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15 items from 2016

Anthony Mackie Is Johnnie Cochran in Signal Hill Biopic

14 June 2016 7:26 PM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

After starring as The Falcon for the third time in Marvel's Captain America: Civil War, Anthony Mackie is lining up a much different project. The actor has come aboard to star as legendary defense lawyer Johnnie Cochran in an untitled project centering on his landmark Signal Hill police brutality case in 1981. Justin Chadwick (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom) has come aboard to direct the Johnnie Cochran Signal Hill Project, which is being set up by The Firm.

Deadline has the news on this project, which will center on the case that put Johnnie Cochran on the map. While the lawyer is most well known for his work in the O.J. Simpson trial, he first made a name for himself with a 1981 police brutality case in the Los Angeles County neighborhood of Signal Hill. The lawyer represented Cal State Long Beach football star Ron Settles, who had been arrested for speeding in Signal Hill. Shortly after his arrest, he was found hung in his cell, which the police called a suicide.

After persuading the family to exhume Ron Settles' body, an autopsy showed that he had in fact been choked to death. The family was awarded a $765,000 civil settlement and the town's police chief resigned although no one was charged in Ron Settles' death. The Signal Hill case is one of many throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s that lead to reform in how police departments handle prisoners.

Justin Chadwick is directing from a script by David McMillan, with Anthony Mackie producing alongside Jason Spire and Robbie Brenner, whose company The Firm is financing and producing. Kevin McKeon and Jeff Kwatinetz will also produce, with David McMillan set to executive produce. Justin Chadwick most recently directed Tulip Fever and Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

Anthony Mackie most recently starred in Captain America: Civil War and the HBO movie All the Way, where he portrayed Martin Luther King Jr. alongside Bryan Cranston as Lyndon B. Johnson. The actor is believed to be returning as The Falcon for the Avengers: Infinity War movies, which start production in November. It isn't known when filming will begin on this untitled Johnnie Cochran/Signal Hill movie, but we'll be sure to keep you posted as soon as more details come in. »

- MovieWeb

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Anthony Mackie’s Johnnie Cochran Movie Draws ‘Mandela’ Director

14 June 2016 3:41 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

British director Justin Chadwick is in negotiations to helm Anthony Mackie’s untitled Johnnie Cochran biopic.

Chadwick directed 2013’s “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom,” “The Other Boleyn Girl” and the upcoming “Tulip Fever.” David McMillan penned the script for the Cochran project.

The film will be centered on the 1981 wrongful death case of college football star Ron Settles. Signal Hill police ruled that Settles had hung himself in a city jail cell in despair over his arrest for speeding, but Cochran suspected foul play and persuaded the Settles family to request that the body be exhumed for an autopsy, which showed Settles had been choked to death.

The Settles family was subsequently awarded $1 million in a civil suit against the Southern California city. Cochran is best known for his defense of O.J. Simpson in the 1995 murder case in which Simpson was acquitted.

Robbie Brenner, The Firm’s president of film, will produce along with Mackie and Jason Spire. Jeff Kwatinetz will be exec producer, along with McMillan.

Mackie was most recently seen in “Captain America: Civil War.”

Chadwick is represented by UTA. Mackie is repped by UTA and Inspire.


- Dave McNary

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Helmer Justin Chadwick, Anthony Mackie Team On Johnnie Cochran Signal Hill Pic

14 June 2016 3:07 PM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Exclusive: Justin Chadwick is making a deal to direct the untitled film about the landmark Signal Hill police brutality case in 1981 that has Anthony Mackie playing attorney Johnnie Cochran. The script is by David McMillan, and the film is backed by The Firm. Mackie and Jason Spire will produce with Robbie Brenner, and Kevin McKeon and Jeff Kwatinetz will also produce. McMillan is exec producer. Chadwick most recently helmed Tulip Fever and Mandela: The Long Walk To Freedo… »

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The Firm-Produced Music Pic In Works At New PepsiCo Content Studio

17 May 2016 11:26 AM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

PepsiCo’s Creators League, the brand’s in-house content development division, has opened a new New York City studio and with it unveiled collaborations including a film with Hollywood management and production company The Firm and rapper Tip "T.I." Harris, as well as AOL's Partner Studios. As part of the content push, The Firm’s film president Robbie Brenner (Dallas Buyers Club) and Harris are teaming on an urban coming-of-age music movie that will star Harris, who will… »

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News Bits: Six, Deadpool, Juliet, Davis, Kubo

6 May 2016 12:47 PM, PDT | Dark Horizons | See recent Dark Horizons news »

The Final Six

Sony has scored the movie rights to Alexandra Monir's upcoming space thriller novel "The Final Six," a deal made even though only the book proposal and a few chapters were available - in fact the book's publishing rights are about to go up for auction.

The story imagines a present-day world under a first-of-its-kind coalition between the United Nations and the international space agencies, with a plot to send a team of six intrepid teenagers to create the first human settlement on Jupiter's moon, Europa. [Source: Variety]


Following the news about its massive success on Digital HD, Fox has released the full six-minute gag reel for the "Deadpool" film and - understandably - is definitely not safe for work.

Juliet Naked

Jesse Peretz has closed a deal to direct "Juliet, Naked" based on the best-selling novel by "Brooklyn" and "About a Boy" author Nick Hornby. Tamara Jenkins, Jim Taylor, »

- Garth Franklin

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Unauthorized Angela Davis Biopic By ‘Shameless’ Scribe Latoya Morgan Acquired By The Firm

5 May 2016 11:27 AM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Exclusive: Suspected 60s radical Angela Davis is getting biopic treatment. Jeff Kwatinetz’s The Firm has acquired an untitled script by Shameless scribe Latoya Morgan that Firm film division president Robbie Brenner will produce with Kwatinetz and Kevin McKeon. Davis, accused of conspiracy in the murder of a federal judge, became the first woman on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted list, became an iconic symbol of an era. After fleeing from authorities, she is eventually captured… »

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Anthony Mackie To Play Johnnie Cochran

3 May 2016 7:01 AM, PDT | Dark Horizons | See recent Dark Horizons news »

Anthony Mackie ("Captain America: The Winter Soldier") is set to star as famed O.J. Simpson defense attorney Johnnie Cochran in an untitled film based on the 1981 Signal Hill police brutality case.

Based on real life events, this follows a young Cochran as he takes on a police brutality case in 1981 in which a young college student died under suspicious circumstances in police custody.

Cochran persuaded the family to do an autopsy after suspecting foul play, leading to one of the more highly publicized cases involving police brutality.

David McMillan penned the script while Mackie, Robbie Brenner and Jason Spire will produce.

Source: Variety »

- Garth Franklin

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Anthony Mackie to Play Johnnie Cochran in Police Brutality Drama

2 May 2016 3:06 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Anthony Mackie will star as attorney Johnnie Cochran in an untitled film based on the 1981 Signal Hill police brutality case, sources confirmed to Variety.

Robbie Brenner, The Firm’s president of film, will produce along with Mackie and Jason Spire. Jeff Kwatinetz will be exec producer, along with McMillan. David McMillan penned the script.

Based on real life events, the story follows Cochran as he takes on a police brutality case in 1981 in which a young college student died under suspicious circumstances in police custody. Cochran persuaded the family to do an autopsy after suspecting foul play, leading to one of the more highly publicized cases involving police brutality.

Mackie’s star power is on the verge of hitting new heights this month with two high-profile projects set to bow. He will first reprise his role as Falcon in “Captain America: Civil War,” followed by a starring role in the HBO movie “All the Way, »

- Justin Kroll

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Daisy Ridley to become ‘The Lost Wife’ between Star Wars sequels

27 April 2016 5:01 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Daisy Ridley will headline the holocaust drama The Lost Wife, which will be based on the book of the same name by Alyson Richman.

The planned film, which is currently seeking a director, will be set in” pre-war Prague, where Lenka, a talented art student, and Josef, her best friend’s older brother, fall madly in love — only to have their dreams shattered by the imminent Nazi invasion.”

According to Variety, who broke the news, the project is a high priority for producer Robbie Brenner, so this could go between Ridley’s gap between the shooting of Star Wars Episodes 8 and 9. Marc Klein wrote the screenplay, which is set to have a heavy presence at Cannes in a couple of weeks. Here’s a little about the plot of the book from Amazon.

In pre-war Prague, the dreams of two young lovers are shattered when they are separated by the Nazi invasion. »

- Paul Heath

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‘Star Wars’ Actress Daisy Ridley to Star in Drama ‘The Lost Wife’ (Exclusive)

26 April 2016 12:13 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Star Wars: The Force Awakens” actress Daisy Ridley is attached to star in the drama “The Lost Wife.”

Ridley is currently filming the next installment in the “Star Wars” franchise. She recently signed on to star in the remake of the Israeli pic “Kolma” with “The Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams producing and Marielle Heller directing.

Robbie Brenner is producing “The Lost Wife,” based on the book by Alyson Richman. The story takes place in pre-war Prague, where Lenka, a talented art student, and Josef, her best friend’s older brother, fall madly in love — only to have their dreams shattered by the imminent Nazi invasion.

Marc Klein penned the script. Michelle Chydzik and Jeff Waxman are also producing. CAA is repping rights and will be taking the project to the Cannes Film Festival next month.

Sources tell Variety that the film is top priority and producers are currently meeting with directors for the job. »

- Justin Kroll

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Daisy Ridley Attached To "Lost Wife"

26 April 2016 12:03 PM, PDT | Dark Horizons | See recent Dark Horizons news »

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" actress Daisy Ridley has reportedly become attached to star in the pre-World War II romantic drama "The Lost Wife".

Based on the novel by Alyson Richman, the story follows a talented art student who falls in love with her best friend's older brother Josef in 1930s Prague. Their life together is torn apart by the imminent Nazi invasion.

Robbie Brenner is producing while Marc Klein is penning the screenplay. No studio or director is attached.

Source: Variety »

- Garth Franklin

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Daisy Ridley in Talks to Star in Holocaust Drama 'The Lost Wife'

25 April 2016 9:36 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Daisy Ridley is in talks to star in the Holocaust drama The Lost Wife. The film was penned by Marc Klein (A Good Year, Serendipity). The story centers on a young Jewish woman who is separated from her husband when the Germans invade Prague and uses her talents as an artist to survive until the couple is miraculously reunited decades later in America. It is based on a book by Alyson Richman. Robbie Brenner, whose passion project Dallas Buyers Club (2013) landed a best picture Oscar nomination, is producing Lost Wife via The Firm, where she is president of the

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- Tatiana Siegel

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Stephen Moyer Leaves ‘Tribes Of Palos Verdes’ Over Scheduling

10 February 2016 3:01 PM, PST | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Exclusive: Stephen Moyer just exited The Tribes Of Palos Verdes due to a scheduling conflict. The Firm is putting together the film, with Jennifer Garner starring and Robbie Brenner producing. They’ll look to recast the male lead right away. The drama is based on the Joy Nicholson Ya novel set in the affluent Los Angeles suburb of Palos Verdes, centering on two teenagers who move to the beach community with their parents as their mother teeters on the brink of a nervous… »

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Mel Gibson’s Son Milo Gibson Joins Jennifer Garner in ‘Tribes of Palos Verdes’

2 February 2016 2:26 PM, PST | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

After working with his father, Mel Gibson, on the upcoming WWII movie “Hacksaw Ridge,” Milo Gibson is riding a wave of career momentum that has carried him to a key supporting role opposite Maika Monroe and Jennifer Garner in “The Tribes of Palos Verdes,” TheWrap has learned. Emmett and Brendan Malloy are directing the coming-of-age drama from a script by Karen Croner, who adapted Joy Nicholson’s debut Ya novel. Croner is producing with Robbie Brenner (“Dallas Buyers Club”) of The Firm, whose Jeff Kwatinetz will executive produce with Kevin McKeon. Monroe (“It Follows”) and Cody Fern (“War Horse”) star as two teenagers. »

- Jeff Sneider

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The Horizon Award To Recognize Four Women Directors at Sundance 2016

22 January 2016 6:50 AM, PST | Sydney's Buzz | See recent Sydney's Buzz news »

Continuing their support for women directors, Horizon Award co-founding producers Cassian Elwes, Lynette Howell Taylor, and Christine Vachon, announced the winners of the second annual Horizon Award. Academy Award nominee Chloë Sevigny will bestow up-and-coming filmmakers Macarena Gaona, Juliette Gosselin, Shanice Malakai Johnson, and Florence Pelletier with the Horizon Award at a reception in Park City, Utah, with creative talent, producers, entertainment executives and media in attendance to celebrate these rising women directors and their achievements in independent filmmaking.

The Horizon Award ceremony and reception will take place on Sunday, January 24th, 2016 at 6:30 pm at the WireImage Portrait Studio at Village at the Lift (825 Main Street, Park City), co-hosted by Jeff Vespa.

The Horizon Award is an annual award that seeks to identify and mentor talented, up-and-coming female directors – the primary goal being to support women directors early enough in their development to help them overcome the hurdles in advancing their learning curve and careers.

In addition to the Horizon Award, the four winners will receive grants from the Adrienne Shelly Foundation. The Foundation supports the artistic achievements of female filmmakers through a series of grants that reflect Adrienne Shelly’s dedication to the art of filmmaking and her own successful transition from actress to filmmaker.

This year’s winners are:

Horizon Award First Place

Juliette Gosselin (University of Quebec in Montreal) & Florence Pelletier (Concordia University, Montreal)

Co-directors of "Mes Anges à Tête Noire" 

Horizon Award Runners-Up

Macarena (Macqui) Gaona (New York University) Director of "Channel 999 and Channel 1000" 

Shanice Malakai Johnson (Scottsdale Community College) Director of "End to the Suffering"

On making the announcement, Cassian Elwes said: “I’m so excited to announce the winners of the second annual Horizon Award. This year’s overwhelming number of submissions and caliber of work made it very hard indeed to pick just one winner – the jury identified one grand prize winner, and two runners-up. Additionally, we have added new partners to our already formidable team – proving that not only is the move towards gender equality in the zeitgeist, but that there are very real advocates amongst our peers. After the recent summit for systemic change (hosted by Sundance and Women in Film), I am more convinced than ever that we can make a difference and that history is on our side. I remain steadfastly committed to the idea that, one day soon, women will have exactly the same opportunities as men to direct movies.”

Franklin Leonard, Founder and CEO of The Black List and one of the award’s original advocates added: “We are passionate supporters of this award that recognizes fresh voices and perspectives in storytelling. This effort mirrors our own effort – the Black List's 500 Feminist Films project, created by our Director of Community, Kate Hagen. We look forward to mentoring the winners in the year to come.”

The jury was comprised of 38 influential directors, producers, and executives from the filmmaking community who viewed 483 short film submissions from over 200 colleges and universities world-wide, including the U.S., Canada, England, Australia, India, China, South Africa, Scotland, France, Mexico, Portugal, Columbia, Brazil, Russia, Serbia, the Ukraine, and more. This year, submissions increased by over one hundred from last year, with additional countries and universities participating. Submissions were received from Nyu, USC, UCLA, Chapman, Emerson, Penn State, Loyola Marymount, University of Wisconsin, University of Washington, Syracuse, Tcu, Ryerson (Toronto), Oxford, University of Sydney, University of Melbourne, University of Delhi, and more.

Now in its second year, the Horizon Award provides an all-expense-paid trip for the winning female college students to the Sundance Film Festival, where they will have the opportunity to present their films to some of the industry’s most influential names. The winners receive mentorship, festival access, and important introductions by Elwes, Howell, and Vachon to agents, producers, executives, festival staff, and other influencers throughout the Sundance Film Festival.

The Horizon Award was founded by producer, Cassian Elwes ("Margin Call," "All is Lost," "Dallas Buyers Club"), and Michelle Satter, Founding Director, Sundance Institute’s Feature Film Program, in response to a Sundance Institute and Women In Film Los Angeles study that revealed that only 4.2% of the top 100 films each year from 2002-2013 were directed by women. Elwes partnered with Howell ("Captain Fantastic," "Mississippi Grind," "Big Eyes," "The Place Beyond the Pines:), and Vachon ( "Goat," "Carol," "Boys Don’t Cry," "One Hour Photo," "Far From Heaven"), to create the award as an opportunity for young female directors to have mentorship and networking opportunities in conjunction with Sundance, the home of American Independent film.

You can see links for more info on the study:

Phase I and II

Phase III

Sponsors and Partners for the 2016 Horizon Award are: The Black List, CreativeFuture, The Creative Mind Group, Done To Your Taste Catering, FilmLA, Indiegogo, Mprm Communications, the Adrienne Shelly Foundation, Sundance Institute, Twitter, Verge, Vimeo, WireImage, Adina Design, and Women in Film. This impressive group has come together to support an award that they hope will continue to identify, nurture, and launch the careers of future female directors for years to come.

Full List of Jurors:

Stephanie Allain Producer ("Dear White People," "Hustle & Flow")

Dori Begley Magnolia Pictures (Svp, Acquisitions)

Amy Berg Director ("Janis: Little Girl Blue," "Deliver Us From Evil," "Prophet’s Prey")

Arianna Bocco IFC Films (Svp, Acquisitions & Co-Productions)

Robbie Brenner The Firm (Partner, President of Film)

Susan Carter Hall Painter

Amal ElWardi Zeal Media Company (Producer)

Cassian Elwes Producer ("Margin Call," "All is Lost," "Dallas Buyers Club")

Janet Grillo Director ("Jack of the Red Hearts," "Fly Away")

Poppy Hanks Macro Venture (Svp, Development & Production)

Catherine Hardwicke Director ("Miss You Already," "Red Riding Hood," "Twilight")

Lynette Howell Taylor Producer ("Captain Fantastic," "Mississippi Grind," "Big Eyes")

Liza Johnson Director ("Elvis & Nixon," "Return," "Hateship Loveship," "In the Air")

Eda Kowan Lionsgate (Svp, Acquisitions & Co-Productions)

Gina Kwon Amazon Studios (Executive, Comedy)

Helen Lee-Kim Good Universe (Partner, Head of International)

Laura Lewis CAA (Agent, Film Finance)

Alix Madigan Broad Green Pictures (Head, Creative)

Marianna Palka Actress/Director ("I’m the Same,""Always Worthy," "Good Dick")

Bruna Papandrea Pacific Standard (Producer/Partner)

Keri Putnam Sundance Institute (Executive Director)

Dee Rees Director ("Bessie," “Empire”)

Laura Rister Untitled Entertainment (Head of Production)

Rena Ronson UTA (Partner)

Michelle Satter Sundance Institute (Director, Feature Film Program)

Cathy Schulman Stx Entertainment (President & Chief Content Officer)

Lauren Selig Shake and Bake Productions (Executive Producer)

Mary Jane Skalski Producer ("The Visitor," "Mysterious Skin," "The Station Agent")

Lara Thompson E1 Entertainment (Svp, Worldwide Acquisitions)

Christine Vachon Producer ("Goat," "Carol," "Boys Don’t Cry")

Ruth Vitale CreativeFuture (CEO)

Angie Wang Director ("Cardinal X")

Hanna Weg Producer ("Septembers of Shiraz")

Tanya Wexler Director ("Hysteria," "Finding North," "Ball in the House")

Joanne Wiles ICM (Partner/Agent, Motion Picture Talent)

Pam Williams Pam Williams Productions ("Lee DanielsThe Butler," "Fail Safe")

Lisa Wilson The Solution Entertainment (Co-Founder/Partner)

So Yong Kim Director ("Love Song," "For Ellen," "In Between Days") »

- Sydney Levine

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15 items from 2016, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.

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