Now in production in London, the movie will launch on Prime Video in the U.K. and Ireland in 2023. Directed by Amponsah, and written by Archie Maddocks and Taz Skylar, the film stars Stephen Odubola (“Blue Story,” “A Violent Man”), Skylar (“One Piece,” “Boiling Point”) and singer Mae Muller, as well as Ms Banks, Yung Filly and Harry Pinero.
Set during the peak of a wave of moped crimes sweeping London, “Gassed Up” follows 20-year-old Ash (Odubola), who is trying to earn money to raise his 14-year-old sister and send his mother to rehab, but gets caught up with an organized crime ring led by a young and charismatic Albanian immigrant (Skylar).
As the crimes get bigger and the attention becomes addictive, Ash struggles to keep his head above water. Soon, he has to choose between the people he loves, and having his whole life come crashing down around him.
Amponsah is best known for his critically acclaimed 2015 documentary “The Hard Stop,” which followed friends of the late Mark Duggan, a London youth who was gunned down by police in 2011, sparking a wave of civil unrest. Other credits include the docuseries “Enslaved,” starring Samuel L. Jackson, and the BAFTA-nominated documentary “Black Power: A British Story of Resistance.”
“Gassed Up” is produced by Rupert Preston and Ed Caffrey of Sunrise Films and “Boiling Point” duo Bart Ruspoli and Hester Ruoff of Ascendant Fox. Other producers include long-term collaborators Stefan D’Bart and Ward Trowman of Bromantics. The creative team also includes director of photography Stefan Ciupek (“Guns Akimbo”) and co-editors Richard Ketteridge (“A Boy Called Christmas”) and Christopher Dickens (“Slumdog Millionaire”). Sunrise Films is handling international rights to the film.
“We’re delighted to be working with Amazon and in production with this viscerally thrilling, vibrant and relevant film,” said Preston. “It’s going to be one exciting ride for audiences both in the U.K. and around the world in 2023.”
Ruspoli added: “Archie and Taz’s script is incredibly powerful and rich in subtext, and Hester Ruoff and I are incredibly excited to make this the first film of our new Ascendant Fox label, and continue to make the films of the highest quality with engaging human stories, in the vein of ‘Boiling Point.’”
Amponsah added: “After 30 years of filmmaking practice I’m delighted to be directing my first feature-length drama. I’ve been working on the ‘Gassed Up’ script since 2017 and it’s been a truly magical process as the story has evolved. Working with Amazon has been great — they encouraged the central theme of teenage ‘redemption’ and it’s from there that a lot of ideas have emerged. I’m very excited to be working with such a talented team in front of and behind the cameras and I feel sure that the resulting film will be one we can all feel proud of.”
Tushar Jindal, head of film acquisitions for Prime Video, added: “We are proud to partner with George and the brilliant minds at Ascendant Fox and Sunrise Films on such a socially and culturally relevant project. ‘Gassed Up’ is a thrilling story about a group of young Londoners and the choices they make. The film will join Prime Video’s library of series and movies telling the stories that matter to our customers, such as the highly anticipated U.K. Original series ‘Jungle.’”
“Gassed Up” joins a burgeoning U.K. originals catalogue for Prime Video, which includes series such as “Good Omens,” “Clarkson’s Farm” and “All or Nothing: Tottenham Hotspur,” as well as forthcoming U.K.-produced series such as “The Rig,” “The Devil’s Hour,” “Mammals,” “All or Nothing: Arsenal,” “Jungle” and “Lovestruck High,” “Anansi Boys” and “The Power.”
(Pictured, L-R: Craige Middleburg, Tobias Jowett, Stephen Odubola, Taz Skylar, Mohammed Mansaray)