The tie-up is a non-exclusive pact that will see Virgin Produced have the option to co-finance, co-produce and co-market a sequel to Columbia’s dystopian sci-fi pic with Will Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook. That’s of course if a sequel is warranted after the pic’s May 31 release. The deal means Virgin will also support the upcoming tentpole starring Smith and his son Jaden Smith and directed by M. Night Shyamalan, with those initiatives to be announced soon. The companies said that going forward they will look to develop film and TV properties together, in which Virgin Produced would co-produce and market across its expansive global platforms. In After Earth, a crash landing leaves teenager Kitai Raige (Jaden Smith) and his legendary father Cypher (Will Smith) stranded on Earth 1,000 years after cataclysmic events forced humanity’s escape. With Cypher critically injured, Kitai must embark on a perilous journey to signal for help. Those themes of family and Earth’s vulnerability drew the companies together. “As a company, we saw the opportunity to team up with one of the industry’s leading film and television production companies that also embraces this mission”, Virgin co-founder Jason Felts said in the deal announcement. “That’s why we’re excited to partner with Overbrook on future films.”
Here’s the latest trailer for M. Night Shyamalan’s After Earth, which pairs Will Smith with his son Jaden as a father and son who crash-land on a hostile Earth a thousand years into the future. The Sony/Columbia release has been teased since last year’s Comic-Con, and the trailer posted …
EXCLUSIVE: As Sony Pictures begins to create buzz for the M Night Shyamalan-directed Will and Jaden Smith-starrer After Earth, the studio has also sealed plans to get out in front of the summer 2013 tenpole with a number of other initiatives. Overbrook Entertainment, Sony Pictures Consumer Products, The Random House Publishing Group and Ebury Publishing is set to create a broad line of publishing products based on the film and the universe that was created from the script by Gary Whitta and Shyamalan, based on a story by Will Smith. The film is produced by Caleeb Pinkett, Smith, James Lassiter, and Shyamalan.
Luke Y. Thompson contributes to Deadline’s coverage of Comic-Con. This year’s event runs July 12-15.
Over the years, we’ve seen Comic-Con evolve from showing presentations not just for comic-book movies and sci-fi, but also horror, action, and fantasy. It’s gotten to the point where you can’t rule anything out – but the studios probably should, because not everything plays. Lionsgate last year had a free screening of The Devil’s Double that very few attended – it was a good movie, but superhero fans don’t necessarily want their escapism ruined by a hard-R movie about Uday Hussein trying to brutally murder one of his own body doubles.
Luke Y. Thompson is contributing to Deadline’s Comic-Con coverage. This year’s event runs July 12-15.
Ever since 20th Century Fox showed the naked wrestling scene from Borat a few years ago at Comic-Con, the convention has been a lot stricter about R-rated clips, and companies like The Weinstein Co. and Lionsgate have scheduled off-site events for edgier genre fare such as Machete and the later Saw sequels. But when an icon of pop culture asks for a panel at the biggest pop-culture convention, well, you give Quentin Tarantino a Saturday slot in Hall H to show Django Unchained clips. Cast members who’ll attend were not announced in the Saturday lineup posted today. That may mean they probably don’t know if Jamie Foxx’s schedule will allow it for sure (last time I remember him coming down was for Stealth. Remember that one?). Similarly, the special guests for Marvel’s Iron Man 3 panel also remain anonymous so far, though I’ll be amazed if Robert Downey Jr. doesn’t show up, as he tends to make appearances every year. Expect that Marvel panel to also show something for Thor 2, and maybe make a more formal announcement about Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man and the Russo brothers’ Captain America sequel.
The Warner Bros-Legendary panel is shaping up as the must-see of the show, with footage from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Zack Snyder’s Superman movie Man Of Steel the obvious draws, and Pacific Rim (aka Guillermo del Toro’s “giant fucking monsters against giant fucking robots”) likely to please. Rumors have been circulating that there may be another giant monster in the house, as Legendary has a Godzilla remake in the pipeline.