In the film Brave New Jersey, a small town is gripped by hysteria thanks to Orson Welles’ 1938 War of the Worlds radio broadcast (which really did lead many people to believe that aliens were invading the planet). Directed by Jody Lambert (People Like Us) and co-written by Lambert and Michael Dowling, the film stars Tony Hale, Anna Camp, Heather Burns, Dan Bakkedahl, Sam Jaeger, Mel Rodriguez, and Erika Alexander.
“The night of the War of the Worlds radio broadcast is one of the great, true bizarre American stories,” Lambert said in his director’s statement. “It always seemed insane to me (and co-writer Michael Dowling) that no one had ever made a feature film about it. There were a few made-for-TV movies over the years… but they focused equally on Orson Welles in the studio, recording the radio show. To us, the most interesting version of the story was about the people who heard the broadcast, believed it, and thought they had one night to live before Martians killed them all.”
Brave New Jersey will receive its world premiere Saturday, Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. at Austin’s State Theater as part of the Austin Film Festival.
See an exclusive clip from the film above.