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Sundance standouts Ana Lily Amirpour, Jim Mickle nail down next films

Ana Lily Amirpour ('A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night') and Jim Mickle ('Cold in July') shore up next movies

With the Sundance Film Festival just a few weeks away, two genre-bending filmmakers who generated buzz at the 2014 gathering, Ana Lily Amirpour and Jim Mickle, have nailed down their next movie projects.

Amirpour, director of the moody black-and-white vampire neo-western "A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night," is teaming up with Annapurna Pictures and Vice for her sophomore film, "The Bad Batch," Annapurna announced Tuesday.

Amirpour will direct the film, a dystopian love story set in a Texas wasteland, with Annapurna's Megan Ellison and Vice's Danny Gabai and Sina Sayyah serving as producers.

"Ana Lily is a force of cinematic nature," read a statement from executive producer Eddy Moretti of Vice. "She inhabits that special place where the pop sensibility of the movies meets the deep sensuality of film art. It's a tricky thing to pull off."

Meanwhile Mickle, director of the taut Texas noir "Cold in July," has signed on to direct the firefighting drama "Esperanza," Legendary Entertainment announced Tuesday.

The screenplay, written by Sean O'Keefe, is based on John N. Maclean's nonfiction book "The Esperanza Fire," which explores the arson-caused blaze that killed five firefighters in Southern California in 2006.

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