Just under a month after the California Film Commission plucked this year’s recipients of the state’s $100 million Film and TV Tax Credit program in a lottery, we learned today who the winners are. Fox’s movie musical revolving around the songs of the Beach Boys and Universal’s Scarface reboot are among the 11 feature films getting a piece of this year’s incentive pie. (See the full list below.) In a rare runaway production reversal, a victory for those who want to bring Hollywood home and a very early renewal, BET’s Being Mary Jane will be relocating from Atlanta to L.A. for its upcoming third season thanks to the Golden State’s tax credits. This is the first news of the high-rated Gabrielle Union-starring show, which just got its official second-season green light back in February, getting a third season. Being Mary Jane joins 12 other basic cable TV series and two TV movies getting money to be made here.
Related: It’s Time To End Lottery For Calif. Tax Credit Program (Video)
Unlike the years since the credits were first introduced in 2009, the list of initially successful projects was not released almost right away by the state Commission because it wanted to make sure everyone was truly eligible. But now that due diligence has been done and the lucky ones have been privately informed, the Commission has revealed that a total of 26 … Read More »
River Road Entertainment announced today that it has secured life rights to Beach Boys frontman Brian Wilson as well as his wife Melinda Wilson and is developing a feature film about the singer-songwriter’s wild and sometimes rocky life, during which he has battled drug addiction and mental illness and suffered a nervous breakdown while making Smile, the Beach Boys’ follow-up to their seminal album Pet Sounds. Oren Moverman, who was nominated for an Oscar for writing The Messenger, already is at work on the screenplay. (Moverman, repped by WME and NY Office, also is working on Universal and Working Title’s Kurt Cobain project, so he’s in the music biopic zone right now.) River Road founder Bill Pohlad and John Wells Productions will produce the Wilson pic, with Jim Lefkowitz executive producing.
EXCLUSIVE AND UPDATED: Fox 2000 has beat out Universal Pictures by paying north of $2 million for a pitch by Susannah Grant and rights to songs from the Beach Boys song catalogue that will form the basis for an original musical that Craig Zadan, Neil Meron, and John Stamos (who used to regularly sit in with the band in more modern times) will produce. The template for the film is to do with the Beach Boys songs what the global blockbuster Mamma Mia! did with Abba. This is not a biopic of the famous musical group; instead the Beach Boys serve as a backdrop for an original narrative. According to the log line: “The story takes place in Southern California over a summer in the 60′s. It’s inspired by the sounds of the Beach Boys music and the beach culture of that time.” Much like Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan and Amanda Seyfried belted out Abba tunes in Mamma Mia!, the idea will be to pack the film with a cast that will sing Beach Boys standards. The 2 studios bid hard on the original musical and I heard both tendered 7-figure bids for Grant’s pitch. The trio of producers already teamed The Beach Boys: An American Family, a biographical ABC miniseries about the band.
Considering how much Beach Boys tunes are indelibly linked to movies that include American Graffiti to Love Actually (how perfect was the tune God Only Knows in the … Read More »