Back in April, Shudder acquired Issa López's festival hit Tigers Are Not Afraid, and today the streaming service announced they'll be releasing the film to theaters in the U.S. and Canada. It will open August 23rd, 2019, in New York City, Los Angeles, and Toronto via theatrical partner Variance Films, with an expansion to follow in September, prior to the film’s debut on Shudder.
"The stories of these children fighting for survival just across the border, and the dreams and nightmares that follow them, is one that needs to be told now more than ever," said López.
Lopez’s film uses horror and fantasy to deliver a moving portrait of the dire circumstances of the children left behind by Mexico’s brutal drug wars. Estrella (a mesmerizing Paolo Lara) is ten-years-old and alone. Given three magical wishes, she asks first that her missing mother come back, and she does... from the dead. Fearful of the ghost she believes she’s invoked, Estrella escapes to the streets and earns her way into a gang of other children, orphaned by cartel violence. But soon Estrella discovers you can never really leave the dead behind.
Tigers Are Not Afraid premiered at Austin’s Fantastic Fest, where it earned Best Director honors. It went on to pick up more than 50 awards around the world, including Best Feature at Screamfest, Mórbido, Boston Underground, Chattanooga, Toronto After Dark, and Amsterdam Imagine International Fantastic Film Festival. The film won both Jury and Audience awards at Paris Fantastic Film Fest, the Silver Raven and Audience Awards at Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival, and ten nominations and two wins at the Ariel Awards, Mexico’s equivalent to the Oscars.
The film has garnered praise from masters of the genre including Guillermo del Toro, Stephen King, and Neil Gaiman.