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Promotional Poster for American Satan
|Directed by||Ash Avildsen|
|Produced by||Ash Avildsen|
Sean E. Demott
|Written by||Ash Avildsen|
|Music by||Jonathan Davis|
Jeff Rice Films
Intrinsic Value Films
American Satan is an American supernatural musical thriller film written by Ash Avildsen and Matty Beckerman. It was released in theaters on Friday October 13, 2017 and features rock artists Andy Biersack (his vocal performance provided by Remington Leith of the band Palaye Royale), Ben Bruce, and Drake Bell. It also stars Denise Richards, Malcolm McDowell, Booboo Stewart, and Tori Black. The film's soundtrack, including tracks performed by the film's fictional band "The Relentless", was released to accompany the film.
The film was produced by Andy Gould, who previously worked on Rob Zombie films.
This movie follows a young rock band, half from England and half from the US, who all drop out of college and move to Los Angeles to try to become famous. The main character is Johnny Faust (Andy Biersack), who lives in Columbus, Ohio with his mother (Denise Richards) and his longtime girlfriend Gretchen (Olivia Culpo). He and his friends move to Los Angeles and meet up with the band members from England; together, they are The Relentless. They hold auditions for a bassist, and choose a girl named Lily (Jesse Sullivan). While leaving a liquor store, some of the band members encounter a homeless man (Bill Duke) who bears a name placard for "Reverend Jasper Williams". Before leaving, he tells them to rely on feeling more than perception. Moments later, the band is accosted by another old man twice before they agree to talk to him, sans Lily. The man (Malcolm McDowell) implies that he's the Devil and that he can make them huge stars if they trust him and perform a human sacrifice. As Lily had told Johnny that her ex-band member Damien (Drake Bell) raped her the night she left the band, and after Johnny has learned that his mother has breast cancer and can't afford treatment and Damien having insulted Johnny's mother, the band decides that Damien will be the victim. They lock him in a van, pour gasoline on it and set it aflame, but midway through Johnny has a change of heart and lets Damien out. Damien tries to climb an electrical fence but dies after being electrocuted, thus fulfilling the sacrifice.
The Relentless get a record deal and record an album, called American Satan and then goes on tour to promote it. At a tour stop in Kansas, a bar fight leads to the death of a racist man, and Johnny is arrested. He goes on trial and is released after a period of time; the death is ruled self-defense. This inspires The Relentless's fans to confront their bullies, leading to more deaths, all blamed on the band.
Johnny and Gretchen try to maintain their long-distance relationship, but matters are complicated when Johnny and Lily sleep together and Lily, unbeknownst to Johnny, answers a call from Gretchen on Johnny's phone who then hears them having sex. At the same time, Ricky overdoses on cocaine and dies, leaving Leo distraught. As a result of Ricky's death, Leo begins to heavily use alcohol and pills. Gretchen dumps Johnny, and he turns to heroin (something that Lily introduced him to) and sex with Lily to try to cope. He also engages in lots of sex, as do the rest of the band. A fan's mother pays Johnny to take her teen daughter's virginity; he does, but then learns from Elias that the girl's dad killed himself because of what she and Johnny did. Johnny gets so involved with heroin that he overdoses and almost dies, but is revived at the last minute by a paramedic - who is revealed to be the same homeless man the group encountered outside the liquor store. Johnny then goes to rehab and begins to get clean. Lily refuses to go to rehab and disappears. The Relentless' album 'American Satan' is well-received and instantly tops the music charts. The band performs more shows and receive a lot of adoration but also a lot of backlash due to their songs, image, and propensity for having sex with teenage fans. This leads them to almost quit the music industry.
The band becomes well-off, and Johnny's mother is able to receive treatment for her cancer. It goes into remission. Johnny tries to get back together with Gretchen but Gretchen is unmoved by his pleas. The Relentless land a gig at a big music festival but the Devil says that they have to kill a supposedly mentally unstable man during their performance, though he intends to make it look like just part of the concert. The night of the big show, Lily returns just before they're set to go on stage but then leaves to go to the restroom. A moment later, the Devil appears in the guise of Johnny's mother's new boyfriend, and when the band goes on stage and performs, Johnny takes the gun and first holds it to his head before shooting and killing the Devil. He is arrested. While in prison, Johnny is told he has a visitor by a guard who reveals his identity to be the archangel Gabriel - it is the same man who they met outside the store and that revived Johnny. He tells Johnny that he has a choice in his future and again to go with his feelings. The visit is soon revealed to be from Gretchen who tells Johnny she still loves him. She brings with her a powerful lawyer, who happens to be Damien's father. The lawyer tells Johnny he can get him off on a technicality. The film ends with Johnny and Gretchen bending their heads toward each other while looking up conspiratorially at the lawyer. Gretchen tells Johnny it's two against one now, indicating the lawyer is the Devil's new disguise (supported by him using a distinctive knock that the Devil had used before) and that she will stay with Johnny and help him fight the darkness.
The credits are interspersed with various bands recounting anecdotes about their experiences with the supernatural and how it influenced their music.
A TV show spin-off of the film called Paradise City was made. It is to air sometime in 2020 as its first season had already been filmed. Andy Biersack and Ben Bruce along with other cast members are to reprise their roles from the original film. The late actor, Cameron Boyce is to make a posthumous appearance in the show playing the role of Simon. Kellin Quinn of the band Sleeping With Sirens is to also appear in the show. Singer and actress Bella Thorne will be taking over as Lily Mayflower, replacing Jesse Sullivan (actress).
The first season of the show will have 8 episodes.