‘Gone With The Bullets’ Sets China Release Date
Jiang Wen’s Gone With The Bullets has secured a December 18 release date in China. The film is the follow-up to Jiang’s blockbuster Let The Bullets Fly, which made $140M worldwide in 2010. Based on a true story, 3D comedy Gone With The Bullets is set in 1920s Shanghai. Ma Zouri (Jiang Wen) and Xiang Feitian (Ge You) establish a notorious beauty pageant called the Flowers Competition. All of the city’s elite attend the gala event, but when an unexpected winner is crowned, it sets into motion a series of tragic events that change their destinies. Per FilmBizAsia, Jiang’s Buyilehu Film told local media that it hopes the title will represent China at the Oscars next year. The film will be handled internationally by Sony Pictures Releasing International. December is a hot time locally for Chinese films with U.S. movies often out of the frame. FBA says other films believed to be eyeing a December release include Tsui Hark’s The Taking Of Tiger Mountain, Jean-Jacques Annaud’s Wolf Totem and Chen Kaige’s Taoist Mountain.
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Gone With The Bullets’ Gets China Release Date; ‘Samba’ Hitting French Theaters In October; More
‘Gone With The Bullets’ Sets China Release Date
UPDATE, 10:38 AM: Unsurprisingly, Aereo is not happy with the denial today of its attempt to overturn the six-state injunction against the Barry Diller-backed service. “We are disappointed in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals 2:1 decision denying our request to stay the injunction in the 10th Circuit,” said spokesperson Virginia Lam Abrams today after the court’s order became public. “We believe that Aereo’s individual, cloud-based antenna and DVR technology falls squarely within the law and we look forward to presenting our case to the U.S. Supreme Court.”
PREVIOUS, 9:44 AM: If you felt that the Aereo legal roller coaster went fast before, welcome to Utah. Just over a week after getting a 14-day reprieve from the 6-state injunction it had been slapped with on February 19, the Barry Diller-backed streaming service today took a hit from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. A panel of judges on the federal court denied Aereo’s emergency motion to stay the injunction.
“Aereo has not made a strong showing that it is likely to succeed on the merits of its appeal,”said two of the judges in the 2-page order (read it here) today. “Nor has Aereo demonstrated that the other factors weigh in its favor. We therefore deny Aereo’s emergency motion to stay the preliminary injunction pending appeal, .While Judge Harris Hartz says he would have granted the motion, his colleagues’ order means that Aereo’s services …
The pact calls for the Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm alum to develop and supervise projects for the pay cable network. Berg serves as executive producer/showrunner, along with Mike Judge, on Judge’s upcoming HBO comedy series Silicon Valley. Additionally, he has directed a couple of episodes of the series. Berg was previously an executive producer/writer/director on Larry David’s HBO series Curb Your Enthusiasm for four seasons. He first worked with David on NBC’s Seinfeld, where Berg rose through the ranks from staff writer to executive producer. He shared in two best comedy series Emmy nominations for Seinfeld and three for Curb. Berg is repped by UTA and attorney Ken Richman.
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Kon-Tiki’ Writer To Pen TV Drama ‘The Institution’; UK’s Feature Film Company Relaunched
‘Kon-Tiki’ Scribe To Develop Norwegian TV Drama ‘The Institution’
In the hot Nordic TV space, Norwegian writer Petter Skavlan is set to develop The Institution, an original series, for Nordisk Film. The drama is set inside a fictional royal family and will examine the inner workings of a modern European monarchy as well as discussing the ancient institution’s place in today’s society. Skavlan wrote and exec produced 2012 Oscar nominee Kon-Tiki. Also teaming on The Institution are Borgen producer Camilla Hammerich, Nordisk’s head of production Henrik Zein and executive producer Lone Korslund. Skavlan is represented by ICM Partners.
Spencer Grammer (Ironside) has been cast in Saint Francis, Chris Moynihan’s multi-camera comedy pilot for ABC, from ABC Studios and Tagline. It centers on Francis Quinlan (Michael Imperioli), a no-nonsense, blue-collar Long Island cop and family man who butts heads with the modern, liberal world when his 29-year-old sister Heather (Grammer) gets pregnant out of wedlock. Heather is a bit of a born rebel who feels dominated by her older brother and is determined to forge her own path in life. Gremmer is with UTA and Untitled.
Related: 2014 ABC Pilots
Fran Kranz has been cast in ABC’s drama pilot Exposed, from writer Charles Randolph, TBD Entertainment, and Uni TV. It centers on Anna, an investigative journalist who will stop at nothing to uncover the truth including making questionable alliances. Kranz, repped by UTA, Berwick & Kovacik and attorney Harris Hartman, plays Jeremy, Anna’s hipster younger brother, a tech genius who runs a corporation and has top-secret security clearance.
CBS News has named veteran Bill Whitaker a 60 Minutes correspondent, it was announced today by Jeff Fager, the executive producer of the newsmag and the chairman of CBS News. Whitaker, who has been based in Los Angeles, will move to the New York area and begin appearing in the fall on the CBS newsmagazine, which is America’s most-watched news program. The newsmag got nicked in its reputation when Lara Logan took a leave in the wake of the program’s since-discredited story on the Benghazi attacks.
Alex Fragen, Summit Entertainment’s former president of TV distribution who oversaw the company’s free and pay TV and VOD and PPV, has joined UTA as a strategist to help agents and clients maximize various delivery platforms. He also previously worked for 14 years at Paramount Pictures where he was responsible for all aspects of television distribution for the studio library in North America. Most recently he worked at multi-media consultancy firm Question Media Group helping such companies as EPIX, Colony Capital and AwesomenessTV to maximize their multi-platform efforts. So basically, Fragen was hired to help the agency negotiate deals and get the best terms for their clients throughout various platforms. The business model for content distribution (with the various windows) has changed so much over the years that all agencies should probably be doing this, if they aren’t already, for their clients. The move to bring in Fragen and his expertise is smart, considering that there is so much content — for instance at Sundance or other film festivals — that might not get picked up but will be able to find new life outside mainstream theatrical distribution.
This is an area UTA has been very involved with in the past. For instance, the agency helped established a distribution model for writer-producer Tom Fontana’s series Borgia on VOD and one of the first scripted series exclusivity deals for Netflix. They also assisted their client Brian Robbins create the digital network AwesomenessTV, a web-based multi-channel network (or MCN, which means it works with YouTube to facilitate the programming, cross-promotion, and monetization, in exchange for a percentage of the ad revenues from the channel). AwesomenessTV distributes content both theatrically and on cable television networks using social media platforms to brand-build.
The Tribeca Film Festival continues to roll out its lineup for this year’s 13th edition, which kicks off April 16. Here is the program slates for the Spotlight, Midnight, Special Screenings and Storyscapes sections. The fest’s shorts program will be unveiled Tuesday. Here are today’s films, which include Spotlight spots for Roman Polanksi’s Venus In Fur, the Robin Williams-starrer Boulevard from Dito Montiel, world premieres of films directed by actors Chris Messina and Courteney Cox, and of course the horror comedy Zombeavers:
A pair of flicks that were shut out at the Oscars on Sunday lead the field for the erstwhile music network’s film nods. American Hustle and The Wolf Of Wall Street snagged eight noms apiece for the 23rd MTV Movie Awards. Close behind are The Hunger Games: Catching Fire with seven and We’re The Millers with six, including a coveted Best Shirtless Performance nom for Jennifer Aniston. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, Dallas Buyers Club, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, This Is The End and Best Picture champ 12 Years A Slave are next with four apiece. Conan O’Brien will serve as host of this year’s festivities, which air live on April 13 at the Nokia Theatre in L.A. The show — which last year switched from its longtime post-Memorial Day date to April — again relishes is such signature categories as Best Kiss, Best Scared-As-S**T Performance and #WTFMoment, The telecast is exec produced by Jesse Ignjatovic. Here are the nominees:
UPDATED: Amazon Studios is building up its next pilot slate. I’ve learned that the latest project to get a pilot greenlight by the studio arm of the streaming service is single-camera comedy Red Oaks, which has Oscar-winning filmmaker Steven Soderbergh attached to executive produce and David Gordon Green (Eastbound & Down) to direct and executive produce. I hear the comedy, written/exec produced by Greg Jacobs and Joe Gangemi, is a coming-of-age comedy set at a country club and is being described as “Caddyshack with tennis“. The setting echoes that of ABC’s Susannah Grant drama series. Red Oaks eyes a June production start. Green and UTA-repped Gangemi are with the Gotham Group; Soderbergh and Jacobs with Anonymous Content. Amazon, which is streaming its second slate of 10 pilots, quietly has been greenlighting new pilots, including comedy Cosmopolitan, dramas Hand of God and Hysteria and dramedy Cocked.
Related: 2014 Amazon Studios Pilots
Patina Miller (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay) has been cast in CBS drama pilot Madam Secretary, from CBS Studios and Revelation Entertainment. Written by Barbara Hall and directed by Dave Semel, the series explores the personal and professional life of maverick female Secretary of State Elizabeth McGill (Tea Leoni) as she drives international diplomacy, wrangles office politics and balances a complex family life. Miller, repped by UTA and The Katz Co, will play Daisy, McGill’s press coordinator. Hall is exec producing with Semel and Revelation’s Lori McCreary, Morgan Freeman and Tracey Mercer.
Related: 2014 CBS Pilots
Ciara Bravo (Big Time Rush) and Nolan Sotillo (Prom) have booked lead roles on Fox’s pilot Red Band Society, from Amblin TV and ABC Studios. It is a coming-of-age drama that explores with dark humor the daily lives of a group of teenagers living in a hospital who become unlikely friends. Bravo, repped by The Savage Agency, Management 101 and attorney Bob Myman, will play Emma, a beautiful patient on the pediatric ward struggling with anorexia. CESD-repped Sotillo will play Jordi Palacios, a very smart and resourceful young man who refuses to take “No” for an answer. Bravo is repped by Authentic, Management 101 and Savage; Sotillo is with Cunningham Escott Slevin & Doherty.
Related: 2014 Fox Pilots
Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and James Weaver’s Point Grey Pictures have entered into a joint venture with Good Universe to develop comedies together. The two companies already have found great success working on such films as 50/50 and This Is The End, and Neighbors, which Universal will release May 9. They also colloborated on an untitled Christmas comedy coming from Sony Pictures. “Point Grey has been one of the most rewarding partnerships for our company, and we’re thrilled to be collaborating on this new venture. Our goal is to create a platform for ambitious filmmakers to take the reins of their projects and bring these comedies to life,” said Good Universe co-founder Nathan Kahane in a statement. Point Grey just entered into a deal with Scott Rudin and Eli Bush to produce three films for Sony. One is with the Mail Order Comedy troupe behind Comedy Central’s Workaholics. Workaholics cast members Anders Holm, Adam DeVine and Blake Anderson will star and Holm is writing the script. Also producing is Isaac Horne, who manages the trio. The second is Brooklyn Castle, which is based on the Katie Dellamaggiore-directed docu about the trials and tribulations of the junior unbeatable champion chess team in an inner-city high school. The documentary won the audience awards at SXSW. And finally, Console Wars is about the battle Sega and Nintendo for video game dominance between in the 1990s. …
EXCLUSIVE: Gillian Robespierre made a splash at this year’s Sundance Film Festival with the comedy Obvious Child. Her directorial debut about a Brooklyn comedian (Jenny Slate) who gets dumped, fired and pregnant just in time for the most chaotic Valentine’s Day of her life was acquired by A24 for low seven figures in one of the biggest deals of the festival. Now UTA has signed Robespierre as the NY-based filmmaker’s first agency representation; she continues to be repped by attorney Andre Des Rochers. Obvious Child will be released June 6.
EXCLUSIVE: Safe House helmer Daniel Espinosa is in talks with Warner Bros to develop to direct Blood On Snow, which Leonardo DiCaprio is eyeing as a potential star vehicle. This is a two-book series that Norwegian crime novelist Jo Nesbo has written under the pseudonym Tom Johansson. The books, which Knopf will publish in two installments this fall and the following spring, will be produced by Kevin McCormick’s Langley Park (which is bringing Charlie And The Chocolate Factory to Broadway) and DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson Killoran’s Appian Way, which is coming off Best Picture nominee The Wolf Of Wall Street.
They will now go out to scribes to draft the tale of a hit man who’s forced to go into hiding after he fails on a job and finds himself on the run with his intended target, who unfortunately happens to be his boss’s wife. Landing Espinosa is a coup. He’s coming off Child 44 for Summit, the adaptation of the Soviet serial killer tale that stars Tom Hardy, Joel Kinnaman, Noomi Rapace, Gary Oldman and Jason Clarke. Espinosa is repped by UTA and Magnolia Entertainment. Jon Berg and Cate Adams are steering the project for Warner Bros.
Marjane Satrapi’s English-language debut The Voices premiered this year at Sundance and stars Ryan Reynolds, Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver. Lionsgate has landed U.S. distribution rights to the horror comedy, which centers on a lovable but disturbed factory worker (Reynolds) who yearns for the attention of a woman in accounting. When their relationship takes a sudden turn, the man’s talking pets — a sinister cat and benevolent dog — lead him down a fantastical, murderous path. Michael R Perry wrote the script and Matthew Rhodes, Adi Shankar, Roy Lee and Spencer Silna produced. The film is presented by Lionsgate and 1984 Private Defense Contractors and is a Mandalay Vision, Studio Babelsberg and Vertigo Entertainment production. Satrapi’s first feature, Persepolis, was nominated for an Animated Feature Oscar in 2008. CAA and UTA co-repped the deal.
We got a peek at horror pic Oculus back in January and now Relativity has dropped the official trailer. Doctor Who‘s Karen Gillan and Brenton Thwaites star as siblings Kaylie and Tim, whose parents were killed 1o years ago in a brutal act blamed on Tim. When he’s released from custody, Kaylie sets out to prove a malevolent supernatural force was really behind their parents’ murder by returning to their childhood home. Katee Sackhoff and Rory Cochrane also star. Mike Flanagan directs from a screenplay he co-wrote with Jeff Howard, based on their short story. Oculus hits theaters on April 11.
Virginia Madsen is set to co-star opposite Meagan Good and Kyle Schmid in NBC drama pilot Babylon Fields, from Michael Cuesta, Gerald Cuesta and Michael Atkinson. The 20th TV-produced project, originally developed and piloted at CBS seven years ago, is about a town’s residents coming back from the dead. Madsen will play Rhonda Wunch, CDC scientist Thomas Wunch’s (Schmid) mother who is close to her son and wants him to stay home in Babylon. Rounding out the pilot’s regular cast are Ritchie Coster as Ernie Wunch, Thomas’ father and Rhonda’s husband, a former cop who most people thought ran away to Daytona; and Yul Vazquez as Chief of Police Matt Conte. Madsen, repped by UTA and Untitled, has recurred on Lifetime’s Witches Of East End. Coster is with Gersh and Glenn Daniels Arts Management; Vazquez is managed by Untitled.
Related: 2014 NBC Pilots
Coming off a two-year overall deal at Sony Pictures TV, 30 Rock alums Dylan Morgan and Josh Siegal have closed a two-year overall pact at Universal TV. “As their outstanding work on 30 Rock proves, Dylan and Josh are terrific, bright comedy writers,” said Uni TV EVP Bela Bajaria. Siegal and Morgan most recently served as co-executive producers on NBC’s 30 Rock, sharing in the series’ last three best comedy Emmy nominations in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Previously, Siegal and Morgan, repped by UTA and attorney Mitch Smelkinson, served as co-producers on USA Network’s Monk, having worked their way up the ranks from staff writers.
The 2014 Tribeca Film Festival unveiled 47 of its 89 feature-length films in its lineup today in the World Narrative and Documentary Competition selections as well as the out-of-competition Viewpoints pics. Thursday will see the remainder in the Spotlight, Midnight, and Special sections. The fest kicks off April 16 with the already announced opening-night film, the Nas documentary Time Is Illmatic. Dior And I will screen opening night for the World Documentary competition, the Rory Culkin-starrer Gabriel from U.S. writer-director Lou Howe will open the World Narrative competition, and Summer Of Blood will open Viewpoints — all world premieres and all to screen April 17. The fest runs through April 27. Here’s the lineups in the three sections: