‘Crush’ Movie: First Look at American High’s Queer Teen Romantic Comedy Shot in Syracuse


Hulu has released the first look at American High’s latest film set in the Syracuse area.

“Crush” is described as a gay teen romantic comedy that follows an aspiring young artist who is forced to join her high school track team. She takes the opportunity to pursue the girl she’s had a crush on for a long time, but she soon finds herself falling in love with an unexpected teammate and discovering what true love looks like.

Director Sammi Cohen said Pride.com the coming-of-age film aims to help normalize the queer experience.

“Growing up, the LGBTQ+ representation in films like ‘Tomboy’, ‘Pariah’ and ‘But I’m a Cheerleader’ changed how I felt about myself. They made the invisible child in me feel seen, accepted and empowered,” Cohen said. “That’s what I hope this film will do for audiences today. With discrimination and active legislation in place right now, it seems more important than ever to tell queer stories and continue to normalize the queer experience as a human experience.

The sports romantic comedy stars Rowan Blanchard (“Girl Meets World”) and Auli’i Cravalho (“Disney’s Moana”), who appear together in three new images released by Hulu. The film will be released on the streaming service on April 29.

Rowan Blanchard and Auli’i Cravalho star in “Crush,” a new American High movie set in Syracuse. (Photo by: Hulu)

“Crush,” produced by Liverpool-based American High, starring Natasha Lyonne (“Russian Doll,” “OITNB”) and Maya Rudolph (“Saturday Night Live,” “Bridesmaids”), was formerly known as “Love in Color” when it was filmed in the Syracuse area last summer.

The cast also includes Isabella Ferreira (“Orange is the New Black”), Tyler Alvarez (“American Vandal”), Teala Dunn (“Are We There Yet?”), Rico Paris (“Better Call Saul”), with Aasif Mandvi (“Evil”), Michelle Buteau (“Always Be My Maybe”) and Megan Mullally (“Will & Grace”). Alvarez previously had a role in another American High movie, the upcoming “Sid is Dead.”


Rowan Blanchard and Auli’i Cravalho star in “Crush,” a new American High movie set in Syracuse. (Photo by: Hulu)

Mullally’s husband, Nick Offerman, was spotted in Armory Square at Pastabilities during production, but is not listed in the cast.

The TV-MA rated “Crush” is Cohen’s directorial debut. Kirsten King and Casey Rackham wrote the screenplay loosely based on their own experiences, would have seeking to portray “the weird joy they wanted to see on screen growing up”.

The film is produced by Jeremy Garelick, Will Phelps and Ryan Bennett for American High; Natasha Lyonne, Maya Rudolph and Danielle Renfrew Behrens for Animal Pictures; Andrew Miano and Britta Rowings for Depth of Field; Katie Newman for 3 Arts; and Mickey Liddell and Pete Shilaimon for LD Entertainment. Depth of Field’s Chris Weitz, Paul Weitz and Dan Balgoyen are executive producers on the project. LD Entertainment’s Michael Glassman is also on board as executive producer, as is Max Butler.

A trailer for “Crush” has yet to be released.

Crush the movie cast

Left to right: Rowan Blanchard, Auli’i Cravalho, Tyler Alvarez and Megan Mullally star in the new American High movie ‘Crush,’ filmed in Syracuse, NY (Getty Images)

“Crush” is one of 13 films shot in CNY by American High in less than five years. Other tracks include “Sex Appeal”, “Plan B”, “The Binge”, “Holly Slept Over”, “Banana Split”, “The great adolescence“, “Looks That Kill”, “The Ultimate Playlist of Noise” and the upcoming releases “I Love My Dad”, “Empire Waist” and “The Binge 2: It’s a Wonderful Binge”.


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