Starring William Mapother, David Arquette, Amy Smart, Kerry Knuppe, Frances Fisher, Irene Bedard, and Mariel Hemingway
Shout! Studios, the multi-platform entertainment distribution and production arm of Shout! Factory, has acquired North American rights to the feature film On Sacred Ground from Concourse Media. The film is based on a 2016 conflict that took place during the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline which runs through the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota, land that is owned by the Lakota “Sioux” Tribe. The filmmakers pulled from their personal experiences and actual footage shot during the protest and consulted with Lakota tribal members to ensure the depiction of events in the film accurately told their story.
On Sacred Ground follows Daniel (William Mapother), a journalist and Afghanistan War military veteran, and Elliot (David Arquette), an oil company executive, who find themselves on opposite sides of the fight during the construction of the contentious pipeline. As the story unfolds, Daniel starts to align himself more with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe than the oil company he was hired to write about favorably, and the two characters go down separate paths as the events unfold during one of the most heated protests and confrontation with Native American tribes in modern US history.
Shout! Studios has secured all distribution rights in North America to On Sacred Ground, including theatrical, digital, video-on-demand, broadcast, and home entertainment for cross-platform releases. On Sacred Ground will screen on over 1,000 college campuses where it will be used as a vehicle to promote the film’s underlying message of equality and the importance of upholding indigenous rights. Shout! Studios is planning a strategic launch of this movie across all major entertainment platforms, beginning with a theatrical day-and-date launch in the first quarter of 2023.
The deal was negotiated by Shout’s Jordan Fields and Steven Katz, Vice President of Business Affairs, and Concourse Media CEO Matthew Shreder on behalf of the filmmakers.
“On Sacred Ground is a potent drama about a conflict as old as America itself. Josh and Rebecca Tickell have crafted an engrossing and eye-opening film that demands a reckoning with how our indigenous populations have been treated for generations. Spoiler alert: their struggle continues,” said Jordan Fields, Vice President of Acquisitions at Shout! Studios.
The film was written by Josh Tickell and Rebecca Tickell (The Revolution Generation, Kiss The Ground) and William Mapother (Lost, Another Earth) who stars in the film alongside David Arquette (Scream, They Call Me Magic), Amy Smart (Stargirl, Justified), Kerry Knuppe (Pachinko, Ratched), Frances Fisher (Watchmen, Titanic), Irene Bedard (The Stand, Longmire) and Mariel Hemingway (Grace & Grit, In Her Line of Fire).
Protests of the Dakota Access Pipeline occurred at several places because of concerns about the pipeline’s impact on the environment and to sites sacred to Native Americans. Indigenous nations around the country opposed the pipeline, along with the Sioux tribal nations. In North Dakota, next to and on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, nearly 15,000 people from around the world protested, staging a sit-in for months.
“We’re hopeful that On Sacred Ground can awaken audiences to the intersection of indigenous issues and the climate crisis. One thing we realized making this movie is that, to heal our planet, we may first have to heal the mistakes of our past,” said Rebecca Harrell Tickell, from Big Picture Ranch.