Screenwriting team and Hemlock Grove creators Brian McGreevy and Lee Shipman and their producing partner Michael Connolly are teaming with novelist Philipp Meyer to write and executive produce his novel The Son as a limited series under Shipman, McGreevy and Connolly’s newly minted production banner, ShineBox SMC. The Son is a multi-generational epic telling the story of America’s birth as a superpower through the bloody rise and fall of one Texas oil empire. In addition to Meyer’s novel, ShineBox SMC also has acquired the rights to Domenica Ruta’s New York Time’s bestselling memoir With Or Without You, and journalist Wil Hylton’s military blockbuster, Vanished. Netflix‘s Hemlock Grove, produced by Gaumont International TV, is currently filming Season 2.
The Weinstein Company has acquired US TV and VOD from the Endemol British drama series Peaky Blinders. The deal covers the first three seasons with an option for others. The Steven Knight-created drama stars Cillian Murphy and Sam Neill.
“We have always been big fans of Steven Knight’s work and are extremely excited to bring this show stateside, where it’s sure to thrill audiences just as much as it did in the UK,” said Harvey Weinstein. The series premiered on BBC Two in September and they are working on a second season. Series is set in Birmingham, England in 1919 where the Shelby family lead the Peaky Blinders – a feared gang named for their practice of sewing razor blades into the peaks of their caps. Led by Thomas Shelby (Murphy), they decide to move up from bookmaking to guns when weapons go missing. Rival gangs, Communist revolutionaries and IRA Fenians descend on the city in pursuit of the weapons, as Winston Churchill dispatches a ruthless police chief from Belfast to impose order on an increasingly lawless city and recover the guns.
Liz Heldens, creator of NBC‘s 2009 medical drama Mercy, midseason mystery drama Deception and co-creator of the network’s summer series Camp, is back at NBC with another hourlong project. Produced by Universal TV and David Janollari’s studio-based David Janollari Entertainment, the untitled drama is a big family saga set against the backdrop of a Texas mega church. When the leader of the Spring Hill Congregation dies, the matriarch of the Strickland family rallies to keep the family together in a show about faith and family and all the complications that come with both. WME-repped Heldens is writing the script and executive producing with Janollari. This marks the latest sale for Janollari in his first season as a producer following a long executive stint. They include two put pilot commitments.
Jonathan Tucker has been cast in Bryan Fuller’s 90-minute Syfy pilot High Moon, which explores what happens when the countries of Earth establish colonies to mine the moon’s resources and discover a new form of life. Charity Wakefield has signed on for a guest-starring role in the pilot, written by Jim Danger Gray based on John Christopher’s novel The Lotus Caves. Tucker, repped by Booh Schut Co, UTA, and attorney Steve Warren, will play Stanislav “Stan” Stavin, a handsome and outgoing miner for the Russians who may be hiding something. He also recurs on Parenthood. Wakefield will play the smart and savvy Eve St. John-Smythe, CEO of the world’s most profitable corporation that is responsible for opening up the moon by providing oxygen to the various countries there. Tucker and Wakefield join previously cast Jake Sandvig, Chris Diamantopoulos, Dana Davis and Peter Macon.
Their business, Silver Eagle Acquisition Corp., is a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). It will use the cash from today’s IPO to hunt for deals — mostly likely ones that capitalize on their experience in content creation, although they say that they’ll consider other “high growth potential” opportunities.Jeff Sagansky formerly was CEO of Paxson Communications, Co-President of Sony Pictures Entertainment, and President of CBS Entertainment, while Harry Sloan formerly was CEO of MGM. In the IPO they sold 32.5M shares at $10 a share, and the stock — trading on NASDAQ under the symbol EAGLU — is up a few pennies in mid-day trading. Each share also includes a warrant to buy a half of a share for $5.75. Deutsche Bank Securities managed the offering.
Ray Richmond contributes to Deadline’s Comic-Con coverage.
EXCLUSIVE: Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey will premiere in the spring on Fox and National Geographic Channel and just introduced a trailer during its Comic-Con panel Saturday evening at the Indigo Ballroom. Seth MacFarlane is executive producer on the reboot of the groundbreaking 1980 Carl Sagan series and sent along a video message from the set of his movie A Million Ways To Die In The West. (Text continues below):
Joining host and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson on the panel are writer/executive producer Ann Druyan and executive producer/director Brannon Braga. On the 44th anniversary of the first moon landing, the closest thing that Comic-Con has to royalty, the late astronomer Carl Sagan’s widow Ann Druyin, held court during a session hyping the forthcoming Fox reboot of the landmark 1980s PBS miniseries Cosmos. The new series, Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey, is slated to premiere next spring. Why do a reboot? Druyin, who lost her husband when he died of pneumonia in 1996, responded, “Well, it’s a very big universe, and in the first series we covered a lot of territory. But there’s so much left. We have new stories that have yet to be told.”
Panelist Druyin said this Cosmos “is as accessible as the first one and contains information that’s at times arcane, that at other times is as less complicated. But it’s for everyone.” She also sees the pendulum swinging back to interest …
NEW YORK, NY July 11, 2013 – Silver Eagle Acquisition Corp. (the “Company”), an acquisition vehicle formed by media executives Harry E. Sloan and Jeff Sagansky, announced today that it intends to commence its initial public offering of 25,000,000 units at $10.00 per unit. The Company intends to grant the underwriters a 45-day option to purchase up to 3,750,000 additional units. Each unit issued in the initial public offering will consist of one share of the Company’s common stock and one warrant to purchase one half of one share of common stock at an exercise price of $5.75 per half share.
Silver Eagle Acquisition Corp. was formed for the purpose of acquiring one or more businesses through a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization or similar business combination. Its efforts in identifying a prospective target business will be focused on, but not limited to, the media and entertainment industries. The Company’s sponsor is Global Eagle Acquisition LLC, which was also the sponsor of Global Eagle Acquisition Corp.
Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. is acting as the sole book runner for the proposed offering.
EXCLUSIVE: Kristen Stewart has committed to star in back to back projects shooting this summer. She will star in Camp X-Ray, a politically charged drama written and directed by Peter Sattler, and she will also star in the Olivier Assayas-directed Sils Maria.
In Camp X-Ray, Stewart will play a young soldier who escapes her suffocating small town by joining the military, only to find that she isn’t going for a tour of duty in Iraq as she hoped. Instead, she’s sent to Guantanamo. Met with hatred and abuse from the Muslim men in her charge, she forges an odd friendship with a young man who has been imprisoned at Gitmo for eight years. The film’s being produced by Gina Kwon and Sophia Lin, and exec produced by David Gordon Green, Lindsay Williams and Ellen Goldsmith-Vein. Production begins late summer.
Stewart will join Juliette Binoche and Chloe Moretz in Sils Maria, the CG Cinema-produced English language film that Assayas wrote for his Summer Hours star Binoche. The film explores middle age and that introspective period where one questions how they’ve spent their life so far and what they’ve accomplished. The title refers to the Swiss setting, and Stewart plays the assistant to Binoche’s character, an actress who becomes obsessed with a young actress (Moretz) playing the role that made the older actress famous when she was young. The film shoots this summer in Europe. IFC acquired …
EXCLUSIVE: Daniel Radcliffe is set to star in Tokyo Vice, a thriller that music video and commercials director Anthony Mandler will direct from a script by playwright JT Rogers. Le Grisbi Productions’ John Lesher and Adam Kassan are producing, and production will start early 2014. Radcliffe will play American reporter Jake Adelstein who, while working at the Yomiuri Shinbun newspaper in Tokyo, covered the crime beat and locked horns with yakuza boss Tadamasa Goto, called the “John Gotti of Japan. The film is based on Adelstein’s memoir detailing how the journalist’s investigating and finally exposing the notorious gangster exacted a high personal cost and sacrifice which included death threats. Adelstein, who will be working with Rogers on the story, is still an investigative reporter who writes for The Daily Beast, The Japan Times, The Atlantic Wire, and is an adviser to Polaris Japan, a non-profit group that combats human trafficking. His second book, The Last Yakuza, will be published next year by Pantheon.
Since graduating from Hogwarts and the Harry Potter series, Radcliffe has been busy. He followed The Woman In Black and Sundance pic Kill Your Darlings with the recently wrapped horror film Horns, the romantic comedy The F Word, and he has just signed on to star in Frankenstein for Fox and Davis Entertainment. Radcliffe this June returns to the West End stage in Martin McDonagh’s The Cripple Of Inishmaan. Mandler has helmed vids with Rihanna, Jay-Z, The Killers, and Lana Del Rey. He’s attached to Vlad for Summit/Lionsgate, and Last Days Of American Crime with Oblivion producer Radical Studios. Rogers’ plays include Blood And Gifts, which played London’s National Theatre and Lincoln Center, and The Overwhelming, which also played both sides of the pond. He shared an Olivier Award nom in 2009 for Great Game: Afghanistan.
Sons Of Anarchy leading lady Katey Sagal is returning to her comedy roots with a guest stint on Fox‘s musical dramedy Glee as the never-before-seen mom of Artie (Kevin McHale). “So thrilled to announce my friend Katey Sagal is playing Artie’s mom on Glee!” Glee co-creator/executive producer Ryan Murphy wrote on Twitter, announcing the casting. “There is nothing this woman can’t do!” Sagal also is attached to a comedy project at FX written by her husband, Sons Of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter.
Tim Burton To Direct ‘Big Eyes’; The Weinstein Company Putting Finishing Brush Strokes On Deal For Painting Saga
EXCLUSIVE: Tim Burton will direct Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams in Big Eyes, the film that Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski scripted. At the same time, The Weinstein Company is closing a deal to fund and distribute. This is a major development on a project that has followed a long development track. Of all the development projects I’ve written about over the years, this is my favorite that has not yet gotten made. And the casting seems so promising. The film will be produced by Alexander and Karaszewski and Burton, with Electric City Entertainment’s Lynette Howell. This will be Burton’s next film, and production will begin this summer.
Waltz, who’s coming off another Oscar turn in Django Unchained, and Adams, nominated for The Master, will play Margaret and Walter Keane, whose paintings of large eyed children became one of the first mass marketed art sensations in the 50s and 60s. Those prints sold in gas stations and every five and dime store across the country. While Walter was the marketing genius, he also took the bows for doing the brush work. He was a full fledged celebrity, a regular on the TV talk show circuit. His shy wife was the actual artist in the family. When they split and she tried to get …
Studios rarely talk to Hollywood about their movies’ DVD and Blu-ray and sell-through and video-on-demand sales anymore. Because it would demonstrate how healthy their business is. Instead the figures are reserved for Wall Street, apparently. Yet Lionsgate‘s Summit Entertainment announced today that its Twilight Saga; Breaking Dawn Part 2 sold an estimated 3.86 million units in its debut weekend release. Both DVD and Blu-ray combined sales for this 5th film in Stephenie Meyer’s vampire novels-to-films franchise represent an increase over the opening weekend of Breaking Dawn Part 1 which along with Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games ranked as two of the top 4 home entertainment releases of 2012. Lionsgate acquired Summit Entertainment in January 2012. Blu-ray sales accounted for an estimated 27% of Part 2‘s first weekend sales, up from 22% of the first weekend sales of Part 1. Part 2 also recorded approximately 20% more electronic sell-through transactions than Part 1 and is showing early indications of a “robust” video-on-demand performance as well. Part 2 launched at 12:01 AM on Saturday with midnight retail events at more than 3,000 stores across the country. The film has grossed $829 million at the worldwide box office, a franchise best, bringing the entire Twilight Saga’s worldwide box office to more than $3.3 billion.
EXCLUSIVE: The Kill Hole, starring Sons Of Anarchy‘s Tory Kittles as an ex-Marine with a vendetta and 42‘s Chadwick Boseman as the Iraq veteran tasked with bringing him down, will open theatrically in New York on March 15 via RBC Films. A DVD release will follow April 9. The indie action-thriller from first-time director Mischa Webley aims to take advantage of Boseman’s mainstream debut as Jackie Robinson opposite Harrison Ford in 42, which Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures are releasing April 12. But the pic’s PR push seems to also capitalize on the pic’s apparent parallels to ex-LAPD cop Christopher Dorner, whose vendetta against the LA Police Department led to the murders of four people, a manhunt, and culminated this week in a nationally televised gunfight standoff in the Southern California mountains.
UPDATE: Jeremy Renner’s ‘Kill The Messenger’ Acquired By Focus Features For WW Distribution On Journo Gary Webb Saga
EXCLUSIVE UPDATE, 9:30 AM: Just after Jeremy Renner and Homeland exec producer/director Michael Cuesta came aboard Kill The Messenger, the film has formalized a deal for Focus Features to take worldwide rights. Focus will distribute in the U.S., and Focus Features International’s Allison Thompson will sell foreign in Berlin this week. This development isn’t a shock, considering that Scott Stuber set it up years ago at his home studio Universal, and it is an excellent fit at Focus. The film is about journalist Gary Webb and how his mostly accurate investigative report on how the CIA helped introduce crack to California got the journalist smeared and fired. He eventually committed suicide.
EARLIER, JANUARY 31 PM: The movie packages are coming together on the eve of next week’s Berlin film market. Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters star Jeremy Renner has been set to star in Kill The Messenger, a thriller that Michael Cuesta will direct that is based on the tragic tale of a journalist who committed suicide after being smeared by the CIA. The script was written by Peter Landesman. Cuesta seems perfect for this; he’s an exec producer and has directed numerous episodes of Homeland and has been integral in establishing the visual look of that show. He also helmed the pilots for Dexter and Elementary.
Scott Stuber, who set up this project eight years ago as producer at Universal, will be joined by Renner and Don Handfield, and it will be a co-production between Stuber’s Bluegrass and Renner’s The Combine. Naomi Despres is also producing. The film begins production in the summer.
Park City, UTAH January 18th, 2012 – RADiUS-TWC is proud to announce that it has acquired North American rights to the Sundance hit TWENTY FEET FROM STARDOM that celebrated its world premiere with an overwhelming standing ovation at last night’s Eccles screening. Produced by the beloved late A&M Records executive Gil Friesen whose dream was to tell this story about the unheralded back up singers to the world’s greatest industry legends, TWENTY FEET FROM STARDOM was directed by Grammy nominated Morgan Neville.
The film is a celebration of the voices from the edge, which brought shape and style to the soundtracks of our lives. Neville follows half a dozen diverse and gifted back up singers from throughout music history, each of whom has a story to tell of life in the shadows of superstardom (Bruce Springsteen, The Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, Sting, Joe Cocker, Bette Midler to name just a few). These talented artists represent a range of styles that come from all eras of popular music, but each singer belongs to the first family of American voice. Now is their turn for the spotlight.
RADiUS will release the film theatrically with a target date of late summer 2013.
‘Texas Chainsaw’s Alexandra Daddario, ‘Twilight Saga’s Elizabeth Reaser, 2 ‘Wire’ Alums Join New HBO Series ‘True Detective’
EXCLUSIVE: Alexandra Daddario, star of the recent No.1 movie Texas Chainsaw 3D, Elizabeth Reaser, co-star of the blockbuster Twilight Saga franchise and The Wire alums Wood Harris and Michael Potts have joined the cast of True Detective, HBO‘s upcoming eight-episode drama series starring Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey. The project is described as an elevated serial narrative with multiple perspectives and time frames. It centers on two detectives, Rust Cohle (McConaughey) and Martin Hart (Harrelson), whose lives collide and entwine during a 17-year hunt for a serial killer in Louisiana.
EXCLUSIVE: Katey Sagal is going from biker matriarch to coffeehouse proprietress. The Sons Of Anarchy actress has joined the cast of There’s Always Woodstock. Sagal will play Lee Ann, the suffer-no-fools owner of the SHOP coffeehouse in the upstate New York town. The character, also a musician, is the close friend of Catherine Brown, the romantic comedy’s lead character. Allison Miller of NBC’s Go On was recently named to the role of Brown. There’s Always Woodstock follows would-be songwriter Brown as she returns to her dead parents’ home in Woodstock, New York for the summer. In her feature directorial debut Rita Merson is helming There’s Always Woodstock. Merson, Sunrise Pictures’ Peter Schafer as well Jenny Hinkey are producing the film. Joe Dain and Jim Klock are executive producers with manager David Guillod serving as Co-Executive Producer. Katey Sagal is repped by WME and B&B Management.
Brad Pitt’s ‘Killing Them Softly’ Dies With ‘F’ CinemaScore As Twilight Saga, James Bond, And ‘Lincoln’ Dominate Box Office Yet Again
SUNDAY 7:30 AM, 3RD UPDATE: No change in the three top movies’ order at the domestic box office: Summit Entertainment’s Twilight Saga finale Breaking Dawn Part 2 is #1 for the third weekend in a row, the Eon Productions/MGM/Sony Pictures’ James Bond actioner Skyfall is a close #2, and Steven Spielberg’s Oscar buzzed Lincoln from DreamWorks/Fox/Disney is #3. It was a lean Friday but a fat Saturday. Ben Affleck’s Academy Awards-touted Argo crossed the $100M benchmark this weekend. While during the week, Wall Street called DreamWorks Animation’s Rise Of The Guardians “one of the most disappointing releases in the company’s history” – enough to hurt the public company’s share price. Analysts who expected to see $55M-$58M for the toon over Thanksgiving – not $32.6M - join Hollywood in still struggling to understand why audiences rejected the film. Toon is probably all in at just $80M.
Traditionally the weekend after Thanksgiving gives new definition to the term ‘quiet’. I’m told it’s failed to produce a wide release hit for 20 years and counting. So there were low expectations for producer Brad Pitt‘s R-rated ruthless star turn in Killing Them Softly (2,424 theaters) from his Plan B production company and Oracle heiress Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures which financed it for $15M. But Friday night it received a miserable ‘F’ CinemaScore from audiences despite decent reviews and a stellar cast including Ray Liotta, Richard Jenkins, and James Gandolfini. Little wonder that distributor …
How long will the joyride continue? Lionsgate’s stock closed today +1.6% to $16.86, exceeding the previous record of $16.68 that it reached on November 9. While that’s the company’s best closing price, it’s still shy of the intra-day high of $17.02 that it hit on November 1. But execs at the independent studio have no reason to complain. Investors remain dazzled by Lionsgate’s string of successes this year including The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2, which has generated $227M at domestic box offices in its first two weeks. Lionsgate and Summit, acquired early this year, account for about 12.2% of the domestic box office so far this year, up from 5.8% for the two in the same period in 2011. And the company’s shares have appreciated nearly 111% in 2012.