Emily Blunt and Rosemary Dewitt in Your Sister's Sister.
By the time Lynn Shelton sat down to view the world premiere of Your Sister’s Sister, the director had seen her new film more times than she could remember. Still, she was surprised.
“The entire room was a single organism, laughing and gasping together,” says Shelton, who watched the screening alongside one of the film’s stars, Emily Blunt, at the Toronto International Film Festival in early September. “I’ve never felt anything like it. And then the reaction after; people would come up to me on the street and tell me how much they enjoyed it.”
Your Sister’s Sister follows Shelton’s 2009 release Humpday, a film that earned the Seattleite critical raves, as well as a series with MTV and a guest directing spot on Mad Men. It also made her a young director to watch and, after three screenings at the festival, her latest was picked up by IFC for theatrical release throughout the Western Hemisphere, along with two other deals that will take it to Australia and the United Kingdom.
“I certainly wasn’t expecting it,” Shelton says. “But I am relieved that I don’t have to sit around biting my nails for very long.”
Your Sister’s Sister takes a turn away from the risqué content of its predecessor, which involved the efforts of two straight male friends to make gay porn. It does still deal in complicated relationships, though—this time between a bereaved brother (Humpday’s Mark Duplass) seeking solace in an island cabin and a pair of sisters (Blunt and Rosemarie Dewitt), each of whom hopes to help him recover.
“I’ve had people, straight men, mostly, come up to me and tell me that they hadn’t watched Humpday, that they wanted to, but that they were scared,” Shelton says. “Which is so strange, because it isn’t really a scary picture. But this one is definitely not going to have that barrier.”
Shelton says that the film is being prepped for a summer release, though Seattle International Film Festival audiences might get a sneak preview this spring.