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Paramount Players Acquires Comedy Pitch From ‘Uncle Drew’ Scribe Jay Longino (Exclusive)

Paramount Players Acquires Comedy Pitch From ‘Uncle Drew’ Scribe Jay Longino (Exclusive)
Paramount Players has preemptively acquired an original comedy pitch from “Uncle Drew” scribe Jay Longino.

While both the logline and title are being kept under wraps, the project is said to be set in the world of West Coast hip-hop and was brought into the studio by executive vice president Matt Dines, who will also oversee along with creative executive Royce Reeves Darby.

A division of Paramount Pictures, Paramount Players has been extremely active setting up a slate since president Brian Robbins’ arrival, mixing in original material like the Malik Vitthal-directed “Body Cam” with more branded IP like a “48 Hours” reboot and a film based on the popular Nickelodeon TV show “Are You Afraid of the Dark?”

Longino, who played professional basketball in both Mexico and the now-defunct United States Basketball League, is the sole writer of Lionsgate’s upcoming “Uncle Drew,” starring Kyrie Irving, Lil Rel Howery,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Hobo With a Shotgun’s’ Jason Eisener to Direct Thriller for Fede Alvarez

‘Hobo With a Shotgun’s’ Jason Eisener to Direct Thriller for Fede Alvarez
Hobo With a Shotgun” director Jason Eisener is attached to an untitled techno thriller produced by Bad Hombre, the new production company formed by Fede Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues.

The thriller will be written by Simon Barrett, whose credits include “Blair Witch,” “The Guest,” “You’re Next,” and “A Horrible Way to Die.” The logline is being kept under wraps.

The project will executive produced by Jay Basu along with Nathan Kahane, Joe Drake, and Erin Westerman of Good Universe.

Eisener’s credits include “The ABCs of Death” and “V/H/S/2.” Basu is currently working with Alvarez on Sony’s “The Girl in the Spider’s Web,” the follow-up to “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” and on the TriStar/Jim Henson Co. rebirth of “Labyrinth.”

Alvarez directed 2013’s “Evil Dead,” which grossed nearly $100 million worldwide, and “Don’t Breathe,” starring Stephen Lang, which topped $150 million worldwide. Bad Hombre was formed by Good Universe and Alvarez
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Taps ‘Blair Witch’ Director Adam Wingard

‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Taps ‘Blair Witch’ Director Adam Wingard
The Guest” director Adam Wingard has been tapped to take the reigns of “Godzilla vs. Kong.”

Terry Rossio is writing the film — a part of Legendary and Warner Bros.’ “MonsterVerse.” The announcement comes on the heels of “Kong: Skull Island” scoring at the box office with $565.6 million worldwide. The studios are prepping another sequel, “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” with Millie Bobby Brown, Kyle Chandler, and Vera Farmiga on board to star.

As the title suggests, the film will pit the two massive monsters against each other. It’s still unknown at this time whether the stars of either “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” or “Skull Island” will be reprising their roles in “Godzilla vs. Kong.”

“Godzilla vs. Kong” roars into theaters on May 22, 2020.

The studios announced in late 2015 that all future “King Kong” and “Godzilla” movies
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Cannes: John Hawkes, Logan Lerman Set for Rocket Science’s ‘End of Sentence’

Cannes: John Hawkes, Logan Lerman Set for Rocket Science’s ‘End of Sentence’
Oscar-nominated actor John Hawkes and “Percy Jackson” star Logan Lerman will star as father and son in drama “End of Sentence,” which London-based sales company Rocket Science will introduce to buyers at the Cannes Film Market this week.

Irish actress Sarah Bolger will co-star in the film which follows a father and son as they reluctantly embark on an eventful and emotionally fraught road-trip from Alabama to Ireland, honoring a request of their late wife and mother.

“‘End of Sentence’ promises to be a warm, funny and moving story of an estranged father and son reconnecting; a road movie executed with sensitivity and humor by both the talented cast and incredible team behind the scenes, guaranteed to strike a chord with audiences the world over,” said Rocket Science founder and CEO Thorsten Schumacher.

Lerman will play the ex-con son of Hawkes’ uptight, but well-intentioned, father as the pair are thrown
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Eva Longoria, Ken Marino, Andy Richter Sign on to Fox Comedy Pilot ‘Type-a’

Eva Longoria has boarded Fox’s comedy pilot “Type-a,” Variety has learned. Longoria will play Axler, the ambitious, brutally honest consultant who is at war with her inner “nice girl.”

The former “Desperate Housewife” and “Telenovela” star will play the lead in the single-camera office comedy about a group of consultants hand-picked to do the dirty work most professionals can’t handle: layoffs, downsizing, generally delivering horrible news. To everyone else, they’re the enemy — to each other, they’re family. Lesley Wake Webster (“New Girl,” “The Odd Couple”) wrote the pilot, which will be directed by Jason Winer (“Modern Family”). Both are executive producing through their Small Dog Picture Company, which is producing with 20th TV.

Additionally, Ken Marino, Kyle Bornheimer, Steve Harris, and Andy Richter have also signed on.

Marino will play “Garland,” a slick, charming attorney — and total shark — who also happens to be Axler’s ex-boyfriend. Bornheimer
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Jamie Chung to Play Blink in Fox’s Marvel Pilot From Bryan Singer

Jamie Chung to Play Blink in Fox’s Marvel Pilot From Bryan Singer
Another X-Men character has been cast in Fox’s Marvel pilot from Matt Nix and Bryan Singer.

Jamie Chung will star as Blink, the popular character from the comics with the power of teleportation, Variety has learned.

The untitled action-adventure series is a hot project at Fox with A-listers behind the scenes. Nix penned the pilot and will serve as executive producer with Lauren Shuler Donner, Simon Kinberg, Jeph Loeb, Jim Chory and Bryan Singer, who is on board to direct the pilot.

The pilot from 20th Century Fox TV and Marvel Television will focus on two ordinary parents who discover their children possess mutant powers. Forced to go on the run from a hostile government, the family joins up with an underground network of mutants and must fight to survive.

Chung’s character Blink — real name Clarice Fong — is described as sarcastic, lively and a bit of a tomboy. Her
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Fox Developing Novel ‘Red Moon’ From Temple Hill with Penalty Commitment (Exclusive)

Fox Developing Novel ‘Red Moon’ From Temple Hill with Penalty Commitment (Exclusive)
Fox is developing a sociopolitical soap from writers and producers behind “Nashville” and “Revenge,” Variety has learned exclusively.

The network is developing a series based on the 2013 novel “Red Moon” from author Benjamin Percy.

The hourlong drama is set in a world in which Lycans, the human-esque basis for werewolf myths, live among humans as an oppressed minority. After a major terrorist event on U.S. soil, a Lycan female FBI agent must go undercover to a world she has shunned her whole life in an effort to stop another attack.

The project that will be penned by “Nashville” scribes Meredith Lavender and Marcie Ulin landed a script order with penalty.

James Ponsoldt (“The Spectacular Now”) is attached to direct the pilot, and Temple Hill’s Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen are executive producers, along with Ponsoldt and the writers. The studio is 20th Century Fox where Godfrey and Bowen are under an overall deal. The
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Dwayne Johnson Producing Sony Adaptation of Graphic Novel ‘Son of Shaolin’

Dwayne Johnson Producing Sony Adaptation of Graphic Novel ‘Son of Shaolin’
Sony Pictures has acquired “Son of Shaolin,” a feature pitch based on the upcoming graphic novel of the same name, with Dwayne Johnson and his Seven Bucks Productions producing.

The book was written by Jay Longino and while the plot is being kept under wraps, sources describe it as a contemporary story about kung fu.

Johnson and Dany Garcia from Seven Bucks Productions will produce and while projects involving Johnson are usually conceived as star vehicles for the mega-star, insiders say he will only produce as of now.

Johnson is currently shooting “Fast and Furious 8” and has Sony’s “Jumanji” reboot and New Line’s “Rampage” on the horizon next year.

As for Seven Bucks Productions, their pipeline is continuing to grow with “Baywatch,” starring Johnson and Zac Efron, bowing next summer, as well as “Jumanji,” “Doc Savage” and a sequel to “San Andreas” all in development. Wme reps both Johnson and Seven Bucks Productions.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Netflix Lands Adam Wingard’s ‘Death Note’ Starring Nat Wolff

Netflix Lands Adam Wingard’s ‘Death Note’ Starring Nat Wolff
Netflix is in final negotiations to pick up Adam Wingard’s “Death Note,” continuing to bolster its feature film slate.

The pic stars “Paper Towns” actor Nat Wolff and Margaret Qualley and was originally at Warner Bros. before being put into turnaround at the studio.

Stx and Lionsgate were among the other studios looking at the property, but Netflix is poised to come out on top with a June start date being eyed for production. While the deal is not expected to reach the same price levels as those for “War Machine” or “Bright,” the price should fall in the $40 million-$50 million range.

Based on the Japanese Manga series, Wolff plays a student who discovers a supernatural notebook that allows him to kill anyone simply by writing the victim’s name. A cat-and-mouse game ensues when he’s tracked by a reclusive police officer.

Roy Lee, Dan Lin, Jason Hoffs
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Rachel Brosnahan, Christopher O’Shea Join Mark Wahlberg’s Boston Marathon Bombing Movie ‘Patriots Day’

Rachel Brosnahan, Christopher O’Shea Join Mark Wahlberg’s Boston Marathon Bombing Movie ‘Patriots Day’
Rachel Brosnahan and Christopher O’Shea have joined the Boston Marathon bombing movie “Patriots Day” opposite Mark Wahlberg, John Goodman, J.K. Simmons, Kevin Bacon and Michelle Monaghan.

The film is directed by Peter Berg and produced by Wahlberg, Scott Stuber, Hutch Parker, Dylan Clark, Stephen Levinson, Dorothy Aufiero and Michael Radutzky. Shooting has started in Boston.

Brosnahan will play Jessica Kensky and O’Shea will portray Patrick Downes. Newlyweds Kensky and Downes were at the finish line to cheer on marathon runners the day of the bombings. Both survived but were seriously injured.

“The survivors are the heart of this story and Rachel and Christopher are bringing their immense talents and their respect for Jessica and Patrick’s extraordinary courage to the film,” commented Berg.

Brosnahan starred in Netflix’s “House of Cards” and O’Shea appeared in the TV movie “Point of Honor.”

She is represented by Innovative Artists,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Dan Fogelman’s Female Baseball Drama Picked Up to Pilot at Fox, Kylie Bunbury to Star

Dan Fogelman’s Female Baseball Drama Picked Up to Pilot at Fox, Kylie Bunbury to Star
Fox has ordered “Pitch” to pilot, Variety has learned. The baseball drama hails from Dan Fogelman and Rick Singer.

Kylie Bunbury will topline the potential series, which follows a young female pitcher who defies the odds when she becomes the first woman to play in the major leagues.

Fogelman (“Grandfathered,” “Crazy, Stupid, Love”) and Singer (“Younger,” “American Dad”) co-wrote the pilot and will serve as exec producers, along with Tony Bill (“The Sting,” “My Bodyguard”) and Helen Bartlett (“North Country”). 20th Century Fox will produce the hourlong drama.

Bunbury most recently was in “Under the Dome” on CBS. She also starred on ABC Family’s “Twisted.” She is repped by ICM and Gotham. Her role marks a continuation in diverse casting, which Fox has found success in with “Empire.” Revolving around a young woman who becomes a success story, the project is likely being well-received in a television landscape that
See full article at Variety - TV News »

‘Salem’ Star Janet Montgomery Cast in Orlando Bloom’s ‘Romans’

‘Salem’ Star Janet Montgomery Cast in Orlando Bloom’s ‘Romans’
Salem” star Janet Montgomery has been cast opposite Orlando Bloom in the psychological drama “Romans,” which has started shooting in the U.K.

Bloom stars as a man still trying to come to terms with repercussions resulting from childhood sexual abuse at the hands of a trusted and idolized priest. Montgomery will star as the character’s wife, struggling to deal with a husband that seems unable to love her back.

The drama is directed by the Shamassian Brothers (“The Pyramid Texts”) from a screenplay by Geoff Thompson. “Romans” is produced by Wsg Entertainment’s Sheetal Vinod Talwar as well as James Harris and Mark Lane of The Tea Shop & Film Company and Jasper Graham of Dreamscape Films.

Montgomery is repped by UTA, Anonymous, Hamilton Hodell and attorney Todd Rubenstein.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Academy’s Careers Event Will Link Up Students With Industry Pros

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences on Oct. 17 will launch a Careers in Film Summit, which brings industry pros (above and below the line) to talk with students from the L.A. Unified School District. The day-long program includes six panel discussions.

It will take place at the Goldwyn Theatre in the Academy’s Beverly Hills headquarters. The event is sold out, but there will be a waiting line, with free tickets given to individuals with student ID if possible.

Opening the program will be comments from Jana Babatunde-Bey, COO of Overbrook Entertainment; Mike Muse, who was named millennial entrepreneur champion of the Sba’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative; and Randy Haberkamp, the Academy’s managing director of preservation and foundation programs.

The first morning session is “Working above the Line,” with panelists including producers Effie T. Brown (“Dear White People,” “Project Greenlight”), Debra Martin Chase (“Just Wright
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Anna Kendrick In Talks to Join Ben Affleck in ‘The Accountant’ (Exclusive)

Anna Kendrick In Talks to Join Ben Affleck in ‘The Accountant’ (Exclusive)
Ben Affleck may have found his first co-star for “The Accountant” with actress Anna Kendrick in early negotiations to join the assassin thriller, sources confirm to Variety.

Gavin O’Connor (“Warrior”) will direct the Warner Bros. pic, which begins production in January. J.K. Simmons is also in talks to join the cast.

Based on an original script by Bill Dubuque, “The Accountant” centers on a mild-mannered accountant (Affleck) who moonlights as a lethal assassin.

It’s unknown whom Kendrick would play in the film.

Mark Williams and Lynette Howell are producing the “The Account, which Drew Crevello and Jon Gonda will oversee for WB.

Affleck, who recently starred in “Gone Girl,” is currently filming the last scenes for “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” in Michigan. “The Accountant” is his next feature before returning to the director’s chair in July for “Live by Night.”

Kendrick can next be seen
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Charles S. Dutton & Mike Epps Join HBO Films’ Bessie Smith Biopic

Exclusive: Charles S. Dutton and Mike Epps will co-star in Bessie, HBO’s film about Bessie Smith, with Queen Latifah playing the iconic blues singer. Also cast in the movie, written and directed by Dee Rees, is Tika Sumpter. Vased on the life story of Smith, the project chronicles how Smith overcame her tempestuous personal life to become one of the most acclaimed performing and recording artists of the 1920s and ’30s, earning the nickname Empress of the Blues. Dutton will play William “Pa” Rainey, husband and partner to Ma Rainey (Mo’Nique). Charles, repped by Greene & Assoc. and Lighthouse Entertainment, was nominated for a Tony Award for his portrayal of Levee Greene in the Broadway production of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom written by August Wilson. Epps plays Richard Morgan, bootlegger and romantic interest to Bessie Smith. Sumpter plays Lucille, a chorus girl in Bessie’s troupe. Epps, repped by CAA,
See full article at Deadline TV »

Mike Epps To Co-Star In Starz Series ‘Survivor’s Remorse’, Recur On Bet’s ‘Being Mary Jane’

Exclusive: Mike Epps is adding a seasoned presence to Starz’s scripted comedy series Survivor’s Remorse, joining a cast of mostly 20-something up-and-comers as a regular. Additionally, Epps has booked a recurring role on the second season of the Bet drama Being Mary Jane. Survivor’s Remorse, executive produced by NBA star LeBron James and Mike O’Malley, is set in the world of professional basketball. It follows Cam Calloway (Jessie T. Usher), a basketball phenom in his early 20s who is thrust into the limelight after signing a multimillion-dollar contract with a pro team. Cam, along with his cousin and confidant Reggie Vaughn (RonReaco Lee), move to Georgia to start Cam’s journey to success. Epps plays Cam’s uncle Julius, who moves from the Dorchester projects to an Atlanta mansion with his family after Cam gets a big pro contract. Although Uncle Julius loves the perks of success,
See full article at Deadline TV »

Victor Rasuk Joins ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’

Victor Rasuk Joins ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’
How to Make It in America” star Victor Rasuk has been cast in the Universal and Focus Features adaptation of E.L. James’ “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

The thesp will play Jose, Anastasia Steele’s close friend from college and romantic rival of billionaire protagonist Christian Grey.

Along with HBO’s “America,” Rasuk is known for roles in “Raising Victor Vargas,” Steven Soderbergh’s “Che,” “Lords of Dogtown” and, most recently, “Jobs.” He will also appear in next year’s “Godzilla.”

Sam Taylor-Johnson is helming the pic, produced by Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti. Kelly Marcel penned the script.

Variety previously broke the news that Jamie Dornan will play Grey after Charlie Hunnam dropped out of the film. Dakota Johnson is still set to play Steele. Other supporting roles have gone to Luke Grimes and Jennifer Ehle.

Rasuk is repped by Brad Lefler at Gersh, manager Katherine Atkinson at Wsa and attorney Todd Rubenstein.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Chuck’ Duo Sells Daughter-Father Cop Drama To Fox

Exclusive: Former Chuck executive producer Matt Miller has teamed with Zev Borow, former writer on the NBC spy dramedy, for a cop/family drama that has sold to Fox. Written by Borow with Miller supervising, Bad Guys centers on Lea Morris, a NYPD detective and a single mom raising a teenage son, and her dad Nalin Morris, a recently paroled ex-con who wants a second chance with his daughter and a first with his grandson. Per the project’s logline, “Bad Guys affirms the ancient truth: You can’t pick your family, but with any luck you can arrest them.” Borrow and Miller will executive produce for Warner Bros TV where Miller is under a deal. The project reunites Miller and Borow with Fox — Miller served as showrunner on the network’s Wbtv-produced drama Human Target, on which Borow was a writer. Wme-repped Miller was executive producer/showrunner on the
See full article at Deadline TV »

Ian Somerhalder and Luke Hemsworth Join The Anomaly

Ian Somerhalder and Luke Hemsworth Join The Anomaly
Ian Somerhalder and Luke Hemsworth topline the cast of The Anomaly, a highly original action thriller exploring the issue of global terriorism. Noel Clarke's UK production company Unstoppable Entertainment announced that principal photography commenced on new sci-fi thriller last week.

The Anomaly's original screenplay was written by Simon Lewis and will be directed by Noel Clarke (4.3.2.1., Adulthood). Lewis' screenplay follows the travails of a traumatized ex-soldier who wakes up in the back of a van, alongside a kidnapped boy, to find that he only has only nine minutes and 37 seconds of consciousness to work out why and how he got there. The film is produced by James Harris and Mark Lane of The Tea Shop & Film Company (Cockneys Vs. Zombies, Tower Block). The film will be shooting on location across London. Ian Somerhalder and Luke Hemsworth join Noel Clarke, Brian Cox (The Bourne Ultimatum, Rise of the Planet of the Apes
See full article at MovieWeb »

Exclusive Media Boards Jackie Chan-Bingbing Fan Comedy

Exclusive Media Boards Jackie Chan-Bingbing Fan Comedy
In a pre-Cannes deal, Exclusive Media has come on board to produce and co-finance Sam Fell’s action comedy “Skiptrace,” starring Jackie Chan and Bingbing Fan.

‘Skiptrace” will be produced as a Sino co-production by Exclusive Media and China’s Talent Intl., which will also co-finance the film. Chan and David Gerson are producing. Cyrte Investments’ Charlie Coker, who brought the project in, will exec producer with Cyrte.

Exclusive Media is handling international rights and will present the film to buyers at the Cannes Film Market this month. Exclusive Media’s Damien Saccani will oversee production.

‘Skiptrace” is based on Chan’s original idea and written by Jay Longino with the Gatewood and Alessandro Tanaka co-writing. Story follows a Hong Kong detective (Chan) tracking down a mouthy American gambler on the run from his creditors. The pair form an unlikely partnership to take down Hong Kong’s most notorious criminal.
See full article at Variety - Film News »
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