enthusiastic reaction they hoped, subsequent press reviews were less than rosy about the film with many savaging it. A few notable critics, including Todd McCarthy, sung its praises.

Smith himself has indicated some trimming will be done to the feature, specifically an extended sermon scene is likely to get some nipping and tucking. His planned 'roadshow' will no doubt bring out the fans who're generally easier to satisfy. How it will play with a general audience is a more interesting question and one we won't know until nearer Halloween."

Trailers & Clips

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Worldwide Release Dates

  • 22 September 2011: Australia
  • 30 September 2011: Ireland, UK
  • 24 November 2011: Netherlands