Check Out Our New Look

Ben Foster In Universal ‘Contraband’ Deal

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Ben Foster will star alongside Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale for Universal Pictures in Contraband, the English language remake of the 2008 Icelandic film Reykjavic-Rotterdam. The film is being directed by Baltasar Kormakur, who starred in, produced and co-wrote the original. Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are producing with Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson and Kormakur.

Aaron Guzikowski wrote the script, and Wahlberg plays a former smuggler trying to go straight as a night guard. When his wife’s brother (who got him the job) botches a smuggling run, his life threatened and the night guard is dragged in for one more job. Foster plays the night guard’s best friend and right hand man, who helps him take on the dangerous job.

Foster next stars opposite Jason Statham in the CBS Films remake The Mechanic, and he’s just now shooting the Oren Moverman-directed police corruption drama Rampart in Los Angeles. He’s repped by WME and manager Ken Jacobson.

Comments (12)

Universal Sets Film Slate Release Dates

Mike Fleming

Universal has locked in release dates for some of its most ambitious films hatched by the team of Adam Fogelson and Donna Langley. Add these to previously set releases that include The Fast and The Furious sequel Fast Five (June 10, 2011), Cowboys and Aliens (July 29, 2011), Tower Heist (November 4, 2011), Battleship (May 18, 2012) and Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (March 12, 2012). Here are the newly dated releases:

Larry Crowne, the Playtone production directed by and starring Tom Hanks and starring Hanks and Julia Roberts, will be released on Friday, July 1, 2011. Safe House, a Stuber production starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds and directed by Daniel Espinosa, will be released on Friday, February 10, 2012. Contraband, a Working Title production starring Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale and directed by Baltasar Kormakur, will be released on Friday, March 16, 2012. Untitled Judd Apatow, written, directed and produced by Judd Apatow, will be released on Friday, June 1, 2012. The Bourne Legacy, a Kennedy/Marshall and Captivate Entertainment production written and directed by Tony Gilroy, will be released on Friday, August 3, 2012. Ouija, a Hasbro Entertainment and Platinum Dunes production, will be released on Friday, November 9, 2012. 47 Ronin, a Stuber production starring Keanu Reeves and directed by Carl Rinsch, will be released on Wednesday, November 21, 2012. … Read More »

Comments 25

Universal To Make ‘Contraband’ Run With Mark Wahlberg And Kate Beckinsale

Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Universal has reemerged as the financier of Contraband, the English language remake of the 2008 Icelandic film Reykjavic-Rotterdam. Mark Wahlberg is set to star, Kate Beckinsale is negotiating, and Baltasar Kormakur is set to direct. Kormakur starred in, produced and co-wrote the original. Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are producing with Wahlberg (who’s next out in The Fighter), Stephen Levinson and Kormakur. Verve-repped Aaron Guzikowski is writing the script.

Oskar Jonasson directed the original, in which Kormakur played a former smuggler trying to go straight as a night guard. When his wife’s brother (who got him the job) botches a smuggling run, his life threatened and the protagonist is dragged in for one more job. WME, which reps the stars and Kormakur, set up the remake at Working Title. Bevan and Fellner’s deal is at Universal, and the studio originally intended to finance the film, then passed when the budget came in at $40 million. Relativity Media stepped in, but encouraged the filmmakers to try bringing down the cost. The filmmakers brought the budget down to around $30 million. A $30 million drama with Wahlberg and Beckinsale is a package any studio would jump at. When Relativity blinked, Universal swooped back in. Read More »

Comments 24