TNT has put in development Anonymous, an action-driven drama from Sons Of Anarchy executive producer Chris Collins. Wild West Prods is in negotiations to board the project, about an ex-special ops soldier who discovers a global coverup that forces him to go off the grid to help those who cannot help themselves. Collins, repped by UTA and attorney Joel McKuin, will executive produce with Wild West’s Peter Billingsley and Victoria Vaughn. Collins, whose previous credits include The Wire, Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Starz’s Crash, has several other projects in development including music-driven period event series Hit Men at Spike TV produced by Leslie Greif and Gene Simmons.
The multinational group supports file sharing and is known for denial-of-service attacks that crash or overwhelm sites, and the grand jury indictment says its first target was the MPAA. Thirteen suspected U.S. members of Anonymous face conspiracy charges tied to the loose-knit group’s “Operation Payback,” an effort launched three years ago in response to the shutdown Swedish file-sharing site Pirate Bay, the indictment says. The filing quotes one set of Anonymous instructions as saying: “This will be a calm, coordinated display of blood. We will not be merciful.” The charges, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, VA, cover attacks on government, credit card and lobbying sites. A half-dozen suspected leaders of the group were indicted in March 2012.
EXCLUSIVE: A character-driven action dramedy from Friday Night Lights and Parenthood developer/executive producer Jason Katims and feature writer Simon Kinberg has landed at Fox with a rich put pilot commitment. Titled Anonymous, the project follows a rebellious, hot-shot wunderkind who is plucked as the CIA’s latest recruit and teamed with a seasoned handler with whom he forms an unlikely father-son relationship. Katims will write and executive produce. Kinberg will executive produce, while Katims’ head of development, Michelle Lee, will serve as producer.
Heading into this season, Katims, an Emmy winner for writing the finale of Friday Night Lights, expressed interest in the CIA arena, which he had never tackled before. He was introduced to Kinberg, who has expertise in the action genre with credits including Sherlock Holmes, X-Men: The Last Stand and the upcoming X-Men: Days Of Future Past as well as two movies about spies: Mr. And Mrs. Smith and This Means War.
The German Film Academy has announced nominations for its Lola awards, the country’s equivalent to the Oscar. Christian Petzold’s Barbara, the story of an East German doctor transferred to the countryside in 1980, scored eight nods, while Roland Emmerich’s controversial Shakespeare film Anonymous and Andreas Dresen’s Cannes Un Certain Regard title Stopped On Track took seven each. All three are in the best picture category along with Tim Fehlbaum’s Emmerich-produced post-apocalyptic thriller Hell; Christian Zübert’s Three Quarter Moon, about a curmudgeonly taxi driver and a precocious little girl; and David Wnendt’s neo-Nazi picture Combat Girls. Petzold won the best director prize in Berlin last month for Barbara and is nominated in that category along with Dresen and Hans Weingartner for Hut In The Woods. Vying for best actress are
When it comes to meting out naked statuettes for Costume Design, the Academy loves its period looks. Consider the most recent winners: Alice In Wonderland, The Young Victoria, The Duchess, Elizabeth: The Golden Age and Marie Antoinette. This year, again, there’s no shortage of organza, tweed and cloches from films spanning the late 1920s to the early ’60s. Sure enough, a contender such as The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo — with its contemporary gritty style — couldn’t upset the trend. AwardsLine contributor Monica Corcoran talked to the nominees about their craft and asked each to do the unspeakable, clothe Oscar himself.
The group Anonymous appears to have crashed sites for the Justice Department, Universal Music, and the MPAA — apparently to retaliate for the Justice Department’s effort to close Megaupload. The so-called hacktivist collective claimed responsibility on Twitter. “We are too many for them!” one tweet said. Another said that it’s “the largest attack ever by Anonymous — 5,635 people confirmed” trying to bring down sites. This is the second major incident recently involving Anonymous after The New York Times reported last week that the group disclosed personal information about Time Warner’s Jeff Bewkes and Viacom’s Sumner Redstone — as well as other executives at NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Disney — to protest their companies’ support for two anti-piracy bills: the Senate’s Protect IP Act and the House’s Stop Online Piracy Act.
Time Warner’s Jeff Bewkes and Viacom’s Sumner Redstone are among the honchos under attack by Anonymous — a group of so-called Internet “hacktivists” – The New York Times reports. Bewkes apparently has already been hit with threatening phone calls and emails after the group disclosed his home addresses and phone numbers on the Web. Anonymous also revealed contact info for people at NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Disney. While it didn’t spread Redstone’s contact info, the group did circulate other material about his family. The attack is part of Anonymous’ “Operation Hiroshima,” a newly launched campaign to protest the House’s Stop Online Piracy Act and the Senate’s Protect IP Act — similar bills that would empower the federal government to block overseas Web sites that traffic in pirated content. Hollywood says they’re needed to stop rampant theft of movies and TV shows, among other things. But Internet and tech companies say the bills could end up being used to quash free speech or attack legitimate Web sites. “You take our speech. You take our Internet. You take our Bill of Rights. You take our Constitution. We fight back,” Anonymous said in a video that announced Operation Hiroshima.
Word is spreading that the Sony Pictures film Singularity is in disarray and that it’s related to Roland Emmerich’s disappointment over the studio’s release of the his Shakespeare film Anonymous. That is being denied both by the studio and by sources close to the filmmaker. I’m told that they’ve added the top authority on the subject of Singularity, Ray Kurzwell, to work with Emmerich and Harald Kloser on honing the script. Pre-production has been suspended, but the studio expects the film to start a few months later than its original March date, and stay on track for its tentative May 2013 release date.
As for Anonymous, Emmerich apparently wasn’t averse to the studio’s last minute decision to go from wide to a platform release. It is obviously important to keep Emmerich happy, since Anonymous was an anomaly for him and he generates global blockbusters as consistently as any filmmaker out there.
Sony Pictures has rethought its approach to the October 28 opening of the Roland Emmerich-directed Anonymous, which originally was planned as a wide release. Instead, the studio is taking a platform approach and debuting in 250 theaters the drama that suggests William Shakespeare didn’t write all those plays — it was really a British earl. Concerned that a soft opening as a wide release would doom what one exec described as “a magnificent film,” the powers that be decided the movie should open only in major cities, hopefully building buzz and momentum in a gradual rollout to more theaters throughout November.
The 55th BFI London Film Festival has set its slate for the 16-day festival that runs Oct. 12-27. It’s composed mostly of the high-profile films that will have made their debuts at the Venice, Telluride, Toronto and New York film festivals. The festival previously announced Fernando Meirelles’ 360 as its opener, and other highlights include George Clooney’s The Ides of March as well as The Descendants, the Alexander Payne film that stars Clooney. Lynne Ramsay’s We Need to Talk About Kevin, Michael Winterbottom’s Trishna, Roland Emmerich’s Anonymous, Madona’s W.E., Steve McQueen’s Shame, David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method and Michel Hazanavicius’ celebrated silent film The Artist are all on the docket for the Gala Premiere section.
The Film on the Square program includes the Roman Polanski-directed Carnage, Gus Van Sant’s Restless, the Paolo Sorrentino-directed Sean Penn-starrer This Must Be the Place, Oren Moverman’s Rampart, Dee Rees’ Pariah and Sean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene.