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Comic-Con: Marvel Sets ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy 2′ For 2017; ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Footage Draws Standing Ovation

By and | Saturday July 26, 2014 @ 6:50pm PDT

Comic-Con: Marvel Sets ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy 2′ For 2017; ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Footage Draws Standing OvationWe finally know the first of the Marvel films that Disney has been setting aside dates for: Guardians Of The Galaxy 2 will arrive July 28, 2017. That leaves five unidentified superhero flicks between November 2017 and May 2019. The announcement came during Marvel’s Comic-Con panel tonight. Guardians star Chris Pratt and director James Gunn appeared via video from London, where they are promoting the first movie’s release overseas.

Related: Comic-Con: Marvel Teases New ‘Guardians’ Animation Series

Avengers Ultron Comic-ConThe panel also included the Avengers cast, who were introduced one by one and asked what it’s like to be in the third-highest-grossing film of all time. Throwing roses out to the Hall H crowd, Robert Downey Jr introduced all those in Avengers: Age of Ultron sans Scarlett Johansson: Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Cobie Smulders, Samuel L. Jackson, Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Quicksilver), Paul Bettany (The Vision), James Spader (voice of Ultron) and Elizabeth Olsen (as Scarlet Witch).

Related: Comic-Con: Marvel’s ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Cast Pic

Whedon couldn’t be here because of an injury. Feige said, “Scarlett couldn’t be here because she’s pregnant.” Then she introduced a clip via viThe-Avengersdeo from Age of Ultron in which the team, in a penthouse, play a round of trying to pick up Thor’s hammer. Tony Stark puts his Iron Man hand on, Captain America makes a go. Then Ultron crashes the party. Iron Man gets in a big super suit as apocalypse dawns again. A lot of crash-bang-boom, like the finale of the first film. Playing throughout the trailer is a child singing, “I Got No Strings” from Disney’s Pinocchio. Last shot in the clip shows all the Avengers lying dead in a massive heap against a black sky, with Tony Stark the only one standing alive. The audience gave the clip a standing ovation. Amplifying the room’s mood was Josh Brolin walking in as Thanos. Read More »

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Comic-Con: ‘The Blacklist’ Adds Mary-Louise Parker To Season 2 Cast

Comic-Con: ‘The Blacklist’ Adds Mary-Louise Parker To Season 2 CastThe Blacklist star James Spader may have been snubbed for an Emmy nomination this year, but he got a lot of love today from the Comic-Con crowd. The actor drew a roar from the more than 1,000 fans in the packed room 6A of the San Diego Convention Center. “It’s been quite a journey, this craziness — and the craziness really started last year right here at Comic-Con,” Spader said after the applause died down. Then again, one year after his debut at the confab and with a breakout show success in the crime drama, the Mary-Louise Parkerman who plays former super-fugitive Raymond Reddington is a geekfest multitasker this time round thanks to his part as the primary villain in next year’s Avengers: Age Of Ultron pic – which got a big cheer when Spader mentioned his work on the Marvel movie.

Related: TCA: NBC Drama Series Showrunners Tell TV Critics How It’s Done

Not that the panel didn’t cut to the Blacklist chase. There was a big casting announcement with the revelation that Mary-Louise Parker would be joining the NBC series in Season 2 in a recurring role as a character named Naomi Highland. EP/creator Jon Bokenkamp didn’t reveal any more details of the former Weeds star’s Blacklist involvement, but he described the character as “completely tied to Reddington.”

Related: Emmy Snubs: ‘The Blacklist,’ James Spader And More

James Spader comic con 2014Then there is the question of relationships on a show all about unknown relationships. “The question of who is Reddington to Elizabeth Keen is the central conceit to the show,: responded Bokenkamp to questions of whether Reddington is the rookie FBI agent’s father, “but we’re really not going to answer that.” From burn marks to pocket photos and the secrets of a dying man, the May 12 Season 1 finale set up a lot for the show’s return – especially about who Reddington really is and what his relationship with Keen might be. Spader himself had some thoughts on the big question. “The real relationship is their present relationship,” the lead actor said. “Destinations aren’t enough. The ultimate answer should be that looking backwards.” Read More »

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Comic-Con: Marvel TV Panel Reveals ‘Captain America’ Movie Directors To Helm ‘Agent Carter’, ‘Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D’ Adds Lucy Lawless

Comic-Con: Marvel TV Panel Reveals ‘Captain America’ Movie Directors To Helm ‘Agent Carter’, ‘Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D’ Adds Lucy LawlessLooks like the greater Marvel Universe is officially coming to the upcoming Marvel’s Agent Carter – at least behind the camera. It was announced today during the Marvel TV panel at Comic-Con that Captain America: The Winter Soldier directors Joe and Anthony Russo will be helming the second and third episodes of the ABC series set to debut in 2015. Captain America: The First Avenger director Joe Johnson will helm the fourth episode, with Marvel Studios co-president Louis D’Esposito set to direct the first one

Related: TCA: ABC Sets Fall Premiere Dates

Agents of SHIELD Comic-ConThe announcements were made after a short teaser video was shown to a packed Ballroom 20. Mostly a voice-over via President Harry Truman, the post-WWII-set series promised fans that they would discover a “different side of the Marvel Universe.” Agent Carter picks up in 1946 and the first version of S.H.I.E.L.D. coming together as the Cold War heats up. Marvel TV boss Jeph Loeb said the show hasn’t started stated filming and the writers room opens next week.

The cast of Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. was also on the panel with Clark “Agent Phil Coulson” Gregg coming out to a thunderous standing ovation. The panel confirmed Lucy Lawless will join the show in the second season as a longtime S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Isabel Hartley. British actor Nick Blood will also join as a mercenary, and Reed Diamond, who appeared on Joss Wheldon’s 2009 Fox series Dollhouse, will also be added. The panel was treated to a specially made video of Patton Oswalt in his S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Billy Koenig role jokingly lecturing the crowd on security.

Related: ABC Picks Up ‘Marvel’s Agent Carter’, Renews ‘Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.’

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Peter Sarsgaard & Mary-Louise Parker To Star in NBC Miniseries ‘The Slap’

By | Friday July 25, 2014 @ 1:20pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Peter Sarsgaard & Mary-Louise Parker To Star in NBC Miniseries ‘The Slap’Peter Sarsgaard has been cast as the lead in NBC’s The Slap. Also cast in a lead role in the 8-hour miniseries, based on the 2011 Australian short-run series, is WeedsMary-Louise Parker. The Slap is described as a complex family drama that explodes from one small incident where a man slaps another couple’s misbehaving child. The seemingly minor domestic dispute pulls the family apart, begins to expose long-held secrets, and ignites a lawsuit that challenges the core American values of all who are pulled into it.

NBC logo Sarsgaard will play Hector, a husband and father who loves his wife and family but shows signs of weakness when he finds himself succumbing to the advances of his wife’s teenaged receptionist during his own party. Hector’s cousin is the one who slaps the child. Parker will play Anouk, a close friend of Hector’s who’s the head writer on a TV show and is now dating the younger leading man. Sarsgaard, repped by CAA, Jon Rubenstein at Authentic, and Jodi Peikoff, and Parker are the first actors cast in The Slap, written by Jon Robin Baitz and to be directed by Lisa Cholodenko (the first two hours) for Universal TV and Australia’s Matchbox Pictures, producer of the original series. Baitz, Cholodenko and Matchbox’s Tony Ayres executive produce with Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald as well as Ted Gold. Read More »

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Jonathan Demme’s ‘A Master Builder’ Introduces A New Star: Video

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 2:10pm PDT

Jonathan Demme’s ‘A Master Builder’ Introduces A New Star: VideoAndre Gregory spent 14 years rehearsing the play. Jonathan Demme took one week to film it. The extraordinarily engaging result is A Master Builder, which went into limited release today at New York’s Film Forum. It’s a movie that benefits from one director’s obsession with allowing his actors to live in their roles over time with another’s burst of creative energy. You can sense both up on the screen in this film of a story that might easily have seemed dated but instead comes across as a chilling tale — a “haunted house story” as Demme describes it. And perhaps just as important, it should mark the second time Gregory has introduced an actress who gives every sign of becoming a star. Her name is Lisa Joyce.

master-superJumbo“She’s astounding,” Gregory told me in an interview from his home on Cape Cod. “I am hoping that my work with Lisa will have the same impact as my work with Julianne Moore did.”

A little history, then. In 1994, the late French director Louis Malle filmed Gregory’s equally long-aborning production of Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya, starring Wallace Shawn in the title role and Moore as Yelena, the object of his (and every other male character’s) desire. It remains arguably the best film adaptation of a Chekhov play, and it figured prominently in launching Moore’s stellar career. Read More »

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Hey Tom Cruise, Johnny Carson, George Clooney, Frank Sinatra, Channing Tatum And Others: SAG Owes You Money But Can’t Find You

Hey Tom Cruise, Johnny Carson, George Clooney, Frank Sinatra, Channing Tatum And Others: SAG Owes You Money But Can’t Find YouEXCLUSIVE: The Screen Actors Guild exists to collect wages and benefits and disperse them to dues-paying members, but a Deadline investigation begs a multimillion-dollar question: Why are so many living and deceased thesps owed unclaimed residual checks worth $40 million, money that is drawing interest for the union’s general fund? The roll call of Who’s Owed is a Hollywood Who’s Who, including more than 75 Oscar-winning actors or their estates and dozens of Emmy winners who likely are unaware they are owed residuals. A union spokesperson tells Deadline the union is working to locate those members, but it is difficult because people change agents and don’t notify the union, or they move and mailed checks are returned by the post office and never cashed.

Still, could it really be that hard to find some of these performers? Deadline found that if you threw a rock on the red carpet of any major industry event, chances are you’d hit somebody SAG owes money to.

Jodie Foster Warren BeattyLike: reigning Best Actress Oscar winner Cate Blanchett, and Tom Cruise, George Clooney, Bradley Cooper, David O. Russell, and former Oscar host Steve Martin. Or Michael Douglas, Dustin Hoffman, Elizabeth Taylor, Jodie Foster, Warren Beatty, Jay Leno, Sally Field, Sean Connery, Christopher Plummer, Channing Tatum, James Franco, Jim Carrey, Sharon Stone, Owen Wilson, Justin Timberlake, Melissa McCarthy, Julianne Moore, Pierce Brosnan, Zac Efron and Andrew Garfield.

The music side of the ledger of Who’s Owed reads like a wing … Read More »

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ESPYs, Baseball All-Stars Big Hitters In Week’s Twitter TV Ratings

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 7:52am PDT

ESPYs, Baseball All-Stars Big Hitters In Week’s Twitter TV RatingsThree baseball events and two sports awards shows filled the top 10 lists in an otherwise slow week for the Twitter TV ratings from Nielsen. The ESPY Awards - otherwise known as How ESPN Fills The Sports-Free Dead Air The Day After Baseball’s All-Star Game – grabbed the week’s biggest Twitter audience, barely beating out the Major League Baseball showcase of its talent in total audience reach.

The Twitter TV ratings are designed to track the number of unique Twitter users who saw a post about a given show during its initial broadcast or during the three hours before and after, an aid to advertisers trying to see which shows are social-media heavy hitters (and which have audiences least likely to be skipping through the ads). The ESPYs, on ESPN and its Spanish-language sibling, reached 8.3 million people through nearly 1.6 million tweets. Even the Kids Choice Sports awards, hardly a big name beyond home channel Nickelodeon, grabbed the eighth spot on Nielsen Social’s Series & Specials list. Plenty of regulars still studded this week’s list, including The Bachelorette, Teen Wolf and dethroned three-time No. 1, Pretty Little LiarsOnce again, the WWE put two in the top 10, including a pay-per-view event, while reality programs Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta and Keeping Up With the Kardashians kept up their regular spots. Also of note: Univision music awards show Premios Juventud 2014which featured plenty of Tweet-worthy fashion and performances by notables such as Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull, grabbed No. 6.

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Toronto Film Fest Will Close With World Premiere of ‘A Little Chaos’; No Opener Yet; Jon Stewart, Chris Rock Get Perches

By | Tuesday July 22, 2014 @ 8:40am PDT

Toronto Film Fest Will Close With World Premiere of ‘A Little Chaos’; No Opener Yet; Jon Stewart, Chris Rock Get PerchesUPDATED, 8:40 AM: The 39th Toronto Film Festival, running September 4-14, will close with the world premiere of Alan Rickman’s A Little Chaos with Kate Winslet, Rickman, Matthias Schoenaerts and Stanley Tucci. The opening-night film was not announced at this morning’s press conference.

Alan Rickman Kate WinsletA Little Chaos is the perfect closing-night film – it transports audiences to another time, another place, full of beauty, complexity, rivalry, politics and romance,” said Toronto artistic director Cameron Bailey. “Alan Rickman’s film will wind audiences up just as our festival is winding down.”

In this sumptuous historical drama Sabine De Barra (Winslet)  —  a landscaper with a taste for the unconventional — is invited to design one of the fountains at the Palace of Versailles. As she battles with the weather, the perilous rivalries at the court of Louis XIV and her own private demons, she finds herself drawn inescapably closer to the formality and enigma of the architect who hired her.

Of the 13 Galas and 46 Special Presentations announced, the initial lineup includes 37 world premieres from directors including Noah Baumbach, Susanne Bier, Peter Ho-Sun Chan, David Dobkin, Philippe Falardeau, Mia Hansen-Løve, Ning Hao, François Ozon, Christian Petzold, Lone Scherfig and Chris Rock. Here’s the list: Read More »

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UPDATE: Judge Denies Seven Arts Founder’s Motion To Have Louisiana Tax Fraud Charges Dismissed

UPDATE: Judge Denies Seven Arts Founder’s Motion To Have Louisiana Tax Fraud Charges DismissedUPDATED, 1:47 PM: A federal judge has denied Seven Arts Entertainment founder Peter Hoffman’s motion to dismiss the fraud charges against him stemming from $1.13 million he obtained in Louisiana tax credits to refurbish a run-down old New Orleans mansion and turn it into a state-of-the-are postproduction facility. Hoffman declined comment until he’s had time to study the judge’s 27-page ruling. A trail is set for January 20.

peter-hoffman-seven-artsPREVIOUSLY, June 2: The founder of Seven Arts Entertainment claims that he did nothing wrong in obtaining tax credits to restore a rundown New Orleans mansion and convert it into a modern postproduction facility. Peter Hoffman has filed a motion to dismiss the criminal tax fraud charges (read it here) brought against him by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Louisiana in February. The 22-count indictment accuses Hoffman, a former business partner, and Hoffman’s ex-wife, producer Susan Hoffman, of conspiring to secure $1.13 million in Louisiana tax credits without having done the work they told state officials they were going to do. All three have pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Related: Peter Hoffman Says He’s Being “Targeted” By Federal Prosecutors In Louisiana Film Tax Fraud Case

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TCA: FX Orders Second Installment Of ‘Fargo’, Fifth Season Of ‘Louie’

By | Monday July 21, 2014 @ 9:20am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

TCA: FX Orders Second Installment Of ‘Fargo’, Fifth Season Of ‘Louie’It was a risky proposition, but Noah Hawley’s take on the Coen brothers classic Fargo was deemed a critical success, landing 18 Emmy nominations, and it drew a sizable total audience when time-shifted viewing and encores are factored in. Not surprisingly, FX is ordering a second 10-episode installment, with Hawley back as writer/executive producer for MGM TV and FX Prods. The new chapter of the Fargo story will feature an all-new cast of characters, a brand new cast, a new time period and a new “true crime” story, and it may be filmed in the same location in Calgary. “Noah’s audacious, bordering on hubristic riff on my favorite Coen brothers film earned 18 Emmy nominations – the most for a single program in our history,” FX Networks CEO John Landgraf. While Ryan Murphy has been using a core group of actors in multiple installments of American Horror Story, “Fargo demands a different level of realism, and we felt we couldn’t introduce these actors as new characters.”

louieMeanwhile, it was a long wait for Season 4 of Louis C.K.’s comedy series Louie but Season 5 is expected to arrive in time, albeit in an abbreviated form. FX has renewed Louie for a fifth season, which will consist of seven episodes — half the size of Season 4 — to premiere in spring 2015. “Louie’s fourth season was once again groundbreaking. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes heartbreaking — always thought provoking,” said … Read More »

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UPDATED: Leaked List Leads To Laughs At TCA Awards

By | Saturday July 19, 2014 @ 9:56pm PDT

UPDATED: Leaked List Leads To Laughs At TCA AwardsUPDATED from TCA Awards: “First of all, I’d like to thank Variety and Gold Derby for letting me know that I should come tonight — I appreciate that very much. I got a dress, lickety split!” Julia Louis-Dreyfus said as she picked up her trophy for Best Individual Performance in Comedy.

The winners of the 2014 TCA Awards were leaked online this afternoon. But, in truth, the winners had learned some time ago they’d won — only winners show up at this non-televised trophy show. Nobody made Matthew McConaughey wise about this, however. Taking the stage to receive the trophy for Best Individual Performance in Drama, he tried to personally address his fellow nominees in his acceptance speech, calling them out by name and looking for them in the Beverly Hilton ballroom — the same room in which the Golden Globes are held each year. After running through the first couple names, creating awkwardness among critics, he singled out fellow nominee Bryan Cranston, saying, “You are here, sir!” Cranston, however, showed up not because he was nommed in the drama acting derby, but because Breaking Bad  had won Program of the Year for a second year running.

“Everyone [tonight] is thanking HBO,” Cranston said after HBO programs took four of the night’s trophies. “So,  thank you, HBO! Early on — you turned us down,” Cranston said on stage when the Breaking Bad win was announced.  He thanked TV critics for praising the AMC drama when few were watching “this story … Read More »

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Universal Buys Angelina Jolie-Brad Pitt Pic Deadline Broke In May

By | Friday July 18, 2014 @ 2:10pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Universal Buys Angelina Jolie-Brad Pitt Pic Deadline Broke In MayEvery studio was after it, but Universal Pictures acquired worldwide rights to the script Angelina Jolie is writing to possibly make her next movie, one she’ll star in with Brad Pitt. Deadline broke news of the project in May. It now has a title, By The Sea, and the studio says Jolie will direct. I’d heard that when I broke the story, but they weren’t admitting it at the time. Jolie and Pitt will produce.

Jolie and Donna Langley have developed a strong relationship after Langley tapped Jolie to direct Unbroken, the adaptation of the Laura Hillenbrand book about the late Olympian and war hero Louis Zamperini. That film bows on Christmas Day. Jolie has been fully focused on making that date, so don’t expect this next film to happen all that quickly. Read More »

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TCA: CW’s ‘Jane The Virgin’ EP Ben Silverman Hopes Show Name Bunches Undies Of Conservative Groups

By | Friday July 18, 2014 @ 11:39am PDT

TCA: CW’s ‘Jane The Virgin’ EP Ben Silverman Hopes Show Name Bunches Undies Of Conservative GroupsCW‘s new series Jane The Virgin, is not a straight adaptation of the Venezuelan telenovela Juana La Virgen - more telenovela meets Gilmore Girls, writer Jennie Snyder Urman told TV critics attending Summer TV Press Tour 2014. Jane The Virgin chronicles the story of aspiring writer Jane Villanueva, a virgin, who accidentally is artificially inseminated at a hospital, and subsequently struggles to navigate her relationships with the biological father, her boyfriend and her mother and grandmother.

“The show is a JAV101B_0289r (1)little less broad [than ABC's telenovela adaptation Ugly Betty],” Urman explained, calling it “the strange mark I’m trying to hit….I wanted it to have a fairy tale, whimsical quality.” At the same time, she hopes to use the tropes of the telenovela –  “Evil twin” and things like that, while keeping the characters “grounded and relatable” which she acknowledged, is a “tricky tone” to pull off.
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Specialty Preview: Zach Braff’s ‘Wish I Was Here’ Plus ‘I Origins,’ ‘Mood Indigo,’ ‘Alive Inside’

By | Thursday July 17, 2014 @ 9:17pm PDT

Specialty Preview: Zach Braff’s ‘Wish I Was Here’ Plus ‘I Origins,’ ‘Mood Indigo,’ ‘Alive Inside’Last weekend Richard Linklater made a Specialty box office splash with the 2nd highest screen average of the year with Boyhood. This week, Focus will hope to grab some similarly outsized attention for Zach Braff‘s Wish I Was Here. His previous film, 2004′s Garden State, cumed more than $26.7 million at a time before crowd sourcing was an indie norm. Braff has since learned some new tricks, raising the seed money for his latest, which debuted at Sundance earlier this year. Fox Searchlight will open second-time feature filmmaker Mike Cahill‘s I Origins on both coasts, while Drafthouse will bow French filmmaker Michel Gondry‘s Mood Indigo in two locations in NYC and L.A. Bond/360 will open the weekend’s new doc, Alive Inside, in an initial exclusive New York run. The film won an audience prize at Sundance.
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EOne To ‘Catch Hell’ On Ryan Phillippe Helming Debut

By | Thursday July 17, 2014 @ 4:01pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EOne To ‘Catch Hell’ On Ryan Phillippe Helming DebutEntertainment One Films has acquired the U.S. and Canadian distribution rights to Catch Hell, a suspense thriller that will star Ryan Phillippe. The actor makes his directorial debut in a film that is slotted for theatrical release in the fall. This becomes the second acquisition by Berry Meyerowitz, who is integrating his Phase 4 Films into eOne and who became eOne’s president of U.S. Film and Distribution in June. Phillippe wrote the script with Joe Gossett and is producing alongside Robert Ogden Barnum and Holly Wiersma. Mark Burg and Cassian Elwes are exec producers.

Phillippe plays a former Hollywood star, who, on location in Louisiana, is kidnapped by two men connected to his past. He awakens, chained in a rundown shack, and discovers the real motives of his captors and finds himself in the middle of a twisted scheme with little chance to make it out. Survival and revenge become the actor’s motivations. eOne’s Larry Greenberg brokered the deal with Elwes. Read More »

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Focus Features First To Start Line On Crowded Field Of Jesse Owens Biopics

By | Wednesday July 16, 2014 @ 10:45am PDT
Mike Fleming

Focus Features First To Start Line On Crowded Field Of Jesse Owens BiopicsAs Deadline was first to reveal, Focus Features has acquired U.S. distribution rights to Race. with Stephan James playing Olympian Jesse Owens, opposite Jason Sudeikis and Jeremy Irons, in the Stephen Hopkins-directed. Mister Smith Entertainment is handling worldwide sales on Race. The film starts production this month, and it is one of several films about the sprinter who ruined Hitler’s plans to showcase the superiority of German athletes in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. This film has the support of the Jesse Owens Foundation, the Jesse Owens Trust and the Luminary Group. Read More »

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IM Global, Pinewood Cross The Mersey For Crime Series ‘The Killing Pool’

IM Global, Pinewood Cross The Mersey For Crime Series ‘The Killing Pool’The inaugural Dream Factory event that wrapped up in Liverpool yesterday at the International Festival of Business 2014 has already brought a new project to the city. UK-based Red Union Films, Pinewood Pictures, and international distributor and financier IM Global have announced plans to co-produce eight-part crime thriller The Killing Pool. Set in Liverpool, the project is based on the novel by Kevin Sampson (Awaydays, Powder). The first in the series was published in March 2013 and features drug surveillance specialist DCI Billy McCartney as he unpeels the layers of an intercontinental heroin-dealing dynasty, forcing him to confront his ultimate nemesis. Production is set to start in early 2015.

The-Killing-PoolIM Global founder and CEO Stuart Ford and Sampson are both Liverpudlians who curated the two-day Dream Factory feature film festival in partnership with UK talent management firm Independent. The event was designed to showcase local opportunities and welcomed such speakers as Mike Hodges and Mike Newell. Sampson said bringing “this caliber of production to our home city gives Stuart and myself an added buzz. Baltimore, Copenhagen, Louisiana, Malmo — now Liverpool Noir is set to make its mark.” (The book’s title is a reference to “The Killing Moon,” a song by Merseyside band Echo and the Bunnymen.)

This is a first step towards TV series production for IM Global and is part of a growing trend that sees film companies get in on the lucrative business. … Read More »

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TCA: Chris Carter’s Apocalyptic ‘The After’ Inspired By ‘Nails Dropping On The Sepulveda Pass’

By | Saturday July 12, 2014 @ 1:27pm PDT

TCA: Chris Carter’s Apocalyptic ‘The After’ Inspired By ‘Nails Dropping On The Sepulveda Pass’After taking a 12-year break from TV in which he surfed, climbed mountains and caught up on The Shield, The X-Files creator Chris Carter returns with his sci-fi apocalyptic theme Amazon series The After early next year. Set in Los Angeles, Carter is dealing with an ensemble cast this time around vs. the two-person team of Mulder and Scully he had on X-Fileshowever, it’s not a daunting prospect as he only churning out eight episodes of The After in its first season compared with the 25 episodes he was on the hook for on the Fox series.  Of course, like most broadcast creators who make the change over to cable, it’s breath of fresh of air in their creative process, enabling them to never jump another shark again.  However, Carter exclaimed today that he has a goal to make “99 episodes of The After. I’m serious. The influence here is Dante’s Inferno and his 99 cantos.” Read More »

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J.C. Chandor To Helm ‘Deepwater Horizon’, Gulf Oil Rig Explosion Survival Tale

Mike Fleming

J.C. Chandor To Helm ‘Deepwater Horizon’, Gulf Oil Rig Explosion Survival TaleMargin Call writer-director J.C. Chandor is in talks to next helm Deepwater Horizon, the big-scale drama being mobilized by Lionsgate, Summit Entertainment and Participant Media for a winter shoot. The drama focuses on the April 20, 2010 explosion of the oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico that caused a massive offshore oil spill that created the second-largest U.S. environmental disaster. Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Mark Vahradian are producing. Matthew Michael Carnahan wrote the most recent draft.

jc chandorThe film took root at Summit and Participant two years ago, when they acquired feature rights to The New York Times article titled “Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hour,” published on December 25, 2010 and written by David Barstow, David Rohde, and Stephanie Saul. There was a heavy bidding battle for the property. Summit and Participant Media teamed on the deal and Matthew Sand wrote the first draft. The rig was owned and operated by Transocean and drilling for BP in the Macondo Prospect oil field about 40 miles southeast of the Louisiana coast. The movie isn’t a morality tale as much as it is the survival story and the courage shown by those who worked on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. More than 100 were on the rig when things turned bad. Despite their attempts to prevent disaster, the rig blew, and the explosion killed 11 workers and injured 16 others. Read More »

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