Drafthouse Films has partnered with Olive Films to release Noel Marshall’s sole directorial effort, notorious 1981 film maudit “Roar” starring Tippi Hedren, Melanie Griffith and over 150 lions, tigers and other untamed animals. The film will have a limited theatrical release this Spring and will be available on Blu-ray, DVD and VOD later this summer. (Original trailer below.)
“Roar” follows wildlife preservationist Hank (Marshall), who lives harmoniously alongside a menagerie of untamed animals, including cheetahs, elephants, lions and tigers on a preservation in the African plains. When his wife and children arrive for a visit, a long-brewing battle for dominance between two lions erupts and threatens their lives.
Set in Africa and produced by Hedren, the film was in production for 11 years, cost $17 million and ended up netting only about $2 million worldwide. Hedren would go on to co-write “Cats of Shambala” about her experience. Over 70 attacks were documented during the making of the film, though no one was killed. Director Marshall was Hedren’s real-life husband, just as Griffith was her real-life daughter/his stepdaughter. Headache-inducing.
Here’s what Drafthouse’s Tim League has to say:
At LA’s legendary Cinefile Video, my favorite shelf is labeled “Holy F***ing S***.” There you’ll find rare discoveries that are beyond comprehension, movies so outlandish and surreal that you cannot fathom the divine providence that allowed such mind-bogglingly singular films to exist. One of our primary missions at Drafthouse Films is to source and rediscover forgotten classics that are worthy of this shelf… I am proud to share that we are partnering with Olive Films to unleash what I consider the next Holy F***ing S*** masterpiece: Tippi Hedren and Noel Marshall’s “Roar.”