EXCLUSIVE: Lionsgate has hired Jeff Chan to develop to direct an untitled project framed in the vein of End Of Watch, with firefighter protagonists. Sascha Penn has been set to write the script. While there has been talk of a few fact-based firefighter films that fell apart over rights issues, we’ve not seen a big movie on the subject since Ladder 49 and before that Backdraft. This one will be high action, centering around a brave group of firefighters in Detroit.
Chan came to prominence in a fairly inventive way. His calling card was spec commercials he made for Call Of Duty, which were done without the gamemaker’s authorization. When they first created buzz online, Activision threatened to sue Chan because the masses thought a new version of the game was coming out. After the strong response, the game company hired him to create its first and only Call Of Duty short film, for which he wrote, directed and created VFX (check it out below). Chan co-wrote and made his feature debut on Grace, a supernatural thriller produced by Brian Kavanaugh Jones and recently acquired for distribution by Sony Pictures. It is unusual in that it is entirely shot from a first-person POV. He just sold a pitch to direct at QED that is conceived as a trilogy about a moment in our near future where everybody over the age of 19 turns into a walking corpse, leaving our world to be run by kids. Management 360 and McG are producing. Penn wrote the sci-fi pic The Ditch and April 29, 1992, the latter of which Seith Mann will direct. He’s scripting the action crime drama Yakuza Vs. Mafia and writing-producing Power, a Starz series.
Chan is repped by Management 360, ICM Partners and Karl Austen and Ryan Levine; Penn by CAA and Madhouse Entertainment.
Here is Chan’s Call Of Duty short: