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CBS Makes It Official: ‘Late Show With Stephen Colbert’ Staying in New York At Ed Sullivan Theater.

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 11:14am PDT

CBS Makes It Official: ‘Late Show With Stephen Colbert’ Staying in New York At Ed Sullivan Theater.New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Leslie Moonves, President and Chief Executive Officer, CBS Corporation, today officially announced that the Late Show with Stephen Colbert will remain in New York and will continue broadcasting from the historic Ed Sullivan Theater. The agreement includes a commitment by CBS for approximately 200 New York-based jobs to support the daily program’s year-round production schedule.

Here’s how CBS spun it this morning:

“Today, I am pleased to announce that the LATE SHOW will stay in New York, where it belongs. New York has long been an international entertainment leader, and with this commitment from CBS we are beginning the next chapter in that proud history,” Cuomo said. “The television and film industries are thriving in the Empire State – creating jobs and fueling dozens of other sectors across the state. Les Moonves and CBS have made the right decision in choosing to continue investing in New York, and as David Letterman passes the baton to Stephen Colbert, I look forward to watching THE LATE SHOW from the historic Ed Sullivan Theater for years to come.”

“We’re thrilled to continue broadcasting CBS’s LATE SHOW from New York and call the Ed Sullivan Theater its home,” said Moonves. “David Letterman has graced this hall and city with comedy and entertainment that defined a generation. When Dave decides to pass the baton next year, we look forward to welcoming Stephen Colbert, one of the most innovative and respected forces on TV, to this storied television theater. I would also

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David Andrews Joins ABC’s ‘The Whispers’, Meaghan Rath In ‘Secrets & Lies’

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:57am PDT

David Andrews Joins ABC’s  ‘The Whispers’, Meaghan Rath In ‘Secrets & Lies’David Andrews (Fight Club, Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines) has been booked as recurring on ABC thriller The Whispers, from ABC Studios and Steven Spielberg’s Amblin TV. It focuses on an an unseen force that is manipulating society’s most innocent – our children – to act in favor of its cause. As the kids unwittingly help this unknown enemy, the clock counts down in a suspenseful race to save humanity. Andrews, repped by Mavrick Artists and Untitled, will play U.S. Secretary of Defense Frommer in a minimum 6-episode arc. Frommer is always in control, calmly authoritative, steely and uncompromising. He meets with Wes regarding Captain Bennigan’s possible survival after the plane crash, surprising Wes by letting him know that Bennigan was working secret ops. He is, however, very concerned about how much Bennigan’s wife may know.
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Comic-Con: ‘Walking Dead’ EP Gale Anne Hurd & Warren Ellis Team For Universal Cable Prods TV Series

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:30am PDT

Comic-Con: ‘Walking Dead’ EP Gale Anne Hurd & Warren Ellis Team For Universal Cable Prods TV SeriesComic-Con doesn’t officially open until tomorrow, but the soon-to-be packed San Diego confab will be buzzing with this news. The Walking Dead EP Gale Anne Hurd, one of the queens of the geekfest, is partnering with Warren Ellisone of the biggest names in comics, for the latter’s first leap into the world of TV. In a deal signed with Universal Cable Productions, the as-yet-untitled Ellis project will be produced with Hurd’s Valhalla Entertainment. “I’ve been strongly drawn to television over the last few years, and working with brilliant and determined collaborators like Gale and the UCP team, I’m delighted at the opportunity to add my voice to the new, novelistic TV form that’s evolved so dramatically,” said the Iron Man: Extremis, Gun Machine and Red author today. Added Hurd: “There are very few writers who have been able to so completely influence a medium as Warren has with comic books.”

Although Ellis won’t be at Comic-Con this year, Hurd will appear again in the cavernous Hall H for the always-packed Walking Dead panel featuring AMC’s zombie apocalypse blockbuster. This year’s panel is set for Friday at 12:20 PM and will feature co-creator Robert Kirkman, cast members Andrew Lincoln and Norman Reedus and others. Read More »

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Comic-Con: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’,'Flash’,'Avengers’ Composers Panel

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:29am PDT

Comic-Con: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’,'Flash’,'Avengers’ Composers PanelComposers from a number of Marvel and DC film and TV projects will be talking about their craft at the second annual “Musical Anatomy of a Superhero” panel tomorrow, Thursday, July 24th, from 3-4 PM in the Hilton Bayfront Indigo Ballroom.  John Ottman (X-Men: Days of Future Past,Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer), Tyler Bates (Guardians of the Galaxy, Salem) Brian Tyler (Avengers: Age of Ultron, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Blake Neely (CW’s The Flash, Arrow) and Christophe Beck (Frozen, Edge of Tomorrow, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) will take attendees behind the scenes on their musical process and show clips, some never-before-seen. The event is produced by Costa Communications.

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Syfy Partners With Nick Cannon On Sci-Fi Fantasy Improv Series

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:21am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Syfy Partners With Nick Cannon On Sci-Fi Fantasy Improv SeriesEXCLUSIVE: Syfy is adding a touch of improv comedy to its lineup. The cable network has teamed with Nick Cannon‘s NCredible Entertainment for a weekly one-hour sci-fi fantasy improv series. The show will be taped in front of a live audience and feature a “home” team consisting of 4-6 national comedians who each week will face off against a different improv squad in various sci-fi/fantasy-related sketches. Casting will begin later this summer for the “away” teams. Cannon and Michael Goldman will serve as executive producers for Universal Cable Prods.

NCredible Entertainment produces music video countdown show Teen Nick Top 10 which is wrapping its third season; Nickelodeon’s React To That; Wild ‘n Out, now in its sixth season on MTV2; and an upcoming Drumline 2 sequel, slated to air in October. Cannon also hosts NBC’s America’s Got Talent.

This marks another step in Syfy’s evolution under its new leadership. The network already returned to the serialized, space opera-type dramas in the vein of Battlestar Galactica that had put it on the map and jumped back into the long-form genre with several high-profile projects.

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Comic-Con: ‘Goonies’ Reunion Not Happening In San Diego

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:11am PDT

Comic-Con: ‘Goonies’ Reunion Not Happening In San DiegoThe moppet gang’s slogan in the cult Richard Donner film is “Goonies Never Say Die,” but apparently the film’s cast reunion at San Diego’s Comic-Con is dead on the schedule. One of the organizers for the panel emailed Deadline this morning to say, ”Due to talent scheduling conflicts and unforeseen circumstances the panel was cancelled. We are saddened for all our fans, it would have been a truly memorable panel.” It’s a pity considering Goonies alums Sean Astin and Josh Brolin are both scheduled to appear in San Diego for presentations — FX’s The Strain and Dimension’s Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, respectively. Back in April, Donner casually mentioned to TMZ that a sequel was in the works, though sources close to the project confirmed that nothing was being fast-tracked at this time. Like many reunion panels at Comic-Con, sometimes the intention is to stir up the fans in hopes that their voice will impact the greenlighting of a fave project. The Goonies Never Say Die panel was scheduled for Thursday at 6 PM in the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Indigo Ballroom. Buffy The Vampire actress Clare Kramer was set to moderate.

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Michelle Fairley Joins ABC’s ‘Resurrection’

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 10:00am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Michelle Fairley Joins ABC’s ‘Resurrection’SPOILER ALERT: This story contains references to story elements and events in Season 3 of Game of Thrones

Michelle Fairley is coming back from the dead. No, this is not a surprise plot twist on HBO’s blockbuster Game of Thrones, where Fairley’s Catelyn Stark faced a spectacular demise. The Northern Irish actress is joining ABC’s drama Resurrection for a season-long story arc. She will play Margaret Langston, the formidable matriarch of the Langston clan. Mother of Henry and Fred (Kurtwood Smith, Matt Craven). Dead for more than three decades, she will reappear in Arcadia as one of the returned.

Image (2) LOGO_-ONAIR_Resurrection_57778_302__140307200731-275x154.jpg for post 696376Margaret brings with her knowledge of the Langston family’s dark past, a past she is determined to keep hidden. Her return will have consequences for the entire family. The second season of Resurrection premieres Sept. 28. In addition to Game of Thrones, Fairley recurred as international industrialist Ava Hessington on the USA series Suits and most recently played the villainous Margot Al-Harazi on Fox’s 24 Live Another Day. She is repped by Paradigm and CAM.

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Angus Macfadyen Set To Play Allan Pinkerton In Syndicated Drama Series ‘The Pinkertons’

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 9:53am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Angus Macfadyen Set To Play Allan Pinkerton In Syndicated Drama Series ‘The Pinkertons’EXCLUSIVE: Turn co-star Angus Macfadyen is set for one of the lead roles in The Pinkertons, Canadian companies Rosetta Media and Buffalo Gal Pictures’ upcoming 22-episode action-adventure detective series that is set to premiere in first-run syndication in the U.S. this fall. It has been cleared in more than 85% of the country by Rohrs Media Group on station groups including Tribune, Weigel, Hearst, LIN, Meredith, Cox and the CW PLUS.

Drawing on the real cases of Pinkerton Detective Agency, The Pinkertons follows founder Allan Pinkerton (Macfadyen), his son, William, and America’s first female detective, Kate Warne, as they solve crimes throughout the “Wild West” of the 1860s (Pinkerton is known for revolutionizing detective work by developing use of surveillance, undercover work and the mug shot). In part because of his commitment to AMC drama Turn, on which he is a regular, Macfadyen is will be a recurring guest star on The Pinkertons, not appearing in all episodes. Turn was renewed in June for a 10-episode second season to air in the spring. Read More »

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California Lost Over $1B To Runaway Production Last Year, Film Commission Says

California Lost Over $1B To Runaway Production Last Year, Film Commission SaysThe Golden State saw a loss of production spending to other states and countries more than double last year from the year before, the California Film Commission said today. According to the CFC’s annual Progress Report (read it here), more than 40 projects that applied for but did not receive a piece of California’s $100 million Film and TV Tax Credit program last year ended up spending $1.062 billion outside the state in territories that offered incentives. That’s a record loss to the state since the tax credit program was introduced in 2009 and a $722 million leap over the $370 million spent outside California in 2012-2013 on projects that missed being picked in the tax credit lottery. And here’s the thing: that $1 billion plus figure doesn’t take into account projects that didn’t even apply for the incentive last year – like tentpoles with budgets over $75 million, which are ineligible for the current program.

ca-film-commission__140602221837Still the report wasn’t all bad news — though there was a lot of that within its pages. With $700 million in tax credits allocated since California introduced its incentive program, today’s report estimates that has led to $5.39 billion in total aggregate direct spending. The CFC document adds that includes about $1.72 billion in below-the-line wages. But as anyone in the industry who has seen a friend or family member relocate to Georgia or up to B.C. for five months, it is not stopping the flood. Read More »

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Comic-Con: Sony Dates Two ‘Spider-Man’ Films And ‘Uncharted’

Mike Fleming

Comic-Con: Sony Dates Two ‘Spider-Man’ Films And ‘Uncharted’San Diego Comic-Con has become more than a place for film studios to vamp their upcoming superhero movies. Now, they use the geek frenzy to stake out release date turf. Days after Disney and Marvel declared release dates for a flurry of superhero films the studio isn’t even ready to identify yet, Columbia Pictures has set its release plans and formalized plans to expand its $4 billion Spider-Man universe. As expected, the next film in the series will be Sinister Six, writer-director Drew Goddard’s bad guy mash-up, which is the first of several planned character and story expansions. That film has been dated for release November 11, 2016, with Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach producing.

Columbia will then release the third installment of The Amazing Spider-Man in 2018.

unchartedThe studio also announced that it has slated Uncharted for June 10, 2016, the date originally held by The Amazing Spider-Man 3. The adaptation of the Sony PlayStation vidgame will be directed by Seth Gordon, and the latest draft of the screenplay is being written by David Guggenheim. They haven’t set a star to play Nathan Drake; I’ve heard they are trying to pull Mark Wahlberg back into the mix, but the studio and the actor’s reps say nothing is happening. That film will be an Arad/Atlas Entertainment Production, produced by Charles Roven, Avi Arad, Alex Gartner and Ari Arad. Read More »

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‘Mice’ Roar More: James Franco, Chris O’Dowd & Co. Will Get ‘NT Live’ Broadcasts

‘Mice’ Roar More: James Franco, Chris O’Dowd & Co. Will Get ‘NT Live’ BroadcastsProducer David Binder, juggling the smash success of two star-driven Broadway revivals — Hedwig And The Angry Inch and Of Mice And Men — added another arrow to his quiver of successful producing tips this morning by announcing a deal has been struck making the Steinbeck drama, starring James Franco, Chris O’Dowd, Leighton Meester and Jim Norton, the first Broadway show to be filmed for telecast under the wing of the UK’s National Theatre Live.

The deal was made in a flurry of activity over the last several days, Wayne Wolfe, a spokesman for the show, told Deadline, including securing the OKs of Broadway’s particularly protective unions. Read More »

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Rooney Mara Signs On For Jim Sheridan’s ‘Secret Scripture’

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 9:03am PDT

Rooney Mara Signs On For Jim Sheridan’s ‘Secret Scripture’EXCLUSIVE: After wrapping Joe Wright’s Pan picture in London, Rooney Mara will head for the Jim Sheridan-helmed The Secret Scripture. The drama, about a 100-year-old woman named Roseanne who recounts her life in mental institutions in a secret memoir, is gearing up for a September shoot in Ireland. Jessica Chastain was previously attached to star alongside Vanessa Redgrave, but now Mara will play the younger Roseanne, who survives a traumatic childhood only to see her life utterly changed by a vindictive Catholic priest. Pic reunites Sheridan with his My Left Foot producer Noel Pearson and is adapted by Johnny Ferguson from Sebastian Barry’s 2008 novel of the same name. Rooney is also currently developing A House In The Sky with Annapurna Pictures, which she’ll star in and produce. She’s repped by WME and Management 360.

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Jon Stewart Launches Kickstarter Campaign To Buy CNN: Video

Jon Stewart Launches Kickstarter Campaign To Buy CNN: VideoBecause Rupert Murdoch wants to buy Time Warner, and journalists have reported Murdoch would sell off Time Warner‘s cable news network CNN, Jon Stewart last night launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $10 billion in order to buy the network “and do…something with it. Not quite sure what yet.” ”CNN, America’s first 24-hour cable news network, has been terrible for many, many years. Does it have to be that way? Who knows, maybe it does,” The Daily Show host’s campaign explains. “So let’s find out for ourselves! This $10 billion, all-cash bid for CNN would secure control of a massive television network reaching over 100 million homes in the US alone, which we could then use to rebuild a news organization befitting this proud land. Or more likely we’d use it to make a lot more poop jokes. Either way, you get to watch!”

A mere $10 contribution gets your photo in an on-screen “21 box” of  talking heads. For $15,000 it’ll be just you and Carol Costello in a “2 box”, with 5 minutes of freestyling. And for $5 million, CNN will initiate a 24-hour, 2-week hunt for your lost car keys. Watch here:

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RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘America’s Got Talent’ Steady, ‘Food Fighters’ Debuts Soft, ‘Celebrity Wife Swap’ Falls

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 8:46am PDT

RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘America’s Got Talent’ Steady, ‘Food Fighters’ Debuts Soft, ‘Celebrity Wife Swap’ FallsLittle person, big voice. The vocal gymnastics of 11-year old Mara Justine on a Whitney Houston tune proved to be a big success with the judges on America’s Got Talent (2.4/8) last night. While the Garden State native isn’t America’s next sweetheart yet, making it as one of the contestants to get through Judgment Week on the 2-hour NBC competition show on Tuesday certainly moved her a step towards that goal. Her next stop is of course the live shows at Radio City Music Hall where things will really heat up on AGT. Not that things weren’t hot last night with candidates in six categories like kid singers, magic and comedy competed to progress to those live shows. And that was OK for AGT. Back after weeks of repeats and recap specials, the show dipped 8% from it last original on July 1. On a night of scant original competition, the 2-hour AGT was the top rated and most watched show of the night with 10.3 million viewers.

Leading into AGT last night, NBC had the debut of Food Fighters (1.0/4) at 8 PM. Unlike his now postponed new Travel Channel series, this Adam Richman-hosted show went ahead despite the controversy over some of his comments on social media. Maybe that wasn’t the best idea as the cook-off game show was down 23% from the premiere of the comparable Hollywood Game Night on July 11 last year on NBC.

The only other originals on last … Read More »

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Merger-Mania Could Depress Big Media Stocks: Analyst

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 8:23am PDT

Merger-Mania Could Depress Big Media Stocks: AnalystCowen and Co’s Doug Creutz advises investors today to “call a ‘time out’” on Big Media stocks in a break with the prevailing view on Wall Street that an upcoming round of mergers could help companies, or at least not hurt them. He fears that Fox’s bid for Time Warner will lead to “a land grab for content assets.” And companies that need cash for acquisitions probably won’t continue to repurchase shares and pay big dividends — strategies that have helped to keep investors interested in traditional media. The analyst says he now takes a ”more negative view” of Big Media, and downgraded Fox (to underperform from outperform), Viacom, and Time Warner (both to market perform from outperform). “Historically, this group has been uninvestable when M&A activity has been significant.”

Creutz observes that when Fox CEO Rupert Murdoch has had dealmaking on his mind “the shares of his company have underperformed the market.” And the analyst says he’s “not a believer that a combination with Time Warner would create significant value.”

It’s too risky to bet on traditional media, Creutz says, especially at a time when their stock prices are “near multi-year highs.” The advertising slow down in Q2 “feels like it was a little worse” than previous soft patches. It could become “a more significant negative” if the economy weakens. The pay TV cash cow could be threatened as “new over the top [Internet] distribution appears to be opening the door for insurgent content providers to potentially take market share.” And Creutz notes that the “dismal” … Read More »

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Charley Koontz Cast As Regular In ‘CSI: Cyber’

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 8:20am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Charley Koontz Cast As Regular In ‘CSI: Cyber’EXCLUSIVE: Community‘s Charley Koontz has landed his first series regular gig, a co-starring role opposite Patricia Arquette in CBS’ upcoming CSI spinoff, CSI: Cyber. Inspired by the work of real-life CyberPsychologist Mary Aiken, CSI: Cyber centers on Special Agent Avery Ryan (Arquette) who heads the Cyber Crime Division of the FBI, a unit at the forefront of solving illegal activities that start in the mind, live online, and play out in the real world. The project originated as CSICyberplanted spinoff episodes on CSI last season, which only featured Arquette. The rest of the series’ cast is currently being assembled, with Koontz as the first actor locked in. Koontz plays Agent Daniel Grummitz with the Cyber Crime Division — a social introvert and a tech genius with a quick wit and self-deprecating honesty. Workaholic by day and night, Grumitz rarely, if ever, goes home. Indeed, he spends countless hours cracking cyber cases while on the clock. Off the clock, he practices penetration tests on Conficker clones. csicyber1While Koontz has an occasional drama credit, including playing a rape/murder suspect in an episode of NBC’s Awake, the young actor is known mostly for his comedic chops, as showcased in his recurring role as (Fat) Neil on Community. Like most CBS procedurals, CSI: Cyber, created by Carol Mendelsohn, Anthony Zuiker and Ann Donahue, is expected to feature lighter moments, with Koontz likely to provide some of them.  … Read More »

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Disney Dates ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean 5′ For July 2017

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 8:15am PDT

Disney Dates ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean 5′ For July 2017Disney has slotted Pirates Of The Caribbean 5 for July 7, 2017. Right now the pic has the date to itself but will have some competition from Fantastic Four 2, which bows on July 14 that year, and Despicable Me 3, which opens June 30. Disney initially was eyeing summer 2016 to release the latest installment of the franchise, being directed by Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, but the decision was made that it wasn’t worth rushing until the script was right. Jeff Nathanson is the scribe. The first four Pirates films grossed $3.7 billion, and the last one, On Stranger Tides, crossed the $1 billion mark.

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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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Comic-Con: Will Vinton & Gnosis Moving Pictures Team To Produce Toon Features

By | Wednesday July 23, 2014 @ 7:30am PDT

Comic-Con: Will Vinton & Gnosis Moving Pictures Team To Produce Toon FeaturesEXCLUSIVE: Building on their already established relationship, the companies today announced a co-production partnership for a series of CG-animated movies to be directed byWill Vinton. Vinton is, of course, the Oscar-winning filmmaker behind Claymation. Launched last year by CEO Darius Kamali, animation and social gaming production companyGnosis Moving Pictures will team up with Vinton Entertainment for a slate that will include the  previously announced last year The Quest. The Monty Python-esque comedy that Vinton co-wrote is set in outer space and features the voice of an actual Python, John Cleese. Other pics in the worksgnosis logo small (1) include Jack Hightower, a comedic action adventure based on the Dark Horse graphic novel about a macho secret agent who’s shrunk to the size of a hotdog and Moby & Dick, a tale about the bond between fathers and sons, inspired of course by the classic Harold Melville novel. There’s also Nicholas, a mix of 3D stop-animation and CGI, an action-adventure story based on L. Frank Baum’s novel The Life And Adventures of Santa Claus.

“Our partnership with animation icon Will Vinton is poised to produce engaging and thought-provoking animated content for children and families from one of the best in the business,” said Gnosis’ Kamali. “We are looking forward to Will’s vision giving these animated stories life.” Vinton won an Academy Award for his 1974 animated short Closed Mondays and has four nominations since. He also directed the 1985 pic The Adventures Of Mark Twain. ” Together, we’ve got … Read More »

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