Matt Porterfield's new film, "I Used To Be Darker," has been a festival favorite abroad. But soon Baltimore will get the first wider-release peek.

According to a statement, the Baltimore director's third film will have its national opening in Baltimore Sept. 27. Porterfield told us that Strand Releasing has agreed to let Baltimore get first dibs on the film, before New York and Los Angeles.


The film is scheduled to open at The Charles Theatre. It also screened at the Maryland Film Festival in May.

Porterfield, who won the Sondheim Artscape Prize in 2011, has garnered acclaim for his films "Hamilton" and "Putty Hill," both set and filmed in and around Baltimore. Porterfield said, via email from Santiago, Chile, where he's screening "I Used To Be Darker," that his latest was shot in Hamilton, Station North, Roland Park and Ocean City.

"It's a film about a Baltimore family, much like 'Hamilton' and 'Putty Hill' were, so there's nowhere I'd rather premiere than the Charles," Porterfield said in an email. "It's a local film, so it should open at home."

"I Used To Be Darker" screened at the Sundance Film Festival and Berlin Film Festival this year (and won Best Narrative Feature at the Atlanta Film Festival). Here's the plot, via the press release:

"When Taryn (Deragh Campbell), a runaway from Northern Ireland, finds herself in trouble in Ocean City, MD, she seeks refuge with her aunt and uncle in Baltimore. But Kim and Bill (Ned Oldham and Kim Taylor) have problems of their own: they’re trying to handle the end of their marriage gracefully for the sake of their daughter Abby (Hannah Gross), just home from her first year of college. A story of family revelations, people finding each other and letting each other go, looking for love where they’ve found it before and, when that doesn’t work, figuring out where they might find it next."

Porterfield added that the opening event will include special guests and an audience Q&A. "I Used To Be Darker" was partially crowd-funded through Kickstarter, much of it regionally, Porterfield said.

"The thing I'm most excited about is the opportunity we'll have to talk about it with audiences afterwards," Porterfield said. "We've got a number of cool guests and events planned for opening weekend."

After its debut in Baltimore, "I Used To Be Darker," is scheduled for an Oct. 4 opening in New York and an Oct. 11 opening in Los Angeles before a national release.

Porterfield, who teaches screenwriting, theory and production at Johns Hopkins University and the Maryland Institute College of Art, has two other film projects in the works: the long-gestating "Metal Gods," as well as "Sollers Point."