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Update: Will Risky ‘Ant-Man’ Be Marvel’s Waterloo Or Greatest Triumph?

31 May 2014 1:20 PM, PDT

Update: Amid the morning news that Adam McKay has backed away from talks of directing Marvel‘s Ant-Man, the Anchorman director took to Twitter to say the following: And yes, met w/Marvel. Kirby & Lee r my Lennon Mccartney so it was awesome. But have other projects I’m committed to. Not sure it can work. — Adam McKay (@GhostPanther) May 31, 2014   Previous, 8:04 Am Analysis: Marvel and the reps of Adam McKay will spend the weekend trying to make a deal for the Talladega Nights helmer to replace Edgar Wright as the director of Ant-Man. McKay, the former Saturday Night Live writer who grew up on that show with Will Ferrell and moved with him to feature films, has become an accomplished director of comedies (Step Brothers is my favorite), but this seems to be a risky move (reports have him already deciding this is not for him). I was already »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Chockstone Pictures, Nick Wechsler Land ‘The Kind Worth Killing’

30 May 2014 11:42 AM, PDT

Exclusive: Chockstone Pictures partners Steve Schwartz and Paula Mae Schwartz have teamed with Nick Wechsler to acquire film rights to the Peter Swanson novel The Kind Worth Killing. The book had made the rounds under the title The Lonely Lives Of Murderers but just got a new title. The novel focuses on a particularly ruthless female killer. On a late-night flight from London to Boston, Ted Severson meets fellow passenger Lily Kintner. Thinking he will never see her again, he tells her he’s been thinking about murdering his faithless wife. When they land, Lily tells the guy she wants to help, and they form a strange twisted, bond plotting the wife’s demise. He doesn’t know she has some experience in this kind of thing. The book will be published January by HarperCollins. “For Lily, murder is a lifestyle,” said Paula Mae Schwartz. “The gorgeous femme fatale that »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Relativity Acquires ‘Fearless’ For Film On Navy Seal Team Six Hero Adam Brown

30 May 2014 11:24 AM, PDT

Exclusive: In competitive bidding, Relativity has acquired Fearless, based on the Eric Blehm bestselling book on Seal Team Six operative Adam Brown. Brown battled personal demons, including drug addiction and jail time, to fulfill his childhood dream of becoming a Navy Seal. With the support of his wife and family, and drawing on his faith, Brown persevered through relapses and overcame what should have been career ending injuries to earn a spot on the elite Seal Team Six unit. In a final act of true selflessness, Brown volunteered for an exceptionally dangerous mission during which he was killed protecting his teammates. Like Lone Survivor, this movie is the story of a tale of courage and sacrifice and a man’s unwavering love for his family, his fellow Seal members, and his country. Have to say I don’t think there can be too many powerful movies that remind us of »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Josh Brolin Joins ‘Sicario’

30 May 2014 11:05 AM, PDT

Josh Brolin has joined Benicio Del Toro and Emily Blunt in the Denis Villenueve-directed Sicario. Lionsgate has worldwide distribution and Black Label is financing. The movie is set against the backdrop of the border wars between the cartels in Mexico, and the Americans trying to stem the violence from coming over the border. Brolin plays Matt, a CIA guy who runs the task force that recruits Blunt’s character from a Swat squad out of Tucson. Del Toro plays a mysterious and lethal character who is working with Matt’s team to take out a powerful cartel figure. Basil Iwanyk is producing with Molly Smith, Trent Luckinbill, Thad Luckinbill and Ed McDonnell. Taylor Sheridan wrote the script and Erica Lee and John Starke are exec producing. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Warner Bros Taps Drew Crevello As Senior Movie Production Veep

30 May 2014 10:38 AM, PDT

Breaking: Warner Bros has bolstered its production ranks by naming Drew Crevello as Svp. The hire was made by Creative Development and Worldwide Production president Greg Silverman. Crevello was a production veep at Fox, where he worked on X-Men: First Class and oversaw such films as Knight And Day. Before that he ran his own producing shingle and had a deal at Mandate, where he had worked as an exec previously. He started in the exec suites at Universal, working on Friday Night Lights and Jarhead. He began as a lawyer in mergers and acquisitions at David Polk & Wardell in New York, and he has been writing full time the past two years. “Drew has a long history of developing and guiding character-driven films of every genre, which makes him a great fit for our team,” said Silverman. “He’s strategic, exceptionally bright and knows firsthand the challenges and rewards of the creative process. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Will Smith Exits Legendary Pic ‘Brilliance’

29 May 2014 6:20 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Will Smith has decided to drop out of director Julius Onah’s Brilliance, the Legendary Pictures adaptation of the Marcus Sakey novel that has a script by David Koepp. Universal is releasing the film, which was to begin production this summer. The film’s start has moved a couple of times, and the exit came down to timing. Legendary has been in negotiations with Noomi Rapace to star alongside him. The pic focuses on a world where a rare set of people are born with extraordinary abilities and are called “brilliants.” At the center of the story is a federal agent with great hunting gifts who is drafted to track down a terrorist, another such brilliant who intends to start a civil war. Onah directed The Girl Is In Trouble, and Joe Roth and Palak Patel are producing with Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni. Smith, who recently decided to »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Jack Huston To Star In Fox 2000′s ‘The Longest Ride’

29 May 2014 4:43 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Boardwalk Empire’s Jack Huston has been set to star in The Longest Ride, Fox 2000′s adaptation of the Nicholas Sparks tale that will be directed by George Tillman and produced by Temple Hill’s Marty Bowen, Wyck Godfrey along with Theresa Park. Huston will play the young Ira in a tale that brings together two intertwining love stories. Pic has an April 3 release date. Scripted by Craig Bolotin, Brad Desch, Scott Neustadter and Michael Weber, the story opens with a 90-year-old man snowbound and stuck in his car after a major crash on an isolated road. As he drifts in and out of consciousness awaiting rescue, the man sees visions of his life’s love, who died earlier. Together they reminisce about their life together, including his difficulty in returning from WWII and being unable to have children with her because of a war wound. They become renowned »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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MGM, Warner Bros Reboot ‘Stargate’

29 May 2014 4:28 PM, PDT

Big day for reboots. First it was Cliffhanger, and now MGM and Warner Bros. announced they are teaming with Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin to create a re-imagined trilogy based on the sci-fi hit Stargate, one of the biggest titles in the MGM library. Emmerich, who directed and co-wrote the original 1994 film with Devlin, is on board to direct this one, with Devlin producing. Those two are already hard at work on a new version of Independence Day at Fox. Related: Climb Toward ‘Cliffhanger’ Reboot Moving Forward; Joe Gazzam Set To Write MGM’s Gary Barber called Emmerich and Devlin “world-class creators of the original Stargate,” and said they will “bring their reinvigorated vision of this wildly popular property to audiences of multiple generations.” Said Emmerich and Devlin: “The Stargate universe is one that we missed terribly, and we cannot wait to get going on imagining new adventures and situations for the trilogy. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Fox 2000, Temple Hill To Bring Edm Mogul Pasquale Rotella’s Life To Screen, Buying James Frey-Penned Memoir

29 May 2014 3:42 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Based on a book proposal, Fox 2000 has made a preemptive acquisition of Insomniac: The Life And Times of Pasquale Rotella, a memoir that the Electronic Dance Music mogul is writing with A Million Little Pieces author James Frey. The book, which St. Martin’s Press will publish next summer, tells of Rotella’s rags to riches ride as the architect of Insomniac, a company behind the biggest Edm events in the country. Rotella became a promoter at the beginning of the rave scene in the early 1990s, starting with 50 people in warehouses in Venice Beach, to staging events like the Electric Daisy Carnival Flagship Festival, which draws 400,000 to Vegas each June. He reportedly sold half his company to Live Nation for $50 million. Temple Hill‘s Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen will produce with Haven Entertainment’s Rachel Miller, and Fox 2000′s Elizabeth Gabler and Erin Siminoff will oversee it »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Climb Toward ‘Cliffhanger’ Reboot Moving Forward; Joe Gazzam Set To Write

29 May 2014 2:44 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Producer Neal Moritz and StudioCanal are ready to move forward with Cliffhanger, a re-imagining of the 1993 Renny Harlin-directed mountain climbing film that starred Sylvester Stallone. They’ve set Joe Gazzam to write the screenplay after he was among a group of screenwriters who pitched their take on a movie that still holds up as a guilty pleasure. The original was made by Carolco before that company crashed, and TriStar distributed it. StudioCanal ended up with the rights. There is no domestic distributor in place, but since Moritz’s Original Pictures is Sony-based, that studio should get a first crack at the project. Sony already has a mountain climbing project in Everest, the Doug Liman-directed film that has Tom Hardy attached to play Sir Edward Mallory, the British mountaineer who tried to be first to summit the world’s highest mountain. Cross Creek, Walden and Universal financed another film called Everest, »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Katie Holmes Joins ‘Woman In Gold’

29 May 2014 11:08 AM, PDT

Exclusive: Katie Holmes has been set to join Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds, Daniel Bruhl, and Antje Traue in The Woman In Gold, the Simon Curtis-directed drama from Worldview Entertainment, BBC Films and The Weinstein Company. Scripted by Alexi Kaye and Alex Campbell, the story is set in 1998 and follows a holocaust survivor who solicits the help of her newly minted lawyer grandson to help her sue the Swiss government to get back priceless artwork stolen by the Nazis. Holmes, who’s repped by ICM Partners and Untitled, next will be seen in The Giver. She previously starred with Mirren for TWC’s Teaching Mrs. Tingle, a dark comedy by Kevin Williamson about students seeking revenge on a tyrant teacher. Related: Katie Holmes Joins ABC’s Richard Lagravenese Pilot »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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James Cameron Teaming With Cirque Du Soleil For Live ‘Avatar’ Tour

29 May 2014 9:31 AM, PDT

Update: Got a press release with the details for Avatar, which is the first film that Cirque Du Soleil has used for a touring act. Release is below the original story. Breaking: How invested is James Cameron in the blue people that populate his Avatar world? Cameron, who’s readying a trio of 3D-shot sequels to Hollywood’s all time highest grossing film, has announced that he will team with Cirque du Soleil to develop an arena-tour show that is inspired by the film. The show will debut in late 2015. He announced it alongside Cirque Du Soleil president/CEO Daniel Lamarre at the C2MTL-Commerce and Creativity Conference. The timing means the show will debut before the three sequels which, like the original, is financed and distributed by Twentieth Century Fox. Cameron previously worked with with Cirque Du Soleil as exec producer of the Andrew Adamson-directed 3D film Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Lego Docu Goes To RADiUS

29 May 2014 7:37 AM, PDT

A narrative feature populated with Lego characters just cleaned up for Warner Bros, so how about a documentary on the toy itself? RADiUS bought rights in most of the world to release the Daniel Junge/Kief Davidson-directed Beyond The Brick: A Lego Brickumentary, a film that played Tribeca. Pic focuses on the global phenomenon that is the building block toy franchise that spans 400 billion bricks sold since the toy was hatched in 1958. I was more of a Lincoln Logs man as a child, but the ambition of some of these Lego works is pretty spectacular. Said RADiUS co-presidents Tom Quinn and Jason Janego “We’ve been looking for a film that families can enjoy together and Beyond The Brick: A Lego Brickumentary surpasses all of those expectations. The movie is an amazing ride and will appeal to Lego fans around the world.” Submarine’s Josh Braun repped the filmmakers in the deal. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Lionsgate Signs YouTube Pranksters The Janoskians To Movie Deal

28 May 2014 5:31 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Lionsgate has made a deal with the YouTube prank crew The Janoskians to develop a feature film star vehicle for the group. The film label will try to harness a rabid online following and turn it into a movie ticket buyers. The Janoskians, who are born and bred on the Internet and provide a mix of the outrageous with some social commentary, have developed an enormous YouTube following since making their debut in 2011. Their fan base has grown to more than 15 million followers and 200 million views. They’ve spread their brand to include a sold-out worldwide Live Nation tour last year, a clothing line called Dirty Pig, a record deal with Republic Records, and a video game on iTunes/Android called Ouch! Couch. Their personal appearances in malls from Los Angeles to New York and London resulted in closings and evacuations because of crowd-control issues. Now, if all goes well, »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Fox Taps Carter Blanchard For ‘Independence Day’ Sequel Rewrite

28 May 2014 3:39 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Fox has set Carter Blanchard to do a new draft of the Independence Day sequel that Roland Emmerich has committed to direct for a July 1, 2016, release. The first draft was done by Emmerich and Dean Devlin, and then James Vanderbilt. Emmerich is producing with Devlin and Harald Kloser. Emmerich is prepping the film as he simultaneously shoots Stonewall, a drama about the seminal Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village that sparked the gay rights movement. Jeremy Irvine stars. The scribe is currently adapting Mark Millar’s Kindergarten Heroes for Fox and producer Simon Kinberg, and he just finished a draft of Spyhunter for Ruben Fleischer to direct at Warners. He’s best known for selling the spec Glimmer to DreamWorks and getting a personal call from Steven Spielberg that sealed the deal. Blanchard is repped by Paradigm and Madhouse. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Sony Buys Kevin James Pitch ‘Stranded’

28 May 2014 3:24 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Sony has acquired Stranded, a pitch that will be written by Tripper Clancy as a star vehicle for Kevin James. It’s a family comedy/action-adventure idea, and they are keeping the log line under wraps. The idea came from James and Todd Garner, who’ll produce together with Sean Robins from Broken Road. Jonathan Kadin will oversee for Sony. Tripper is repped by UTA and Benderspink. The scribe has Ambassadors at Fox and Winter Break at Qed. James, who’s repped by Wme and Jeff Sussman, is starring in Pixels and Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 for Sony. Related: Kevin James, Josh Gad For ‘Pixels’ »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Anthony Mackie On Track To Play Olympian Jesse Owens In Crowding Field

28 May 2014 3:01 PM, PDT

Exclusive: While Anthony Mackie won’t be at the finish line for Dan Pritzker’s Bolden film, the actor has a passion project of his own that he is about to shop to distributors. The Captain America: The Winter Soldier co-star badly wants to play Jesse Owens, the sprinter whose four gold medal performance at the 1936 Berlin Olympics infuriated and demoralized Adolf Hitler and put the lie to his theory that the Germans were the superior race. Mackie got together with his We Are Marshall writer Jamie Linden, and together they are producing an Owens film that was scripted by George Olson under their supervision. With longtime manager and producing partner Jason Spire from Inspire Entertainment, they will shortly shop the script in hopes of fast tracking a feature that will focus on the run-up to the 1936 games, and the profound impact that the performance by Owens had on the world. »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Seven Years After Production Began, Dan Pritzker’s ‘Bolden’ Skeds New Shoot, Sans Star Anthony Mackie

28 May 2014 2:55 PM, PDT

Dan Pritzker has formalized plans for a three-month shoot he hopes will finally allow him to finish his film about Buddy Bolden, the coronet player Pritzker believes invented jazz. The billionaire son of Hyatt Hotels magnate Jay Pritzker began shooting this movie in 2007, so this means resurrecting the period sets that have sat in storage for five years in Wilmington, N.C., and rounding up everyone who worked on the film in 2007 and did extensive reshoots in 2009. Well, not everyone will be back. Anthony Mackie, who before starring in the Oscar-winning The Hurt Locker played the title character in Bolden, has bowed out of doing the performance again. He has been replaced by Downton Abbey’s Gary Carr. Despite running up a budget he acknowledges has surpassed $30 million already, and despite hanging on to the film so long that it cost him his lead actor, Pritzker believes he is on »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Paramount, China Film Co Set Rob Cohen To Helm ‘Marco Polo’

28 May 2014 1:36 PM, PDT

Paramount and China Film Co said today that Rob Cohen will helm the 3D fantasy/action film Marco Polo. with shooting to begin in China later this year. The announcement was made at a press conference in Beijing by Paramount Pictures Vice Chairman Rob Moore, China Film Co Chairman La Peikang and Cohen. Moore said the story of Marco Polo is the perfect choice for this international collaboration, as it is well-known not only in China but also in the West. He also added that there has been great interest in Hollywood and China to participate. Related: Paramount & China Film Co To Produce 3D ‘Marco Polo’ La said that with the rapid economic development in China, Chinese movies have entered a “great creative and great industrial” era and that Marco Polo breaks the traditional method of a China-u.S. co-production. He added that China no longer is only providing the money, »


- MIKE FLEMING JR

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Antoine Fuqua Attached To Fox Drug Trafficking Thriller ‘Narco Sub’

28 May 2014 1:11 PM, PDT

Exclusive: Fox has attached The Equalizer helmer Antoine Fuqua to direct Narco Sub, the David Guggenheim-scripted thriller that has long been a priority project at the studio. It’s set in the dangerous world of drug smuggling, and the title refers to the semi-submersible crafts that South American drug cartels have been using to ship cocaine into the U.S. without having to deal with land-based authorities. Related: Antoine Fuqua Closes Deal To Direct Kurt Sutter-Penned ‘Southpaw’ The pic will be produced by Scott Free’s Jules Daly, Ridley Scott and Michael Schaefer and Genre FilmsSimon Kinberg. Elishia Holmes and Aditya Sood are exec producers. Kinberg had a hand in revising the script and Anthony Peckham as well. Fuqua is next directing Southpaw at The Weinstein Company, and his reteam with Training Day star Denzel Washington on The Equalizer has generated such strong buzz at Sony that »


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