Ahead of the pic’s June 16 world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival, Netflix has snapped up the Blumhouse TV and Ryan Murphy executive produced documentary Pray Away which investigates the enduring harm of conversion therapy and the “pray the gay away” movement. An August release on the streamer is currently set.
In the Kristine Stolakis-directed and produced docu, former leaders of the “pray the gay away” movement contend with the aftermath unleashed by their actions, while a survivor seeks healing and acceptance from more than a decade of trauma. In the 1970s, five men struggling with being gay in their Evangelical church started a bible study to help each other leave the “homosexual lifestyle.” They quickly received over 25K letters from people asking for help and formalized as Exodus International, the largest and most controversial conversion therapy organization in the world. But leaders struggled with a secret: their own “same-sex attractions” never went away. After years as Christian superstars in the religious right, many have come out as LGBTQ, disavowing the very movement they helped start.
Blumhouse Television and Murphy previously teamed on the award-winning documentary A Secret Love also released by Netflix and the HBO award-winning feature The Normal Heart. Stolakis’ feature directorial debut will continue on to play Doc10. The movie was originally invited to Tribeca and Telluride last year before both festivals were paused due to the pandemic. Pray Away is also produced by Jessica Devaney and Anya Rous. EPs are Murphy, Jason Blum, Jeremy Gold, Marci Wiseman, Mary Lisio, Amanda Spain, Daniel J. Chalfen, Jim Butterworth, Katy Drake Bettner, Johnny Symons, Julie Parker Benello, Patty Quillin, Nion McEvoy, Leslie Berriman, Regina K. Scully, and Alexis Martin Woodall.
Cinetic Media and Blumhouse negotiated the deal on behalf of the producers.
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