‘The Inbetweeners 2′ Coming To The UK & Ireland On August 6
Entertainment Film Distributors said Tuesday that The Inbetweeners 2 will hit theaters in the UK and Ireland on August 6. Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison and Joe Thomas are returning for the comedy sequel written and directed by Damon Beesley and Iain Morris — who created the series on which the films are based — and produced by Spencer Millman. The film, which sees the lads descend on Australia, also stars Emily Berrington, Freddie Stroma and David Field. The Inbetweeners Movie took in nearly £45 million at the UK box office in 2011.
Amma Asante Set For ‘Brits to Watch: The Screenings’ In U.S.
The British Academy of Film and Television Arts announced Tuesday that it will profile director Amma Asante (A Way of Life, Belle) next month at the first of this year’s “Brits to Watch: The Screenings,” a series of showcase events in New York and Los Angeles that introduce outstanding British film talent to the US film industry. On April 1 in New York and April 3 in Los Angeles, Asante will be introduced at a screening of her second feature film Belle, which premiered at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, and opened this year’s Palm Springs International Film Festival. Belle is inspired by the true story of a mixed-race girl raised … Read More »
Amazon is officially an original drama series player. A month after Amazon Studios uploaded five pilots — two dramas and three comedies — for users to watch and comment on, the company has quietly notified the auspices of four of them that they are being picked up to series. That includes Amazon’s first dramas: The After from Chris Carter, marking The X-Files creator’s return to series television, and Eric Overmyer and Michael Connelly’s Bosch, starring Titus Welliver. Newly picked up half-hour comedy series include Gael Garcia Bernal starrer Mozart In The Jungle, from Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman, Alex Timbers and Paul Weitz, and Jill Soloway’s semi-autobiographical Transparent. Amazon’s fifth pilot, comedy The Rebels, from Ice Cube and Michael Strahan, is being put on hold. Five pilots yielding four series represents a much higher batting average than Amazon’s first pilot season, when it tested eight comedy pilots, picking up two — Alpha House and Betas — to series. Of them, Alpha House has been quietly renewed for a second season to begin film in July, while Betas will not be retuning. Here are descriptions of Amazon’s newly greenlighted series, whose pickup was first reported by Variety:
Related: 2014 Amazon Studios Pilots
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In this week’s podcast, Deadline International Editor Nancy Tartaglione and host David Bloom preview this year’s Mip-TV market and the interactive Israeli format that may just dominate this year’s show; take a look at some of the very familiar nominees for the Olivier Awards, honoring the best of British stage; and ponder the promised closure of BBC Three amid the possible resurgence of The X Factor in the United Kingdom as Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole return to shore up the sagging franchise. Read More »
In April 2004, ABC was wrapping its third consecutive season in last place among adults 18-49. Then-rising star Disney cable executive Anne Sweeney was brought in, greatly expanding her portfolio to include the struggling broadcast network and its sister studio along with her oversight of Disney’s cable properties. She’s had successes — most notably the gutsy 2010 move to install Ben Sherwood, then considered a polarizing figure, as head of ABC News, as he went on to revitalize Good Morning America and take the morning ratings lead away from incumbent Today. (Sherwood’s morning success has him already tipped for a Jeff Zucker-type career trajectory to a big network job at ABC.)
Related: Disney/ABC TV Group President Anne Sweeney To Exit In January 2015 To Become TV Director
But there has been little change in primetime. There was an initial momentum brought in by three shows developed by the dismissed ABC executives when Sweeney and her lieutenant Steve McPherson stepped in – Lost, Grey’s Anatomy and Desperate Housewives, which launched during the 2004-05 season, followed by Dancing With The Stars in June 2005. Since then, there has been a breakout success in Modern Family, several slow builders in hits Scandal, Shark Tank and Castle and a few other solid players. But in the end, Sweeney will leave ABC where she found it, wrapping its third consecutive season in last place among the broadcast networks. Read More »
A comedy about two young women having a really difficult time getting to the beach won the Grand Jury prize for features tonight at the SXSW Film Festival in Austin. Fort Tilden is directed and written by Sarah-Violet Bliss & Charles Rogers and stars Bridey Elliott and Clare McNulty. The Great Invisible, director Margaret Brown’s look at the oil industry’s secretive world in the wake of the Gulf Coast disaster, took the top prize for documentary features. The awards were hosted for the second year by comedian Jerrod Carmichael at the Paramount Theatre in Austin. The Audience Awards will be announced Saturday, and the festival wraps Sunday.
Here is the complete list of 2014 SXSW Film Festival award winners:
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Despite Disney’s best legal efforts, perpetually litigious Stan Lee Media Inc is not going quietly into the Pennsylvania night with its claims to Spider-Man. Today SLMI fired back at the media giant’s attempts to shut it down once and for all last month with assertions of time-barred claims and the fact that it is a dissolved corporation. “It is Disney’s burden to prove Disney’s ownership of the copyrights to Spider‐Man. Prior litigation cannot bar [American Music Theater], and concomitantly SLMI, from defending itself by showing Disney’s assertion is wrong,” says the dense and exhibit heavy filing in federal court in the Keystone State (read it here). “No judge has decided that Disney actually owns the Spider‐Man copyrights or, for that matter, that SLMI does not own the copyrights,” adds the opposition to Disney Enterprises’ motion to dismiss SLMI from its copyright case against American Music Theater. AMT also filed paperwork (read it here) in opposition to Disney’s motion to toss its counterclaims and SLMI from the case. This latest kick at the can by the repeatedly defeated SLMI over its claims over various Marvel characters created by Stan Lee — who no longer has anything to do with the company that bears his name — seems certainly to clog up the courts for at least a little while longer.
Related: Disney’s Spider-Man Rights Contested In Court Again By Stan Lee Media
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EXCLUSIVE: We’ve already seen the trailer for WGN America‘s first scripted series, now here’s a first look at some of the key art. Set in 17th century Massachusetts, Salem revolves around the infamous witch trials — only this time the witches are real. The drama from Brannon Braga and Adam Simon stars Janet Montgomery, Shane West, Seth Gabel, Ashley Madekwe and Xander Berkeley. It bows April 20.
Related: TCA: WGN’S ‘Salem’ Creators Defend Witch Trials Re-Write
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The CEO of Anonymous Content today let loose against Lakeshore Entertainment over its firing of him last year from the romantic drama Adaline. “There is no polite way to put it: Lakeshore tried to pull a fast one to avoid honoring its obligations to prominent film, television, and commercial producer [Steve] Golin in connection with the upcoming film Adaline, featuring Harrison Ford, Ellen Burstyn, and Blake Lively,” says the breach of contract and unjust enrichment complaint Golin filed today by in LA Superior Court (read it here). Golin and his Overt Operations claim that he is owed “no less than $450,000 and no more than $1,000,000” under a Loanout Agreement with Lakeshore as well as a hefty backend on the pic. Requesting a jury trial, the True Detective EP and his company are seeking unspecified damages, proper credit and a change in the agreement plus legal costs and the usual “for such other and further relief as the Court deems proper and just” in the 5-claim complaint. Read More »
On Friday, Tom Bergeron tweeted that he would be leaving ABC’s America’s Funniest Home Videos after its next season. Somehow, in 140 characters, Bergeron buried the lead, and the news went mostly unnoticed:
This morning, however, Vulture broke the news, including an emailed statement from Bergeron, who also hosts the network’s Dancing with the Stars, that went like this: “I’m embracing change this month. DWTS will sure have plenty of it. And I’ve decided that, after 15 wonderful seasons as host of AFV, next year, the show’s 25th anniversary(!!), will be my last. As Doctor Who fans know, every so often a regeneration is a good thing.”
Sources say the announcement by Bergeron — who is not the show’s first host, just its longest running — does not spell the end for the series. This makes sense given that, despite premiering in 1989, it’s still pulling in a 1.4 demo rating.
If you’re the sort who makes his living swimming in the social-media sea like I do, one form of sport these days is the online battles between big shows to grab fan mindshare and loyalty from each other — particularly as the networks slowly begin to understand that this stuff can make a difference. And nowhere are those battles more starkly direct and entertaining than in late-night, where each talk show has a big team of social-media specialists culling potentially viral bits from the day’s program and sprinkling them across the web. The battle has become particularly stout between Jimmy Fallon‘s online team at The Tonight Show and the Jimmy Kimmel Live crew.
Related: Jimmy Fallon Seizing Social Media Ahead Of ‘Tonight Show’ Takeover
Both shows have had big lead-ins recently (the Winter Olympics in Fallon’s first days; ABC’s Oscars on March 2, when Kimmel went live on the East Coast right after the awards show ended). But the crucial bit is not the audience you’re bequeathed, but the one you build. According to data from RelishMIX, which tracks fan engagement for TV shows and movies across, particularly, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, no one’s building better right now than Fallon. Overall, from March 3-March 10, Fallon’s YouTube videos were watched nearly four times as often as Kimmel’s, 27.5 million to 7.6 million. That’s a margin. Right now, Kimmel still leads Fallon in total YouTube subscribers, about 3 million to less than 2.7 million. Then again, Kimmel’s been at it for a while; Fallon took over the Tonight Show social media outlets barely a month ago.
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EXCLUSIVE: Nashville‘s Rayna James is gaining a full-time friend and a full-time foe for next season. Recurring players Oliver Hudson and Will Chase are being promoted to regulars for Season 3, contingent on the ABC series getting a renewal, something considered likely as most of the network’s freshman dramas have struggled mightily this season. Hudson, who joined Nashville in the second episode of this season, plays arrogant Edgehill label head Jeff Fordham. Chase, who was introduced in Episode 5, plays Luke Wheeler, a country superstar and Rayna’s (Connie Britton) current significant. Hudson is repped by ICM Partners, Management 360 and Ziffren; Chase is with Gersh and AC Management.
Related: 2014 ABC Pilots
Game Of Thrones and Body Of Proof alum Elyes Gabel has been cast as the lead in CBS‘ drama pilot Scorpion, from writer Nick Santora, director Justin Lin, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci. It centers on Walter (Gabel), an eccentric genius and his international network of super-geniuses who form the last line of defense against the complex threats of the modern age. Robert Patrick co-stars. CBS casting executives have had their eye on UK-born Gabel, casting him in his first US TV pilot, the 2012 CBS drama Widow Detective. Scorpion also reunites Gabel with Kurtzman and Orci, who cast him in the 2012 Fox drama pilot Exit Strategy. Gabel is with Paradigm, Brillstein Entertainment and UK’s Troika.
Related: 2014 CBS Pilots
After all the twists and turns on the Shane Salerno-directed docu Salinger that began with a January 2010 Deadline reveal that the film had been shot, how did the documentary do? The American Masters version totaled 2 million viewers, including repeat broadcasts and DVR viewers. This was strong considering the film had been released by The Weinstein Company and was in the top 10 of the year’s theatrical docus, and that it was viewable on Netflix at that time. The Simon & Schuster companion book written by David Shields and Salerno hit both the New York Times and LA Times bestseller lists. And Salerno more than made back the $2 million he invested to make the film, after he made three 7-figure deals with TWC, S&S and American Masters. It didn’t hurt the Salinger estate either, as Catcher In The Rye hit the bestseller charts again, 62 years after its publication in 1951.
“When combined with the incredible sales figures and national social media conversation, it demonstrates the true impact of public television,” said Stephen Segaller, the WNET programming veep in charge of Salinger. “The fact it was the 200th episode of American Masters makes the accomplishment even sweeter.” Read More »
A down-on-his luck salesman gets a strange phone that sets him on a series of 13 tasks, each more sinister — and lucrative — than the last. Mark Webber stars in director Daniel Stamm’s 13 Sins, which had its world premiere Friday at SXSW as a Midnighters. Rutina Wesley, Devon Graye, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Richard Burgi, Tom Bower, Ron Perlman co-star in the Radius-TWC pic, which Stamm (The Last Exorcism) scripted with David Birke. It’s available on demand March 14 and in theaters April 18. Here’s the rather violent red band trailer:
After an eight-month stint, Emile Gladstone is leaving Chris Morgan Productions. Gladstone had been Morgan’s long-time agent when he left ICM Partners last summer to partner with his client at Chris Morgan Productions, running the company’s film and TV divisions. Gladstone will now return to representation, launching a management/production company with Morgan as a client. I hear Gladstone never felt comfortable in the new setting, feeling he was better suited for working with multiple clients. Through his company, Gladstone will continue to work on the film and TV projects he and Morgan have in various stages. CMP has a first look feature deal at Universal, where Morgan has written the last five films in the Fast And The Furious franchise, and a first-look TV deal through 20th Television, where the company has the upcoming series Gang Related.
EXCLUSIVE: CAA has signed Eric Stonestreet, who after winning two Emmy Awards playing Cam Tucker in ABC’s Modern Family, is looking to branch into features. Stonestreet, who had been at ICM Partners, has already started that process. He has a memorable supporting role in the Melissa McCarthy-Jason Bateman comedy Identity Thief, and did Bad Teacher with Cameron Diaz, Jason Segal and Justin Timberlake. Next up for him is Loft, a thriller that will be released this summer. He continues to be managed by Thruline Entertainment’s Steve Kavovit and his attorney is Patti Felker.
EXCLUSIVE: Jimi Hendrix has become an ICM Partners client. The agency has signed Experience Hendrix LLC, the family-owned enterprise that controls the songs and rights of the legendary late guitar player. The agency’s first order of business: to amplify its client’s efforts to produce a feature film chronicling Hendrix’s life story. The film will be the very first to be authorized by and have the full cooperation of Experience Hendrix — and believe me, many actors and film companies will covet that opportunity. The company was founded by the guitarist’s father James “Al” Hendrix and now is helmed by Janie Hendrix, President and CEO and the sister of the guitar great, who died in 1970 after recording just four albums that were enough to make him arguably the greatest rocker to plug a guitar into an amp.
I’ve written numerous times over the years about attempts by the likes of Eddie Murphy and Will Smith to play Hendrix, and most recently Legendary Pictures’ Thomas Tull, who financed the rock docu It Might Get Loud, commissioned Max Borenstein to write a script, and he and producer Billy Gerber had Anthony Mackie ready to string up the Fender Stratocaster and Paul Greengrass ready to direct him. They dropped the effort when the estate refused to authorize the film and license rights to Hendrix’s signature tunes. OutKast’s Andre 3000 also sparked to playing Hendrix, and when the estate didn’t waver, he and Oscar-winning 12 Years A Slave scribe John Ridley made All Is By My Side anyway. The film, about Hendrix’s formative years, does not feature any songs controlled by the estate. It’s playing at SXSW. Read More »
It’s that time of year, when the TV viewers’ thoughts turn to plot wraps and cliffhangers. NBC today announced season-finale dates for 10 of its series. The Voice will wrap with a two-hour edition on May 20, and Community‘s term ends April 17. On the drama side, the 2013-14 season of Parenthood also wraps April 17, The Blacklist checks off its last episode May 12, Chicago Fire goes out May 13, Revolution wraps May 14, Grimm’s story ends May 16, the Law And Order: SVU and Chicago P.D. shifts end May 21, and Hannibal‘s last meal is set for May 23. The network last month announced an April 24 date for its hourlong Parks And Recreation finale featuring Michelle Obama.
Related: 2014 NBC Pilots
How ironic is it that Hollywood studios walk on eggshells with faith-based groups hoping their religious epics like Noah do a fraction of the business Mel Gibson did with The Passion Of The Christ, while those studios continue to shun Gibson like a leper? What better way to commemorate Passion‘s 10th anniversary than journalist Allison Hope Weiner‘s examination of her relationship with Gibson and how it evolved from harsh coverage to the point where she feels strongly enough about his good qualities and recovery to urge Hollywood to consider giving him another chance. Weiner has written about Gibson for Deadline before, as well as The New York Times and other national magazines. – MF
It has been a decade since Mel Gibson made The Passion Of The Christ and watched it become the biggest-grossing independent film with $612 million in worldwide ticket sales. In the years that followed, Gibson made several comments that went public, made him seem anti-Semitic and racist. They made him persona non grata at major studios and agencies, the same ones that work with others who’ve committed felonies and done things far more serious than Gibson, who essentially used his tongue as a lethal weapon. As a journalist who vilified Gibson in The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly until my coverage allowed me to get to know him, I want to make the case here that it is time for those Hollywood agencies and studios to end their quiet blacklisting of Mel Gibson. Once Hollywood’s biggest movie star whose film Braveheart won five Oscars and whose collective box office totals $3.6 billion, Gibson hasn’t been directly employed by a studio since Passion Of The Christ was released in 2004.
The Gibson I’ve come to know isn’t a man who’ll shout from the rooftops that he’s not anti-Semitic, or hold a press conference to tell media those audiotapes were released as part of a shakedown, and that he never assaulted the mother of his infant daughter. He won’t explain to people that he first got himself into a career spiral because he’s a long struggling alcoholic who fell off the wagon and spewed hateful anti-Semitic remarks to an arresting officer who was Jewish. He won’t tell you that he’s still got a lot to offer Hollywood as a filmmaker.
The fact that he won’t jump to his own defense is part of his problem, but also part of why I have grown to respect him. That is why on the occasion of this 10th anniversary of Passion, a film about an innocent man’s willingness to forgive the greatest injustice, I propose to Hollywood that it’s time to forgive Mel Gibson. He has been in the doghouse long enough. It’s time to give the guy another chance. Read More »