‘Grow Up, Tony Phillips’ Adds Onscreen Talent To Match the Creative Force Behind the Camera

By  · Published on October 1st, 2012

It’s not often that you get to see an exciting filmmaking talent growing and developing before your eyes, but one such example can be found in Emily Hagins. It’s impressive enough that she’s directing a film at the age of nineteen, but when you realize her latest will be her fourth feature? It’s enough to make a person wish for a time machine so they could go back in time to light a fire under their own ass.

Hagins’ last movie, My Sucky Teen Romance, was a popular feature on the festival circuit and saw a DVD release last month from Dark Sky Films. Again, impressive for a film featuring no name talent to speak of. (Apologies to the two hundred and forty eight Austin bloggers who appeared throughout the film in various capacities.) She’s stepping up her game for her new film with both a more mature story and some recognizable talent in front of the camera.

Genre and indie favorites Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator) and AJ Bowen (The House of the Devil) have signed on to star in Grow Up, Tony Phillips which is scheduled to begin production in the next month or so. Even better, you can have a hand in the film’s production too.

Check out the full press announcement below or go straight to the film’s Kickstarter page to help make Grow Up, Tony Phillips a reality (and score some pretty cool swag in the process).

Hagins directed her first film, Pathogen, at the ridiculous age of eleven, and she hasn’t stopped moving since. While her first three movies were embedded with her love of the horror genre, her latest is a comedic coming-of-age story about a young man who doesn’t think that growing up means having to let go of childhood things. It’s a sentiment that any movie-goer should find appealing and understandable.

Fans of Hagins and of independent film in general have a chance to help Grow Up, Tony Phillips get made (and get made right) by contributing to the film’s Kickstarter campaign. There are some fun rewards to be found at the various donation levels, but the real reward will be seeing (and helping) a young, bright and extremely creative vision continue to make movies.

But if that’s not enough for you there’s also an exclusive Mondo poster drawn by Jay Shaw. His recent posters for Wrong and Beyond the Black Rainbow have been big hits, and this is your chance to nab a new creation that won’t be available for sale anywhere else (unless you count eBay which you totally shouldn’t because the price will be jacked up to take advantage of people who just can’t say no to Mondo releases).

AJ Bowen & Barbara Crampton Join ‘Grow Up, Tony Phillips’

A Halloween comedy written and directed by 19-year-old filmmaking sensation Emily Hagins

October 1, 2012 – AJ Bowen (A Horrible Way to Die, You’re Next) and Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator, From Beyond) have signed on for Grow Up, Tony Phillips, the fourth feature film from writer-director Emily Hagins (My Sucky Teen Romance, Pathogen). The pair join previously attached cast members Tony Vespe, Devin Bonnée (both of My Sucky Teen Romance), and Jamie Landau (son of Jon Landau, in his feature film acting debut) in the independently-produced comedy about a Halloween-loving teenager who doesn’t think childhood passions should have an expiration date.

Grow Up, Tony Phillips is the fourth feature film from young director Emily Hagins, who drew an international spotlight when she set out to make her first feature, the zombie film Pathogen, at only 11 years old. Her most recent film, the vampire comedy My Sucky Teen Romance, enjoyed its world premiere at the 2011 South by Southwest Film Festival, where it was acquired by Dark Sky Films for American distribution. Producing are Paul Gandersman and Peter Hall, founders of the Austin, Texas-based Arcanum Pictures. Filming is set to begin in late 2012, with principal photography taking place in and around Central Texas.

The production is currently raising a portion of its budget on the revolutionary platform Kickstarter, where today they’re also announcing a limited-edition, original poster for Grow Up, Tony Phillips created by artist Jay Shaw (of Mondo posters fame) that will only ever be available through the film’s campaign. To learn more about the Kickstarter campaign and get involved, head to www.GrowUpTonyPhillips.com.

For media inquiries contact: [email protected]

About Emily Hagins

Like all passionate filmmakers, Emily Hagins was bitten with the cinema bug at a very young age. Unlike most, however, her ambitions couldn’t wait. The production of Pathogen, her first feature film, at the age of 11, is chronicled in the hit documentary Zombie Girl. She followed that with her second film, the ghostly The Retelling, which paved the way for the SXSW hit 2011 vampire comedy My Sucky Teen Romance, available now on Blu-ray, DVD and VOD from Dark Sky Films.

About Arcanum Pictures

Arcanum Pictures is an Austin, Texas-based production company created by Paul Gandersman and Peter Hall that works in narrative short and feature films, as well as commercials.”

Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since before you were born, which is weird seeing as he's so damn young. He's our Chief Film Critic and Associate Editor and lists 'Broadcast News' as his favorite film of all time. Feel free to say hi if you see him on Twitter @FakeRobHunter.