EXCLUSIVE: Oscar winner Martin Landau and Oscar-nominated Virginia Madsen are set to co-star opposite Agnes Bruckner in Lifetime’s original movie The Anna Nicole Story. American Psycho helmer Mary Harron has come on board to direct the film, executive produced by Craig Zadan, Neil Meron and Judith Verno. Written by John Rice and Joe Batteer, the biopic is based on the true life story of Vickie Lynn Hogan, a pretty but plain girl growing up in a small Texas town who transforms herself into Anna Nicole Smith – a voluptuous, Marilyn Monroe-esque Playboy pin-up and model. Determined to be noticed, for good or ill, Vickie gets her wish, but it comes at a steep price, both for her and her beloved son, Danny. Madsen will play Vickie’s mom Virgie who raised her. Landau will play oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall who married then-stripper Smith when he was 89 and she was 26. He died a year later, and Smith spent the following decade in a legal battle with Marshall’s sons over his estate. The Anna Nicole Story is produced by Sony Pictures TV and Zadan and Meron’s Storyline Entertainment. Landau, repped by TalentWorks, voices a character in the upcoming animated feature Frankenweenie. Harron is with WME.
Martin Landau & Virginia Madsen To Co-Star In Lifetime’s Anna Nicole Smith Biopic, Mary Harron To Direct
Craig Zadan & Neil Meron Extend Longform Deal With Sony, Set Up Anna Nicole Smith & Warren Jeffs Movies, ‘Bonnie & Clyde’ Mini
EXCLUSIVE: Storyline Entertainment’s Craig Zadan and Neil Meron have signed a new two-year deal with Sony Pictures Television for TV movies and miniseries. The duo, who just closed a first-look deal with Universal TV and NBCUniversal International for series and specials, have set up several high-profile new longform projects: movies about Anna Nicole Smith and Warren Jeffs at Lifetime and a Bonnie & Clyde miniseries at History.
Sony’s TV movie/mini EVP Helen Verno brought Zadan and Meron to the Sony TV fold nearly twenty years ago, making Zadan and Meron’s partnership with the studio one of the longest in the TV movie/miniseries business. Their first collaboration was the award-winning 1994 movie Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story. Since then, Zadan, Meron and Sony TV have done more than a dozen movie and minis together, including new takes on titles from the Sony libraries like A Raisin In The Sun and Zadan and Meron’s upcoming passion project, a Steel Magnolias remake for Lifetime starring Queen Latifah, Phylicia Rashad, Alfre Woodard. “(Sony TV president) Steve Mosko is a one of a kind executive and a true inspiration and supporter of our longform work, while others have walked away from the genre”, Zadan and Meron said.
Storyline’s longform development slate with Sony TV includes a biopic of the late Anna Nicole Smith at Lifetime written by John Rice and Joe Batteer. Also in the works at Lifetime is a biopic of another controversial figure, jailed FLDS Church leader Warren Jeffs, which is written by Art Monterastelli. On the two movies, as well as Lifetime’s recently aired Blue Lagoon film, Zadan and Meron teamed with Judith Verno who executive produces with them. Also at Lifetime, Zadan and Meron are in early development on a movie about the true story of Constance McMillen, the lesbian student who was denied going to her own prom. The project, written and directed by John Gray, was previously set up at ABC Family.
On the heels of the runaway success of its Hatfields & McCoys miniseries, History has partnered with Zadan and Meron to develop another mini about another famous duo from America’s past. A four-hour event miniseries based on the true story of Bonnie and Clyde is being written by Rice and Batteer.