Newly formed 101 Studios has announced the release date and new stills for their forthcoming film BURDEN, which opens in theaters for a limited launch on November 1st with a continued rollout through the month of November.
BURDEN has been edited down 20 minutes from the film’s premiere at Sundance in 2018. The film is the winner of the 2018 Audience Awards at Sundance and Nantucket Film Festivals, and was written and directed by first-time filmmaker Andrew Heckler.
BURDEN tells the incredible true story of Michael “Mike” Burden (Garrett Hedlund), an ardent young member of the South Carolina Ku Klux Klan who rose to the rank of Grand Dragon – and walked away from all of it with the help of a new love and an unlikely ally, the African American religious leader and social activist Reverend David Kennedy (Forest Whitaker). The film’s cast additionally includes Tom Wilkinson, Andrea Riseborough, Tess Harper, and Crystal Fox. The film also stars Usher.
In support of the film, five-time Grammy award winner Chris Stapleton will release an original song for the film self-titled: “Burden.” Stay tuned for details.
Producer Robbie Brenner (DALLAS BUYER’S CLUB): “I could not be more excited for Andrew and I to be joining forces with Studio 101 to distribute BURDEN. This has been a multi decade labor of love, passion and sheer will for us, and it couldn’t be happening at a better time in the world. David Glasser and his team share our passion for the story and understand how timely and important this movie is.”
Director Andrew Heckler: “Even though it was written over twenty years ago, unfortunately, BURDEN is more timely than ever. Now in a time when the world has become so polarized and divided by ethnicity, race and religion, BURDEN can deliver a powerful message of how extremes can join together to overcome and resolve our differences and hatred through love and tolerance. I cannot be more excited to get that message out there to audiences with Studio 101.”
Release: November 1, 2019 (Limited)
Distributor: 101 Studios
Director: Andrew Heckler
Writer: Andrew Heckler
Producer: Robbie Brenner, Bill Kenwright
Cast: Garrett Hedlund, Forest Whitaker, Tom Wilkinson, Andrea Riseborough, Tess Harper, Crystal Fox, Usher
Genre: Biography, Drama, History
SYNOPSIS – BURDEN tells the incredible true story of Mike Burden (Garrett Hedlund) who opened the world famous Redneck Shop and KKK Museum on the historic town square of Laurens South Carolina in 1996, then was subsequently wrenched out of the clutches of this hate family through the love of a single mother (Andrea Riseborough) and the faith of a African American, Baptist Minister (Forest Whitaker). Mike Burden was raised and indoctrinated into the KKK by Klan leader Tom Griffin (Tom Wilkinson), rising to the ranks of Grand Dragon through his affinity for violence and seemingly set on a lifetime path steeped in racism and bigotry, until he meets and falls in love with a single mother, deeply opposed to the hate group, eventually forcing him to make a choice. After being cut off and shut out of his Klan family, with nowhere else to turn, Mike begs for help from his mortal enemy, civil rights activist Reverend David Kennedy. Against all odds and wisdom, Reverend Kennedy proves the power and conviction of his faith when he accepts Mike’s disavowal of the Klan and welcomes him into his home and his church. Together, they face down irate, vengeful and violent Klan members and win over Reverend Kennedy’s skeptical parishioners, forming a true bond and forging a path towards redemption and forgiveness.