“Beneath the Grass,” a drama about the criminal justice system and marijuana incarceration rates, will hit the market at the Cannes Film Festival next week.
Mía Maestro, Quincy Isaiah and Jeff Kober will lead the film, which begins production next month in New Jersey. Paradigm is representing worldwide sales for the film.
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“Beneath the Grass” is set in 2008, capturing both the economic recession and the “Yes We Can” summer, and follows a single Latina mother whose illegal marijuana business is jeopardized when her young son befriends the new neighbors, a young white boy and his police officer grandfather.
According to production research, in 2008, Latino people were four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than white people, while Black people were seven times more likely. Despite marijuana legalization in several states in the years since, the research explains, arrest rates have risen with racial disparities still prevalent.
Conscious Contact Entertainment’s David Goldblum (“Sell/Buy/Date,” the upcoming feature adaptation of “A Child Called ‘It'”) is producing the project alongside Exit 14’s Adam Edery. The film marks the directorial debuts of William Bermudez and Sam Friedman, who wrote the screenplay, with a story by Bermudez, Friedman, Goldblum and Edery.
Executive producers include Paul Blavin and Amy Blavin, as well as Exit 14’s Sam Silverstein and Jeremy Paczos.
Following roles in “The Motorcycle Diaries,” “Frida” and the “Twilight” franchise, Maestro recently appeared in the Apple TV+ series “Extrapolations” and “The Cow That Sang a Song Into the Future,” which debuted at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. She will next star in Oscar nominee Jose Rivera’s “Alina of Cuba,” a biopic about Fidel Castro’s exiled daughter Alina Fernandez, directed by Miguel Bardem.
Meanwhile, Isaiah is coming off a breakout performance in HBO’s “Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty,” in which he portrays NBA legend Magic Johnson. The highly-anticipated second season of the series is set to debut on Max this summer.
In 2022, Kober won a Daytime Emmy for playing Cyrus Renault on “General Hospital.” The actor’s film and TV credits include “The Walking Dead,” “Sons of Anarchy,” “Big Sky” and “Sully.” He most recently appeared in the film “Self Reliance,” Jake Johnson’s feature directorial debut, which debuted at South by Southwest in March.
The cast also includes Rachel Ticotin (“Total Recall,” “The Act”), Rachel Stubington (“Shrinking”) and newcomer Elizabeth Cuzzupoli.
Maestro and Goldblum are represented by Luber Roklin Entertainment. Maestro is also repped by Paradigm, and Goldblum by Eric Feig at Feig Finkel.
Kober is represented by Artists & Representatives and DiSante Frank & Company, while Isaiah is represented by CAA, Relevant and Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner & Klein.
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