EXCLUSIVE: Topher Grace is in talks for a supporting role in the Chris Nolan-directed Interstellar for Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. He joins Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain and Michael Caine in a film that Nolan and Emma Thomas are producing with Lynda Obst, with Jordan Goldberg exec producing. Grace most recently starred opposite Susan Sarandon in the Jason Stone-directed The Calling and wrapped the romantic comedy A Many Splintered Thing opposite Chris Evans, Michelle Monaghan and Aubrey Plaza. Grace is represented by ICM Partners and Brillstein Entertainment Partners.
Warner Bros has done everything possible to keep a lid on the details of the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises. So it’s a shocker that today the studio posted a 49-page document filled with production notes – including a synopsis a well as some dialogue and several interviews with the main actors and other behind-the-scenes intel –on the ‘About The Film’ section of the official website. Deadline has decided to publish the notes (via .pdf here) since they’re in the public domain. Please do not read them if you want to be surprised when the finale of Chris Nolan’s Batman trilogy opens nationwide on July 20th.
EXCLUSIVE: After Dan Aloni exited CAA and was quickly named a WME partner, the big question was how many of the clients he worked with would jump. Deadline told you that his biggest client, Chris Nolan, declared before Aloni landed that he was staying with his longtime agent wherever he went. I’m hearing that aside from The Dark Knight Rises director, Aloni clients who’ve moved from CAA to WME so far are Tom Shadyac, Michel Gondry, Raja Gosnell, Mandeville Films, Jonathan Mostow, Dean Parisot, Neal Moritz, Andy Fleming and David and Ian Purchase. Several other clients are still in play, including David Dobkin, Jim Carrey, Charles Roven and Jay Roach. More to come.
EXCLUSIVE: Chris Nolan has just left CAA, in the wake of the firing of Dan Aloni. A source close to the situation tells me that Nolan and his producer/wife Emma Thomas, will be going wherever Aloni lands. This makes Aloni a prime commodity in the marketplace, whether he goes to an agency like WME or becomes a manager. I broke the story earlier today when CAA abruptly fired Aloni, on the grounds that he didn’t mesh with the agency’s culture. Nolan directed the three Batman films as well as Inception. He also produced Superman film Man of Steel. He’s a billion dollar director that any agency would kill to represent. Nolan is only 41 and he’s going to make a lot more movies.
I’d heard early today that while CAA tried to keep Nolan in the fold, the agency more or less expected this might happen. The agency is due about $12 million in commissions from past and upcoming film deals brokered for Nolan, which cushioned the blow somewhat. What a crazy development this has been. Nolan’s move underscores what I’ve heard about Aloni: he can be a prick with co-workers, but he kills for his clients and they are loyal in return. I’m waiting to see if Aloni’s other clients feel the same. Aside from the directors I mentioned earlier, he’s got Jay Roach and David Dobkin, and producers like Neal …
UPDATE: I’m told that as of right now, Aloni’s top client Chris Nolan has not left the CAA fold. We’ll have to wait and see if that changes. There is speculation that Aloni could perhaps become a manager, or that he would land at WME. If the latter move is going to happen, it hasn’t yet because even that agency was caught off guard by what happened. I’ve also heard that no matter what happens, CAA is looking at a huge commission cushion from Nolan’s Inception, Batman trilogy and Superman, which he’s producing. The prospect of that revenue made it easier to decide life’s too short, which is evidently what happened between CAA and Aloni.
PREVIOUS EXCLUSIVE: In a major and surprising development, Dan Aloni has left CAA abruptly. I’m told it was the result of an eroding relationship with the agency and his coworkers. It sounds like his approach didn’t mesh with the CAA culture. I’ve heard that it led to his firing. Which just happened. Aloni came over to CAA in October 2005 after a long stint at UTA. He has an amazing list of writers and directors, including The Dark Knight Rises helmer Chris Nolan, Tom Shadyac, David Goyer, Michel Gondry, Dean Parisot and others. I’m not sure whether Aloni will move to another agency, and will follow this story as it develops. It does put a lot of clients in play, that’s for sure. I’ve …
BREAKING: Anne Hathaway has closed a deal to join Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe in Les Miserables, the Universal Pictures and Working Title Films musical adaptation of the stage play and classic novel. Hathaway will play Fantine, and her participation had been rumored for some time. Crowe plays Inspector Javert and Jackman is Jean Valjean. The film’s being directed by Tom Hooper, who helmed the Oscar-winning The King’s Speech.
Universal has set the picture for release in the center of next year’s Oscar race with a December 7, 2012 date. Cameron Mackintosh is producing with Working Title’s Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Debra Hayward. William Nicholson wrote the script and the music is by Claude-Michel Schonberg and Alain Boublil. Hathaway is currently playing Catwoman in the Chris Nolan-directed The Dark Knight Rises for Warner Bros.
EXCLUSIVE: Superman is getting a new mom. Ayelet Zurer, the Israeli actress who starred in Angels & Demons and who played the wife of Avner (Eric Bana) in Munich, has been set to play the role of Lara Lor-Van, Superman’s Kryptonian mother, in Man of Steel. Production is underway on the Warner Bros/Legendary film. That role was originally going to be played by Julia Ormond. I was unable to find out why director Zack Snyder made the last-minute change, but I’ve confirmed that Zurer will start filming this week. Henry Cavill plays Superman, Russell Crowe plays Superman’s Kryptonian father, Jor-El, and Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane and Michael Shannon also star. Zurer will next be seen starring in the Lawrence Kasdan-directed Darling Companion opposite Diane Keaton, Kevin Kline and Dianne Wiest for Sony Pictures Classics. She’s repped by IFA Talent Agency. Man of Steel is produced by Chris Nolan, Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder and Emma Thomas.
Though Warner Bros found itself in the Oscar race last year with Chris Nolan’s Inception, awards season isn’t usually when the studio shines. This year, Warner Bros finds itself with not one but two potential contenders in the Oscar race, and the studio has found a way to give both films space from each other. Warner Bros has set the Clint Eastwood-directed Leonardo DiCaprio-starrer J Edgar for a limited release on Wednesday, Nov. 9, with a wide release set for two days later. Eastwood produced with Imagine partners Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, and Robert Lorenz.
Warner Bros has dated the Stephen Daldry-directed drama Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close for limited release on Dec. 25, with a wide release to take place on Jan. 20, 2012. That film stars Oscar winners Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock, and it was produced by Scott Rudin, who’s always got at least one film in the Oscar race.
Warner Bros also slotted the sequel Journey 2: The Mysterious Island 3D for Feb. 10, moving the film off its original Jan. 27 date. And the Alfonso Cuaron-directed Gravity 3D, with George Clooney and Bullock, has been set for Nov. 12, 2012. The big role in that space film is the one played by Bullock, so Warner Bros could have two years of Oscar campaigning for the actress, who won her first Academy Award for The Blind Side.
Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures have released a teaser for The Dark Knight Rises, Chris Nolan’s third and possibly final installment of the Batman franchise. Pic stars Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway and Marion Cotillard, with Nolan bringing back a lot of the cast of his last film Inception.
Months ago, Relativity Media released a teaser trailer for Immortals, the big-budget Tarsem Singh-directed pic that stars Henry Cavill, who subsequently was chosen by Warner Bros, Zack Snyder and Chris Nolan to be Superman in Man of Steel. Deadline’s comment contingent beat up on that teaser pretty good. Now, Relativity has generated the full trailer for a film that’ll be released Nov. 11. Is it any better?
Even though Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life won the Palme d’Or at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, the film is still such an extraordinarily ambitious work that Fox Searchlight can use all the help it can get broadening it behind Malick acolytes (like me). So they’ve drafted two directors who have a kinship with the young demo that drives movies to big grosses. Check out this short video, as The Dark Knight Rises director Chris Nolan and The Social Network’s David Fincher explain why this is required viewing.
Theater Owners Fight Premium VOD In Canada, As Chris Nolan, Quentin Tarantino And Others Join Outcry
In a keynote speech at industry confab ShowCanada, NATO President & CEO John Fithian today urged Canadian movie theater operators to be vigilant in their focus on theatrical release windows. Challenging a recently announced proposal from four Hollywood studios to release movies early to the home on “premium” VOD, Fithian explained the dangers of the model. “Early VOD releases to the home could damage the movie industry in two significant ways,” Fithian asserted. “Early releases will reduce movie ticket sales, and will exacerbate movie theft by giving pirates an early pristine copy of movies.” Fithian also reiterated NATO’s call for the participating studios to release sales data from their experiment. “How can the industry evaluate the studios’ test if they continue to hide the facts.”
Fithian’s remarks at ShowCanada marked an expanded, global phase in NATO’s work to preserve the theatrical release window. Beginning with Canada this week, moving to Europe later in the month and onto Australia in August, Fithian will hold dozens of meetings with leading international exhibitors on the topic. “We hope that this early VOD experiment begins and ends in the U.S.,” Fithian continued. “But if not, we want exhibitors everywhere to be prepared.”
Neither of these castings in The Dark Knight Rises has been a surprise since February, but it demonstrates Chris Nolan’s preference for working with the same actors. Both Gordon-Levitt and Cotillard starred in Inception, as did Tom Hardy, who was set earlier. Cotillard, who’ll play Wayne Enterprises board member Miranda Tate, was rumored for her role in February, and Deadline was first to reveal that Gordon-Levitt was in talks. He will play John Blake, Gotham beat cop. Here’s the official word from Warner Bros:
BURBANK, CA, April 19, 2011 – Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that Oscar® winner Marion Cotillard (“La Vie en Rose”) and Joseph Gordon-Levitt have joined the cast of “The Dark Knight Rises,” the epic conclusion to the Dark Knight legend.
Cotillard will appear as Miranda Tate, a Wayne Enterprises board member eager to help a still-grieving Bruce Wayne resume his father’s philanthropic endeavors for Gotham. Gordon-Levitt will play John Blake, a Gotham City beat cop assigned to special duty under the command of Commissioner Gordon. The film reunites the actors with Christopher Nolan, who recently directed them in the award-winning blockbuster “Inception.”
The director stated, “When you collaborate with people as talented as Marion and Joe, it comes as no surprise that you would want to repeat the experience. I immediately thought of them for the roles of Miranda and Blake, and I am looking forward to working with both of them again.”
Before it got released on DVD today, Tron: Legacy managed to play in theaters long enough to establish Joseph Kosinski as the highest-grossing first-time director of a live-action film in Hollywood history. The film’s $399 million global gross recently eclipsed the $397.5 million gross that JJ Abrams turned in on 2006′s Mission: Impossible 3.
Now, such a distinction is relative. Tron: Legacy cost between $165 million and $170 million to make and a comparable amount to market. Sam Mendes made his debut on the $15 million American Beauty, which grossed $356 million worldwide in 1999. Jan De Bont’s debut on the $30 million Speed turned in a $350 million worldwide gross in 1994. Ticket prices were lower when American Beauty and Speed were released, and Tron: Legacy had the extra benefit of higher 3D pricing. American Beauty and Speed were extravagantly profitable. Disney will make some money on Tron: Legacy, but they won’t need to back up the Brink’s truck.
But Tron: Legacy’s performance certainly gives the studio reason to think it has poured the foundation for a franchise. Disney has begun work on a sequel, which Kosinski is constructing with original writers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz. Maybe because of Tron: Legacy’s pricey launch and heightened expectations, I had the impression that the film had been a bit underwhelming, despite a $44 million opening weekend. But looks are deceiving. For one …
EXCLUSIVE: I’m told that there is heightened interest in Kevin Costner for a key role in the Superman reboot that is being directed by Zack Snyder for Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures. Henry Cavill was recently set in the Man of Steel role. I’m not exactly sure what role Costner is likely to play, but he has certainly been in good guy mode lately. Beyond his performance in the John Wells-directed The Company Men, Costner surfaced as an unlikely hero in aiding the cleanup in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. British Petroleum purchased over 30 centrifuge machines which separate oil from water, technology that was developed with a reported $24 million in funding by the actor over 15 years.
The Superman film is being produced by Chris Nolan, Charles Roven, Emma Thomas, and Deborah Snyder. The screenplay is being written by David S. Goyer based on a story by Goyer and Nolan. Thomas Tull and Lloyd Phillips are serving as executive producers. The new Superman is targeted for release in December 2012.
BURBANK, CALIF., February 16, 2011 – Warner Bros. Digital Distribution (WBDD), a market leader in video-on-demand and electronic sell-through, today announced the groundbreaking launch of the “App Editions” of feature films “Inception” and “The Dark Knight,” giving consumers around the world an entirely new way to own special edition movies with the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. The “Inception: App Edition” and “The Dark Knight: App Edition” are now available on the App Store.
App Editions provide a fully-loaded, connected viewing experience that gives consumers the first five minutes of a feature film and a portion of bonus content that can include games, trivia, soundtracks and soundboards. The entire feature film can be unlocked via an in-app purchase, which enables downloading and unlimited streaming, as well as access to the entire array of bonus content available within the App.
The “Inception” and “The Dark Knight” App Editions are available in over 30 territories, including some which previously did not have access to films through iTunes including China, Brazil and the Netherlands. They contain fully customized menus in 16 languages including Japanese, Greek and Russian and also provide consumers movie subtitles in 34 languages ranging from Arabic to Ukrainian (streamed via WiFi). While watching the film, fans can also connect with friends by sharing their favorite movie quotes through Facebook and Twitter and watch a feed of social networking chatter directly related to the movie in real-time.
“Warner Bros. is bringing more than 100 million Apple device owners a highly
In Other Deals: French Paper Taps Marion Cotillard For Batflick; Javier Bardem Wins Goya; Broadway Spider-Man Gets SNL Parody, More Bad Press
French newspaper Le Figaro reported Marion Cotillard is set for Chris Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises. We’ll get some clarity today, but the move makes sense given that most everyone in that cast but Anne Hathaway (Catwoman) worked with Nolan on a previous film, including Christian Bale (The Prestige), and Cotillard’s Inception cohorts Tom Hardy and Joseph Gordon-Levitt…
While industry attention on the weekend was mostly on the BAFTA wins by Colin Firth and The King’s Speech, Javier Bardem won Best Actor for his Biutiful performance at the Goya Awards, Spain’s version of the Oscars. The King’s Speech won Best European Film but the big winner was Agusti Villaronga’s Black Bread, which won Best Picture and eight other awards. Bardem seems like a dark horse in this race, but it sure does seem like it’s Firth’s year…
Magnolia Pictures acquired North American rights to Headhunters, the Morten Tyldum-directed adaptation of Jo Nesbo’s novel. Magnolia is likening it to another The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. That is easy hype because of the geographical proximity to Sweden. But nobody in the movie business cared much about fiction that came from this region until Larsson, and it’s possible nobody will care about any of the work written by anyone but Larsson…
Chris Nolan has lifted the veil off his third Batman film. He has set Anne Hathaway to play Selina Kyle, who has a double identity as Catwoman. Nolan has also acknowledged that his Inception star Tom Hardy will play the villain role of Bane, an escaped prisoner who became abnormally strong after being pumped full of drugs. Bane is known as “the man who broke the Bat” after he broke Batman’s spinal cord in the comics storyline. Warner Bros has a checkered history with the Catwoman; Michelle Pfeiffer was hailed for her performance as the feline in 1992′s Batman Returns. A subsequent attempt at a 2004 spinoff movie with Halle Berry was a flop. Hathaway has been vying for the role since last November, along with actresses that included Keira Knightley, Rachel Weisz, Naomi Watts, Blake Lively and Natalie Portman. Deadline revealed last October that Hardy was set to play the villain role. That started a guessing game over which Batbaddie he might be. Now we know. Here is the official studio announcement.
BURBANK, CA, January 19, 2011 – Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that Anne Hathaway has been cast as Selina Kyle in Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises.” She will be starring alongside Christian Bale, who returns in the title role of Bruce Wayne/Batman.
Christopher Nolan stated, “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Anne Hathaway, who will be a fantastic addition to our
Inception garnered four nominations and HBO’s Boardwalk Empire received five as the Visual Effects Society set the finalists for awards that will be announced at a Beverly Hilton Hotel ceremony on February 1. Aside from the awards, VFX pioneer Ray Harryhausen will be honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award, and Inception director Chris Nolan will be given the Visionary Award. Here is the complete list of nominees:
Visual-Effects Driven Feature Motion Picture
Paul Franklin Visual Effects Supervisor
Chris Corbould Special Effects Supervisor
Mike Chambers Visual Effects Producer
Matthew Plummer Visual Effects Producer
Iron Man 2
Ben Snow VFX Supervisor
Ged Wright VFX Supervisor
Janek Sirrs VFX Supervisor
Susan Pickett VFX Producer
Eric Barba Visual Effects Supervisor
Lisa Beroud Visual Effects Producer
Steve Preeg Animation Director
Karl Denham Sequence Supervisor
Alice In Wonderland
Ken Ralston Senior Visual Effects Supervisor
Tom Peitzman Visual Effects Producer
David Schaub Animation Supervisor
Carey Villegas Visual Effects Supervisor
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
Tim Burke Overall VFX Supervisor
Emma Norton Visual Effects Producer
John Richardson Special Effects Supervisor
Supporting Visual Effects in a Feature Motion Picture
Peter Chiang Visual Effects Supervisor
Charlie Noble Visual Effects Supervisor
Joss Williams Special Effects Supervisor
Matthew Plummer Visual Effects Producer
Robert Grasmere Visual Effects Supervisor
Camille Cellucci Visual Effects Producer
Mark Breakspear Visual Effects Supervisor
Ivan Moran Visual Effects Supervisor
Michael Owens VFX Supervisor
Joel Mendias Executive Producer
Bryan Grill VFX Supervisor
Danielle Plantec CG Supervisor
Dan Schrecker Visual Effects Supervisor
Colleen Bachman Visual Effects Producer
Michael Capton 3D Supervisor
Brad Kalinoski Compositing Supervisor
Richard Stammers Overall VFX Supervisor
Allen Maris VFX Producer
Jessica Norman Digital Effects Supervisor
Max Wood CG Supervisor
Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
Clay Kaytis Supervising Animator
John Kahrs Supervising Animator
Glen Keane Supervising Animator
Roy Conli Producer
How to Train Your Dragon
Simon Otto Head of Character Animation
Craig Ring Visual Effects Supervisor
Bonnie Arnold Produced By
Toy Story 3
Lee Unkrich Director
Darla K. Anderson Producer
Guido Quaroni Supervising Technical Director
Michael Fong Simulation & Effects Supervisor
Shrek Forever After
Jason Reisig Head of Character Animation
Doug Cooper VFX Supervisor
Gina Shay Produced By
Teresa Cheng Produced By
Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole
Zareh Naibandian Producer
Simon Whiteley Production Designer
Eric Leighton Animation Director
Alex Weight Animation Supervisor
Visual Effects in a Broadcast Miniseries, Movie or a Special
Last Day of the Dinosaurs
Arnaud Brisebois Artistic Director
Louis Desrochers VFX Artist
Alain Lachance Visual Effects Producer
Marc-Antoine Rousseau Visual Effects Supervisor
Inside The Perfect Predator
Philip Dobree VFX Supervisor/VFX Producer
Richard Costin Animation TD
Sam Meisels Compositor
John Sullivan Senior Visual Effects Supervisor
David Taritero VFX Producer
William Mesa Visual Effects Supervisor
Marco Requay Digital Visual Effects Supervisor
Prep and Landing: Operation Secret Santa
Dorothy McKim Producer
Kyle Odermatt VFX Supervisor
Andy Harkness Art Director
Adolph Lusinsky Look and Lighting Director
America – Story of US
Philip Dobree VFX Supervisor/VFX Producer
Emile Hardy DMP
Sam Howell Lead Animator
Visual Effects in a Broadcast Series
Michael Gibson VFX Producer
Gary Hutzel VFX Supervisor
Davey Morton VFX Artist
Jesse Toves CGI Artist
No Ordinary Family
Andrew Orloff VFX Supervisor
Curt Miller VFX Supervisor
Paul Linden VFX Supervisor
Scott Tinter VFX Producer
Andrew Orloff VFX Supervisor
Nathan Overstrom 2D Supervisor
Karen Czukerberg VFX Producer
Roberto Biagi VFX Supervisor
Victor Scalise Visual Effects Supervisor
Jason Spratt Visual Effects Producer
Diego Galtieri Compositor
Mike Enriquez Lead 3D Artist
Mark Savela VFX Supervisor
James Rorick VFX Producer
Craig Vanden Biggelaar Digital Effects Supervisor
Adam de Bosch Kemper Lead Animator
Supporting Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program
The Walking Dead
Sam Nicholson Visual Effects Supervisor
Jason Sperling Visual Effects Supervisor
Kent Johnson Visual Effects Producer
Chris Martin Compositing Supervisor
Andrew Orloff VFX Supervisor
Raoul Bolognini VFX Producer
Nathan Overstrom 2D Supervisor
Jason Monroe Lead Modeler
Jay Worth VFX Producer / Supervisor
Andrew Waisler VFX Supervisor
Ron Thornton VFX Supervisor
Andrew Kramer Digital Artist
Robert Stromberg VFX Supervisor
Dave Taritero VFX Producer
Richard Friedlander VFX Producer
Paul Graff VFX Supervisor
Adam Avitabile Visual Effects Supervisor
Godoy Visual Effects Producer
Michael Capton 3D Supervisor
Brad Kalinoski Compositing Supervisor