EXCLUSIVE: Just told you that Ben Stiller was in talks to play a role in the Alan Ball-directed I Am Chippendales, the film that’s in talks to land at The Weinstein Company. I also can tell you that …
As any guild member receiving screeners via courier the past few weeks know, the studios and networks are vehement about their DVDs not ending up in the wrong hands or wrong places. Well, seems someone on Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show isn’t quite with the War On Piracy program. A copy of The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty that began popping up online a few days ago has been traced back to The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Producers on the syndicated talker are working with Mitty distributor Fox to investigate the matter but they are not sure if they are the source of the leak. “Our show is sent advanced screeners of movies, sitcoms, reality shows, cds, etc. before guests appear on our show. We do everything we can to protect the content and in 11 seasons nothing has ever leaked online from our show,” they said in a statement I was sent. “We’re not sure if this leaked from our show or not, but we are doing everything we can to find out and to make sure it never happens again.”
Kickstarter’s former CTO Andy Baio first noted the Ellen-screener leak connection on his blog yesterday. Fox confirms that the “Ellen DeGeneres 11/26/13″ watermark on the pic online seems genuine. The DVD was made for DeGeneres and her staff as background for her interview with the film’s star and director Ben Stiller that aired in early December. The pic itself came out on Christmas Day. Sources tell me the DVD was delivered to the show on November 27 and picked up a couple of days later. Somewhere in those couple of days someone uploaded it to the web or put in online storage to upload at a later date.
Comedy Central has picked up to series pilot Big Time In Hollywood, FL with a 10-episode order. The project, produced by Ben Stiller‘s Red Hour and Brillstein Entertainment Partners, is written by Alex Anfanger and Dan Schimpf. It follows two delusional brothers and self-proclaimed filmmakers, played by Anfanger and Lenny Jacobson, who are kicked out of their parents’ house and forced to fend for themselves for the first time in their lives, leading them on an epic journey in pursuit of their American dream. Kathy Baker and Stephen Tobolowsky play the brothers’ parents, and Jon Bass co-stars in the series, whose pilot was directed by Schimpf. “Ben, Alex and Dan have fulfilled my career-long dream of having a show based in Hollywood, FL,” said Comedy Central president of original programming Kent Alterman. Added Stiller, “Big Time combines the directorial style of Hitchcock, the acting prowess of Streep, the budget of House Of Payne, and the nutritional value of Velveeta. I think people’s minds will be blown wide open. For real.” Stiller is executive producing the series with Anfanger and Schimpf, along with Red Hour’s Debbie Liebling, Stuart Cornfeld and Mike Rosenstein, and Brillstein’s Lee Kernis and Brian Stern.
20th Century Fox is hitting the New York Film Festival again today after last year’s big success with Life Of Pi, which opened the fest and went on to win four Oscars including Best Director for Ang Lee. Perhaps hoping lightning strikes twice, or maybe just praying for a commercial hit, the studio is holding the World Premiere tonight of its Christmas Day opener The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, which is directed by and stars Ben Stiller. Two and a half months before its release, critics and select press got a look at it earlier Saturday with precisely timed simultaneous screenings in New York and on the Fox lot in L.A. (An L.A.-based publicist told me they actually had a bicoastal countdown to the film’s start to make sure there was no unfair advantage.) And also like Pi, 20th earlier did an elaborate presentation during its April CinemaCcon event in Las Vegas to get exhibitors on board early for the movie they are hoping will be favorably compared to the Oscar-winning Forrest Gump. That move, which included 15 minutes of footage from the then-unfinished movie, also probably heightened blogger awards anticipation.
After giving Captain Phillips the opening-night berth, the New York Film Festival has locked the Ben Stiller-directed The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty as the Centerpiece Gala presentation. It is a first-time experience for Stiller, who was raised in New York. Here is the official word:
New York, NY, August 1, 2013 – The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today that Ben Stiller’s highly anticipated adaptation of James Thurber’s classic short story THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY which also stars Stiller alongside Kristen Wiig, will make its World Premiere on Saturday, October 5 as the Centerpiece Gala presentation for the upcoming 51st New York Film Festival (September 27 – October 13).
The first official trailer has dropped for Ben Stiller’s The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty. Stiller directs and stars in the Fox remake of James Thurber’s classic story of a day-dreamer who escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When …
Hollywood’s Proud Past Lives Again This Week With AFI, TCM Classic Film Festival And Danny Kaye Centennial
In Hollywood they say ‘everything old is new again’ and that has never been more true this week than with a massive celebration of classic films and stars. There is tonight’s AFI Night At The Movies with 13 classic titles (including Best Picture winners like In The Heat Of The Night and Terms Of Endearment) taking up every screen at Hollywood’s Arclight Theatre complete with in-person introductions from their original stars (Shirley MacLaine, Cher, Sidney Poitier, Sally Field and Harrison Ford among them). There is a year-long centennial celebration of the great Danny Kaye and a reminder of his talent at year’s end with the Fox remake of a Kaye classic, The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty. And starting Thursday with the World Premiere restoration of Funny Girl, the 4th Annual TCM Classic Film Festival kicks off its four day run in Hollywood.
Even as competing fests this week at Tribeca and in San Francisco try to steal the spotlight for new films from a new generation, The Turner Classic Movies fest has become a big deal focusing on the past. And not only for the network, but as a signature event where studios can show off new digital restorations of classic films with the same hoopla that might have accompanied their original premieres. Though its stars Barbra Streisand and Omar Sharif won’t be attending the Funny Girl restoration’s premiere at the Chinese Theatre tomorrow night (Sharif is in Europe; Streisand is sending a statement to be read by TCM host Robert Osborne) many vintage stars including festival honorees like Eva Marie Saint, Ann Blyth, Max Von Sydow and numerous others are expected to walk the red carpet. Competing for attention across the street at the Hollywood Roosevelt Pool will be TCM’s pristine digital presentation of 1958′s South Pacific with stars Mitzi Gaynor and France Nuyen on hand. TCM’s longtime talent exec, Darcy Hettrich has the herculean task of turning out all the great stars of Hollywood’s past that keep these fans buzzing.
Ben Stiller’s Red Hour Sells 2 Guy-Centered Family Comedies To ABC, Including One Written By And Starring Michael Ian Black
Ben Stiller’s Red Hour Television has scored two more sales in its maiden development season for comedies You’re Not Doing It Right and Between Two Kings. Both have been set up at ABC with a script commitment through ABC Studios, where Red Hour is under a deal, and are executive produced by Stiller, Red Hour TV’s Debbie Liebling and Stuart Cornfeld.
Single-camera You’re Not Doing It Right is starring and written by Michael Ian Black who is also executive producing with his manager Ted Schachter. Based on Black’s book and set “in the wilds of Connecticut,” the show is described as a comedy about modern marriage and parenting and takes a hard look at what happens when you wake up, look around, and don’t recognize the life you are living as your own. Black is repped by UTA.
Between Two Kings is written/executive produced by Jeff Kahn. It centers on a divorced and devoted father with sole custody of his 11-year-old son who moves into his narcissistic father’s house to care for his ailing dad and finds himself torn between the constant needs of both his self-centered father and his demanding son. Kahn is repped by WME and Andy Cohen at Grade A Entertainment.
“Of course we are all here for one reason, and that’s because Deadline Hollywood might tweet a link to a write-up about this and we all might get mentioned,” Ben Stiller joked in his very funny acceptance speech as the recipient of the 26th annual American Cinematheque Award on Thursday night at the Beverly Hilton. Friends and co-stars including Jennifer Aniston, Will Ferrell, Jack Black, Laura Dern, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Stiller’s wife Christine Taylor among others offered tributes to the star-writer-director-producer-humanitarian the Cinematheque’s chairman Rick Nicita called a “Renaissance man of comedy” — to which Stiller said later, “I didn’t know you could be a Renaissance man of just one thing. It’s like being a jack-of-all-trades of carpentry.” But judging from the numerous clips and in-person tributes, he is about much more than just “one thing”.
Jack Black, Patton Oswalt, Jennifer Aniston, Will Ferrell and Jeffrey Katzenberg will lend support as live presenters. Ben Stiller receives the American Cinematheque Award at the organization’s November 15 gala at the Beverly Hilton. The star of the upcoming The Secret Life of …
EXCLUSIVE: Ben Stiller is teaming with another comedy multihyphenate, Bonnie Hunt, for a comedy project at ABC that will star the comedienne. Hunt will write the half-hour, titled compliKATEd, with her writing partner and frequent collaborator Don Lake. The ensemble comedy centers on Kate (Hunt), a confidently insecure woman with a complicated life. It is produced by Stiller’s Red Hour Television, Hunt’s Bob & Alice Prods and ABC Studios, where Red Hour TV is under an overall deal. Hunt and Lake will executive produce with Red Hour TV’s Stiller, Debbie Liebling and Stuart Cornfeld.