EXCLUSIVE: Tom DeSanto has teamed with David Ranes, Grace Roeder Oppenheimer, and Wayne Duband to form New Myth Entertainment. The intention is to hatch tentpole fare, along with some filmmaker driven small films. DeSanto’s writing and producing credits include X-Men and Transformers, and he was right there at the inception of both of those projects which have done billions in box office and merchandising. DeSanto is currently writing and producing his re-imagining of the millennium-old Chinese story, Creation Of The Gods, with YiSang Media, with plans of it being his next global film franchise.
New Myth is currently developing several big properties that include Faces, a high concept action thriller, with DeSanto and Ranes producing. “When a young genius invents infallible facial recognition software he uncovers a millennia old global conspiracy that threatens to throw the planet into chaos and a new World War,” DeSanto said.
UPDATE: New Myth, Toonz Entertainment Help Launch Epiphany, A $200 Million Film Fund
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No clue if this is the start of a revenge campaign or a bit of photoshopping. But one of Deadline’s comments did suggest on June 11th that “bloWME also works” so that may have been the genesis of the idea. Now Dan Mirvish (co-founder of the Slamdance Film Festival) has put up this photo of a purported LA bench ad on his Facebook page with the question, “CAA‘s retaliation against WME?” (Thanks to FishbowlLA for tipping me off to it.) Or maybe this is a publicity stunt for Mirvish’s June 21st feature film. All I know is forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown:
Related: WME Scraps Plan For Phase Two Attack On CAA
Related: WME Responsible For CAA “CAAN’T” Attack Ads
They killed his brother. But “it’s a little more complicated than that.” A month after it screened in Competition at Cannes, Only God Forgives has a new trailer out today. Writer-director Nicolas Winding Refn reteams with his Drive star Ryan Gosling for the violent tale of a drug-running family’s thirst for revenge against some Bangkok baddies. Kristin Scott Thomas and Vithaya Pansringarm also star in the pic, which hits July 19 via Radius/The Weinstein Company:
The Monte-Carlo Television Festival wrapped in Monaco tonight with the Golden Nymph Awards handed out at the Grimaldi Forum. Hungarian coming-of-age TV movie Aglaja, directed by Krisztina Deák, was the big winner with four prizes. Breaking Bad, Modern Family, Borgen and Fresh Meat were also singled out. The festival has been attracting an increasing number of high-profile talent to the principality with cast members and execs in attendance this year from such shows as The Big Bang Theory, Breaking Bad, Crossing Lines, Dallas, Grimm, Hatfields & McCoys, Once Upon A Time, Revenge, Revolution and Scandal. Donald Sutherland received a Crystal Nymph Award earlier this week. Below is the full list of tonight’s winners for excellence in international television:
Best Television Film
M-RTL ZRT, Hungary
Krisztina Deák, Aglaja
M-RTL ZRT, Hungary
Arsher Ali, Complicit
Many Rivers Films, UK Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: ITN has dated its grindhouse indie Danny Trejo’s Vengeance to arrive on August 28, deliberately opening two weeks ahead of star Danny Trejo‘s other actioner, Robert Rodriguez’s Machete Kills. Filmmaker Gil Medina hasn’t made a ton of friends with his bold strategy of piggybacking off of P&A for the Open Road-released Machete sequel, which ITN hopes will boost interest in their rival Trejo pic. Unorthodox Medina’s gone directly to smaller exhibitors around the country offering highly desirable splits ranging from 50/50 to 80/20 in select markets. So far he’s struck deals or is in talks to book with chains including Cinemark, Carmike, Harkins, and Megaplex Theatres to run his film ahead of Machete Kills, whose distributor Open Road is owned by top chains AMC and Regal. “I’ve been told that these chains do not care to do any favors for Open Road,” Medina told me. Utah-based Megaplex Theatres even booked the bloody revenge pic, which was shot in-state, despite its relatively conservative market. Read More »
Ray Liotta has joined Revenge Of The Green Dragons, the thriller helmed by Andrew Lau and Andrew Loo, with production beginning in New York. The triad thriller is executive produced by Martin Scorsese and is fully financed by IM Global’s prolific genre label Octane. Scorsese’s Best Picture Oscar-winning The Departed was a remake of Lau’s Hong Kong gangster film Infernal Affairs. Liotta will play the lead New York detective responsible for investigating the brutal gang and bringing them to justice. He is coming off The Iceman, The Place Beyond The Pines and Killing Them Softly. Also joining the cast are Justin Chon and Harry Shum. The film’s based on Fredric Dannen’s New Yorker article about the terror spree inflicted by the Green Dragons, the gang of Asian youths in Chinatown.
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. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has acquired Rasputin, a pitch by American Sniper scribe Jason Hall that will be developed for Leonardo DiCaprio to play the Russian mystic who became an advisor to the Russian Imperial family the Romanovs. Embraced by Tsar Nicholas II and Alexandra as a healer for their only son, Tsarevich Alexei, who secretly suffered from hemophilia, Rasputin’s influence with the family in all matters grew to the point that rivals tried several times to kill him, finally succeeding in 1916. The film will be produced by Langley Park’s Kevin McCormick, by DiCaprio’s Appian Way partner Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Peter Morgan, who’s a producer on the Hall-scripted adaptation of American Sniper, which Steven Spielberg will direct with Bradley Cooper playing Navy SEAL elite sniper Chris Kyle.
This will become the blind script commitment I wrote that Hall had made at Warner Bros, this coming after that studio and DreamWorks teaming up on American Sniper. The screenwriter is also in early talks to adapt as a possible Spielberg project the David Finkel book Thank You For Your Service, about the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder syndrome that is becoming a major issue for vets returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
There have been numerous movies made about Rasputin and the controversial role he played in the Russian court, but there were new elements here unearthed by Hall … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Husband and wife scribe team Ken Marino & Erica Oyama have been set by 20th Century Fox to script the comedy True Freshman, which 21 Laps & Radar are producing. Studio hired the duo after getting them recently to adapt Go The F To Sleep for Fox 2000. True Freshman is a campus comedy in the vein as Revenge Of The Nerds and Animal House, as a team of underdogs attempt to restore athletics to their long past position of greatness at a snooty Ivy League school. Jeremy Kramer is overseeing for Fox, and Shawn Levy is producing through his 21 Laps Shingle with Radar’s Ted Field. Michael Weber is Exec Producing. The scribes are repped by Paradigm and Principato Young.
EXCLUSIVE: Ashley Davenport is done scheming on ABC‘s Revenge. I’ve learned that British actress Ashley Madekwe will not return to the soapy drama next season. Her option was not picked up due to what I hear were storyline reasons. Madekwe has been on Revenge since the pilot, but her character went through metamorphoses. Ashley was introduced as Victoria Grayson’s (Madeleine Stowe) event planner and a friend to Emily Thorne (Emily VanCamp), who brought her into the Grayson family. Driven by ambition, she fell for the diabolical Tyler (Ashton Holmes) and eventually managed to bed both Conrad Grayson (Henry Czerny) and his son Daniel (Joshua Bowman). By the end of Season 1, Ashley’s storyline played out, but the producers found a way to bring her back in a new role as Conrad’s assistant and then PR for his political campaign. With Conrad winning the election in the second-season finale, that story arc also came to a natural conclusion. Madekwe is one of two regulars to depart Revenge heading into Season 3, along with Connor Paolo, whose character Declan Porter died in the season finale. Revenge also will be with a new showrunner in Season 3, with Sunil Nayar recently replacing creator Mike Kelley.
UPDATE FRIDAY PM: Madekwe tweeted about the exit of her character from the show. “My preference is that Ashley Davenport dies in a blaze of glory. Preferable whilst wearing Valentino couture….Or … Read More »
The Spike Lee-directed remake of Park Chan-wook’s cult Korean classic will now see its wide release on October 25, 2013, after FilmDistrict originally slated it for October 11. Oldboy will now bow opposite Paramount’s Paranormal Activity 5, which already had the date. Josh Brolin, Samuel L. Jackson, Elizabeth Olsen and Sharlto Copley star in the revenge pic, which was originally part of Park’s Vengeance trilogy that included Lady Vengeance and Sympathy For Mister Vengeance. That latter movie is also getting a U.S. remake, with Silver Reel and Lotus Entertainment announcing in Cannes that they are partnering with di Bonaventura Pictures and CJ Entertainment for an English-language version from a script by Broken City‘s Brian Tucker.
2013-14 The CW New Series
The Originals – Family is power. The Original Vampire family swore it to each other a thousand years ago. They pledged to remain together, always and forever. Now, centuries have passed and the bonds of family are broken. Time, tragedy and hunger for power have torn the Original Family apart. When Klaus Mikaelson, the original vampire-werewolf hybrid, receives a mysterious tip that a plot is brewing against him in the supernatural melting pot that is the French Quarter of New Orleans, he returns to the city his family helped build. Klaus’ questions lead him to a reunion with his diabolical former protégé, Marcel, a charismatic vampire who has total control over the human and supernatural inhabitants of New Orleans. Determined to help his brother find redemption, Elijah follows Klaus and soon learns that the werewolf Hayley has also come to the French Quarter searching for clues to her family history, and has fallen into the hands of a powerful witch named Sophie. Tensions between the town’s supernatural factions are nearing a breaking point as Marcel commands his devoted followers and rules with absolute power. For Klaus, the thought of answering to his powerful protégé is unthinkable, and he vows to reclaim what was once his – the power, the city and his family. While they wait to see if their sister Rebekah will leave Mystic Falls and join them, Klaus and Elijah form an uneasy alliance with the witches to … Read More »
2013-14 NBC New Series
About A Boy – Based on the best-selling Nick Hornby (“High Fidelity,” “An Education”) novel, writer Jason Katims (“Friday Night Lights,” “Parenthood”) and director Jon Favreau (“Iron Man,” “Revolution”) present a different kind of coming-of-age story. Will Freeman (David Walton, “Bent,” “Perfect Couples”) lives a charmed existence as the ultimate man-child. After writing a hit song, he was granted a life of free time, free love and freedom from financial woes. He’s single, unemployed and loving it. So imagine his surprise when Fiona (Minnie Driver, “Good Will Hunting,” “Barney’s Version”), a needy single mom and her oddly charming 11-year-old son, Marcus (Benjamin Stockham, “1600 Penn”), move in next door and disrupt his perfect world. When Marcus begins dropping by his home unannounced, Will’s not so sure about being a kid’s new best friend, until, of course, Will discovers that women find single dads irresistible. That changes everything and a deal is struck: Marcus will pretend to be Will’s son and, in return, Marcus is allowed to chill at Will’s house. Before he realizes it, Will starts to enjoy the visits and even finds himself looking out for the kid. In fact, this newfound friendship may very well teach him a thing or two that he never imagined possible — about himself and caring for others. Writer Jason Katims, director Jon Favreau, Tim Bevan (“Les Misérables,” “About a Boy”), Eric Fellner (“Les Misérables,” “About a Boy”), Liza Chasin (“Les Misérables,” “About … Read More »
2013-14 ABC New Series
Betrayal — A chance meeting between photographer Sara Hadley (Hannah Ware) and Attorney Jack McAllister (Stuart Townsend) leads to an instant and undeniable attraction. Sarah’s husband, Drew (Chris Johnson), is a successful prosecutor with political aspirations, while Jack is married to Elaine (Wendy Moniz), the daughter of his boss, Thacher Karsten (James Cromwell). When Karsten’s brother-in-law Lou is murdered, all evidence points to Karsten’s son, T.J. (Henry Thomas). Jack, the company’s lead counsel, will have to defend him, but for Sara’s prosecutor husband, Drew, this is the kind of high-profile murder case that can secure his political future. Just as Sara and Jack’s affair is starting, the lovers find themselves in an impossible situation — on opposite sides of a murder investigation. “Betrayal” stars Hannah Ware (“Shame,” “Boss”) as Sara, Stuart Townsend (“The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen”) as Jack, James Cromwell (“Babe,” “American Horror Story”) as Thacher Karsten, Henry Thomas (“E.T.,” “Gangs of New York”) as T.J. Karsten, Chris Johnson (“The Vampire Diaries”) as Drew, Wendy Moniz (“Guiding Light,” “The Guardian”) as Elaine, Elizabeth McLaughlin (“The Clique”) as Val and Braeden Lamasters (“Men of a Certain Age”) as Vic. “Betrayal” was written by David Zabel (“ER”) and directed by Patty Jenkins (“The Killing,” “Monster”) and is executive-produced by David Zabel, Rob Golenberg (“Red Widow”) and Alon Aranya. “Betrayal” is produced by ABC Studios.
Killer Women — Of all the notorious lawmen who have ever patrolled the violent Texas frontier, none are more … Read More »
An HBO film? A VOD movie? Competing for the Palme d’Or, all seriously in one of the last bastions of pure cinema, the Cannes Film Festival‘s main competition? Oui!
With HBO’s Behind The Candelabra and Radius-TWC‘s Ryan Gosling-starrer Only God Forgives from Cannes darling Nicolas Winding Refn, a new day — and date — has dawned here. And in all these cases, huge movie stars who might not have considered anything but a traditional theatrical release and all the trimmings that go with that are suddenly here with projects that — while also possibly traveling the theatrical route, too — will simultaneously, or even first, be seen on smaller screens. This might have been considered sacreligious in the Cannes of old, but in this ever-changing film industry it’s the way of the future, at least partially.
HBO made a big splash Tuesday night with its extremely well-received Steven Soderbergh-directed movie Behind The Candelabra, the story of a very closeted Liberace and his relationship with a young man that has become one of the best-reviewed films here. Its Oscar-winning stars Michael Douglas and Matt Damon hit the Palais Grand Theatre’s red carpet, won raves and immediate awards talk here, even though one person said of the film’s Palme d’Or chances, “I can’t imagine Cannes giving an award to an HBO movie”. Really? Well, who could have imagined Cannes, a few years ago, actually embracing HBO and letting it compete at the big table which is exactly what Candelabra is doing. Many observers here think Douglas is in fact the frontrunner for the Best Actor prize for his uncanny portrayal of the uber-flamboyant Liberace. I would go as far to say that Douglas and Damon, who plays his young lover Scott Thorson (the man who wrote the expose upon which the film is based), would easily have been nominated for Oscars had this gone theatrical instead of cable in America (it will be in theaters internationally). Instead the film, which HBO begins airing Sunday in the U.S., and its stars will just have to settle for sweeping the Emmys, as it most likely will do. That it also represents what Steven Soderbergh says is his final film for the foreseeable future could actually increase his Palme d’Or chances in my view, perhaps as a message that he shouldn’t quit so soon. How ironic that no major studio or distributor wanted the film when it was initially pitched. But HBO jumped at the chance. Douglas for one is extremely grateful. He even had to hold back tears and got very choked up trying to thank his colleagues during the Cannes press conference yesterday for waiting for him while he underwent his cancer treatments.
So as their movie hits TV screens in America, could Soderbergh or his film be winning a prize in Cannes the same day? Stranger things have happened, but that would be a first. Read More »