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9 items from 2007

Palm Springs fest fetes composer Howard

20 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

James Newton Howard will receive the Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing at the 19th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival.

His film scores have included Andrew Davis' The Fugitive, P.J. Hogan's My Best Friend's Wedding and M. Night Shyamalan's The Village, which were all Oscar nominees for best original score. Howard also received three Grammy nominations, for music from Disney's Dinosaur, M. Night Shyamalan's Signs and a song from Michael Hoffman's One Fine Day.

Howard has been honored with ASCAP's Henry Mancini Award for Lifetime Achievement and now has over 100 films to his credit.

His film scores for 2007 include The Great Debaters, Michael Clayton, Charlie Wilson's War, "The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep," The Lookout and I Am Legend.

Other film scores include M. Night Shyamalan's The Sixth Sense, and Unbreakable; Taylor Hackford's The Devil's Advocate; Michael Mann's Collateral, Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins and Edward Zwick's Blood Diamond.

The award will be presented Jan. 5 at the Festival's annual Awards Gala. »

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Young Breslins take business to ICM

3 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Young sibling actors Abigail and Spencer Breslin have signed with ICM.

Abigail, who received a supporting actress Oscar nomination this year for her portrayal of Olive in Little Miss Sunshine, next appears in the feature film Definitely, Maybe, which co-stars Rachel Weisz and Ryan Reynolds. Other upcoming credits for the 11-year-old include Nim's Island, with Jodie Foster and Gerard Butler, and Kit Kittredge: An American Girl, in which she plays the title role opposite Stanley Tucci and Joan Cusack.

Her credits also include Signs and Raising Helen, which also featured Spencer.

His credits include the title role in Harold as well as The Shaggy Dog, The Cat in the Hat and the second and third installments in The Santa Clause trilogy. The 15-year-old next appears in M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening, starring Mark Wahlberg, and is directing his first feature, a documentary detailing what he and his young peers experienced in the aftermath of Sept. 11.

The Breslins also are repped by Meredith Fine of Coast to Coast, manager Beth Cannon of Envision Entertainment and attorney Linda Lichter. »

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Shyamalan Can Keep Deer Fence

7 November 2007 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Signs filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan can keep an eight-foot tall deer fence erected around his Philadelphia, Pennsylvania property, a judge has ruled. The Sixth Sense director's mesh fence has angered his suburban neighbors, who insist it's ugly, ruins their views and has an adverse effect on property values. But on Friday, Chester County Judge Robert J. Shenkin ruled the perimeter fence can stay, which Shyamalan has argued is necessary to prevent deer from destroying planned formal gardens. Judge Shenkin's decision is the second ruling to defeat locals' objections to the fence. »

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UTV posts first profit since float

26 October 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

LONDON -- Indian-owned movie production, distribution and financier UTV Motion Pictures, listed here on the Alternative Investment Market, posted a pretax profit of $8.4 million for its maiden interim results.

The company, which floated on AIM in July and aims to set up a business model based on the U.S. studio system, raised $65 million from the flotation and struck several deals during the period ending Sept. 30.

The outfit, which encompasses Bollywood movie distribution and production in addition to international filmmaking ambitions, struck a deal with Virgin Comics "to create four original superheroes in India."

It also boarded M. Night Shyamalan's "The Happening" as co-producer and will provide financial muscle to the production.

From the float to Sept. 30, the company earned revenue of $10 million and posted an operational profit figure of just north of $5 million.

The company also told the market it is expanding into the Telgu film market, India's second-largest, and plans to produce movies there. »

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Busy Breslin preparing for laughs, thrills

18 July 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

NEW YORK -- Spencer Breslin has landed the title role in the high school comedy Harold opposite actor-producer Cuba Gooding Jr. and a lead role in M. Night Shyamalan's thriller The Happening.

Breslin, known for his title role in The Kid and lead performances in The Cat in the Hat and the two Santa Clause sequels, will star as Harold, a prematurely balding student trying to adapt to a new high school. Gooding will portray a janitor who befriends the teased teen in the City Lights Pictures/M.E.G.A. Films production.

In 20th Century Fox's The Happening, Breslin appears with Mark Wahlberg, who plays a father trying to lead his family to safety when a natural disaster threatens to destroy the planet.

Breslin, the 15-year-old older brother of Little Miss Sunshine Oscar nominee Abigail Breslin, describes his role in Happening as "a typical teenage boy, a bit of a smartass." He claims he "hasn't been clued in" to other aspects of his role in the film, which he begins shooting in August in Philadelphia, including whether his character is part of Wahlberg's family. »

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Wahlberg in Shyamalan's 'Happening'

30 March 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Mark Wahlberg has signed on to star in M. Night Shyamalan's thriller "The Happening" for 20th Century Fox. The studio has grabbed Friday, June 13, 2008, as its worldwide release date.

"Happening" revolves around a family on the run from an apocalyptic threat to humanity. Wahlberg will play Elliot Moore, the science teacher at the center of the event. Shyamalan wrote the original screenplay and will produce with Sam Mercer and Barry Mendel, producer of Shyamalan's "The Sixth Sense" and "Unbreakable".

Production is set to begin in August in Philadelphia.

With a budget of $57 million, "Happening" is being co-financed by Fox and India's UTV. Fox is distributing worldwide, except in India, where UTV will handle the release.

"Happening" will mark the first time Shyamalan -- whose most recent film, "Lady in the Water", was a bust for Warner Bros. Pictures -- will partner with Fox. His first four films, all successes of varying degrees, were made for the Walt Disney Co.

Fox, which hasn't released a thriller on this scale since 2004's "The Day After Tomorrow", is bullish on the release date. »

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Fox, UTV team for Shyamalan's 'Happening'

15 March 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

NEW DELHI -- Mumbai-based production company UTV Motion Pictures and 20th Century Fox are teaming up for the co-production of director M. Night Shyamalan's latest film, The Happening.

"The deal entails UTV and Fox equally sharing the $57 million budget and being equal partners in all revenue streams of the film, which starts shooting this August, slated for a 2008 summer tentpole release," UTV CEO Ronnie Screwvala said in an interview. "Worldwide distribution will be handled by Fox except India, which will be handled by UTV."

Screwvala said that negotiations with Shyamalan started a couple of months ago, "after we were introduced to him by his agency, CAA, with whom we have also dealt in the past on our other projects with Fox Searchlight. In fact, even before 20th Century Fox came on board for 'The Happening,' UTV had already confirmed its commitment to Shyamalan for the project."

Given Shyamalan's Indian origins -- he was born in the southern city of Pondicherry -- Screwvala said that Shyamalan "has always been keen on working with India." »

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Shyamalan Granted Permission To Keep Deer Fence

2 March 2007 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

The Sixth Sense director M. Night Shyamalan is going to extremes to keep deer off his Philadelphia, Pennsylvania estate - he has been granted permission to keep an eight foot fence erected around his rural property. Academy Award nominee Shyamalan upset neighbors in Willistown Township when he put the fence up last November and they complained to local officials, stating it looked awful and hurt property values in the area. But the moviemaker has won over the locals by insisting he means no harm to the deer, he just doesn't want them ruining gardens he is planting on his estate. »

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Element of Shyamalan in 'Airbender'

9 January 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

M. Night Shyamalan will battle the elements when he tackles Avatar: The Last Airbender, a live-action big-screen adaptation of the popular Nickelodeon animated series, for Paramount Pictures' MTV Films and Nick Movies.

Shyamalan will write, direct and produce the adaptation, which Nick hopes will turn into a three-picture series with Shyamalan's continuing involvement. The project marks the first time that Shyamalan, who is known for crafting original screenplays, will direct material he didn't create. It also is a rare foray for him into the kids pic arena, though he did flirt with directing one of the Harry Potter movies and did co-write 1999's Stuart Little.

Created by Michael Dimartino and Bryan Konietzko, Avatar is set in a world balanced on four nations -- Water, Earth, Fire and Air. In each society, there are masters who can manipulate their native elements -- Waterbenders, Earthbenders, Firebenders and Airbenders -- while the one person who can master all four is the Avatar.

When the current Avatar, a 12-year-old boy still learning to master his powers, seemingly dies, the Fire nation launches a war for global domination. »

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9 items from 2007

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