BREAKING: New York-based Gelfman Schneider Literary Agents has under its banner authors including Jeffrey Deaver, Tracy Chevalier, David Nicholls, David Rabe, Chris Bohjalian, Carolyn Hart, Meg Gardiner, Alan Lightman, Madison Smartt Bell, John Burdett, Jacquelyn Mitchard, Glen Duncan and Evan Hunter/Ed McBain. The alliance with ICM Partners just announced today will see the formation of a new entity, Gelfman/Schneider/ICM Partners, with the agency co-signing authors and journalists and also repping film, television and media rights from the rich library of titles now at its disposal. ICM’s Media Rights Department has had plenty of success in this realm, brokering deals for such projects as Steve Jobs, Lincoln, No Country For Old Men and Sex And The City. Gelfman Schneider will keep its offices on Seventh Avenue, with ICM Partners’ agents down the road in their Fifth Avenue HQ doing the deals. The pact comes after ICM Partners gained a foothold in the D.C. publishing arena via a similar alliance with Raphael Sagalyn’s The Sagalyn Agency in November, which melded Sagalyn’s nonfiction author list and ICM’s list to that point dominated by fiction authors.
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Some said that opening opposite a juggernaut like Man Of Steel would be box office suicide, but not everyone went for the obligatory tentpole. After a splash earlier this year with Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers ($263K opening, 3 theaters in March) A24 once again found box office gold with youth gone awry formula, this time via Sofia Coppola‘s The Bling Ring. The Cannes Un Certain Regard debut opened in just five theaters, grossing $210K. The distributor was clearly pleased, noting that Bling is Coppola’s highest opening since Oscar-winning Lost In Translation. Said A24 Sunday: “Sofia Coppola’s latest and greatest has certainly entered the zeitgeist and we look forward to capitalizing on this great success as we expand nationwide next weekend. It is the highest opening for a Sofia Coppola film since Lost in Translation and played to sold-out crowds in NY and LA on Friday and Saturday with the highest per screen average of the weekend.”
Specialty B.O. Preview: ‘The Bling Ring’, ‘Pandora’s Promise’, ‘So Young’, ‘The Stroller Strategy’, ‘In The Fog’
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Sofia Coppola‘s Cannes Un Certain Regard opener The Bling Ring will have its chance to shine this weekend as the real-life inspired feature hits theaters. A24 will open the film in limited release, joining a number of Specialties going up against Man Of Steel. Also offering an alternative beginning Friday is doc Pandora’s Promise by Oscar-nominee Robert Stone, who gives a sobering reassessment of nuclear power. China Lion will open China’s biggest homegrown box office hit of the year, So Young in a trio of North American cities as it assesses its prowess on this side of the Pacific. Also hailing from abroad are France’s romantic comedy The Stroller Strategy from Rialto Premieres and Strand Releasing’s Cannes 2012 feature, In The Fog.
The Bling Ring
Director-writer: Sofia Coppola
Writer: Nancy Jo Sales (Vanity Fair article)
Cast: Emma Watson, Katie Chang, Leslie Mann, Taissa Farmiga, Israel Bourssard, Claire Julien
Sofia Coppola came across the real-life story in Vanity Fair that inspired The Bling Ring while on a plane going on vacation. The article, The Suspects Wore Louboutins by Nancy Jo Sales, tells the story about a group of San Fernando Valley fame-obsessed teens who used the Internet to track when celebrities were away from their homes in order to rob them. “After reading the quotes from the kids, I thought it had some of the elements that would make for a good movie,” Coppola said at an event hosted by the Film Society of Lincoln Center this week.
New York, NY (June 12, 2013) — The Film Society of Lincoln Center and Jaeger-LeCoultre announced today select members of their Advisory Board for the new Filmmaker In Residence initiative at a dinner co-hosted by Charles Finch, Bennett Miller, Paul Schrader and Rose Kuo. The evening marked the launch, and celebration, of the recently announced partnership between the Film Society of Lincoln Center and Jaeger LeCoultre, following the efforts of Finch & Partners to bring the film organization and luxury brand together.
The Advisory Board members participating in the initiative include: Henry Bean, Brady Corbet, Charles Finch, Naomi Foner, Larry Gross, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Danny Huston, Tamara Jenkins, Ed Lachman, Bennett Miller, Matthew Modine, Ed Pressman, Ira Sachs, Paul Schrader and Marisa Tomei. Their involvement may include nominating potential candidates, mentoring the filmmaker once selected, panel participation during the 51st New York Film Festival and/or attending/hosting events in support of the initiative.
Hollywood & Swine’s Andy Marx & Will McArdle Peddling Projects This Summer: Will Industry Exact Revenge?
EXCLUSIVE: Their headline alerts show up in showbiz emails with regularity if not always hilarity. And recently the Hollywood & Swine blog embarrassed Variety when a content syndication deal resulted in legitimate media outlets confusing a satirical story with real news. (No, Sharon Stone wasn’t the prime suspect of French cops in that recent $1.4M Cannes jewel heist “after an IMDb search made her attendance at the film festival extremely suspicious”.) The humilitainment website jabs and keeps tabs on Tinseltown’s more moronic aspects but the TV and movie scripters behind it never get identified or punished. It’s a delicate and dangerous tightrope that the vast majority of WGA writers are too afraid to try — yet Andy Marx and Will McArdle have been walking it since January 2012. But this summer will mark if the duo fall off phone sheets or meeting calendars. That’s because I’ve learned that the writing team have at least two TV pilots going out to networks and one feature film going out to directors. Then it’s an opportunity for hot Industry players to exact revenge which, as we all know, is a dish best served cold.
Fiftysomething Marx and thirtysomething McArdle for some time now have managed to sweet-talk the media like LA Times‘ John Horn and The Guardian‘s Rory Carroll into keeping their identities out of the spotlight so Hollywood wouldn’t know they were biting the hands that feed them. (“After multiple requests, the duo finally agreed to an in-person interview on the condition that they not be publicly identified, lest they jeopardize their business relationships,” the LAT wrote.) McArdle is described to me as a nobody who was writing on the non-WGA fringes when manager Danny Halsted paired him with client Marx. He’s the well-known Groucho Marx and Gus Kahn grandson who previously had a successful script pitching partnership with fellow journalist-turned-screenwriter Andrea King before it crashed and burned. (“They sold over $2 million worth of pitches but didn’t like each other,” an insider told me. “In the rooms, they were great together. But both were repped by Halsted and, behind the scenes, it was Andy on Line 1 and Andrea on Line 2. So they professionally divorced.”) Marx wanted to continue working with a partner, and Halsted thought McArdle had a similar comic sensibility. The hope was that they all could make some coin together. Sweet and funny Marx had a hobby of skewering execs and actors in humorous emails sent to pals, so that led the longtime showbiz insider to begin writing anonymous Hollywood & Swine news parodies with McArdle.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Keshet to Canada; Credit For Bona Film; NZ Lures Tourists With ‘Hobbit’; ‘Mr. Selfridge’ Selling; More
Keshet Int’l Invades Canada With Mark Rubenstein
Keshet International is moving into Canada via a joint venture with veteran TV executive Mark Rubinstein. Keshet Canada will bring Keshet’s scripted and unscripted formats to the Canadian market and will look to develop, produce and co-produce original content. Rubinstein is a former president and CEO of Insight Sports and COO of Alliance Atlantis Broadcasting. The venture will have the rights to over 50 Keshet International properties, to be produced in the territory under the Keshet Canada banner. Keshet, the company behind Prisoners Of War, the Israeli source of Homeland, has recently set up shop in Australia and the UK.
Bona Film Group Gets $34.2M Credit Line
China’s Bona Film Group, which part-owned by News Corp., has secured a $34.2M revolving credit line with China Minsheng Banking Corp. The facility will be for three years and will be used to help grow exhibition, production and distribution. News Corp. acquired a 19.9% equity stake in the Nasdaq-listed Bona in May 2012, and in October Fox International Productions and Bona entered a multi-picture co-producing pact for Chinese-language films. Bona this year released Wong Kar-wai’s The Grandmaster. Its upcoming titles include rom-com My Lucky Star with Zhang Ziyi and China’s first 3D disaster film, Inferno, produced by Oxide and Danny Pang. The company also plans to double its theater network to 40 owned-and-operated cinemas before 2015.
British actor Tom Felton, best known for playing Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter movies, has joined the cast of TNT’s drama pilot Murder In The First as a series regular. Co-created by Steven Bochco and Eric Lodal, the project is a murder mystery that centers on San Francisco PD homicide detectives Terry Seagrave (Taye Diggs) and Hildy Mulligan (Kathleen Robertson), as they take on a case that seems more like a maze. Felton will play Erich Blunt, the cocky, spectacularly wealthy CEO of Applicon, a tech genius.
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Joss Whedon‘s Much Ado About Nothing clearly ruled the Specialty Box Office this weekend. Opening in 5 theaters, the Roadside/Lionsgate release gave the 4-century-old play some 21st century adulation, grossing over $183K in 5 theaters for a $36,680 average. Whedon broke box office records last year with The Avengers and will likely do so again with his second round with the franchise, but the versatile filmmaker has clearly shown his filmmaking chops outside the big summer tentpole. Sundance Selects debuted its timely Dirty Wars in 4 runs, also opening solid. The distributor said it played sold out shows in all venues and called the launch a “promising start.” This weekend’s limited release newcomers were plentiful, though most others opened soft at best. Oz pic Wish You Were Here bowed in 11 theaters, averaging $2,338, while Kino Lorber’s You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet opened in two locations, averaging $3,500. Cinedigm’s Violet & Daisy, meanwhile, debuted in 17 locations, with a very slight $602 average, taking in over $10K. The film will move into the top ten markets next weekend.
Ben Affleck, Justin Timberlake, Anthony Mackie and Gemma Arterton star in this drama set in the world of offshore online gambling. Lincoln Lawyer helmer Brad Furman directs Runner Runner from a script by David Levien and Brian Koppelman. Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way produces the film that Fox is releasing on September 27. Here’s the first trailer:
Relativity Media announced that Stacey Mooradian, who previously held executive publicity posts at Lionsgate and Miramax, has been hired as EVP Publicity. She will report to President of Theatrical Marketing Terry Curtin and will craft publicity campaigns for the studio’s film slate. The move comes after Friday’s hire of David Shane as Relativity’s EVP Corporate Communications on the exec side, reporting to CEO Ryan Kavanaugh and president Tucker Tooley. This is more restructuring after Relativity lost EVP Worldwide Publicity and Corporate Communications Adam Keen recently; the well-liked Keen is now set up at Warner Bros as a film VP. Mooradian most recently was a communications consultant. As EVP Theatrical Publicity at Lionsgate, she worked on films including The Expendables, Precious, The Lincoln Lawyer and the Saw franchise. As VP National Publicity at Miramax, she worked on Chicago and the Kill Bill pics.
RSA has hired Arrow Kruse to be an executive producer at Ridley Scott’s commercials production company, running the Branded Content, Digital and Entertainment division. He is currently overseeing the RSA/Machinima partnership for RSA president Jules Daly and Ridley Scott. Said Daly, “I am thrilled to have Arrow onboard at RSA as we continue the company’s legacy of innovative work — creating new definitions and platforms to deliver branded content that pushes the boundaries of expectations. Arrow’s extensive experience with reinventing and expanding global campaigns, and establishing new brands makes him the perfect fit for us here”.
Specialty B.O. Preview: ‘The East’, ‘The History Of Future Folk’, ‘Hannah Arendt’, ‘The Kings Of Summer’
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Two Sundance titles will roll out the first weekend of June. Specialty newcomers this weekend run the gamut from star vehicles to niche special interest titles. Brit Marling, Alexander Skarsgard and Ellen Page star in Fox Searchlight’s The East, which will open in several runs in a traditional platform launch. Variance Films is sending its genre-bending feature The History Of Future Folk exclusively in New York as will Zeitgeist Films for its Toronto biopic Hannah Arendt. And CBS Films will, appropriately, bow its Sundance pickup, The Kings Of Summer in New York and L.A.
The East had its debut at the Sundance Film Festival and closed out the SXSW Film Festival in March. Director Zal Batmanglij along with star (and co-writer) Brit Marling traveled to over a dozen cities for college and word-of-mouth screenings, hosting Q&As. “Given the fact that the film will be the only one in the marketplace with a strong female lead as protagonist, we feel that this smart and modern thriller is well positioned as a film unlike any others in release,” noted, SVP Domestic Distribution at Searchlight. “We will be targeting the core art house audience as well as a younger demographic including college students for The East. Our marketing will be comprised of Broadcast, Print, Radio and a targeted online effort, including social media.”
Rob Lowe To Play John F. Kennedy, Ginnifer Goodwin & Michelle Trachtenberg To Co-Star In National Geographic’s ‘Killing Kennedy’
Rob Lowe, Ginnifer Goodwin (Once Upon A Time) and Michelle Trachtenberg are set to star in National Geographic’s two-hour original factual drama Killing Kennedy, from Scott Free Prods. Based on the best-selling book by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard and a sequel to Nat Geo’s Killing Lincoln, Killing Kennedy begins in 1959 and follows the paths of Kennedy (Lowe) — a member of one of the United States’ most wealthy and powerful families — and his assassin Lee Harvey Oswald — a disillusioned former Marine and Marxist — until they collide in Dallas four years later. Goodwin will play former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, while Trachtenberg will play Oswald’s Russian wife Marina. Production on Killing Kennedy will begin in June in Richmond, Va., with Nelson McCormick directing from a script by Kelly Masterson, for a premiere later this year in the United States and globally in 171 countries, timed to the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination. This is the Nat Geo’s second collaboration with Lowe this year. In April, he narrated the network’s six-part miniseries The ’80s: The Decade That Made Us. JFK and Jacqueline Kennedy were recently played by Greg Kinnear and Katie Holmes in the ReelzChannel mini The Kennedys.
Specialty B.O. Preview: ‘Before Midnight’, ‘We Steal Secrets: The Story Of WikiLeaks’, ‘Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton As Himself’, ‘A Green Story’, ‘The Lesser Blessed’
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
Cannes is winding down with the year’s first glimpse of titles that will hit the fall release slates for companies Stateside, with a number likely to factor into the fall awards season. But first off, of course, is summer and Memorial Day weekend. Sony Classics’ Before Midnight and FocusWorld’s We Steal Secrets: The Story Of WikiLeaks will anchor the Specialty alternative to the official onslaught of blockbusters season. Richard Linklater’s Midnight is the third installment which debuted in the ’90s with Before Sunrise, while Oscar-winner Alex Gibney’s expose on WikiLeaks will take the non-fiction spotlight along with Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton As Himself from Laemmle/Zeller Films. Indican Pictures is bowing immigrant feature A Green Story with Shannon Elizabeth, Ed O’Ross and Billy Zane, while Monterey Media will open coming-of-age story, The Lesser Blessed.
Director-writer: Richard Linklater
Co-writers: Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, Kim Krizan
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy, Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick, Jennifer Prior, Charlotte Prior
Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics
SPC’s Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have played pivotal parts in Richard Linklater’s career, having released his first film Slacker at Orion and later Suburbia at SPC. They were also at Sony when Columbia Pictures released the first film that now forms a trio, Before Sunrise. “We’re big fans of these films and of Rick,” said Michael Barker in Cannes. “And when we saw the first screening of [Before Midnight] in Sundance, we knew we had to have it. The producers wanted us as well, so it felt like a match that had to happen. A deal was made very quickly and it’s been such a pleasure to work on this film. It has Rick at the peak of his form in a very relaxed sort of way. It has artistry but it’s also done in an entertaining way and being in Greece is just awesome.”
Tom Felton (Harry Potter), Minka Kelly (Friday Night Lights), Julian McMahon (Nip/Tuck), David Boreanaz (Bones), Keke Palmer (Akeelah And The Bee), Devon Gearhart (The Wait), Billy Campbell (The Killing, Killing Lincoln), Kate Walsh (Private Practice), Noah Silver (The Borgias), Ally Sheedy (Welcome To The Rileys), Cheyenne Jackson (Behind The Candelabra) and Robin Weigert (Sons Of Anarchy) have been cast in Full Circle, DirecTV announced today. The 10-episode series marks the TV debut of screenwriter/playwright Neil LaBute. It examines the human condition and relationships through a series of conversations between 11 people whose lives, unbeknownst to them, are intertwined. Nick Hamm will executive produce for Momentum TV, the scripted division of Momentum Entertainment Group. Series creator LaBute will serve as writer and co-executive producer. FremantleMedia International will handle global distribution.
Ross Lincoln is a Deadline contributor
UPDATE, 12:25 PM: The protest just wrapped up around its scheduled 12:30 PM target. Among the speakers was writer Bryan Cook, who addressed the picketers that reached about 150 in number and generated notice from passersby on foot and in cars along Wilshire Boulevard. He touched on why the writers are seeking union representation. “We’ve worked hard to make Fashion Police one of E!’s top-rated shows, and we don’t even get health care benefits,” he said. “It can be hard to get how hard this work is. It’s not like were working in a coal mine — you can’t get black lung from writing jokes, but rest assured, E! will try to find a way.” Said fellow writer Ed Rice to Deadline as the event was breaking up: “I don’t know what’s specifically next on our part. To a certain extent, its a stand-off — the ball’s really in their court. What we want is a phone call from the network to our representative at the guild saying they accept them as representation and would like to offer us a guild contract. That’s the only next step from the network we will accept.”
PREVIOUS, 11:43 AM: Striking writers from the Joan Rivers-hosted series Fashion Police are protesting today in front of E!‘s headquarters on the Miracle Mile in LA. Among the chants overheard from the 100-plus on the scene holding signs: “We’re …
Newbie distributor Vertical Entertainment has snapped up US rights to the Russian 3D animated pic produced by Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter), based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale. The Snow Queen tells the tale of a little girl who embarks on a journey to save her brother from the evil witch who’s covered the world in ice. Maxim Sveshnikov and Vlad Barbe directed the pic from a script by Barbe and Vadim Sveshnikov. Yuri Moskvin, Vladimir Nikolaev, Olga Sinelshchikova, Sergey Rapoport, Alexander Ligay and Bekmambetov are producers. Already released in Ukraine, Brazil, South Korea, Israel, Turkey, UAE, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, The Snow Queen has a sequel in the works for Winter 2014. Peter Jarowey negotiated the deal with WME’s Deb McIntosh. Wizart Distribution’s is handling international sales at Cannes, where last week Vertical acquired rights to Josh Duhamel’s SXSW film Scenic Route.
Last year, the Broadcast Television Journalists Association might have helped fuel Homeland‘s surprise Emmy win by awarding its top drama prize to the then-rookie Showtime series. But with today’s announcement of nominees for its 3rd annual Critics’ Choice TV Awards, the group might make more noise with what it spurned than what it honored. HBO and FX lead the network tally with 21 and 19 noms, respectively, and CBS’ The Big Bang Theory and FX’s American Horror Story each drew six to top all programs. However, a look at the Best Comedy and Best Drama races reveal some surprising omissions. Missing from the BJTA’s comedy series hopefuls are three-time defending Emmy champ Modern Family (supporting actress Sarah Hyland is the show’s lone nominee), along with recently wrapped perennial 30 Rock and, perhaps most glaringly, HBO’s hipster darling Girls. And conspicuously absent from the drama series combatants is four-time Emmy winner Mad Men, which also earned only a single nom, for lead actress Elizabeth Moss.
Instead, vying for the Critics’ Choice Award for best drama are Homeland, HBO’s Game Of Thrones, PBS’ Downtown Abbey, CBS’ The Good Wife and AMC’s Breaking Bad — all of which also were nominated in the category last year — along with FX’s freshman The Americans. Up for best comedy are Modern Family‘s Wednesday night companion The Middle, landing its first major awards recognition, as well as Big Bang Theory, FX’s Louie, Fox’s New Girl, NBC’s Parks and Recreation and HBO Veep. (No sign of last year’s winner Community, led by new showrunners Moses Port and David Guarascio.) Netflix’s House Of Cards made an entrance into the awards circles with two acting noms, including one for star Kevin Spacey.
The awards will be handed out June 10 at the Beverly Hilton — not coincidentally during Emmy voting season. Parks and Rec‘s Retta will host. See the complete list of nominees, along with the breakdown of noms by show and network, after the jump:
Last year, the Broadcast Television Journalists Association likely helped fuel Homeland‘s surprise Emmy win by awarding its top drama prize to the then-rookie Showtime series. But with today’s announcement of nominees for its 3rd annual Critics’ Choice TV Awards, the group might make more noise with what it spurned than what it honored. HBO and FX lead the network tally with 21 and 19 noms, respectively, and CBS’ The Big Bang Theory and FX’s American Horror Story each drew six to top all programs, though the latter is not among the six finalists for Best Drama Series. However, a look at the Best Comedy and Best Drama races reveal some surprising omissions. Missing from the BJTA’s comedy series hopefuls are three-time defending Emmy champ Modern Family, along with recently wrapped perennial 30 Rock and, perhaps most glaringly, HBO’s hipster darling Girls. And conspicuously absent from the drama series combatants is four-time Emmy winner Mad Men, which earned only a single nom, for lead actress Elizabeth Moss.
Instead, vying for the Critics’ Choice Award for best drama are Homeland, HBO’s Game Of Thrones, PBS’ Downtown Abbey, CBS’ The Good Wife and AMC’s Breaking Bad — all of which also were nominated in the category last year — along with FX’s …