The NYC-based distributor has acquired writer-director Victor Levin’s romantic dramedy that premiered at Tribeca in April. IFC Films hasn’t set a U.S. release date for 5 To 7, which stars Anton Yelchin as an aspiring novelist who has an affair with a French diplomat’s wife (Berenice Marlohe). Cultures, worldviews, personal ethics and dietary preferences clash as love deepens. Olivia Thirlby, Lambert Wilson, Frank Langella and Glenn Close co-star in the film produced by Julie Lynn and Bonnie Curtis for Mockingbird Pictures, Sam Englebardt and William Johnson for Demarest Films. Executive producers are David Greathouse, Ruth Mutch and Benjamin and Theresa Castellano-Wood. The deal was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, SVP Acquisitions at Sundance Selects/IFC Films, with CAA and WME Global on behalf of the filmmakers.
Anton Yelchin and Zooey Deschanel will star alongside John Hawkes in The Driftless Area, a dark comedy from director and co-writer Zachary Sluser. A resourceful bartender (Yelchin) moves back to his hometown after his parents die, falls for an enigmatic woman (Deschanel) and is unwittingly pitted against a volatile crook (Hawkes). Ciaran Hinds and Alia Shawkat co-star in the dark comedy based on the novel by Tom Drury, who co-wrote the screenplay. Shooting starts May 14 in Vancouver for Unified Pictures and Bron Studios. Keith Kjarval and Aaron L. Gilbert are producing with Nicole Romano as exec producer. Radiant Films will be selling international rights at the Cannes Film Market next month, and CAA is handling domestic.
EXCLUSIVE UPDATE, 10 AM: Here is the short list of actors going up for the other lead roles in Warcraft, the Legendary Pictures/Atlas Entertainment adaptation of the vidgame World Of Warcraft. I’m told that on the short list is Paul Dano, fresh from the weekend openers Prisoners; Travis Fimmel, a revelation as the star of the History Channel series Vikings; Anson Mount, who stars in the AMC series Hell on Wheels; and Star Trek‘s Anton Yelchin. Paula Patton is in advanced negotiations and Colin Farrell has been offered one of the leads.
EARLIER EXCLUSIVE, SUNDAY PM: Legendary Pictures and Atlas Entertainment are casting up Warcraft, the movie adaptation of the hit Blizzard video game World Of Warcraft that Duncan Jones will direct. I’m told that Paula Patton is negotiating for a lead role and that another lead has been offered to Colin Farrell. I’m not sure that Farrell is going to make a deal — sources said it’s 50/50 — and Jones is testing other actors for the major roles. Production will begin in January and Charles Leavitt wrote the script.
The role-playing game takes place in a medieval-like setting where players control avatars that take on gryphons, dragons, zombies, werewolves and elves. Time travel and alien worlds also are part of the mix. The project is one of Legendary’s biggest and was supposed to be made at Warner Bros. Since Thomas Tull’s financing/production company moved over to Universal Pictures, I expect the film to be located there as well.
Selena Gomez, Anton Yelchin, Laurence Fishburne, and Billy Crudup have been cast in William H. Macy‘s directorial debut. Macy and Felicity Huffman also star in Rudderless, a musical drama about a grieving father who forms a band after finding his deceased son’s songs. The Shameless star co-wrote the original story with Casey Twenter and Jeff Robison, who adapted the script. Unified Pictures’ Keith Kjarval is producing with Amberdale’s Brad Greiner. Filming is set to begin in April in Oklahoma.
Diane Kruger and Anton Yelchin will star in the Victor Levin-directed romantic comedy 5 To 7, a project to be shopped at AFM by The Solution Entertainment Group. The plan is to begin production February in New York. Yelchin plays an aspiring novelist in a tryst with the beautiful wife of a french diplomat. Levin, whose work includes Mad Men, wrote the script.
EXCLUSIVE: Anton Yelchin has joined the cast of the Jim Jarmusch-directed Only Lovers Left Alive, which shoots this summer. The film also stars Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston, Mia Wasikowska and John Hurt, and is the story about a centuries-long love affair between two star-crossed vampires. The Like Crazy star just wrapped the JJ Abrams-directed Star Trek sequel and will next be seen in the Dean Koontz novel adaptation Odd Thomas.
EXCLUSIVE: Dakota Fanning, Elizabeth Olsen and Anton Yelchin are in final negotiations to star in Very Good Girls, the directing debut of screenwriter Naomi Foner. The project, shooting this June in New York, is being financed by Norton Herrick’s Herrick Entertainment and produced through Michael London’s Groundswell Productions alongside Lee Clay and Herrick. Hawk Koch and Gale Anne Hurd are executive producers. Fanning and Olsen play lifelong best friends in the summer after their high school graduation, both determined to lose their virginity as a rite of passage into the adult world. When they fall in love with the same boy (Yelchin), their quest becomes much more complicated and emotionally dangerous than they ever imagined. They come out of the summer more women than girls, but in ways that they never imagined. Olsen and Yelchin turned in breakout performances at last year’s Sundance, in Martha Marcy May Marlene and Like Crazy.
The film is the first in a newly signed partnership between Groundswell and Herrick. The companies will collaborate on three-five movies per year with Groundswell and Herrick both generating projects that Herrick will finance. Herrick and Groundswell will produce them under London and Groundswell head of production Janice Williams. Their second film will be The Hollars, written and to be directed by Jim Strouse (Grace is Gone). The film is …
EXCLUSIVE: ICM has signed Willem Dafoe, the veteran actor who just wrapped the Andrew Stanton-directed Disney film John Carter, with Taylor Kitsch playing the title character. Dafoe had been repped by WME. Dafoe has been working up a storm. He starred in The Hunter, a film that premiered at Toronto and has been acquired by Magnolia for release next year. He also completed production on Odd Thomas, the adaptation of the Dean Koontz novel that stars Anton Yelchin; the Abel Ferrara-directed 444 Last Day On Earth; and Boot Tracks with Michelle Monaghan. Dafoe continues to be managed by D/F Management.
EXCLUSIVE: The 19th annual Hamptons International Film Festival has set the silent film sensation The Artist to be the closing-night film premiere on Oct. 16 and the Drake Doremus-directed drama Like Crazy to be the Centerpiece Film screening Oct. 15. That film won the Grand Jury Prize at 2011 Sundance, where it was acquired by Paramount and Indian Paintbrush.
The festival will honor its star, Anton Yelchin, as one of this year’s Breakthrough Performers. Other emerging stars will be added as the festival gets closer. HIFF already announced that its opening film will be the Jay and Mark Duplass-directed Jeff Who Lives at Home. The Michel Hazanavicius-directed The Artist, acquired by The Weinstein Company on the eve of Cannes, won Best Actor honors at the festival for Jean Dujardin, who plays a silent-movie superstar at the advent of talking pictures, a development that will ruin his career.
Paramount Pictures and Indian Paintbrush have released a trailer for Like Crazy, one of the hot titles that came out of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. The Drake Doremus-directed film stars Anton Yelchin, Felicity Jones and Jennifer Lawrence, it won the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance and good things are happening for all the participants. We’ll soon discover whether that festival acclaim translates to box office when the film opens Oct. 28 in awards season.
Between The Mummy franchise, Van Helsing and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, director Stephen Sommers hasn’t made a movie outside the studio blockbuster system in about 13 years. He doing just that right now, getting underway this week on an adaptation of the Dean Koontz bestseller Odd Thomas, a series that’s expected to spark three more novels and perhaps a film franchise. The film stars Anton Yelchin as a short-order cook with clairvoyant abilities who encounters a mysterious man surrounded by dark, threatening forces. The cook’s unique abilities, which include an ability to speak with the dead, help him protect his town and family. The pic also stars Addison Timlin, Willem Dafoe, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Curtis Jackson, Nico Tortorella and Patton Oswalt. Sommers is producing with Fusion Films’ Howard Kaplan and John Baldecchi.
Sommers said the movie is unlike any he’s ever made, down to his decision to write the script without having the rights from Koontz, who has been burned enough by the movies to be wary.
We’ve certainly gotten an eyeful lately of actor/soap star/Oscar host James Franco. We even met his grandmother in that Funnyordie.com spot where she deemed moviegoers too squeamish to watch 127 Hours “a bunch of pussies.” Now it’s actor/writer Dave Franco who is building some career steam. He’s just been set to play a villain in 21 Jump Street, a film that is getting close to production at Sony Pictures. In fact, it’s so close that the inevitable rumors have started on whether Johnny Depp will show up for a cameo. After all, the TV series launched his career. I hear plans are being made for him to set aside a day to shoot one, but I’m not sure what his role will be.
Franco has so far played roles in films ranging from Superbad to Greenberg, and he most recently completed the DreamWorks remake of Fright Night, which stars Colin Farrell, Anton Yelchin, Toni Collette and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. He also has starred with Mintz-Plasse (Superbad‘s McLovin) in the widely viewed and very bawdy Funnyordie.com spot You’re So Hot. In 21 Jump Street, he’ll play Eric, the most popular kid in school, who also happens to be a raging drug dealer. Jonah Hill’s narc character befriends him to infiltrate the cool kid crowd. Franco turns 26 in June, and Hill is 28. Channing Tatum, turning 31 this month, plays another undercover officer. Are these guys really going to look like high …
2ND UPDATE 4 PM: Deadline is hearing that the ask for Like Crazy is a $2 million minimum guarantee, and a $2 million P&A commitment. Fox Searchlight, The Weinstein Company, and Summit Entertainment are circling. But nothing is easy these days; dealmakers say that the coming-of-age film would have had multi-million dollar bids on the table instantly three years ago. But distributors are circumspect these days, running models and looking hard at their release calendars to see if the picture fits. Insiders say 7-figure bidding is going on, and if that’s true, it won’t be long before a deal is made.
It is an embarrassment of riches for the UTA team of Rich Klubeck, Rena Ronson, Bec Smith, and David Flynn, who are repping or co-repping 14 titles here. Some of the most promising are front-loaded in the festival. They are moving to close a deal on The Guard (hearing Sony Pictures Classics one of those in the mix), as well as Margin Call. And they have a 6:15 PM premiere screening of the Paul Rudd-starrer My Idiot Brother, which many feel has the potential to be the festival’s biggest sale, and one that is likely to happen in a hurry if it’s got commercial breakout potential.
UPDATE, SATURDAY 3 PM: Sundance competition pic Like Crazy played strongly at the Eccles theater in Park City this afternoon. Summit’s Eric Feig went up to the film’s producer after it played, and the …
EXCLUSIVE: Sony’s Columbia Pictures is getting closer to finding its new Spider-Man. I On Friday, studio decision-makers viewed the screen tests of most of the young actors they are seriously considering to play Peter Parker in the Marc Webb-directed relaunch of Spider-Man.
I’m told that nobody has won the job yet. It is possible that more candidates will be added. But there is a strong list of actors who screen tested, and most likely the new Peter Parker is among them. I’m told that the candidates whose screen tests were viewed Friday are: Jamie Bell (the Billy Elliot star who wrapped the Kevin Macdonald-directed The Eagle of the Ninth) , Star Trek’s Anton Yelchin, Kick-Ass’s Aaron Johnson, Andrew Garfield (The Social Network), Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief) and Alden Ehrenreich (Tetro). Frank Dillane (Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince) and Michael Angerano (Lords of Dogtown) are also in the final list that the studio is working from. I’m not sure if Angarano tested. I’ve heard Dillane decided not to because he is likely headed to attend drama school at London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
The studio wants to lock in its superhero soon, so that supporting roles can be cast around him. Production will begin before the year ends and the film has locked a July 3, 2012 release. The script by Jamie Vanderbilt is still being worked on, and (500) Days of Summer director Marc Webb …