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18 items from 2003


Jackson joins ensemble for indie 'Borealis'

1 December 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Dawson's Creek alum Joshua Jackson is joining Donald Sutherland, Juliette Lewis and Louise Fletcher in the indie Aurora Borealis. The project is lensing in Toronto. James Burke is helming from a script by Brent Boyd. Borealis centers on a troubled young man (Jackson) struggling to right himself after the premature death of his father. Sutherland and Fletcher play his grandparents, with Lewis starring as the home assistant to Sutherland's character who winds up as Jackson's love interest. Entitled Entertainment -- the production partnership between Burke and Scott Disharoon -- is producing in association with Rick Bieber Prods. Individual producing credits go to Disharoon and Bieber. Jackson is repped by WMA and Michael Bircumshaw at Water Street Management. Since the end of Creek, Jackson has worked on the indie Americano, with Dennis Hopper and Leonor Varela, I Love Your Work, for director Adam Goldberg, and as part of the voice talent in Racing Stripes. Lewis is repped by WMA and manager Brandy Lewis. She most recently starred in Old School and Cold Creek Manor. She next appears in Blueberry and Starsky & Hutch. Sutherland is repped by CAA. He next stars in Cold Mountain. Fletcher is repped by Bauman, Redanty & Shaul. She won an Oscar for her work in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Boyd is repped by Rogers Hartmann and manager Noah Rosen. »

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Perez's comedy 'Accepted' by Uni

23 October 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Universal Pictures has invested in higher education by plunking down $1.25 million against almost $2 million for a college comedy from writer Mark Perez for director Tom Shadyac's Shady Acres production company. Shadyac is not expected to step into the director's chair but will produce with the shingle's Michael Bostick. Accepted centers on an underachieving high school senior who, wanting to get his parents off his back about higher education, decides to take an entrepreneurial point of view on things. Sources said the script is in the vein of Old School. Sources confirmed that Universal beat out several bidders, including MGM, Paramount and Regency Enterprises. Perez and his manager Brian Lutz are executive producing, while Scott Stuber and Holly Bario are overseeing the project for Universal. Perez, who came out of the Walt Disney Co.'s writer-in-residence program a few years ago, has his dance card full. He is writing Hardy Men with Ben Stiller attached for Fox 2000 and The Afterparty and Hit Man for Warner Bros. Pictures. Shady Acres produced the Shadyac-directed hit Bruce Almighty as well as Dragonfly. The company also produces the ABC comedy 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. Perez is repped by Lutz and UTA. Shadyac and Shady Acres are repped by UTA. »

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Ferrell getting 'Bewitched'

10 October 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Old School star Will Ferrell has landed the coveted role of Darrin in the Columbia Pictures remake of Bewitched. The project, which is expected to star Nicole Kidman in the lead role of Samantha, is being directed by Nora Ephron and produced by Red Wagon Prods. Ferrell has been busy of late, with starring turns in the upcoming New Line comedy Elf and the DreamWorks comedy Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. He is repped by UTA and Mosaic Media. »

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NL, Vaughn, Wilson test 'Crashers'

8 October 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn are in negotiations to team up in the New Line Cinema comedy The Wedding Crashers. The project, which is seeking a director, is a romantic comedy revolving around two guys who have a hobby of crashing weddings in order to meet girls. While crashing a random nuptial, one of them unexpectedly falls in love. Crashers was penned by the writing team of Steve Faber and Bob Fisher, with Tapestry Films' Andrew Panay and Peter Abrams on board to produce. New Line production executives Richard Brener, Cale Boyter and Magnus Kim are overseeing for the studio. Wilson next appears in the Warner Bros. Pictures thriller The Big Bounce. He also stars in the upcoming Starsky & Hutch feature for Warner Bros. Pictures and appears in Walden Media's remake of Around the World in 80 Days, Franchise Pictures' The Wendell Baker Story and the Walt Disney Co.'s Wes Anderson-directed The Life Aquatic. Vaughn, who most recently starred in the DreamWorks comedy Old School, has several projects in the works. He will appear opposite Wilson in Starsky & Hutch and also appears in the DreamWorks comedy Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, the indie drama The Sky Is Green and the 20th Century Fox comedy Underdogs. Vaughn also is attached to star in the New Line comedy No Place Like Home. Wilson and Vaughn are both repped by UTA. »

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NL, Vaughn, Wilson test 'Crashers'

8 October 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn are in negotiations to team up in the New Line Cinema comedy The Wedding Crashers. The project, which is seeking a director, is a romantic comedy revolving around two guys who have a hobby of crashing weddings in order to meet girls. While crashing a random nuptial, one of them unexpectedly falls in love. Crashers was penned by the writing team of Steve Faber and Bob Fisher, with Tapestry Films' Andrew Panay and Peter Abrams on board to produce. New Line production executives Richard Brener, Cale Boyter and Magnus Kim are overseeing for the studio. Wilson next appears in the Warner Bros. Pictures thriller The Big Bounce. He also stars in the upcoming Starsky & Hutch feature for Warner Bros. Pictures and appears in Walden Media's remake of Around the World in 80 Days, Franchise Pictures' The Wendell Baker Story and the Walt Disney Co.'s Wes Anderson-directed The Life Aquatic. Vaughn, who most recently starred in the DreamWorks comedy Old School, has several projects in the works. He will appear opposite Wilson in Starsky & Hutch and also appears in the DreamWorks comedy Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, the indie drama The Sky Is Green and the 20th Century Fox comedy Underdogs. Vaughn also is attached to star in the New Line comedy No Place Like Home. Wilson and Vaughn are both repped by UTA. »

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Ferrell tapped for role in new Allen picture

8 September 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Will Ferrell has joined the cast of Woody Allen's upcoming untitled project for Fox Searchlight Pictures. Production begins in the fall in New York. The plot line, as is typical of Allen's projects, is being kept under wraps. The former Saturday Night Live comedian joins a cast that includes Jason Biggs, Radha Mitchell, Chloe Sevigny, Jonny Lee Miller and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Ferrell, repped by UTA and Mosaic Media Group, is in production on DreamWorks Pictures' Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. The actor, who most recently starred on the big screen in Old School, next stars in New Line Cinema's Elf. »

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Starsky & Hutch: A Homoerotic Affair?

19 June 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

The new Starsky & Hutch movie will be filled with homoeroticism, according to cast member Juliette Lewis. The actress says the currently-shooting film, starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson as the title characters, will be much more comedy based than the '70s TV series which inspired the flick. She says, "There are so many homoerotic overtones between Ben and Owen's characters that it's just absolutely hilarious. Todd Phillips (director) did a really great job casting the movie. Vince Vaughn is incredible as the smarmy villain. I play his girlfriend Kitty. I'm one of those kinds of girlfriends who constantly massages her man's shoulders." She adds, "Leave it up to Todd to hire me for the T&A factor in the movie when I'm so not that girl. But since Todd directed me in Old School, he calls me his go-to-girl, which is something I'm proud of." »

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Piven following Moore for Alcon

7 May 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Jeremy Piven has been cast opposite Mandy Moore in Alcon Entertainment's untitled Mandy Moore project (aka First Daughter) for Warner Bros. Pictures and helmer Andy Cadiff. The project is slated to go into production in mid-June. It centers on the U.S. president's 18-year-old daughter, who gives the Secret Service the slip and runs away on a European road trip. Piven is set to play a key Secret Service agent. David Parfitt is producing along with Alcon co-presidents Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson. Alcon's Kira Davis and Steven Wegner are co-producing. Wayne Rice is executive producing. Derek Guiley and David Schneiderman penned the screenplay, with a rewrite by Randi Singer. Piven, who is coming off his starring turn in the DreamWorks Pictures/Montecito Picture Co. comedy Old School, next stars in Runaway Jury for Regency Enterprises and 20th Century Fox and Scary Movie 3 for Dimension Films. He is repped by WMA, Matt Luber and Aaron Ray at Nine Yards Entertainment and attorney Patti Felker. Regency Enterprises has a competing First Daughter project, which Katie Holmes recently signed on to topline. That project is due to start production in mid-May, with a Jan. 9 release date scheduled. »

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Col shackles 'Kopps' rights for Happy Madison

15 April 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Columbia Pictures has won a tight bidding war for remake rights to the Swedish comedy Kopps for Adam Sandler and Jack Giarraputo's Happy Madison to produce. The race for the rights came down to Columbia and Dimension Films, which was in the mix to acquire the project for Old School helmer Todd Phillips. Other talent that circled the project included Ben Stiller, director Adam Shankman, writing team Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield and Anger Management scribe David Dorfman. Josef Fares' Kopps -- currently onscreen in Sweden and posting successful numbers -- centers on a small-town police force that is on the verge of being shut down because of a lack of crime in the area. In order to save their jobs, the local cops take matters into their own hands. »

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Wen spec lands at Dimension

14 April 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Dimension Films has paid mid-six figures against $1 million for the Phil Wen comedy spec The Von Doozers, with Todd Phillips attached to produce. The script, which marks the feature debut for television scribe Wen, is being closely guarded but is described as a cross between The Partridge Family and National Lampoon's Vacation. A veteran TV writer-producer, Wen -- along with his partner Bill Callahan -- has worked on such series as ABC's Spin City, Fox's Oliver Beene and ABC's 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. He is repped by Benderspink and UTA. Phillips, best known as the writer-director of the comedy hits Old School and Road Trip, is also attached to produce the comedy The Golden Tux for Dimension and is directing the Starsky & Hutch remake for Warner Bros. Pictures. He is repped by WMA. »

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After 'School,' Vaughn to take New Line 'Home'

19 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

New Line Cinema has tapped Old School star Vince Vaughn to star in the comedy No Place Like Home. Vaughn will play a cocky, upwardly mobile New Yorker who has the world at his fingertips and a deep aversion to his parents. But when he breaks up with his girlfriend and his life falls apart, he ends up moving into their Long Island house. Home was written by Margaret Heidenry and is being produced by The Ring team of Neal Edelstein and Mike Macari. New Line production exec Matt Moore is overseeing for the studio. Vaughn, who is currently on screen in the DreamWorks comedy Old School, is also set to star in the indie feature The Sky Is Green, which marks the directorial debut of Xan Cassavetes. Vaughn has worked with New Line on the comedy Made and was attached to star in the New Line thriller The Other Side of Simple, which was put on hold by the studio in January. Vaughn is repped by UTA. »

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After 'School,' Vaughn to take New Line 'Home'

19 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

New Line Cinema has tapped Old School star Vince Vaughn to star in the comedy No Place Like Home. Vaughn will play a cocky, upwardly mobile New Yorker who has the world at his fingertips and a deep aversion to his parents. But when he breaks up with his girlfriend and his life falls apart, he ends up moving into their Long Island house. Home was written by Margaret Heidenry and is being produced by The Ring team of Neal Edelstein and Mike Macari. New Line production exec Matt Moore is overseeing for the studio. Vaughn, who is currently on screen in the DreamWorks comedy Old School, is also set to star in the indie feature The Sky Is Green, which marks the directorial debut of Xan Cassavetes. Vaughn has worked with New Line on the comedy Made and was attached to star in the New Line thriller The Other Side of Simple, which was put on hold by the studio in January. Vaughn is repped by UTA. »

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Birch, Lewis in sister act for 'Silence'

14 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Thora Birch and Juliette Lewis have teamed up to star as sisters in the indie thriller Silence Becomes You for writer-director Stephanie Sinclaire. Toby Stephens, who starred as the villain Gustav Graves in MGM's Die Another Day, has been cast as the man who comes between them. Shooting on the project is under way in Ireland. It follows the story of two sisters -- bound together by more than blood -- who bring home a man on a dare only to see the situation spiral out of control. Sinclaire is also producing alongside Dragonfly Films' Karl Richards and Brian Freeston along with Sun Gateway Entertainment. Jack Cardiff, a veteran British cinematographer, will serve as a consultant on the film. Birch is repped by manager Jack Birch of Keep the Peace Prods. and attorney Brad Small of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips. She next stars in the true-life tale Homeless to Harvard, set to air April 7 on Lifetime Television. Lewis, represented by WMA, is onscreen in DreamWorks Pictures' Old School opposite Luke Wilson. Stephens is repped by WMA. His credits include Possession and The Great Gatsby. »

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$31.7 mil tab for BV 'House' party

10 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Comedy was the clear choice of moviegoers this weekend in North America as Buena Vista's Bringing Down the House brought down an estimated $31.7 million on its debut to close on the top spot at the boxoffice. The opening for the Steve Martin-Queen Latifah starrer, helmed by Adam Shankman, was the third best ever in March, behind 20th Century Fox's Ice Age and New Line's Blade 2, which brought in $46.3 million and $32.5 million, respectively. The debut for House also proved a career best for Martin, topping the $18 million debut of Universal's Bowfinger. The weekend's only other wide release was Sony's Tears of the Sun, which shone in the second spot. The Bruce Willis starrer from Revolution Studios took in an estimated $17.2 million. DreamWorks' Old School was still in session as the broad comedy seated itself in the third slot with an estimated $9.2 million, down a moderate 34% in its third frame. Miramax's Chicago moved up a notch into the fourth spot as the multiple-Oscar-nominated film tuned in to an estimated $6.9 million, off a scant 12% from a week ago. Paramount's How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days found an estimated $6.75 million. So far, the Matthew McConaughey-Kate Hudson starrer has generated an estimated $86.9 million. »

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$31.7 mil tab for BV 'House' party

10 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Comedy was the clear choice of moviegoers this weekend in North America as Buena Vista's Bringing Down the House brought down an estimated $31.7 million on its debut to close on the top spot at the boxoffice. The opening for the Steve Martin-Queen Latifah starrer, helmed by Adam Shankman, was the third best ever in March, behind 20th Century Fox's Ice Age and New Line's Blade 2, which brought in $46.3 million and $32.5 million, respectively. The debut for House also proved a career best for Martin, topping the $18 million debut of Universal's Bowfinger. The weekend's only other wide release was Sony's Tears of the Sun, which shone in the second spot. The Bruce Willis starrer from Revolution Studios took in an estimated $17.2 million. DreamWorks' Old School was still in session as the broad comedy seated itself in the third slot with an estimated $9.2 million, down a moderate 34% in its third frame. Miramax's Chicago moved up a notch into the fourth spot as the multiple-Oscar-nominated film tuned in to an estimated $6.9 million, off a scant 12% from a week ago. Paramount's How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days found an estimated $6.75 million. So far, the Matthew McConaughey-Kate Hudson starrer has generated an estimated $86.9 million. »

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Piven anchored to 'Scary 3' role

5 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

NEW YORK -- Old School's Jeremy Piven has inked a deal to board Scary Movie 3, the third installment of Dimension Films' horror-spoof franchise. Dimension, Miramax Films' genre arm, has set an Oct. 3 release date for the film, which begins shooting this month in Canada. Piven joins the Scary 3 ensemble consisting so far of Charlie Sheen and his wife, Denise Richards, as well as Scary franchise vets Anna Faris and Regina Hall. Sources said Piven will play a news anchor in the comedy, which Dimension has said will "stay true to the franchise's roots in parodying horror movies, recent blockbusters and pop culture." Scary 3 is being directed by comedy vet David Zucker (The Naked Gun, Airplane!). Pat Proft and Craig Mazin have drafted the Scary 3 script with a round-table team of writers. Repped by WMA and attorney Patty Felker, Piven starred for Miramax in the romantic comedy Serendipity with John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale. »

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'Cradle' robs top of boxoffice

3 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

As the weekend's lone wide release, Warner Bros. Pictures' Cradle 2 the Grave rocked the top spot on its debut at the boxoffice with an estimated $17.1 million. The action-thriller, starring Jet Li and DMX, opened in the area anticipated and marked the eighth No. 1 opening for producer Joel Silver and his Silver Pictures out of the firm's last 10 releases. All in all, younger moviegoers were the driving force behind the boxoffice this weekend as the top four films were all aimed at that coveted demographic. Two comedies in that group fared exceptionally well as DreamWorks' Old School slipped a slim 20% from its debut, and Paramount's How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days was down a scant 13% in its fourth frame. Old School, starring Will Ferrell, Luke Wilson and Vince Vaughn, scored an estimated $13.9 million to place second and averaged a solid $5,069 per theater. The Todd Phillips-directed picture has grossed an estimated $37.2 million in 10 days. Lose a Guy placed fourth with an estimated $10.1 million. The romantic comedy starring Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson and helmed by Donald Petrie has found an estimated $77.5 million to date. 20th Century Fox's Daredevil found its footing in the third spot this weekend as the sight-challenged superhero garnered an estimated $11 million, down 39% in its third session and with 240 fewer theaters than a week ago. The Ben Affleck starrer is closing in on the $100 million mark -- and would be the first film released this year to reach that level -- as its cume advanced to an estimated $84.1 million. Speaking of $100 million grosses, Miramax's Chicago surpassed that milestone this weekend as the musical kicked up an estimated $8.1 million to take the fifth slot, moving its total to about $105.2 million. Chicago is the 24th film released last year to crest that mark -- a record high -- and the first musical in 25 years to do so. »

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Boxoffice preview: 'Cradle' robbers steal spotlight

28 February 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

February has proven to be the month to court the young male audience. From Shanghai Knights to Daredevil to Old School, films have taken direct aim at men under age 25, a group highly coveted by studio executives. This weekend proves no different, with the only wide release coming from Warner Bros. Pictures, which is sending out the action film Cradle 2 the Grave. The R-rated movie, directed by Andrzej Bartkowiak and starring Jet Li and DMX, follows a similar formula to Bartkowiak's previous two hits: Exit Wounds in 2001 and Romeo Must Die in 2000. Both films grossed north of $50 million, with opening weekends hitting the $18 million mark. Distribution executives expect Cradle, which is opening in 2,625 theaters, to do similar business. Some expect it could even climb to $20 million, considering the lack of competition. »

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18 items from 2003


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