Beautiful Disaster: Plot, Cast, and Everything Else We Know

Fans of the After franchise, which follows Hardin Scott (Hero Fiennes Tiffin) and Tessa Young (Josephine Langford) in a twisted romance, are in for a treat with Voltage Picture’s new film. Beautiful Disaster is also about a college freshman trying to stay away from a bad boy she feels an instant connection to. The film is an adaptation of the book of the same name by Jamie McGuire, though it didn’t originate on Wattpad like After did.

Voltage Pictures revealed the cast and director of the film in 2021 on their website. Roger Kumble serves as director, with Dylan Sprouse and Virginia Gardner attached to star. The executive producers include Nicolas Chartier (I Feel Pretty, After franchise), Lucas Jarach (The Haunting of Sharon Tate, First Love), and McGuire, with Kumble, Mark Clayman (The Pursuit of Happyness), Donald De Line (Wayward Pines), Jonathan Deckter (Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, After franchise), Brian Pitt (After franchise) serving as producers.

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Get ready to head to Eastern University as we share everything there is to know about Beautiful Disaster.

Beautiful Disaster: The Plot

Voltage Pictures

Abby Abernathy (Virginia Gardiner) is a college freshman. She has a dark past she’s trying to get away from, but that could all be up in the air when she meets Travis Maddox (Dylan Sprouse). From the looks of the synopsis, it sounds like Travis has quite a bit going on in his life as well.

In Beautiful Disaster, bad-boy Travis Maddox (Sprouse) is exactly what college freshman Abby Abernathy (Gardner) needs and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights fighting in underground boxing matches, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. But Abby wants nothing to do with Travis. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis offers her a simple bet: if he loses his next fight, he must remain sex-free for a month. If he wins, Abby must live in his apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that Abby’s dark past is about to emerge, and he may have finally met his match.

The teaser trailer goes more in-depth, showing Travis making a lasting first impression that results in Abby checking his Instagram during class and being scolded by a professor. The two spend more and more time together, resulting in the bet.

Looking into the book synopsis gives an idea of what could lie in Abby’s dark past. It describes the “new” Abby as a “good girl” who “doesn’t drink or swear” and has cardigans in her closet. Did she like to party in high school? Did something go wrong? Whatever happened, Abby is determined to leave it behind her and be a new version of herself, and Travis may get in the way of that.

Beautiful Disaster: The Cast

Voltage Pictures

Dylan Sprouse is Travis “Mad Dog” Maddox. Sprouse previously worked with Voltage Pictures on After We Collided, the second film in the After sage. While many know him from his work on Disney Channel in The Suite Life of Zack & Cody and The Suite Life on Deck, his recent projects include My Fake Boyfriend, Dismissed, and Tyger Tyger. Virginia Gardner is his love interest Abby “Pigeon” Abernathy​​​​​​​. The actress is known for Runaways and All the Bright Places.

Additional cast members include Autumn Reeser (The Legend of La Llorona, Hawaii Five-0) as Professor Felder, Brian Austin Green (BH90210, Anger Management) as Mick Abernathy, Rob Estes (After We Collided, Famous in Love) as Benny, Jack Hesketh (Karen Pirie) as Trenton Maddox, Libe Barer (Elvis, DuckTales)​​​​​​​ as America Mason, Samuel Larsen​​​​​​​ (After We Collided, Glee) as Jesse Viveros​​​​​​​, Manal El-Feitury (American Night) as Bursa, Austin North (Outer Banks)​​​​​​​ as Shepley Maddox, Akshay Kumar (Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi, Devs) as Adam, Trevor Van Uden (Barbarian)​​​​​​​ as Thomas Maddox, Declan Michael Laird (Big Dogs) as Taylor Maddox, Micky Dartford (Call the Midwife) as Tyler Maddox, and Neil Bishop​​​​​​​ (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom) as Parker Hayes.

Release Date

While an exact release date has yet to be revealed, audiences can expect the film to be released in 2023.

Everything Else We Know

Voltage Pictures

The novel wasn’t immediately a bestseller. McGuire originally self-published the book in 2011 before it was picked up for traditional publishing in 2012. Warner Bros. won the film rights in 2012, but they never produced a film, so the rights went back on the market. Voltage Pictures bought them and began production in 2021. The project was filmed in Bulgaria in late 2021, with Sprouse and Gardner confirming they had finished production in December with a video posted on Voltage Picture’s YouTube page.

There has been some backlash regarding the film. The author has made some controversial statements related to race and the LGBTQIA+ community, which have not sat well with fans of the book. A petition was started to prevent the movie from being made and currently has over 20,000 signatures. The petition was started a year ago and seemed to have lost traction, as it hit 20,000 signatures within a month of being created.

While we wait for a more definite release date, check out the best college films of all time.