Saban Films has acquired North American distribution rights to Rob Zombie‘s latest horror-thriller, “31”. Written and directed by Zombie, the film premiered at Sundance earlier this year and will be released on September 16.

“31” stars Sheri Moon Zombie (“The Devil’s Rejects”), Golden Globe nominee Malcolm McDowell (“A Clockwork Orange”) and “The Lords Of Salem” actors Jeff Daniel Phillips and Meg Foster. The film follows five carnival workers who are kidnapped and held hostage in an abandoned, Hell-like compound where they are forced to participate in a violent game, the goal of which is to survive twelve hours against a gang of sadistic clowns.

’31’ is a treat not just to horror fans, but fans of true auteur filmmaking,” Saban Films president Bill Bromiley said. “The film is executed in true stylistic Zombie fashion. Rob is an unrivaled talent, and we are thrilled to bring his bold new film to audiences across the continent.”

“After meeting with Saban, it was obvious that this was the perfect home for ’31’,” Rob Zombie said. “They have a true understanding of the genre and how to handle it. I am very excited to work with them.”

Bow and Arrow Entertainment financed the film and co-produced with Spectacle Entertainment Group.

Zombie previously told a fan on his Facebook page that an unrated cut of “31” will be issued on DVD. Zombie presented the film three times to the MPAA ratings board, which slapped it with an NC-17 twice and finally gave it an R after he made some trims to the film’s violent content.

Zombie himself had stated that he thought it was likely that that edits would need to be made to try and fit the MPAA‘s strict guidelines.

Rob Zombie‘s new album, “The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser”, will be released on April 29 via UMe/T-Boy Records. The CD was produced by Chris “Zeuss” Harris and features Zombie alongside guitarist John 5, bassist Piggy D and drummer Ginger Fish.