Hellbender, a coming-of-age occult horror film, has been picked up by AMC’s Shudder ahead of its world premiere at this year’s Fantasia International Film Festival on August 14, 2021. The film is co-written and co-directed by Toby Poser, Zelda Adams, and John Adams and produced by Yellow Veil Pictures.
The film’s synopsis reads:
In Hellbender, 16-year-old Izzy (Zelda Adams) suffers from a rare illness that has kept her isolated on a mountaintop with her mother (Toby Poser) her whole life. As Izzy begins to question her sickness, she pushes back against her confinement and secretly befriends Amber (Lulu Adams), another girl living on the mountain, but her newfound happiness is derailed after she eats a live worm as part of a juvenile game and finds an insatiable and violent hunger awakened within her. To understand the hunger, Izzy must learn the dark secrets of her family’s past and the ancient power in her bloodline.
The film has a certain ring of authenticity to it in that it is a family affair. John Adams and Toby Poser are not only collaborators in film. They’re also husband and wife and the parents of Zelda and Lulu Adams in real life.
Shudder will release the film in all of its territories in early 2022.
“We are thrilled to bring this family-focused folk nightmare to Shudder with such a talented actual family in front of and behind the camera,” Craig Engler, Shudder’s general manager said in a statement. “With Hellbender, Wonder Wheel Productions has made their most polished feature yet, and we know our audience will delight in the film’s shocking visuals and scares.”
“Teaming up with Shudder was at the top of our bloody bucket list. They’re the pinnacle of beautiful horror, and to be a part of that is beyond thrilling for our family,” added Toby Poser, Zelda Adams and John Adams.
Keep your eyes peeled for more details on Hellbender including trailers as they become available.