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Lionsgate Picks Up Deon Taylor Crime Drama Free Agents

Just weeks after acquiring Deon Taylor’s taut psychological thriller Fatale, starring two-time Academy Award winner Hilary Swank and Michael Ealy, Lionsgate has preemptively tackled Free Agents, Taylor’s crime drama set against the backdrop of professional athletes, it was announced today by Nathan Kahane, President of the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group.

The film will be directed by Taylor and was written by Taylor & Joe Bockol. Taylor will produce with Roxanne Taylor under their Hidden Empire banner. In Free Agents, some professional football players turn to crime to get back at the owners who are exploiting and under paying them. The movie is described as a high octane film in the vein of Heat and The Town.

“Deon is an enormously talented storyteller and director and we think he will turn Free Agents into a fascinating and topical crime drama with a lot of depth set in the world of high stakes professional sports,” said Kahane.

“As a filmmaker, I’ve always been a fan of high-impact heist films and Free Agents is going to bring that level of action and excitement,” said Taylor. “I’m thrilled to be working with Lionsgate and together, we’re going to deliver a film that will not only entertain audiences, but also spark a conversation about the gritty inner workings of professional sports.”

The project will be overseen by Brady Fujikawa at Lionsgate.

Taylor is an unabashed creative force in the world of film and television. His next directorial feature, Black and Blue, starring Academy Award nominee Naomie Harris, Frank Grillo, Tyrese Gibson and Mike Colter was released by Sony’s Screen Gems today. The film is a thriller written by Peter A. Dowling, which follows a rookie African American female cop who stumbles upon corrupt officers who are murdering a criminal, an incident captured by her body cam.

In 2019, Taylor wrote, directed and produced the hit thriller The Intruder, starring Dennis Quaid, Michael Ealy and Meagan Good, which was released by Sony’s Screen Gems on May 3, 2019. And in 2018, Taylor directed the film Traffik, an intense sex trafficking thriller starring Paula Patton, Missi Pyle, Omar Epps, William Fichtner and Roselyn Sanchez, released theatrically by Lionsgate’s Codeblack Films. The film was nominated for NAACP, Image Award for Outstanding Motion Picture, nominated for Africa Movie Academy Awards for Best Diaspora Feature.

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