Robert Rodat To Rewrite ‘Thor 2′

By | Tuesday January 10, 2012 @ 5:34pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Marvel Studios has set Saving Private Ryan scribe Robert Rodat to rewrite Thor 2 for director Alan Taylor. Rodat is reworking a draft by Don Payne. Disney will put the film into production later this year for release in … Read More »

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‘Thor 2′ Director Will Be ‘Game Of Thrones’ Helmer Alan Taylor

By | Saturday December 24, 2011 @ 11:24am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Marvel Studios has found its Thor 2 director. I’m told that Marvel has set Alan Taylor, who was widely rumored to be on the short list to replace Patty Jenkins. Taylor is an accomplished TV director whose recent credits … Read More »

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Director Patty Jenkins Exits Marvel’s ‘Thor 2′

By | Tuesday December 6, 2011 @ 3:48pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Director Patty Jenkins is leaving Thor 2. Best known for directing Charlize Theron to an Oscar in Monster and the pilot of AMC’s The Killing, Jenkins had been set to helm the film in late September. I’m told … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Cabin In The Woods’

The trailer for The Cabin In The Woods went online today. The horror thriller that stars Chris Hemsworth was finished before his breakthrough as Thor. Directed by Cloverfield scribe Drew Goddard, who co-wrote it with Joss Whedon, the MGM project stalled because of that company’s financial problems and Lionsgate made … Read More »

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Brits Dominate BAFTA’s Orange Rising Star Longlist

The longlist for BAFTA’s 2012 Orange Rising Star Award has been announced. The group is made up of 4 Brits, 2 Americans, an Irishman and an Aussie who are seen as the hottest up-and-comers of the year – though some … Read More »

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Hot Teaser Trailer: ‘Snow White And The Huntsman’

Mike Fleming

Universal Pictures has released a new teaser trailer for Snow White And The Huntsman, the studio’s big revisionist fairy tale that stars Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron. Rupert Sanders directed the film, which will be released June 1, 2012. That’s several months behind Relativity Media’s Mirror, Mirror, but … Read More »

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‘Snow White And The Huntsman’ Banner




Universal has released new artwork for Snow White And The Huntsman. The three-character banner shows Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth as the title characters and Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen. Directed by Rupert Sanders, it’s slated to open June 1, … Read More »

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WME Signs British Actor Tom Hiddleston

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: WME has just signed Tom Hiddleston, who reprises his Loki character from Thor in the upcoming Joss Whedon-directed The Avengers. Hiddleston, who was last repped in the U.S. by ICM, had a year in which he also starred in … Read More »

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TOLDJA! Patty Jenkins Confirmed As ‘Thor 2′ Director

By | Thursday October 13, 2011 @ 1:03pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Deadline broke the news when Patty Jenkins was the surprise choice to direct Chris Hemsworth in Thor 2, and Marvel has just confirmed that her deal closed. Jenkins, who directed Charlize Theron in her Oscar-winning Monster performance, also directed the pilot of the AMC series The Killing. Still, she … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Avengers’

Mike Fleming

Marvel Studios has released its first full trailer for The Avengers, its Joss Whedon-directed dream teaming of Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), and team leader Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), who team up against Loki (Tom … Read More »

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Olivia Wilde Lands ‘Rush’ Role Of Suzy Miller; Russell Crowe For Richard Burton Cameo?

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: It’s a role that a lot of actresses wanted, but I’m told that Olivia Wilde will play 1970s supermodel Suzy Miller in Rush, the Ron Howard-directed Formula One drama about the rivalry between drivers Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl) and … Read More »

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Cross Creek Makes Three-Year Distribution Deal With Universal Pictures

Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Universal Pictures has made a three-year deal to distribute at least six pictures produced and funded by Cross Creek Pictures. The first film in this deal will be Rush, the Ron Howard-directed Formula One drama. Cross Creek, run by president Brian Oliver and CEO Timmy Thompson,  has quickly emerged as a significant film financier. They got started with the Darren Aronofsky-directed Black Swan and continue with the upcoming George Clooney-directed The Ides of March and Daniel Radcliffe-starrer The Woman in Black, which will be distributed by CBS Films.

The deal was announced by Universal Pictures chairman Adam Fogelson and co-chairman Donna Langley, along with Oliver and Thompson.

Cross Creek is partnered with Exclusive Media Group as co-financier and co-producer of Rush, the Howard-directed drama about the battle between ’70s Formula One racers Niki Lauda and James Hunt that stars Thor‘s Chris Hemsworth and Inglourious Basterds‘ Daniel Bruhl. Peter Morgan wrote the script, and Howard and the actors shot some footage during Formula One races held at Nurburgring Race Track in Germany. It was there, in the 70s, that Lauda was almost killed in a fiery accident that is a major part of the drama. The film seems a natural fit for Universal, since Oliver’s fellow producers are Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer and Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner. Both Imagine and Cross Creek have overall deals at the studio.

Aside from pictures that Cross Creek brings into the equation, the company will likely become a financier of existing Universal projects getting close to green lights. The budgets of the films will range from $15 million-$65 million, with the average film costing between $25 million-$35 million. Cross Creek is set up to generate up to four films per year, with Universal to distribute at least two of them with a wide-release commitment. Read More »

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Joe Roth Taking Producer Role In Angelina Jolie-Starrer ‘Maleficent’ For Disney

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: If Joe Roth were any more closely associated with fairy tales, he’d be one of the Grimm Brothers. Roth, who help start Hollywood’s feverish devotion to fairy tale films by producing the $1 billion-grossing Alice in Wonderland, is negotiating … Read More »

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Marvel Mulls ‘Monster’ Helmer Patty Jenkins For ‘Thor 2′

By | Thursday September 22, 2011 @ 9:04am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Marvel Studios is getting close to naming a director for Thor 2, and I’m hearing they might go with a surprise: Patty Jenkins, best known for directing Charlize Theron to an Oscar in Monster, and also for directing the … Read More »

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Universal Pictures Chairman Adam Fogelson Re-Upped Through 2014

Mike Fleming

BREAKING: NBCUniversal’s new owners at Comcast have given a vote of confidence to the studio’s feature film operation. They’ve exercised an option on Universal Pictures’ Chairman Adam Fogelson and extended his contract through 2014. I’m told that Fogelson is, in turn, in the process of exercising the option of Donna Langley and she will continue as the studio’s co-chairman. They will also keep their executive team intact. Fogelson will continue to have full day-to-day operating responsibility for the Motion Picture Group, reporting to Universal Studios President and Chief Operating Officer Ron Meyer (whose contract was recently re-upped through 2015) and will now also report to NBCUniversal Chief Executive Officer Steve Burke.

While Universal has had its ups and downs, higher-ups are clearly convinced that Fogelson, Langley and their team are making progress. They’ve had recent hits –Bridesmaids, Hop! and Fast Five– but also had some recent misses that include The Dilemma, Change-Up and Cowboys & Aliens. In the latter case, the studio was on the hook for one-third of the film, and shared that third with Relativity Media. It has also been a year in which Fogelson and his team have made some painful decisions and let pricey productions go. That began with the Guillermo Del Toro-directed At the Mountains of Madness, which Universal developed for years and which was ready to go with Tom Cruise, until the studio made a late decision not to go forward because of the possibility the $150M film could carry an R-rating. Universal also dropped two projects that were in advanced  stages of development: The Dark Tower, the Akiva Goldsman-directed adaptation of the Stephen King novel series that was to be made into three feature films and two limited-run TV series, with the first film and TV segment directed by Ron Howard and produced by Brian Grazer and Goldsman; and Oiuja, the Hasbro board game that had McG directing and Michael Bay and his Platinum Dunes partners producing with Hasbro. The moves were surprising because Howard and Grazer are cornerstone filmmakers for Universal; and Del Toro and Hasbro have overall deals there. Ouija is one of several Hasbro properties the studio dropped, the others being the Gore Verbinski-directed Clue, the Ridley Scott-directed Monopoly and Magic, The Gathering. These were part of a groundbreaking deal the studio made with the toymaker several years ago, but the studio and Hasbro have re-focused their attention solely on Battleship, Stretch Armstrong, and Candy Land. Read More »

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Ron Howard-Directed ‘Rush’ Revving Up This Week On German Formula One Track

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Rush, the Peter Morgan-scripted drama about the battle between ’70s Formula One racers Niki Lauda and James Hunt, will rev up for action this week. The Ron Howard-directed film doesn’t really start principal photography until after Chris Hemsworth (he plays Hunt) completes Marvel’s The Avengers in a couple of months, but he and Inglourious Basterds‘ Daniel Bruhl (Lauda) will be around this weekend at Nurburgring Race Track in Germany. A race will be held there, featuring the Formula One classic cars that were driven during the 70s. Howard will be shooting 35mm all weekend with his cast.

This is more than just an opportunity for Howard to get generic footage on a race track; Nurburgring plays a pivotal part in the drama. That’s the track where Lauda, when he was reigning world champion and the only driver to ever complete a lap on that track in less than 7 minutes, tried to rally the other drivers to boycott the German Grand Prix race from being held there in 1976 because he felt safety arrangements weren’t up to snuff. When the other drivers voted against it, Lauda took the wheel and crashed his Ferrari on the second lap. Because it was so early in the race, Lauda’s car was full of fuel; his face was badly burned and he inhaled toxic hot gases that scorched his lungs before three rival drivers got out of their cars and pulled him from the wreckage. The film focuses on Lauda’s competitive spirit, which prompted him to get back behind the wheel despite being in severe pain six weeks later in Italy to stop Hunt from taking the world title. Read More »

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Beau Flynn Makes New First-Look Producing Deal At New Line

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: After splitting up with Contrafilm partner Tripp Vinson in June following a decade-long partnership, Beau Flynn has formed a new company, Flynn Picture Co. He hasn’t strayed far from home. Flynn has made a two-year, non-exclusive, … Read More »

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Lionsgate Sets April 13, 2012 Bow For ‘The Cabin In The Woods’

By | Wednesday July 20, 2011 @ 4:46pm PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Lionsgate, which acquired worldwide distribution rights to the horror film The Cabin in the Woods from MGM, has set it for release on Friday, April 13, 2012. Deadline revealed in April that Lionsgate would take over distribution of … Read More »

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Between ‘Thor’ Turns, Chris Hemsworth Revs ‘Rush’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Chris Hemsworth will get behind the wheel to star in the role of British Formula One driver James Hunt in Rush, the Peter Morgan-scripted drama that shapes up as the next directing effort for Ron Howard. Cross Creek Pictures … Read More »

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