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A24’s Talk to Me Palms Off Possession


Sundance Breakout Talk To Me Coming To Theaters July 2023

By Avery Pearson

Last week, A24 teased fans with a trailer for Talk to Me, an Australian horror movie set for release on July 28th. Talk to Me promises an etheric take on the lasting hold grief, escapism, and obsession can have on the young and impressionable.

Fear of missing out and morbid curiosity draws Mia (Sophie Wilde) to a seance on the anniversary of her mother’s death. The viral party trick depicted uses a disembodied hand covered with inscriptions to summon spirits. The premise is simple – light a candle, grab the hand, and recite three words: “Talk to me”. 

For ninety seconds, the player experiences an out-of-body encounter with the nonliving. Failure to let go in time extends their welcome, increasing the likelihood of voices, visions, and possessions. After Mia tries it out, all kinds of entities come through, and as the plot descends further to chaos, become a part of her.

YouTube Blacklist To Sundance Midnight Premiere

No strangers to controversy, directors Danny and Michael Phillipou are best known for their racy stunt and horror Youtube channel, RackaRacka. The twins gained 6.6 billion subscribers and over 1.5 billion views on the platform, winning Best International Youtube Channel at the 2015 Streamy Awards. While filming a ‘carpool’ prank in 2019, Michael was charged by the South Australia Police in Adelaide for driving a modified vehicle filled with water on a public road. Their channel was eventually demonetized. The pair announced their filmmaking debut in 2020.


Talk to Me was first unveiled at the Cannes Film Festival in 2022, premiering internationally at the Sundance Film Festival this year, which Hereditary director Ari Aster attended. A high-budget bidding war ensued after its midnight screening, with A24 ultimately closing the deal with a seven-figure offer. Shortly after, Jordan Peele (Nope and Get Out), Steven Spielberg (E.T. and Poltergeist), and Steven King (It and The Shining) reached out to the Phillipou brothers directly to offer their praise.

Brought to Life by Producers of The Babadook and The Nightingale

Causeway Films (The Babadook and The Nightingale) produced Talk to Me with an all-Australian cast. Sophie Wilde (The Portable Door) plays Mia and her friends, Jade, Hayley, and Joss, are played by Alexandra Jensen (Beat), Zoe Terakes (Wentworth), and Chris Alosio (Surviving Summer). Mia’s younger brother, Riley, is played by Joe Bird (First Day).

In spite of their contentious past, Danny and Michael Phillipou’s film career is off to a spectacular start. Bring Her Back, their second horror movie is allegedly already in the works. While only time will tell how Talk to Me turns out, it’s sure to be a gripping summer feature. See for yourself below:


Talk To Me (2023) Official A24 Trailer

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Avery Pearson has written long-form print pieces, thought leadership articles, and web copy for startups and nonprofits. Her work has been featured in Ocean News & Technology.