Ron Burgundy & Co. are back December 20 in Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. Paramount’s unleashed another teaser for the currently-filming sequel with more in-character riffing but no actual footage, in what plays like outtakes from last year’s first peek:
Cannes Briefs: ‘Space Dogs 2′; Franco’s ‘Tar’; ‘The Surprise’; ‘Rudderless’; Gosling’s ‘Monster’; ‘Starry Eyes’; Wentworth Media & Arts; ‘Lilting’; ‘Third Person’; Doha Fests
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Epic Pictures is launching sales on animated action-adventure Space Dogs 2, the sequel to 2010′s canine astronaut pic Space Dogs 3D. Vadim Sotskov of Kinoatis and Sergei Sernov are producing alongside exec producers Patrick Ewald and Shaked Berenson of Epic Pictures Group. The US-Russian project is currently in production in stereoscopic 3D. Epic is also repping global sales on action-thriller The Patrol: Operation Herrick, written and directed by Tom Petch, who is producing with Tom Stuart for AFG Film Ltd. The story of a British Army patrol battling the Taliban in Afghanistan stars Owain Arthur, Nicholas Beveney, Daniel Fraser, Alex Mcnally, Oliver Mott, Ben Righton, and Nav Sidhu.
Spotlight Pictures has come aboard to sell Tar, the biopic of Pulitzer-winner poet CK Williams that stars James Franco, Mila Kunis, Jessica Chastain, Zach Braff, Henry Hopper and Bruce Campbell. The pic follows the life of Williams (Franco) as he recalls the experiences that shaped the man he became and the writer he was destined to be. It was directed by 12 NYU film students and premiered last year at the Rome Film Festival. The sales deal was negotiated by Vince Jolivette for Rabbit Bandini Productions with Carlos Rincon at Spotlight.
Open Road Films and Unclaimed Freight Productions’ Randall Miller and Jody Savin are partnering to bring Gregg Allman biopic My Cross To Bear to U.S. theaters. Miller and Savin penned the screenplay based on the New York Times bestselling autobiography of the iconic blues singer. Miller will direct. Open Road will handle U.S. distribution. The story will focus on Allman’s early struggles through the formation of The Allman Brothers Band and the group’s ultimate explosion on the music scene. Savin and Miller are working closely with Allman and his manager, Michael Lehman, both of whom will serve as executive producers. The film is expected to include original Allman Brothers tracks as well as re-recorded performances by the actor/musicians. Production is scheduled to begin late summer 2013 in Georgia. Casting is under way. The deal was negotiated on behalf of Open Road Films by Tom Ortenberg and Ben Cotner, SVP of Acquisitions. Ben Weiss of Paradigm negotiated on behalf of the filmmakers. Miller and Savin recently produced CBGB about the famous New York City rock ‘n’ roll club. CBGB is being repped in Cannes by The Exchange and several large foreign deals are under way.
Sean Ellis’ Philippines-set Metro Manila is bound for a remake courtesy of Fox International Productions which acquired rights earlier this week. The Sundance World Cinema Audience Award winner has now been picked up by distribution partners 108 Media and Paladin for North America. Written by Oscar- and BAFTA-nominated English filmmaker Ellis (Cashback) and Frankie E. Flowers, the thriller follows a poor farmer seeking a brighter future who takes the most dangerous job in Manila as an armored transport driver. Paladin’s Mark Urman and 108 CEO Rastogi negotiated the deal with Independent’s Abigail Walsh and Jessica Lacy, on behalf of ICM partners, who represent Ellis.
Myriad Pictures has tapped Richard Loncraine to direct Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton in Life Itself, a comedy based on the Jill Ciment novel Heroic Measures. Charlie Peters wrote the screenplay, about a long-married NY couple who find themselves swept into an emotional and comical real estate bidding war when they put their beloved downtown apartment on the market — and must come to terms with the possibility of moving from the home where they have spent most of their adult lives. Freeman and Lori McCreary’s Revelations Entertainment will produce with Latitude Productions. McCreary, Curtis Burch, Peters and Tracy Mercer are producing, and Freeman will executive produce. Myriad’s Kirk D’Amico and David Ducar negotiated international sales rights to the film and the company is introducing the project at Cannes. Its slate here includes Emanuel And The Truth About Fishes starring Kaya Scodelario and Jessica Biel; The Disappearance Of Eleanor Rigby: Him And Her with Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy; Life Partners with Leighton Meester, Adam Brody, and Gillian Jacobs; and the Derek Martini-directed The Curse Of Downers Grove with Bella Heathcote, Lucas Till and Kevin Zegers. CAA and WME Global co-rep North American rights to Life Itself.
Phase 4 Films has acquired U.S. and Canadian rights to The Crash Reel, which follows the different paths taken by childhood friends and rivals Shaun White and Kevin Pearce. The latter suffered a serious brain injury while training for their anticipated showdown at the Vancouver Olympics; White went on to gold medals and fame while Pierce struggled to recover. HBO, which helped finance the film, retains U.S. TV broadcast rights to the pic, which weaves 15 years of verite footage with a soundtrack that includes music from Chemical Brothers, Underworld, and Moby and chronicles Pearce’s long road to recovery. It premiered this year at Sundance. Oscar-nominated Lucy Walker (Waste Land, Devil’s Playground) directed, wrote the script with Pedro Kos and produced with Julian Cautherley. HBO’s Sheila Nevins executive produced. Phase 4 plans an early winter 2013 theatrical release. The deal was negotiated by Phase 4′s Larry Greenberg and Sam Posner with Andrew Herwitz at The Film Sales Company on behalf of the filmmakers.
This is a project that stirred a lot of excitement when it was initially announced in 2010. Writer-director Andrew Dominik was coming off of The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford at the time and then went on to make Killing Them Softly. He is still aboard to direct Blonde, which Worldview Entertainment has now optioned. The fictional biopic of Marilyn Monroe is based on a 700-page imagined memoir written by Joyce Carol Oates. Fans of the book are legion. It was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 2001, and the prolific Oates has said she thinks it may be the book for which she will be most remembered. Dominik wrote the adaptation. The filmmakers are currently casting (Naomi Watts was originally attached to play Monroe). CAA arranged financing and is packaging. The agency reps Dominik and will handle domestic rights. Wild Bunch is selling internationally.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Shine Int’l Makes CEO Permanent; New Download/Streaming Service Headed For UK
Shine International Takes Interim Tag Off Nohr
More than eight months after Nadine Nohr stepped in as interim CEO at Shine International, the company has made her gig permanent. Two years ago, the exec supervised the unit’s revamp and relocation. She began as a consultant to Shine International, the sales and distribution arm of the Shine Group, in 2011. Her resume includes a dozen years at Granada International.
First off, congratulations to all writers, producers, actors and agents who landed new series this week. I know it wasn’t easy. Here is Deadline’s annual list of those who excelled at the upfronts. I tried to be inclusive, but if I’ve missed anyone who’s had a banner week, let me know. I’ve also compiled a list of pods and independent producers with multiple broadcast series.
Cougar Town co-creator Bill Lawrence and his Doozer banner had three new series unveiled at the upfronts this week: comedies Undateable on NBC, Surviving Jack on Fox and Ground Floor on TBS. Also, TBS recently renewed Cougar Town for a fifth season.
J.J. Abrams‘ Bad Robot claimed one of the top new drama series last season with NBC’s Revolution and one of the hottest sophomore shows with CBS’ Person Of Interest. The company is keeping the momentum with two new series orders for next season: Almost Human at Fox and Believe at NBC.
Independent producer Aaron Kaplan of Kapital Entertainment received two new series orders from the broadcast networks: Back In The Game at ABC and Friends With Better Lives at CBS. Additionally, his freshman ABC comedy The Neighbors was renewed and his ABC pilot Bad Management is in serious contention for a series pickup. Kaplan also received two cable series orders in the past month, for Chasing Life on ABC Family and Instant Mom on NickMom, and also has comedy series Wendell & Vinnie on Nick at Nite and pilot HR at Lifetime.
Writer-producer Julie Plec also landed two new series this week, both at the CW: She wrote/executive produces the planted Vampire Diaries spinoff The Originals and executive produces The Tomorrow People. Additionally, she executive produces TVD, giving her three series on the air next season. (Fellow Tomorrow People executive producer Greg Berlanti has two, including returning CW hit Arrow.)
Oscar winner Ben Affleck is hosting this weekend’s Saturday Night Live season finale, but it’s musical guest Kanye West who steals the spotlight in SNL‘s set of promos. “Hell no, I’m not going on SNL skits, this is my goddamn life,” he said onstage this week at the Adult Swim upfronts. Should be fun. Watch the promos:
Mark Roberts, the creator of Mike & Molly, will be leaving the CBS comedy series, which was recently renewed for a fourth season. Roberts “will be stepping down from his showrunner and executive producer roles after three successful seasons to focus on other projects,” Mike & Molly producer Warner Bros. TV said in a statement to Deadline. “Al Higgins, currently co-executive producer of Mike & Molly, has been named executive producer and will serve as day-to-day showrunner of the comedy for its upcoming fourth season.” The studio would not comment on the reasons for the change, however there has been speculation for months that the show’s cast and crew were not happy with Roberts. Veteran comedy writer-producer Higgins has been on Mike & Molly since after the pilot. His previous series credits include NewsRadio and Malcolm In The Middle. On Mike & Molly, he will serve as executive producer alongside Chuck Lorre, who has four series on the air and has not been really involved with Mike & Molly this past season. The comedy starring Melissa McCarthy and Billy Gardell will have some time to accommodate the showrunner transition as it is slated for midseason.
Another Jason Reitman movie is getting prime awards-season placement. Paramount said the Juno and Up In The Air director’s latest, Labor Day, will open in limited release December 25 this year before expanding January 10 and going wide January 31. Tobey Maguire, Kate Winslet, Josh Brolin, J.K. Simmons, James Van Der Beek, Brooke Smith, Gattlin Griffith, and Brighid Fleming star. The studio is also co-financing the pic, which Reitman also wrote as an adaptation of the Joyce Maynard novel. The story centers on a 13-year-old boy (Griffith) from New Hampshire who learns valuable life lessons over a five-day Labor Day weekend after an escaped convict (Brolin) seeks shelter with the boy’s single mom (Winslet). Mr. Mudd’s Lianne Halfon and Russ Smith are producing along with Helen Estabrook and Reitman. Indian Paintbrush is exec producing. The date obviously is chock-full of big pics including Paramount’s own Jack Ryan, Universal’s 47 Ronin, and Fox’s The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty as well as expansions for The Weinstein Company’s Grace Of Monaco and Fox Searchlight’s Twelve Years A Slave.
Ken Venturi, the voice of PGA golf on CBS for 35 years, died today after a long hospitalization. He was 82. After a solid career as a pro golfer, including a win at the 1964 U.S. Open, he turned to broadcasting after after hanging up his spikes in 1967. He immediately became CBS’ No. 1 golf announcer and retired in 2002 as the longest-serving lead sports analyst in history. The San Francisco native, who counted Frank Sinatra among his best friends, was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame just last week but was too ill to attend the ceremony.
PREVIOUSLY, WEDNESDAY AM: Time Warner Cable, the country’s No. 2 cable service and a second unidentified pay-TV entity are considering taking a piece of the ad-supported streaming-video service, The Wall Street Journal reports. Slower growth in the pay-TV sector has the NY-based Time Warner Cable paying more attention to its broadband operations lately. Disney, News Corp and Comcast own about a third each of the 6-year-old service, which recently topped the 4 million-subscriber mark. Other groups mulling a stake in Hulu include Yahoo and the Chernin Group, run by ex-News Corp. exec Peter Chernin.
The deal’s finally done, with Kroenke Sports & Entertainment paying $10.25 a share — about $265M — for the cable channel. “As a part of KSE, Outdoor Channel will be well positioned — competitively, strategically and financially — to meet the needs of its customers and business partners,” says KSE chief Jim Martin. Outdoor Channel CEO Tom Hornish adds that the new owner will “greatly strengthen our ability to invest in assets, expand our distribution and continue to generate the unparalleled experience our viewers expect.” KSE is owned by Stan Kroenke. It owns the NFL’s St. Louis Rams and is a power in Denver with venues including the Pepsi Center, the Paramount Theater and Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, and teams including hockey’s Colorado Avalanche, the NBA’s Denver Nuggets, and Major League Soccer’s Colorado Rapids. Outdoor Channel shareholders approved the deal in a special meeting yesterday with 19.3M votes in favor and just 758,969 against. The company initially agreed in November to sell itself to InterMedia Partners, which owns The Sportsman Channel, in a deal valued at about $8 a share. But that collapsed in March when Kroenke launched a bidding war.
Summit Entertainment has hired Red and Red 2 writers Jon Hoeber & Erich Hoeber to write Red 3. Red 2 opens July 19 and returns Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren and John Malkovich among others. The screenwriting brothers’ recent credits include Battleship.
Listen to (and share) episode 35 of our audio podcast Deadline Big Media With David Lieberman. Deadline’s executive editor joins host David Bloom to discuss the advertising upfronts this week, including the CBS victory lap and whether an auto ad spending blitz will finance this year’s pricey programming; Daniel Loeb’s (and possibly Les Moonves’) plans for Sony; and National CineMedia’s whiz-bang new technologies to give exhibitors and studios more bang for their in-theater ad bucks.
Previous: Magnolia Client Rachel McAdams Fires UTA
UPDATE: Magnolia Entertainment manager Shelley Browning’s inexplicable and one-sided battle against UTA co-owner Tracey Jacobs rages on. Last month, Browning was behind Rachel McAdams firing UTA after a seven-year stint with Jacobs. Now two Swedish actors who are both Magnolia clients follow McAdams out the door for no reason: Joel Kinnaman and Noomi Rapace. Since becoming Browning’s client, Rapace has bounced between Hollywood agencies: first UTA, then WME, then back to UTA, and now out of UTA. Among the only Magnolia clients left at UTA is Daniel Espinosa (Safe House) who is directing Kinnaman and Rapace with Tom Hardy in Child 44.