Culver City, CA (November 30, 2011) – Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) and FilmDistrict have partnered with Ghost House Pictures on a worldwide deal—excluding U.K. and France —for Sony Pictures to distribute the remake of Evil Dead. The announcement was made by Steven Bersch, SPWA President, and Peter Schlessel, CEO of FilmDistrict. Lia Buman, FilmDistrict’s EVP of Acquisitions, will oversee the project.
Original producing partners Rob Tapert, Bruce Campbell (who also starred in the original franchise) and Sam Raimi will produce. Ghost House Pictures partners Joe Drake and Nathan Kahane will executive produce. Nicole Brown and J.R. Young will oversee the project for Ghost House.
Rob Tapert stated, “For 30 years, Sam, Bruce and I have been looking for the right home where we could return the deadites to the big screen. Amy Pascal and Jeff Blake at Sony and Peter Schlessel at FilmDistrict have always been incredible partners who share our passion for great storytelling as well as our obsession for scaring the pants off the audience. Together, we are looking forward to terrorizing a whole new generation.”
Added Schlessel, “I have been part of the extended Ghost House family for a long time. It’s fantastic to continue the relationship as we bring this classic horror film to a new generation of fans.”
“Sony Pictures has a fantastic history collaborating with both Ghost House and Film District and we couldn’t be more excited to continue working together on the contemporary adaptation of Evil Dead,” said Jeff Blake, Chairman of Sony Pictures Worldwide Marketing and Distribution. “Sam and Rob have an extraordinary vision and we can’t wait to share this film with audiences in most territories throughout the world.”
Fede Alvarez, who will direct the film, wrote the script with Rodo Sayagues. Academy Award® winning screenwriter Diablo Cody did revisions on the draft. Ghost House, FilmDistrict and SPWA are committed to renewing the franchise and have the film on the fast track towards a 2012 production start.
Often imitated, never equaled. Evil Dead was the horror movie that started it all. Now, after 30 years, Raimi and the original creators are passing the reins of their beloved classic to Alvarez. In this retelling, five friends hole up at a remote cabin where they discover a Book of the Dead. A demonic force is unleashed possessing each until only one is left to fight for survival.
Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert and Bruce Campbell are readying to remake their cult horror hit The Evil Dead, tapping Fede Alvarez to write and direct the redo and putting the project on the fast track via Raimi, Tapert and Nathan Kahane’s Ghost House Pictures. Alvarez, who came to the producers’ attention via his short film Panic Attack, penned the script with Rodo Sayagues, and scribe Diablo Cody is doing revisions on the latest draft. In the original 1981 film that starred Campbell, five friends at a remote cabin in the woods unknowingly summon demons from an ancient civilization, causing all sorts of bloody and gory problems. The movie spawned a pair of sequels: Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness. Raimi, Tapert and Campbell, the original film’s producers, will produce the new incarnation, and Ghost House partners Kahane and Joe Drake will executive produce. Nicole Brown and J.R. Young will oversee the project for Ghost House. Lionsgate will handle international sales on the film. Two things come to mind: The in-camera special effects were the best parts of the original, so it will be interesting to see how modern VFX will be utilized. Also, the news that Juno scribe Cody is on the case is interesting, though she does have a horror film under her belt having penned the Megan Fox-starrer Jennifer’s Body, which didn’t do much at the box office. Stay tuned on both fronts.
Former Fox executive Lee Bartlett, who ran ITV’s production arm for the past 2 years until recently stepping down, is back in the U.S., joining Discovery Communications as EVP global production management, business and legal affairs. He will report to COO Peter Liguori, reuniting with his former boss. Bartlett …
If you’re developing a prequel to your hit series Burn Notice built around Comic-Con fave Bruce Campbell, what better place to announce the plan than Comic-Con! That’s exactly what Jeff Wachtel, USA Network’s president of original programming, did at …