EXCLUSIVE: Byron Allen’s Freestyle Digital Media has acquired North American VOD rights to Our Words Collide, a poetry-themed documentary executive produced by Rosario Dawson that will be released in early 2024.
Directed and produced by Jordan W. Barrow and Matt Edwards, the film highlights the poets of Get Lit, a non-profit organization in Los Angeles, which uses the art form to educate and empower young people. Juxtaposing vérité scenes and intimate footage, self-shot by the poets, with stylized poetry performances and animation, it more specifically spotlights five spoken word poets as they navigate their final year at high school, exploring many challenges that face young people today — including identity, expression, transitioning into adulthood and overcoming mental health issues — through the unique prism of their poetry.
Originally premiering at the Santa Barbara Film Festival, where it won the ADL Stand Up Award, Our Words Collide‘s other EPs are Diane Luby Lane and Samuel Curtis. The teen spoken-word poets spotlighted are Tyris Winter, Cassady Lopez, Jason Alvarez, Virginia Villalta, and Amari Turner.
“From the first time I watched the film Our Worlds Collide I knew I wanted to be a part of this project,” said executive producer Dawson in a statement to Deadline. “It was so powerful seeing the journey unfold for these five exceptional poets knowing the challenges that so many young people are facing today with mental health, identity, and expression, and finding their place in the world.”
Added directors Barrow and Edwards, “We’re so honored to have had the opportunity to collaborate with this group of incredibly gifted young poets. And we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team at Freestyle Digital Media to bring this film, and the words and inspiring stories of these poets, to audiences everywhere.”
Freestyle Digital Media negotiated the deal to acquire the film directly with Ryan Bury of MPX-Motion Picture Exchange. View a new trailer for it above.