Notorious club kid James St. James was canonized in the 2003 film “Party Monster,” which saw an adult Macaulay Culkin return to the screen for the first time since 1994’s “Richie Rich.” In his controversial comeback, based on St. James’ memoir and directed by “RuPaul’s Drag Race” producers Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey, Culkin played a drug-addled party promoter who becomes embroiled in a murder. Fifteen years later comes “Freak Show,” which is based on the eponymous novel by St. James. “Freak Show” has a lighter take on a similar character, although not one without his demons.
From first-time feature director Trudie Styler, “Freak Show” releases its flashy first trailer today.
Alex Lawther (“The Imitation Game”) plays Billy Bloom, a teenaged version of Culkin’s Michael Alig. The gender-bending teen spends his days dancing with his fabulous yet distant mother (Bette Midler), and putting together elaborate looks that make him the subject of much derision at school. When he challenges his biggest bully, the school’s reigning mean girl (Abigail Breslin) to the title of homecoming queen, things get a lot worse before they get better.
“Freak Show” also stars Laverne Cox, Larry Pine, Celia Weston, and John McEnroe. It premiered at the Berlin International Film festival earlier this year, and will be released by IFC Films on January 12 in theaters and VOD.
Watch the exclusive first trailer for “Freak Show” below: