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Magnolia Pictures and Undue Medical Debt Partner on Zoey Deutch Comedy ‘Buffaloed’ To Eliminate $1.5m in Medical Debt

Unprecedented Collaboration is the First of its Kind for a Feature Film

NEW YORK, NY (JANUARY 15, 2020) – Magnolia Pictures and Undue Medical Debt announced today an unprecedented collaboration on the Zoey Deutch-starring film BUFFALOED to eliminate $1.5m of medical debt. The film, directed by Tanya Wexler, is an engrossing comedy about a natural-born hustler and her descent into the unorthodox world of debt collection as a way out of her seemingly dead-end life in Buffalo, New York. BUFFALOED might take a comic look at the issue, but treats it with the seriousness it deserves. Magnolia will release the film February 14 in theaters and on demand.

Undue Medical Debt is a national 501c3 nonprofit organization that uses donations to purchase bundled medical debt portfolios that have gone through collection agencies for months or years. Using third-party credit data providers, it targets debts specifically incurred by people facing financial hardship, and then forgives them for a small fraction of the initial cost. 

As part of this partnership, the first of its kind for a feature film, Magnolia will eliminate $1.5m of medical debt. A campaign launched through Undue Medical Debt’s platform, Qgive, encourages people to contribute. Magnolia will offer ten prize packages to ten people, selected at random, who donate to the campaign.

“Buffaloed highlights the business of the debt collection world, and how hard-working people can make a good living,” said Undue co-founder Craig Antico. “But, over half of all bill collectors collect medical debt- especially against people that can’t pay. The filmmakers understand this plight of the debtor, and are doing something about it. They are abolishing over $1 million in debt to help those Americans most burdened by un-payable medical debt.”

Buffalo is the debt collection capital of America, though Peg Dahl (Zoey Deutch) never saw herself in that world. She’s bet on her sharp mind—and even sharper mouth—to get her out of town and into an Ivy League university. But when an acceptance letter to the school of her dreams arrives, she quickly realizes the cruel impossibility of paying tuition. A chance phone call changes everything and leads her into the lucrative yet complex and shady business of delinquent debt collection. She’s a natural and soon running her own shop, but at what cost? Also starring Judy Greer, Jai Courtney and Jermaine Fowler, BUFFALOED is a hilarious and timely comedy about one woman rewriting the rules of The Man’s game. 

Directed by Tanya Wexler, BUFFALOED was written by Brian Sacca. The film is a Lost City production, a Bold Crayon production in association with MXN Entertainment. Producers are Mason Novick, John Finemore, Bannor Michael MacGregor, Jeffrey Katz, Zoey Deutch and Brian Sacca. Executive producers are James Hoppe, Elizabeth Grave, Brooke Davies, Kirsten Ames, Mary Anne Waterhouse, and Phil Quartararo.

The leading independent film distributor for nearly 20 years, Magnolia Pictures is the theatrical and home entertainment distribution arm of the Wagner/Cuban Companies. Recent releases include Cannes Best Actress prize-winning sci-fi featureLITTLE JOE;SCANDALOUS: THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE NATIONAL ENQUIRER;MISTER AMERICA, a new comedy starring Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington;RAISE HELL: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS, a new documentary about the trailblazing Texas journalist that world-premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and won the Festival Favorites Audience Award at SXSW; TONI MORRISON: THE PIECES I AM, celebrating the life and career of the trailblazing literary icon; 2018 Cannes Palme d’Or winner and Oscar-nominated SHOPLIFTERS, from renowned Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-Eda; SUPPORT THE GIRLS, Andrew Bujalski’s critically lauded film starring New York Film Critics Circle Best Actress award winner Regina Hall; Box office sensation and Oscar-nominated RBG, award-winning filmmakers Betsy West and Julie Cohen’s documentary about the consequential life and legal legacy of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg; Ruben Östlund’s 2017 Cannes Palme d’Or winner and Oscar-nominated THE SQUARE; and Raoul Peck and James Baldwin’s Oscar-nominated I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO. Upcoming releases include CUNNINGHAM, director Alla Kovgan’s immersive documentary on visionary Americanchoreographer Merce Cunningham; Toronto International Film Festival Opening Night Gala PresentationONCE WERE BROTHERS: ROBBIE ROBERTSON AND THE BAND; Romanian crime thrillerTHE WHISTLERS, which world-premiered in competition at Cannes; SLAY THE DRAGON, an urgent and eye-opening documentary about gerrymandering; TWO OF US, the feature directorial debut of France-based Italian filmmaker Filippo Meneghetti; and COLLECTIVE, a jaw-dropping expose of corruption at the highest levels of government. 

Magnolia Pictures International is the sales arm of Magnolia Pictures, overseeing a diverse catalog of more than 100 features from Magnolia Pictures and 2929 Productions. Over the years, Magnolia International has worked on the international distribution of many ground-breaking documentaries including RBG, LO AND BEHOLD: REVERIES OF THE CONNECTED WORLD, THE WOLFPACK, and IRIS; critically-acclaimed narratives such as LUCKY, TANGERINE, GOOD NIGHT AND GOOD LUCK, and TWO LOVERS; and genre films XX, THE EYES OF MY MOTHER, TROLLHUNTER, and HONEYMOON. 2019 films include Sundance documentaries HAIL SATAN? and THE BRINK, survival thriller BODY AT BRIGHTON ROCK and Horror/Western THE WIND.

About Undue Medical Debt

Undue Medical Debt is a nonprofit that buys and forgives medical debt across America. It works with individual donors, philanthropists and organizations to purchase medical debt for pennies on the dollar to provide financial relief for those most burdened by impossible medical bills. Founded in 2014 by two former collections industry executives, Craig Antico & Jerry Ashton, Undue rose to national prominence on an episode of HBO’s “Last Week Tonight” with John Oliver in which Undue facilitated the abolishment of $15M in medical debt. To learn more visit: www.unduemedicaldebt.org



George Nicholis
Magnolia Pictures

Daniel Lempert @ Undue Medical Debt