6 items from 2007
Sony Picture Entertainment has retained investment bank Houlihan Lokey Howard & Zukin to place a value on Sony Pictures Imageworks and Sony Pictures Animation. The company is exploring possible investment, prompted by an expression of interest.
Said Jim Kennedy, senior vp corporate communications for Sony Pictures Entertainment: "As we have in other areas of our business, we are open to exploring equity partnerships, and it's no surprise that there is market interest in our visual effects and animation businesses. Having worked on everything from Spider-Man and Superman to Polar Express and Beowulf, Imageworks is one of the most respected visual effects studios in the industry. Sony Pictures Animation has produced two critically acclaimed films, and we continue to maintain a strong commitment to making animated movies going forward."
Sony Pictures Animation, which recently completed Surf's Up, has announced upcoming features Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, slated for March 2009; and Hotel Translvannia, which is scheduled to open later that year.
Visual effects business Imageworks, the company behind the visual effects in the Spider-Man films, just completed Robert Zemeckis' Beowulf. In the works is the December release I Am Legend, starring Will Smith. »
- Dead franchise reboot alert! Warner Bros. has acquired the North American distribution rights to the next installment in the Terminator franchise. Tentatively titled Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins (The Future Begins??? How can the future begin???), the pic is slated for an early 2008 production start so that it can be ready for summer 2009. Originally MGM was slated to distribute the film, but litigation with Halycon- the privately held company that recently obtained the rights to the franchise, has led to the new deal with WB- which played a similar role for 2003's Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. The film is intended to be the first installment of a new trilogy which will take place in the Skynet controlled, post-apocalyptic future only glimpsed in the first three installments. The film will supposedly carry an event sized budget, but lower than the $200 million T3 price tag. No word on whether »
Donner is set to receive a career achievement award, recognizing excellence in casting as well as overall contributions to the industry as a whole. As both director and producer, Donner has been involved in such successful movies as The Omen, Superman, Maverick and the Lethal Weapon series.
Hirschfeld will receive the Hoyt Bowers Award, honoring casting professionals who have elevated the profession by embodying the spirit and ideals of the late casting director.
Hirschfeld, executive vp casting at NBC Universal Television, oversees casting for all NBC Entertainment, Sci Fi Channel, Bravo and USA Network scripted programs. Most recently, Hirschfeld has overseen the casting of such NBC series as The Office, Heroes, My Name Is Earl, 30 Rock and Friday Night Lights, among others. Before joining NBC, Hirschfeld spent 12 years at Liberman/Hirschfeld Casting, which he founded with partner Meg Liberman.
Winners in 20 theatrical casting categories will be announced Nov. »
Warner Home Video's Superman Ultimate Collector's Edition boxed set won top honors Monday as best of show at the third annual DVD Critics Awards: The Perfect Ten in Century City.
The awards were bestowed at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza as part of the sixth annual Home Entertainment Summit: DVD & Beyond, produced by Home Media Magazine and DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group in cooperation with The Hollywood Reporter and the Entertainment Merchants Assn.
The awards, chosen by a panel of critics from newspapers, entertainment magazines and DVD Web sites, honor the top DVDs released in 2006, based on DVD presentation criteria.
The 14-disc Superman set includes special editions of all five theatrical Superman features, plus director's cuts of the first two films, behind-the-scenes featurettes and retrospective documentaries.
Warner also won for Ultimate Collector's Editions that celebrated the 50th anniversaries of two classic films: The Searchers won for best classic/catalog DVD, while Forbidden Planet earned the award for best special features/bonus materials.
The two-disc Forbidden Planet set came packaged in a collectible tin with a toy replica of the movie's famed Robby the Robot, plus historical documentaries and the film The Invisible Boy, which also featured Robby. »
Late actor Christopher Reeve's Superman costume has sold at auction for $115,000 on website eBay.com. The red and blue ensemble, worn by Reeve in the 1978 movie, had been expected to fetch between $50,000 and $70,000. It was one of numerous items being sold by memorabilia firm Profiles In History, including H.R. Giger's creature suit from the 1979 film Alien, which sold for $126,500. Marilyn Monroe's gown from There's No Business Like Show Business and Val Kilmer's Batman costume from Batman Forever fetched $92,000 and $63,250 respectively. Elsewhere, the golden headpiece of the "Staff Of Ra" from Raiders Of The Lost Ark took $69,000. »
Executives at Hollywood film studio New Line are desperately trying to sign Brokeback Mountain star Jake Gyllenhaal as Captain Marvel in Shazam! The studio is looking to bid on a big franchise along the lines of Batman and Superman and think the movie, which is based on the DC comic, is the perfect project. A source tells the New York Daily News, "They're ready to spend up to $200 million to get it started." Sources say director Peter Segal and his fellow producers want to sign the star before Spider-Man director Sam Raimi can get to him. Raimi is reportedly on the lookout for a new Spider-Man after current star Tobey Maguire recently said he is ready to move on and let someone else play the role. »
6 items from 2007
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