EXCLUSIVE: Screenwriter John Glenn has been brought on to re-imagine Abducted, a science fiction thriller that was originally acquired by the studio as a spec by John Heffernan. Disruption Entertainment’s Mary Parent and Cale Boyter will produce. JC Spink, Chris Bender and Jake Weiner are exec producers. The story centers around an alien abduction of a group of average Americans who decide to take on the aliens and battle their way off the extraterrestrial craft. Glenn, who did early drafts of Clash of the Titans and Eagle Eye, is writing the hour-long Treasure Island for NBC. That is a contemporary re-imagining of the Robert Louis Stevenson story, set in Gotham. Glenn’s repped by WME and managed by Brian Lutz.
In her first producing effort since leaving as chairman of the MGM Worldwide Motion Picture Group, Mary Parent has come aboard as producer of Pacific Rim, Legendary Pictures’ big-budget action film that Guillermo del Toro will begin shooting in November. Charlie Hunnam, Charlie Day and Idris Elba star. Parent joins Legendary’s Thomas Tull and Jon Jashini as producer, with del Toro also producing. Parent has been prepping the film for the past month. After exiting MGM, she started Disruption Entertainment and made a first-look deal at Paramount., But Legendary has plenty of movies prepping and they needed an experienced hand on the ground on location in Toronto. Parent’s Disruption execs, Cale Boyter and Luke Ryan, continue to develop projects, but Parent had the time and lends an experienced hand to a tent pole pic.
EXCLUSIVE: Mary Parent for 2 1/2 years kept beleaguered MGM together with chicken wire and chewing gum. It was only on the basis of her skill for talent-spotting and dealmaking that the studio was even able to make the movies it did, like the upcoming big comedy Zookeeper with Kevin James that’s now Sony’s major summer laugher even though Mary did the early heavy lifting by paying $2 million for the Jay Scherick/David Ronn script and hiring James a a bargain price before he made Paul Blart: Mall Cop, and then steering the pic through production. It should have been Parent’s first real swing for the fences, but the MGM uncertainty led it to be turned over for distribution by its SPE partners. So all of Hollywood took a run at Parent when she finally exited MGM last October after hiring on April 2008. Now I can report that she has chosen to land at Paramount for her new overall deal. The veteran filmmaker who segued from a Universal exec to a producer on the lot, to MGM’s co-CEO, to back to producer now is taking with her Cale Boyter and Luke Ryan, the two former New Line executives who had joined her at MGM. “Now I can do as a producer what we didn’t get to do together at the studio. I have a lot of pent-up energy now that I’m no longer locked up,” Parent tells me. …
Where in heck is all the money supposedly coming from to fund this beleaguered studio’s “renewed” movie slate? No one seems to know. Nevertheless, MGM announced today that it has named Cale Boyter as executive VP of production. He’s billed as MGM’s new mogul Mary Parent’s first senior hire. (See my previous, Desperate MGM Studios Throws Hail Mary.) A veteran at New Line for the last 10 years, Boyter recently served as New Line’s executive VP of development.