5 items from 2017
The woman behind “Orange Is the New Black’s” Sophia Burset has signed on to portray another — albeit very different — reformed criminal. Laverne Cox will star in “Spirited,” a one-hour drama about a fake psychic who discovers she has genuine powers. The project, executive produced by Elizabeth Banks, received a put pilot order from ABC. Variety broke the story.
Should the project get picked up to series, “Spirited” would center on Cox’s character as she “realizes she can really communicate with the dead” and “decides to put her con-woman past behind her and actually start helping people.”
“Spirited” marks Cox and Banks’ second TV collaboration. Cox and Meaghan Rath (“New Girl,” “Being Human”) starred in the Brownstone-produced ABC pilot “The Trustee.” The buddy cop comedy didn’t end up going to series.
Cox made TV history this year as the first transgender actress cast as a regular on a broadcast series. She played lawyer Cameron Wirth on CBS’ short-lived Katherine Heigl legal drama “Doubt.” “Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce,” “Grandma,” and the 2016 TV movie “The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again” are among Cox’s other screen credits.
Multi-hyphenate Banks has a bunch of projects in the works. She’s serving as producer on “White Girl Problems,” a book adaptation helmed by Lauren Palmigiano, and producing and starring in “Pitch Perfect 3,” out December 22. Banks made her directorial debut with 2015’s “Pitch Perfect 2” and is set to helm a reboot of “Charlie’s Angels” that’s scheduled to hit theaters in 2019. Banks appeared on-screen most recently in Netflix’s “Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later.”
Laverne Cox to Star in Elizabeth Banks-Produced Psychic Drama Pilot for ABC was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Rachel Montpelier
Lauren Palmigiano came on board a year ago to direct “White Girl Problems” with Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman producing the movie project. It’s the feature directorial debut for Palmigiano, formerly the head writer and executive producer at “Funny or Die” and the creative mind behind dozens of the site’s videos and creative content.
Banks and Handelman are producing through their Brownstone Productions banner. Alison Small is the executive overseeing the project for Brownstone.
Alisha Brophy and Scott Miles adapted the bestselling book by Babe Walker, published in 2012 about a young woman with a massive social network who lands in rehab after spending $246,893.50 in one afternoon at Barneys — then decides to write her memoir about the hurdles she’s had to overcome such as hating her horse and her job.
Fox Searchlight acquired rights to “Patti Cake$” in January at »
- Dave McNary
Danielle Macdonald: Screen Australia/ YouTube
The breakout star of Sundance 2017 has booked her next gig. “Patti Cake$’” Danielle Macdonald will topline Lauren Palmigiano’s feature directorial debut, “White Girl Problems.” Deadline broke the news.
Based on Babe Walker’s 2012 bestselling book of the same name, “White Girl Problems” follows a young woman with a huge following on social media who ends up in rehab following a shopping spree at Barneys with a price tag of $246,893.50. She then “decides to write about her life — of excess and meaningless problems,” the source summarizes.
Macdonald was the talk of Sundance this year. She earned rave reviews for playing an aspiring rapper in “Patti Cake$” and the film caused a bidding war. Fox Searchlight came out victorious, and shelled out $10.5 million for worldwide rights in one of the biggest deals of the fest.
“Patti Cake$” hits theaters August 18.
“American Horror Story,” “2 Broke Girls,” and “Toolies” are among the Australian actress’ previous credits. Her upcoming gigs include Greta Gerwig’s solo directorial debut “Lady Bird” and Anne Fletcher’s “Dumplin’,” a comedy about a girl who enters a beauty pageant.
“Patti Cake$” Breakout Danielle Macdonald to Star in “White Girl Problems” was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Laura Berger
Exclusive: Danielle Macdonald, who broke out as the star of this year’s Sundance Film Festival hit Patti Cake$, has landed the lead in White Girl Problems, the Lionsgate pic based on Babe Walker’s bestselling book. The rights were acquired in 2013 for producers Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman. Lauren Palmigiano, formerly head writer and executive producer at Funny or Die, will make her feature film directorial debut on the pic, which was adapted by Alisha Brophy and… »
Two upcoming women-directed projects have received release dates. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Michelle MacLaren’s “The Nightingale” will hit theaters in summer 2018 and the “Charlie’s Angels” reboot from Elizabeth Banks will open in summer 2019.
MacLaren’s feature directorial debut, “The Nightingale,” is based on the book by Kristin Hannah. The drama centers on two sisters growing up in German-occupied France in the years leading up to World War II. Written by MacLaren and John Sayles (“The Spiderwick Chronicles”), the film will hit screens August 10, 2018.
MacLaren has previously directed episodes of series like “The Leftovers,” “Better Call Saul,” and “Game of Thrones.” She has won two Emmys for her work on “Breaking Bad.” MacLaren was originally set to direct the upcoming “Wonder Woman” movie starring Gal Godot before Patty Jenkins took over.
“The Babadook” writer-director Jennifer Kent is also making a movie titled “The Nightingale.” That project is currently filming and centers on a convict seeking revenge against a soldier who wronged her family.
Banks’ “Charlie’s Angels” is an update of the TV and film-mainstay about three private detectives hired by an enigmatic millionaire, Charlie, only ever heard through the telephone. The original, a 1976 TV show starring Jacklyn Smith, Kate Jackson, and Farrah Fawcett, was previously remade into an early-aughts action film franchise (starring Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, and Lucy Liu) and a short-lived 2011 ABC series (starring Minka Kelly, Annie Ilonzeh, and Rachael Taylor). The new “Charlie’s Angels” will be released June 7, 2019.
Banks made her directorial debut with 2015’s “Pitch Perfect 2,” in which she also starred. The comedy sequel about a misfit college a cappella team earned more than $287 million worldwide. Banks has a number of projects in the works including adapting Lindy West’s feminist memoir “Shrill” for TV, serving as producer on “White Girl Problems,” a book adaptation helmed by Lauren Palmigiano, and producing and starring in “Pitch Perfect 3.” The franchise’s next film hits theaters December 22.
Release Dates Set for Elizabeth Banks’ “Charlie’s Angels” and Michelle MacLaren’s “The Nightingale” was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Rachel Montpelier
5 items from 2017
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