LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The last film made by U.S. actress Brittany Murphy, who died in December after suffering cardiac arrest, is heading to the big screens later this year after being picked up by Anchor Bay Entertainment.
The film distribution company said in a statement that it had bought the psychological thriller "Abandoned" for North American distribution with the film set to be released this summer.
The movie, produced by Jeffrey Schenck and Barry Barnholtz, was the last film role for 32-year-old Murphy, who co-starred in films like "8 Mile," "Clueless" and "Girl Interrupted" but worked in mostly low-budget movies in more recent years.
"Brittany will be deeply missed by everyone who worked on Abandoned. The film is a taut thriller which portrays Brittany's character as smart and tough - and that's how we all want to remember her," the producers said in a joint statement.
Murphy suffered a cardiac arrest on December 20 in the bathroom of her Hollywood Hills home. A coroner has ruled her death accidental and the result of pneumonia, anemia and "multiple drug intoxication."
Anchor Bay Entertainment's President Bill Clark said it was an "honor and bittersweet" to release Murphy's last film that was finished in June last year.
"It was important to Anchor Bay that the timing of this release be right, because we're sensitive to such a tragic loss. However, we also recognize that Brittany's fans will want to see her amazing work," said.
In "Abandoned" Murphy plays Mary Walsh who takes her boyfriend to hospital for routine outpatient surgery but he vanishes with no record of him left behind. Soon, however, she receives a ransom demand.
The film co-stars Dean Cain and Mimi Rogers.
Anchor Bay Entertainment is a division of Starz Media LLC which is a subsidiary of John Malone's Liberty Media Corp..
Writing by Belinda Goldsmith, Editing by Miral Fahmy