Bold Films, one of the expanding monied production companies, has gotten a couple sharp executive to steer its movies. Chairman Michel Litvak and CEO Gary Michael Walters have brought Matthew Rhodes over from running the specialty label Mandalay Vision. He will become president of Motion Pictures for Bold, and oversee the development and production departments. He reports to Litvak and Walters. They’ve also appointed vet Jeffrey Stott to head up physical production.
Rhodes joined Mandalay Vision in 2011, and was a producer on the Marjane Satrapi-directed Sundance pic The Voices, which starred Ryan Reynolds, Anna Kendrick, Gemma Arterton and Jacki Weaver. He’s also a producer on the Gilles Paquet-Brenner-directed adaptation of the Gillian Flynn novel Dark Places which stars Charlize Theron. Rhodes also produced the Lionsgate Bruce Willis-starrer Fire With Fire and Sony’s Bad Country, which stars Matt Dillon and Willem Dafoe. Before that, he ran his own shingle, Persistent Entertainment, and produced 20 films including the Lasse Halstrom-directed An Unfinished Life. He started as an assistant to producer Scott Rudin.
He comes to Bold after the company won the Sundance Grand Jury prize and Audience Award for Whiplash, with Sony Pictures Classics releasing after the film plays Cannes, and has the Ryan Gosling-directed Lost River screening at Cannes before it is released by Warner Bros. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Bold Films has established its first revolving credit line with Comerica Bank, a $35 million debt facility that will cover an expanding slate of features. It allows Bold to step up and finance The Coup, an action thriller that will shoot in Thailand in November, with Owen Wilson and Pierce Brosnan starring. The Coup, written by brothers Drew Dowdle and John Erick Dowdle and directed by John Erick Dowdle, is the story of an American expatriate businessman in a third world city who gets caught in the middle of a violent revolution. He must flee to safety with his wife and two small children while being hunted by a murderous rebel leader. Bold Films’ Michel Litvak and David Lancaster will produce with Gary Michael Walters serving as executive producer. Drew Dowdle will also produce the film.
The film was originally put together to be financed by Crime Scene Pictures. The first film covered by the Comerica facility is How To Catch A Monster, the film that marks the writing and directorial debut of actor Ryan Gosling. Christina Hendricks, Saiorse Ronan, Eva Mendes, Matt Smith and Ben Mendelsohn starred in a film that recently wrapped production in Detroit. Warner Bros will distribute the film domestically. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Bold Films has acquired Children Of The Gun, an action spec by Will Dunn that Fabrice Du Welz will direct. Deal was worth low against mid six figures. Michael Litvak and David Lancaster will produce for Bold Films, and Sean Daniel and Gary Michael Walters are exec producer. Script is set in a desolate near future, where two survivors must unite, using their urban athleticism and a weapon from the past to escape their crumbling world, ruthless pursuers and their own violent history. Dunn is currently in the Fox writing program, and is one of three original members of the program asked back for a second year. The scribe first made a splash when Channing Tatum attached to his epic spec Ion. Dunn is repped by WME, Think Tank Management and attorney Jeff Frankel.
EXCLUSIVE: Bold Films, Blumhouse Productions and Right of Way Films are teaming up to bring Damien Chazelle‘s Sundance Prize-winning short Whiplash to the screen as a feature. Bold Films will fully finance the film. Chazelle was basically dared by Right of Way and Blumhouse to direct a short based on his Black List script about a talented young drummer who strives for perfection under the instruction of a ruthless band conductor. That short was produced by Reitman’s partner Helen Estabrook and Blumhouse EVP Couper Samuelson, along with Nicholas Britell and was awarded the 2013 Sundance short film jury prize. J.K. Simmons will reprise his role from the short and star in the feature. WME Global is repping domestic rights and Sierra/Affinity is selling offshore territories. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has scored the first major acquisition of the Cannes Film Festival, before anybody has gotten on a plane. The studio is closing a deal for U.S. rights to How To Catch A Monster, the film that is shooting now. Writer-director Ryan Gosling‘s film stars Saoirse Ronan, Christina Hendricks, Eva Mendes, Matt Smith Ben Mendelsohn and Rob Zabrecky. The studio is paying a $3 million minimum guarantee for the film, a fantasy thriller in which a single mother is swept into a dark underworld, while her teenage son discovers a road that leads him to a secret underwater town. Marc Platt is the primary producer on the film. Read More »
The late Elizabeth Taylor was fondly remembered during a tribute Thursday night at the ultra-glamorous annual amFAR Cinema Against AIDS event (now in its 18th year) at Hotel Du Cap. The event co-chaired by Kenneth Cole and Harvey Weinstein broke all records, bringing in a haul of more than $10 million after an auction that also saw record prices. In clips from movies like Cleopatra and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, along with footage from her work for the organization in which she was the founding international chairman and host of the first event in 1993 Cole saluted Taylor as someone who “spoke up when others wouldn’t and said things when others can’t. I hope this will always be part of her legacy.” Weinstein added, “It was an honor to work beside her and it was an honor to watch her movies.”
Continuing the Taylor theme of the evening, two “Elizabeth” items went for big bucks in the annual auction that is always a part of this glitzy dinner, thrown near the end of each Cannes Film Festival since ’93. A limited-edition Herb Ritts photo of Taylor taken in Malibu in 1991 fetched a whopping $150,000, while an Andy Warhol dated lithograph of Liz circa 1964 fetched $400,000.
Among the stars taking part in the evening and auction were Janet Jackson, Brooke Shields, Freida Pinto, Kanye West, Rosario Dawson, Naomi Campbell, Gwen Stefani, Gavin Rossdale, Patrick Dempsey, Milla Jovovich (who opened the proceedings with a sultry “I Wanna Be Loved By You”), Jane Fonda, Goldie Hawn and Sean Penn. Penn, bringing up the rear, got big laughs demanding women abstain from sex unless their men cough up $10,000 apiece in order to break the record amount for the fundraiser. Twenty-one of them did just that. Boy George performed a couple of songs, too. Among those in the crowd were three Cannes jury members including president Robert De Niro, Uma Thurman (who also participated in the auction) and Jude Law, along with Melancholia star Kirsten Dunst, who looked happy not to have Lars von Trier as her date. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Bold Films has paid six-figures to buy Evidence, a spec script by first time writer John Swetnam, who’ll be given first crack at directing. Marc Platt will produce along with FilmEngine’s Anthony Rhulen and Jake Wagner, and Bold’s Michael Litvak and David Lancaster. Police arrive at an abandoned gas station following a brutal massacre. The only evidence at the crime scene is the victims’ personal electronic devices, including a camcorder, flip Cam, and two cell phones. With nothing else to go on, a detective must analyze the bits of “found footage” to piece together the identity of the killer. Script was one of several that went out late last week, and was the first to sell. Adam Siegel will be exec producer with Gary Michael Walters. APA’s David Boxerbaum brokered the deal with FilmEngine.
The company is a partnership between Rodriguez, OddLot Entertainment and Bold Films and will produce and finance action-oriented projects. The partnership is for multiple titles and all films will either be directed by or produced by Rodriguez. “This new venture allows us to develop, greenlight and produce films from the idea stage through delivery,” the Machete writer/director said. Quick Draw will be based in Austin, Texas. Bold Films and OddLot are both currently producing Drive, starring Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan. Separately, OddLot has two upcoming films scheduled for release in Rabbit Hole and From Prada to Nada, while one of Bold’s upcoming productions is Into Hell, directed by Alex Holmes.