Berlinale: Programme

Film file

Generation 14plus

Freak Show

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‘Being fabulous, no: being relentlessly fabulous is damn hard work. I should know. I've dedicated my life to the pursuit of it.’

Could Billy Bloom be like everyone else if he wanted to? It would certainly save him a whole lot of trouble. But he has absolutely no desire to be like them. When others call him theatrical, he takes it as a compliment; when his classmates feel provoked by his drive to be different, it only motivates him further. ‘The nail that sticks out gets hammered down’, his father warns him. That does not deter Billy from deciding to run for homecoming queen. Somewhere in-between David Bowie, Lady Gaga, Freddy Mercury and Oscar Wilde, in the transgressive space of pop culture and dressed up as a high school comedy with wit, heart and a dazzling cast, Freak Show is about the violence of conformity and the power of self-determination.

Trudie Styler

USA 2017


95’ · Colour


Alex Lawther (Billy Bloom)
Abigail Breslin (Lynette)
AnnaSophia Robb (Blah Blah Blah)
Ian Nelson (Flip)
Celia Weston (Florence)
Willa Fitzgerald (Tiffany)
Laverne Cox (Felicia Watts)
John McEnroe (Coach Carter)
Charlotte Ubben (Sesame)
Mickey Sumner (Dr. Veronica Vickers)
Michael Park (Principal Onnigan)
Daniel Bellomy (Bo-Bo)
Christopher Dylan White (Bernard)
Walden Bryan Hudson (Bib)
Larry Pine (William)
Bette Midler (Muv)


Trudie Styler
Patrick J. Clifton, Beth Rigazio, based on the book by James St. James
Dante Spinotti
Sarah Flack
Dan Romer
Production Design
Franckie Diago
Colleen Atwood, Sarah Laux
Anouck Sullivan
Avy Kaufman
Assistant Director
Karen Radzikowski, Curtis Smith, Betsy Friedman
Production Manager
Franses Simonovich
Jeffrey Coulter, Bryan Rabin, Trudie Styler, Celine Rattray, Charlotte Ubben, Ember Truesdell, Chris Miller
Executive Producers
Cathleen Ihasz, Nicole Ihasz, Jenny Halper, Bruno Wang, Samantha Perelman, Bobby Sager, Pierre Lagrange, Maya Sanbar, Sawsan Asfari, Sir Ivan, Drew Barrymore, Nancy Jujoven
Alex Kerry, Stephen Mao, Chris Botti


Trudie Styler

Born in Bromsgrove, UK in 1954, she is an actor, director and producer as well as an environmental activist and an ambassador for UNICEF. After beginning her career as an actor in theatre and television, since the 1990s she has chiefly worked behind the camera, producing feature films including Guy Ritchie’s Snatch (2000) and Duncan Jones' Moon (2009), as well as documentaries. In 2011 she founded the production company Maven Pictures with Celine Rattray which has produced films such as Still Alice (2014) and American Honey (2016). Freak Show marks her debut as a director.


2002 The Sweatbox; documentary 2005 Wait; short film 2016 Freak Show

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2017

Produced by

Maven Pictures