In the post-Weinstein era, the fragile Hollywood ecosystem of predatory talent agencies and investors is a house of cards teetering on collapse. Jordan Hines (Jim Cummings), an ambitious but struggling agent trying to preserve his way of life, receives an anonymous invitation to a no-strings sexual encounter. Obsessed with uncovering the people behind the letter, Jordan falls into a paranoid spiral as he becomes embroiled in a labyrinthine mess of murder, sex, and intrigue.

Anchored by Cummings’ performance—brimming with nervous energy, and a compulsive veneer of charisma—The Beta Test is effortlessly entertaining as it intertwines searing cultural and political commentary with its bombastic plot. Cummings, who also directed and wrote the film with co-star PJ McCabe, has crafted a darkly comic thriller that lambasts the corporate Hollywood male ego.

"The Beta Test is a furtive satire of Hollywood corruption, a libidinous thriller about how the treacherous risks of adultery have been magnified by #MeToo and the age of digital tracking, and a nightmare of Internet consumerism run amok."—Owen Gleiberman, Variety

Director Icon Director
Jim Cummings, PJ McCabe


Cast
Jim Cummings, PJ McCabe, Virginia Newcomb, Olivia Applegate
Executive Producer Alex Rudolph, Douglas Choi, John Jeffrey Martin, Jake Orthwein, Matthew A Stewart
Producer Natalie Metzger, Matt Miller, Ben Wiessner
Screenwriter Jim Cummings, PJ McCabe
Cinematographer Ken Wales
Editor Jim Cummings
Production Design Charlie Textor
Contact Vortex Pictures
USA/UK 91 min. Review

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Cummings-Jim headshot

Director – Jim Cummings

Jim Cummings is a Sundance and South by Southwest-winning filmmaker from New Orleans. His films Thunder Road (2018) and The Wolf of Snow Hollow (2020) have been showcased and praised around the world for their comedic genre-bending aesthetics. His new film, The Beta Test (2021) is a comedy thriller about the packaging fight between the agencies and the Writers’ Guild of America. He lives in Los Angeles.


Filmography
Thunder Road (2018); The Wolf of Snow Hollow (2020)
McCabe-PJ headshot

Director – PJ McCabe

PJ McCabe is a writer, director, and actor from Philadelphia. His films have been showcased at Sundance and South by Southwest Film Festivals, and Fantasia International Film Festival. His most recent feature, The Beta Test, premiered at Berlinale and the Tribeca Film Festival and will be released this fall with IFC Films. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and his dog.