Michael Pitt Boards Sean Penn & Tye Sheridan Paramedics Thriller ‘Black Flies’

EXCLUSIVE: Boardwalk Empire actor Michael Pitt has joined Open Road and Sculptor Media’s drama-thriller Black Flies opposite Sean Penn, Tye Sheridan and Katherine Waterston.

The movie, based on the Shannon Burke novel of the same name, takes an immersive view of life on the streets and one medic’s struggle to maintain his desire to help despite his growing fear that nothing he can do will make a difference. It is the story of lives that hang in the balance and the choices of two men caught in the middle. Ollie Cross (Sheridan) is ready to do good. In preparation for his dream of medical school, he hits the streets driving an ambulance alongside Rutkovsky (Penn), a grizzled veteran and one of New York’s best medics.

Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire is directing off the latest draft by Burke, with Ryan King also penning. Open Road took U.S. rights for a theatrical release. FilmNation Entertainment is handling international sales. Production is already underway in New York City.

Pic is being produced under the Sculptor Media banner alongside Force Majeure, James Masciello’s creative producing arm, wiip and Projected Picture Works.

Producers are Warren Goz (Sculptor Media), Eric Gold (Sculptor Media), Christopher Kopp, Lucan Toh, Sean Penn (Projected Picture Works), John Ira Palmer (Projected Picture Works) and John Wildermuth (Projected Picture Works). EPs are Luke Rodgers, Tye Sheridan, James Masciello, Matthew Sidari, Tom Ortenberg, King, Burke and Josh Stern (wiip).

Pitt played gangster Jimmy Darmody on HBO’s Emmy winning series Boardwalk Empire from Martin Scorsese and Mark Wahlberg; a part that earned him two SAG ensemble drama TV series wins. He also starred in the late Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Dreamers, Gus Van Sant’s Last Days and Michael Haneke’s Funny Games. 

Pitt will next be seen starring in the Netflix thriller Reptile opposite Benicio Del Toro and Justin Timberlake for Black Label Media.

Pitt was recently seen starring in Netflix’s Last Days Of American Crime, as well as Stephen King’s limited series Lisey’s Story, directed by Pablo Larraín for Apple+.

Other notable works include his roles in John Cameron Mitchell’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths, Barbet Schroeder’s Murder by Numbers, and M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village.

On the directing side, Pitt made his directorial debut with a campaign film for fashion label Rag & Bone. Pitt has also directed a number of music videos for his band Pagoda. Pitt recently directed his feature directorial debut Nocturnal, which is currently in post-production.

Pitt has been featured in campaigns for some of the top fashion houses in the world including, Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Rag and Bone, and Vivienne Westwood.

He is represented by Paradigm, LBI Entertainment and Schreck Rose Dapello Adams Berlin and Dunham.