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Alicia Vikander in Negotiations to Star in Wim Wenders’ ‘Submergence’ (Exclusive)
The film is based on J.M. Ledgard’s eponymous novel which ranked second in New York Magazine’s list of the 10 Best Books of 2013.
Penned by Erin Dignam (“The Last Face”), “Submergence” centers on two lovers, immersed in life-or-death situations and separated by thousands of miles, who find solace in memories of their intense romance the previous Christmas after a chance encounter on a beach on the Atlantic coast. One is enduring captivity by jihadist fighters in Somalia while the other is exploring the greatest depths of the ocean floor from her submersible.
The Swedish-born Vikander currently stars opposite Eddie Redmayne in Tom Hooper’s “The Danish Girl” which had a robust bow in the U.S., grossing $185,000 over Thanksgiving weekend, and has earned solid awards buzz since opening at the Venice Film Festival. »
- Elsa Keslassy
'Bones' Stars File New Lawsuit for 'Tens of Millions of Dollars' in Fox Profits (Exclusive)
The litigation over Bones profits is getting some star power. Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz, stars of the longest-running drama series in Fox history, along with author and executive producer Kathy Reichs, have filed their own lawsuit claiming they have been shortchanged "tens of millions of dollars" in profits by producer 20th Century Fox Television, the Fox network and affiliated companies. The trio's lawsuit claims they saw zero profits for years despite the success of the show. The suit follows a similar case filed Wednesday by Barry Josephson, one of the show’s executive producers, who also cried foul over
- Austin Siegemund-Broka, Matthew Belloni
‘Supergirl’ Lands Full First Season Pickup at CBS
One of the fall’s top-rated new shows, “Supergirl” has averaged 11.24 million viewers a week since it premiered on Oct. 26.
Starring Melissa Benoist as the title character, “Supergirl” follows Superman’s cousin Kara Danvers, who decides to embrace her superhuman abilities and be the hero she was always meant to be after years of hiding her abilities. Along with Benoist, Calista Flockhart, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh, Jeremy Jordan and David Harewood round out the cast.
“Supergirl” has had faith from the CBS from the get-go. The drama was the first new series to get the greenlight at the network for the 2015-16 season.
- Elizabeth Wagmeister
‘Walking Dead’ Fans Complain About ‘Weak,’ ‘Bland’ Midseason Finale
(Spoiler alert: Do not keep reading if you have not seen the season six midseason finale of “The Walking Dead”) “The Walking Dead” aired the Season 6 midseason finale on Sunday, and fans were split on the quality of the episode. While some mourned Deana’s death and said the episode left them with their heart in their throat, others described it as “boring” and “weak.” Regardless, AMC’s hit zombie apocalypse drama has left the door open to plenty of action when season six resumes in February, including the unveiling of Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the villain Negan. See video: »
- Joe Otterson
Ron Howard Will Direct a Thrilling Adaptation for the Unreleased Book The Girl Before
Ron Howard's latest project pick-up involves another book-to-screen adaptation, Deadline reports. This one will be based on J.P. Delaney's The Girl Before, a thriller novel (which the trades say might really be best-selling author Tony Strong's) that hasn't come out yet, but is coming soon. The Ballantine Bantam Dell Random House book will tell the story of "a traumatized woman [who] falls in love with an extraordinary minimalist house and with the man who designed it," according to Deadline. "But when she discovers that three years earlier another damaged woman died here, she starts to wonder if her own story is just a re-run of the girl before." Even though it hasn't been released, something about Girl Before's scaled-back Crimson Peak approach or trendily simple-but-cryptic-Girl title evidently caught Howard's eye (that or he's really trying to busy himself to avoid future Star Wars offers). The director's also reportedly attached to help produce, »
- Sean Fitz-Gerald
Peter Jackson Will Draw Out the Announcement of Him Directing Doctor Who As Long As He Can Because He Loves Torturing You
Peter Jackson could turn a visit to the dog-food store to buy dog food into an eight-hour, three-part epic adventure, so I don't know why you would expect anything less from any of his other projects. In a video posted to his Facebook wall, the Hobbit director luxuriously teased a potential turn behind the camera on Doctor Who, languorously polishing his Oscars and discussing the shoot schedule he pitched Steven Moffat (one episode, six months, filmed in New Zealand). Jackson had previously been rumored to direct, and, despite a visit from the doctor himself, you'll notice he still doesn't actually say he's doing it. Oh, he's good. Look for Jackson's official conformation Christmas 2015, 2016, and 2017, because that man is going to milk this for all the sweet, sweet anticipation he can. »
- Halle Kiefer
'Beasts of No Nation': After Indie Spirit Awards nominations windfall, is Oscar next?
"Beasts of No Nation" was truly a beast at the Indie Spirit Awards when nominations were announced. It scored five bids, making it the second most recognized film, behind only "Carol" with six. That's more nominations than the current Oscar frontrunner, "Spotlight," which contends for four. Does that mean "Beasts" might be stronger than we're anticipating at the Oscars? -Break- Subscribe to Gold Derby Breaking News Alerts & Experts’ Latest Oscar Predictions At the Indie Spirts, "Beasts" contends for Best Feature, Best Director (Cary Joji Fukunaga), Best Actor (Abraham Attah), Best Supporting Actor (Idris Elba) and Best Cinematography. It earned that Best Feature bid over another high profile film, "Room," which is a more likely Best Picture nominee at the Oscars according to our racetrack odds. So is it just the independent film community that admires "Beasts o..." »
Sofia Coppola Talks About Getting Into the Spirit of A Very Murray Christmas
For me, the idea for the special all started from talking to Bill Murray about how I wanted him to do a week at the Carlyle singing old standards. I love seeing him in a tuxedo. He and Mitch [Glazer, the writer-producer] were talking about doing something for TV and wanted to talk to me about that. We were having drinks one night, and somehow the idea came together. What I like to have Bill indulge for my own pleasure and amusement — that’s what other people like to see from Bill, too. I always enjoy seeing him in distress and then getting out of it. So the idea of putting him in a situation in the special where he’s having the worst Christmas, and then it all turns around, was something we responded to because there is so much expectation around that time of year and it’s easy to be disappointed. »
- Sofia Coppola as told to David Marchese
IMDb's Annual Top 10 Movies and Top TV Shows (Exclusive)
Suffice it to say, these won't all be awards contenders, although many will contend for tech awards, and some are on my ten best list. As you compile your personal ten best lists of the year, which are on yours? The IMDb list includes two Marvel blockbusters, one Pixar smash, two sequels, a Sundance hit that did not succeed at the box office, a hip hop origin myth, and seven movies that are packed with action thrills including flicks directed by Ridley Scott, George Miller, Denis Villeneuve. Matthew Vaughn, Joss Whedon and Peyton Reed. Marvel also makes its mark on the TV list. Here are the IMDb Ten Most Popular lists: Top 10 TV Shows, consistently ranked the highest on the weekly IMDb Most Popular TV chart in 2015. 1. "Game of Thrones" 2. "The Walking Dead" 3. "Arrow" 4. "Daredevil" 5. "Narcos" 6. "American Horror Story" 7. "Orange Is the New Black" 8. "Fear the Walking Dead" 9. "True »
- Anne Thompson
U.K. Pay TV Service Virgin Takes Rights to ‘Ash vs Evil Dead’
London – U.K. pay TV platform Virgin Media has licensed the first season of Starz series “Ash vs Evil Dead.”
The series will be available from Dec. 1 for Virgin Media TV customers to watch through its TV on demand service. The first five episodes will be available to watch from this date, followed by a new episode released each week, bringing the series in-line with the U.S. broadcast air dates.
David Bouchier, chief digital entertainment officer at Virgin Media, said: “This long-awaited and much anticipated series marks a step-change in our TV programming strategy and demonstrates the true potential for video on demand. By investing in original series and bringing more exclusive TV shows to Virgin Media customers, we are unlocking the power of the boxset once again. ‘Ash Vs Evil Dead’ is just the start for Virgin Media customers.”
Mara Winokur, senior VP of digital at Starz, said: »
- Leo Barraclough
Ventana Sur: Outsider/Todo Cine Latino Takes U.S. on ‘Silencio’ (Exclusive)
An inevitably polemical docu-feature, it adds to one of the richest Latino lineups among U.S. distributors. Recent Outsider/Todocinelatino U.S. pickups include Cesar Acevedo’s Camera d’Or winner “Land and Shade” and Los Cabos winner “All of Me,” a Mexican docu-feature. It recently picked up Israeli Nitzan Gilady’s “Wedding Doll” with Strand Releasing, the first buy in a potentially significant U.S. upscale acquisition alliance.
“Silencio” highlights the last 25 years of politics in Bolivia, concentrating in particular on the 2002 political campaigns to elect Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada aka “Goni”, which most recently came to prominence (albeit fictionally) in the Sandra Bullock film “Our Brand is Crisis,” and the more recent government of Evo Morales. Interestingly, Sanchez de Lozada and »
- John Hopewell
Watch: Spike Lee on His Blistering New Film, 'Chi-Raq': "The goal is to save lives"
For Amazon Studios' first original movie release, they agreed to finance Spike Lee's rhyming reworking of Aristophanes' classic Lysistrata, "Chi-Raq" (Lionsgate/Roadside, December 4), betting that the Brooklyn filmmaker was back in his agit-prop sweet spot from the days of "She's Gotta Have It," "Do the Right Thing" and "Bamboozled." Indeed, "Chi-Raq" is ripped from the headlines of violence between young black males in Chicago. It's what you expect from Lee: vibrant, lively, idiosyncratic, engaging, uneven, musical, chaotic and bombastic. It's never dull. Dapper Samuel L. Jackson serves as the film's narrator/Mc/Greek chorus, as we follow wondrous beauty Lysistrata (Teyonah Parris of "Dear White People"), who loves her raucous sex with her gangsta man Chi-Raq ("Drumline" star Nick Cannon), but hates the gun violence his posse wrecks on the people of their neighborhood. Lee asked »
- Anne Thompson
Ventana Sur: ‘Stella,’ ‘Devil’ Make Ventana Caribe Cut
Kiki Alvarez’s “Sharing Stella” and Maria Govan’s “Play the Devil” are two out of four features in post-production highlighted by Ventana Caribe, a new industry event at Ventana Sur, Latin America’s largest movie market.
“Sharing Stella” turns on a director seeking an actress for the role of Stella in a “A Streetcar Named Desire.”
“In ‘Sharing Stella,’ youth which no longer believes in politics meets Cuba on the verge of a transcendental shift in its relationship with U.S..” Characters include “a YouTuber without Internet, a director who looks for desire and an actress who is a beast in the jungle of the Caribbean’s post-socialism,” Nicolas Ordonez at Bogota’s Lapopular told Variety.
The Ventana Caribe event features not only four pix-in-post but also one-to-one co-production meetings, a video library selection available for potential industry buyers and partners and a presentation offered by Jonathan Ali, at »
- Emilio Mayorga
Ventana Sur: Puenzos, Demente Back Guillermo Helo’s Film Debut (Exclusive)
Chilean companies Altirosapiens and Demente Producciones are teaming with Argentina’s Historias Cinematograficas, the shingle run by the Puenzo family, to co-produce social comedy “Spider Thieves,” the feature directorial debut of Chile’s Guillermo Helo.
Preceded by good buzz, “Spider Thieves” screens Dec. 1 at Ventana Sur’s 7th Primer Corte pix-in-post competition, which takes place Nov. 30-Dec. 3 in Buenos Aires.
The humor-laced “Thieves” follows three dirt-poor adolescent girls who dream of having the material wealth they see in TV commercials. To fulfill their dreams, they decide to climb buildings and plunder expensive apartments. They become media celebs, heroines for some.
The film is based on real events that happened in 2005, in Santiago, which inspired playwright Luis Barrales to write the play “Spider Girls,” from which the script is adapted.
“The issue of criminals who become media ‘stars’ has been addressed many times in cinema. What makes this story different it is that they are girls. »
- Emiliano De Pablos
Latin America: Up Next! Jayro Bustamante, Prepping ‘Temblores’
Jayro Bustamante finds inspiration at home but applies the filmmaking skills he learned in Paris and Rome. His feature debut “Ixcanul” (“Volcano”) is only the second Guatemalan pic to vie for a Foreign Language Oscar, and has been reaping awards across key festivals including the 2015 Berlinale Silver Bear Alfred Bauer Prize. Film school studies in Paris and Rome have informed Bustamante’s work, which includes his Cannes-winning short “Cuando Sea Grande.” “I knew its ending first and worked my way backwards,” says Bustamente of penning “Ixcanul.”
Now shuttling between Paris and Guatemala, Bustamante credits his multilingual skills to his early Montessori education in Guatemala where he lived in the highlands populated by the Kaqchikel (Mayan) tribe until age 14. Between the ages 17 to 19, he was an in-house commercials director at Ogilvy and Mather where he saved to fund his European film education. “I learned a lot from the creative people around me, »
- Anna Marie de la Fuente
Abu Dhabi To Host ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Middle East Premiere
After hosting a portion of its shoot Abu Dhabi will also host the Middle East premiere of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” on December 16, prior to its launch via Disney in the region on December 17.
The exclusive red carpet gala to be held at Abu Dhabi’s sumptuous Emirates Palace will be attended by a host of as yet unspecified A-list Middle East stars but sans “Star Wars” talent in tow. Instead it is highly likely there will be props from the pic’s Abu Dhabi shoot in the Liwa desert, sources said.
In “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” Abu Dhabi plays Jakku, “a frontier desert planet in a remote section of the Outer Rim Territories,” according to StarWars.com.
“Having Star Wars: The Force Awakens screen in Abu Dhabi prior to its general release is a real validation for how successful the filming was whilst the production was here, »
- Nick Vivarelli
Latin America Up Next! Oz-Educated Laura Mora on Breaking the Mold
One of the few femme action thriller helmers in Colombia, Mora, 34, is poised to shoot her feature debut “Matar a Jesus” in March. A Medellin native, she co-directed the epic Caracol TV series “Escobar, El Patron del Mal” with Carlos Moreno, who tapped her after seeing her award-winning shorts “West,” “Salome” and “Brotherhood.” “We shot 60 episodes in 10 months,” says Mora of the ambitious “Escobar” series, noting that Moreno teased her that the grueling experience was her “baptism in blood.”
The Rmit Melbourne graduate drew from her personal experience for her feature debut about a girl who witnesses her father’s assassination. “I’ve been writing it for the past 10 years but I felt I needed to prepare for it physically, emotionally and technically for it.“ Her short “Salome” turns on a young girl grieving over her deceased father.
“I guess I belong to a whole new generation of Colombian filmmakers, »
- Anna Marie de la Fuente
Ventana Sur: ‘The Clan’ Sells Out Worldwide (Exclusive)
Buenos Aires – Adding another achievement to its blockbuster Argentine box office bow, Venice Fest best director win, upbeat critical reception and selection by Argentina as its Oscar entry, Pablo Trapero’s true-life crime thriller “The Clan” has now sold out worldwide.
Doing so in just three months after its Venice international premiere, “The Clan” – a bracing indictment of Argentine state collusion in the Puccio’s family’s true-life abduction and murder of multiple victims under and after Argentina’s military dictatorship – has recorded an exceptional performance for a Latin American – and indeed foreign-language – movie.
Closed by Vicente Canales’ Film Factory, the Barcelona-based sales company that also licensed Damian Szifron’s “Wild Tales,” in unannounced deals, Rai Cinema’s 01 Distribution, the country’s top distribution op, has claimed rights to Italy, NonStop Ent. those for Scandinavia; Filmcoopi bought Switzerland, Broadmedia Studios picked up Japan; Russia has gone to Cinema Prestige, which also bought “Wild Tales. »
- John Hopewell
Bvi, Fox Take Burman’s ‘Rey del Once’ for Latin America
Buenos Aires — In increasingly customary moves on top-flight Argentine titles, two studios – Disney and Fox – have moved to acquire Latin American rights on “El Rey del Once – The Tenth Man,” from Daniel Burman (“Lost Embrace,” “Family Law”).
Buena Vista Intl. has secured theatrical rights for Latin America, Fox Plus, one of the region’s most powerful cable/satellite operations, premium pay TV/Svod.
One of the most anticipated of titles from Argentina, where it is expected to see box office traction, “El Rey” is tipped for a major festival berth. Sold by Guido Rud’s FilmSharks Intl., and ready for delivery first quarter 2016, it also reps the latest movie from Burman whose 2004 “Lost Embrace” swept Berlin’s Grand Jury Prize and a best actor Silver Bear for Daniel Hendler.
A very loose follow-up to “Lost Embrace,” “King” shares the setting of Buenos Aires’ Jewish district, is again a father-son dramedy, »
- John Hopewell
Sarah Paulson on her 'secret history' opposite Cate Blanchett in 'Carol' [Exclusive Video]
"It's always hard to play a person who has a secret history in life that's not something out on the table," reveals Sarah Paulson in our recent interview (watch below) about her role in the new film "Carol." She plays Abby Gerhard, the former lover of married woman Carol Aird (Cate Blanchett) who has now moved on but remains one of her closest friends. The movie is set in 1950s New York, an era when a lesbian romance was simply not discussed in public. -Break- Related: Watch our chats with 'Carol' stars Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara Paulson adds, "A lot of the performances are in a style connected to the time period where not everything is said. We're in an age now when people say anything and everything 25 times a day on Twitter and everywhere else. This is a movie that really, really captures the unspoken and unsaid. »
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