After lengthy dealmaking, HBO has closed the deals for a 18-episode straight-to-series order to Vice Principals, a new comedy series from Eastbound & Down creators Danny McBride and Jody Hill. The 18-episode run is expected to split into multiple seasons. Like he did on Eastbound & Down, McBride will be starring in the new series. “Danny McBride and Jody Hill have created a smart, rowdy and unpredictable style of comedy that we can’t get enough of,” said HBO’s Michael Lombardo. “The idea of them setting their minds on high school was irresistible.” Created by McBride and Hill, Vice Principals tells the story of a high school and the people who almost run it: the vice principals, one of them played by McBride. The series had been in the works for about a year, with Lombardo discussing it at last summer’s TCA. Vice Principals is executive produced by McBride, Hill, David Gordon Green and Stephanie Laing, who were also executive producers of Eastbound & Down, which wrapped its four-season run on HBO in November.
Eastbound & Down may be ending its run with its upcoming fourth season, but co-creators Danny McBride and Jody Hill are staying in business with HBO on a potential new comedy series. “They’re going to take a look at high school,” HBO’s Michael Lombardo said, declining further details about the project. He was effusive in his praise for Eastbound & Bound, though. “It was a slow build for us — started slow and built exponentially,” he said about the offbeat baseball comedy starring McBride whose fourth and final season premieres in September.
FXX has given a series pickup to Chozen, an FX animated comedy pilot from Danny McBride and his Rough Pictures partners Jody Hill and David Gordon Green. This marks the first original series order for the new network, which launches on Sept. 2. At FXX, Chozen joins FX transplants It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, The League and Legit as well as late-night show Totally Biased With W. Kamau Bell. FXX will launch with a Wednesday night block of Sunny and The League, plus Totally Biased airing Monday-Friday. Sunny and The League will be relieved by Legit and Chozen in Q1 2014.
Chozen was written by from up-and-coming scribe Grant Dekernion, former writer’s assistant on McBride, Hill and Green’s HBO series Eastbound & Down, which was canceled today. Bobby Moynihan (Saturday Night Live) will voice the lead character in the comedy, about a gay white rapper fresh out of prison with a new message and new skills, which he will use in his quest for redemption and domination. Dekernion will write and rap the songs for the lead character of the series, which he is executive producing with McBride, Hill, Green as well as Adam Reed and Matt Thompson of Floyd County Prods. (Archer) for FX Prods. “Chozen is an outrageous and ballsy comedy, but it’s also a very smart examination of the rap culture,” said Nick Grad, President of Original Programming at FX Networks and FX Prods.
Basic cable experienced a raunchy night as the MTV Movie Awards were held live. Host Rebel Wilson kicked off the night with an “Iron Mangina” sketch. Then Universal’s Townies co-stars Zac Efron, Seth Rogen, and Danny McBride took the stage for a bit that ended with two of them dropping trou. Rogen stood there wearing a giant merkin as the trio presented Best Shirtless Performance to Taylor Lautner:
HBO confirms it’s ordered 8 more episodes of the off-beat baseball comedy Eastbound & Down that stars Danny McBride. The show ended its third season in April, but left room for more storytelling. It features McBride as a former Major League Baseball pitcher living in Shelby County, North Carolina. Fate brought him close to reclaiming his former glory, both on the field and in the sack with his high school sweetheart April, but the comeback eluded him. He ended up abandoning April at a convenience store and hitting the road to start a new life – as a cockfighter in Mexico. McBride’s character Kenny Powers was back in the states in Season 3, facing challenges as a single parent with a baby. McBride exec produces the show, along with Will Ferrell, Chris Henchy, Adam McKay and Jody Hill.
EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has acquired remake rights to the Danish film and TV series Klovn. The studio has set Danny McBride to write and star in Clown, a film he will produce through his Rough House banner along with Todd Phillips and his Green Hat Films. The film follows the basic premise of the Mikkel Nørgaard-directed film, a concept created by Casper Christensen and Frank Hvam, who’ll also be producers on the project. The logline: two men and a 13-year old boy embark on an R-rated vacation.
In the original film that followed the TV series, Casper and Frank plan a canoeing trip deemed “Tour de Pussy” in which they plan to party hard and have as much sex as possible. Then, Frank discovers his girlfriend is pregnant and wants to get rid of the baby. She’ll only relent if he can prove he’ll be a worthy father. Frank’s answer is to take her 11-year old son on the canoe trip, but he and his buddy don’t change any of their plans for debauchery. The film was widely compared to The Hangover, and sounds like a perfect premise for Phillips, but at this point, he’s only producing and not attached to direct. In the remake, the kid will be 13 years old.
McBride will start work immediately. His HBO series Eastbound & Down airs its finale this Sunday. McBride played a …
EXCLUSIVE: Chernin Entertainment has acquired Untitled Foreign Exchange, a comedy pitch that Shawn Harwell will write and Jeff Tomsic will direct. Peter Chernin, Dylan Clark and Jenno Topping will produce for Chernin Entertainment, which won the pitch with a preemptive offer made from the company’s discretionary fund. Tomsic gets the directing job after helming a number of shorts, including I’m Having A Difficult Time Killing My Parents, which debuted at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. He’s also directed shows for MTV and VH1 and campaigns for Dr. Pepper, Hasbro and other brands. Harwell cowrote Dog Fight, the Warner Bros comedy that Jay Roach is directing with Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis. He also scripted Hench with Danny McBride for Warner Bros and Neal Moritz, and was a staff writer in McBride’s HBO Series Eastbound & Down. Both are repped by CAA and Tomsic is managed by Generate.
BREAKING; Mandate Pictures and Rough House Pictures have set commercials director Randy Krallman to make his feature directorial debut on Bullies, the comedy hatched by Danny McBride and written by Andrew Mogel and Jarrad Paul. The plot revolves around wo brothers who have been bullies all their lives and get their comeuppance. McBride is expected to star. Rough House principals McBride, David Gordon Green, Jody Hill and Matt Reilly are producing, while Mandate’s Nathan Kahane is exec producer. McBride’s repped by CAA and Management 360.
20th Century Fox Television has inked a pod deal with Rough House Pictures. Under the one-year pact, Rough House principals David Gordon Green, Jody Hill, Danny McBride and head Matt Reilly will develop animated and live-action comedies targeted for broadcast networks. This marks the first network TV deal for the company. Hill and McBride co-created the HBO live-action comedy series Eastbound & Down, now in production on its third season, and Green created the upcoming MTV animated comedy series Good Vibes. Additionally, Rough House is producing the Comedy Central comedy pilot Black Jack starring Ving Rhames. “We as a studio are always looking to be in business with people who we think have unique and specific voices, and the group from Rough House have that,” 20th TV chairman Gary Newman said. On the feature side, Pineapple Express helmer Green is directing the forthcoming Jonah Hill comedy The Sitter for 20th Century Fox Studios.
Sony Pictures has released a Red Band trailer for the Media Rights Capital comedy 30 Minutes Or Less. The R-rated laffer stars Danny McBride (who’s becoming king of the Red Band trailer) and Aziz Asari, and reunites Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer with his star Jesse Eisenberg. The film opens Aug. 12.
The star of the HBO comedy said during the show’s panel at PaleyFest last night that the raunchy but strangely addictive series’ third season, which is filming now, will be its last. There’s been no official word from HBO on the series’ future since renewing it for Season 3 back in October, though today the network said it wants the show to stick around as long as McBride and company (producers include Will Ferrell and Adam McKay’s Gary Sanchez Productions) want to do it.
Meanwhile, the full schedule for the festival’s TV panels at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills is here.
ARC Entertainment has acquired U.S. distribution rights to the ContentFilm International medieval action thriller Ironclad. ARC made the deal in collaboration with Barry Gordon’s XLrator Media, and will release the film theatrically in June. Directed by Jonathan English, the film is the true story of a motley crew of battle-hardened warriors who go to war to defend their country’s freedom.
Rome‘s James Purefoy, Brian Cox, Derek Jacobi, Kate Mara, Paul Giamatti and Jason Flemyng star with Jamie Foreman, Aneurin Barnar, Mackenzie Crook, Vladimir Kulich and Charles Dance. English wrote the script with Erick Kastel and Stephen McDool, and Mythic International Entertainment’s Rick Benattar, Andrew Curtis and English produced it.
“The partnership between ARC Entertainment and XLator is the perfect team to distribute Ironclad,” said ContentFilm’s Jamie Carmichael. ContentFilm most recently generated the Ian Palmer-directed documentary Knuckle that premiered at Sundance. The film, about a longstanding dispute between two clans in Ireland that gets periodically settled through bare knuckle brawls, came away with a remake rights deal CAA made at HBO for a potential series from the Eastbound & Down team of Danny McBride, Jody Hill and David Gordon Green of Rough House Pictures.
Here’s a trailer for Ironclad:
EXCLUSIVE: HBO is closing a remake rights deal for Knuckle, the Ian Palmer-directed documentary at Sundance about two Irish families that settle a longstanding dispute by periodically engaging in bare knuckle bouts. Rough House Pictures partners Danny McBride, Jody Hill and David Gordon Green are attached, and HBO will turn the concept into a TV series, I hear. Numerous parties circled — word is they included companies of Gerard Butler, Robert Downey Jr., and Vin Diesel, but Rough House’s Matt Reilly came to Sundance and won by knockout. Rough House produces Eastbound & Down at HBO.
For two weeks, interest has been high for the remake rights of a film that debuted at Sundance last Friday. After bootlegs of an unfinished version began making the rounds, CAA pressed copies for the interested suitors. In the documentary that was produced by Rise Films’ Teddy Leifer, the fighters square off and beat each other to bloody pulps, the victor winning family pride and bragging rights. It’s not exactly clear why the families hate each other—hints are it has to do with a dispute over a woman—but the bouts are preceded by taunt-filled videos sent by one family to the other. The film took 12 years to shoot, and focuses on two brothers, James Quinn and Michael McDonagh.
Domestic distribution on the film is still being worked out. Content International bought international …
The second seasons of two underrated HBO comedy series, Bored to Death and Eastbound & Down, will premiere on Sept. 26. Bored to Death, starring Jason Schwartzman, Ted Danson and Zach Galifianakis, will air at 10PM, followed by Danny McBride’s Eastbound & Down at 10:30 PM.