Chris Hardwick might be taking over the nerd world. Which is fine, for the most part, as long as he continues to be a force for good. Firmly in the “force for good” category is getting into the film distribution business and bringing SXSW Audience Award winner Zero Charisma to audiences around the country. In partnership with Tribeca Film, Nerdist Industries will distribute the directorial debut of Katie Graham and Andrew Matthews, which follows the story of Scott (Sam Eidson), a table-top game enthusiast whose quest to lead his friends on Dungeons & Dragons-esque quests comes with a bit more off-table drama than he’s equipped to handle.
Here’s the full, official synopsis: “As the strict Game Master of a fantasy role-playing game, Scott (Sam Eidson) leads his friends in a weekly quest through mysterious lands from the safety of his grandmother’s kitchen. But his mastery of his own domain starts to slip — along with everything else in his life — when neo-nerd hipster Miles (Garrett Graham) joins the game, winning over the group with his confident charm and dethroning Scott with an unexpected coup. Caught in delusions of grandeur, Scott must roll the dice and risk everything to expose Miles as the fraud he believes him to be. A darkly comedic fable of epic proportions,Zero Charisma is an ode to nerds from every realm.”
The film took home the audience award in the Narrative Spotlight category of the 2013 SXSW Film Festival, co-starring Garrett Graham, Brock England and Katie Folger. In our review from SXSW, Scott Beggs said that it was like “watching Todd Solondz play D&D,” highlighting Eidson in the lead and the film’s ability to communicate the intricate nature of relationships within geek culture without alienating its audience.
“My podcast mate Jonah Ray saw Zero Charisma at SXSW and immediately texted me to say it was one of the best movies of the year,” explained Hardick in a press release following the Nerdist Comic-Con panel today. “When I saw it, I knew I had to tell as many people as I could about it. It’s hilarious, touching, beautiful, authentic and an eerily accurate echo of my first D&D group in the 80’s. I think the character of Scott will become a cultural hero. He is the personification of the nerd rage that boils in all of us when PEOPLE. DON’T. FOLLOW. THE. RULES. OF. THE GAME.”
Tribeca Film and Nerdist Industries will co-release the film this fall beginning October 8, 2013 on cable/telco and satellite video-on-demand platforms, as well as iTunes, Amazon Watch Instantly, VUDU, Playstation, and Google Play, followed by a theatrical release on October 11, 2013.
Watch the SXSW trailer for Zero Charisma below: