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UPDATE: CNN Fires Back At GOP Over Hillary Clinton Docu & Debate Threat

By | Monday August 5, 2013 @ 1:00pm PDT

UPDATED, 1 PM: CNN says that the Republican National Committee are making “premature decisions” about CNN Films upcoming Hillary Clinton documentary. The cable news network says the GOP body are also performing “the ultimate disservice to voters” in threatening to pull out of debates that the network either sponsors or partners on. The news network’s statement today came after the RNC said that it would take a vote next week to pull out of any 2016 primary debates including CNN and NBC over their respective projects about the assumed Presidential candidate. RNC chief Reince Priebus said that the networks were acting as “Hillary Clinton campaign operatives” in producing the projects. In his letter Monday to CNN’s Jeff Zucker, Priebus wrote that “your credibility as a supposedly unbiased news network will most certainly be jeopardized by the decision to show political favoritism and a produce an extended commercial for Secretary Clinton’s nascent campaign.” CNN’s doc is scheduled to come out theatrically and then on the network in 2014. NBC Entertainment boss Bob Greenblatt said on July 27 that the Peacock would be making a four-hour miniseries with Diane Lane starring as Clinton. Check out CNN’s full statement on the matter after the jump:

Related: Will ‘Rodham’ Affect Hillary Clinton In 2016?

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TCA: NBC Developing Hillary Clinton Miniseries Starring Diane Lane, ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ & Stephen King’s ‘Tommyknockers’

By | Saturday July 27, 2013 @ 9:59am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

At the top of NBC‘s TCA presentation, entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt announced that it has put in development four event series/miniseres as part of its push in the arena. They include 4-hour miniseries Hillary, about Hillary Clinton to star Diane Lane. Oscar nominee Courtney Hunt (Frozen River) will script the project which recounts Clinton’s life as a wife, mother, politician and cabinet member from 1998 to the present as she goes from First Lady to US Senator and then Secretary of State. Asked whether the mini would approach Clinton as a great tough woman or a controversial figure, Greenblatt said, “it’s going to be all of those things.” Clinton is “not going to be involved at all” in the project and “I don’t know if she’s aware of it,” he said. “If I were her, I can’t imagine she’d have anything to say about it yet… We literally just closed the deal and maybe she’ll have a point of view about it. I don’t think she’ll endorse it.” Sherryl Clark of Busted Shark will executive produce the mini with James D. Stern (Looper). Hillary joins Rodham, a feature about Clinton’s 20s that has been in the works.

NBC also announced a four-hour updated remake and resetting of Rosemary’s Baby, new version of Stephen King’s Tommyknockers, and Plymouth, the … Read More »

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Toronto: ‘West Of Memphis’ Helmer Amy Berg Gets Diane Lane And Elizabeth Banks For ‘Every Secret Thing’

By | Sunday September 9, 2012 @ 4:32am PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Amy Berg, who had Johnny Depp and Natalie Maines on hand here to launch her latest documentary West Of Memphis, will next helm Every Secret Thing, a Nicole Holofcener-scripted drama that will star Diane Lane and Elizabeth Banks.

The project is coming together with Anthony Bregman of Likely Story, Frances McDormand, Raj Singh of Merced Media Partners, Kevin Frakes of Palmstar Media Capital and Ashok Amritraj of Hyde Park Entertainment. Merced Media Partners, Palmstar Media Capital and Hyde Park Entertainment will finance the film that shoots in February. Film is based on the novel by Laura Lippman.The film will be produced by Bregman and Frances McDormand. Deadline readers might recall that McDormand optioned the book herself and attached Lane in 2010, and she has really turned this into something special here.

At 11-years-old, Ronnie and Alice were convicted for the murder of a baby and were incarcerated until they turned 18. Now newly released and replete with psychological problems, each attempts to adjust to life outside juvenile detention… when children start to go missing. As the police turn their attention to Ronnie and Alice, the mystery surrounding the original murder and their roles in it takes the fore.

Raj Singh, Stuart Brown, Kevin Frakes, Ashok Amritraj, and Stefanie Azpiazu. Hyde Park Entertainment will handle international sales out of the Toronto International Film Festival. Craig Emanuel … Read More »

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Ayelet Zurer Replacing Julia Ormond As Superman’s Krypton Mom

Mike Fleming

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.

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First Look At Henry Cavill As ‘Man Of Steel’

Mike Fleming

Warner Bros today released a first photo of British actor Henry Cavill as Superman in Man of Steel, the franchise reboot that’s being directed by Zack Snyder and produced by Christopher Nolan. Cavill stars with Amy Adams, Diane Lane, Kevin Costner, Michael Shannon, Antje Traue, Julia Ormond, Russell Crowe, Chris Meloni, Harry Lennix and Laurence Fishburne. Currently in production, Man of Steel is slated for release on June 14, 2013:

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Superman Won’t Soar Again Until Summer 2013

Mike Fleming

Warner Bros has pulled The Man of Steel from a planned late 2012 release date and has slotted it to open wide on June 14, 2013 release. The Zack Snyder-directed reboot of the Superman franchise feels like a summer film anyway. Henry Cavill stars with a cast that includes Henry Cavill, Michael Shannon, Kevin Costner, Amy Adams, Diane Lane and Russell Crowe. The distribution calendar is just forming for films that far in advance, but what’s also interesting about that date is it strays close to the expiration of certain rights that revert back to the estates of creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. Warner Bros has spent a fortune defending its position to keep the Superman rights–some say as much as $25 million in legal fees–but right now it looks like there will be a splitting of rights between the creator estates and DC Comics. As long as the film has been shot, Warner Bros won’t have problems releasing the films, but you don’t reboot Superman to make one movie, so there will likely have to be some stunning court decision or a major payday for those heirs if Man of Steel is to soar in a trilogy of movies.

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Julia Ormond In Talks To Play Superman’s Mom

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros and Zack Snyder are in talks with Julia Ormond to play Superman’s Kryptonian mother, Lara Lor-Van, in Man of Steel. I expect the deal to make shortly. Russell Crowe has been offered the role of  Jor-El, the father of Superman (Henry Cavill). Kevin Costner and Diane Lane were previously set to play Clark Kent’s Earthbound parents. This comes after Ormond completed the role of Vivian Leigh in the Simon Curtis-directed My Week With Marilyn, which stars Michelle Williams, Emma Watson, Dominic Cooper and Kenneth Branagh. Ormond’s repped by Gersh and Artists Independent.

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Superman Takes Villain Focus: Michael Shannon Contender

Mike Fleming

After setting Henry Cavill for the lead role, and Diane Lane and Kevin Costner for Ma and Pa Kent, Warner Bros., Legendary Pictures and director Zack Snyder are working on a villain for Superman: Man of Steel. I’m told there’s interest in Michael Shannon. Shannon is coming off a memorable first season in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, and he turned in a strong performance in Take Shelter, which Sony Pictures Classics acquired at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. Neither the studio nor Shannon’s reps were helpful.

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Kevin Costner Set For ‘Superman: Man Of Steel’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: It’s all over but the press release! Almost a month after Deadline revealed that Kevin Costner was in early talks for a lead role in Superman: Man of Steel, I hear that he has closed a deal to play Jonathan Kent, the adoptive dad of Clark Kent. Costner will join Henry Cavill, who is playing the title role, and Diane Lane, who is playing Martha Kent, his adopted mother.

Zack Snyder is directing for Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures. 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.

Now, the speculation will begin on who will play the Superman villain. Early reports had Viggo Mortensen as the likely candidate, but I don’t think that’s going to be possible, if he signs that deal to star with Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron in Universal Pictures’ Snow White and the Huntsman. Let the guessing game begin! Costner is repped by WME and One Talent Management.

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Warner Bros Sets Diane Lane For Superman’s Adopted Mother, Martha Kent

By | Wednesday March 2, 2011 @ 7:22pm PST
Mike Fleming

BURBANK, CA, March 2, 2011 – Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures announced today that Oscar®-nominated actress Diane Lane will play Martha Kent, the only mother Clark Kent has ever known, in the new Superman movie to be directed by Zack Snyder.
Snyder stated, “This was a very important piece of casting for me because Martha Kent is the woman whose values helped shape the man we know as Superman. We are thrilled to have Diane in the role because she can convey the wisdom and the wonder of a woman whose son has powers beyond her imagination.”
Lane will star with Henry Cavill, who was recently announced as the new Clark Kent/Superman.
Lane earned an Academy Award® nomination for her performance in the 2002 drama “Unfaithful.” She most recently starred in the family hit “Secretariat.” She next stars in the HBO feature “Cinema Verite,” opposite Tim Robbins and James Gandolfini. Lane’s long list of film credits also includes “Nights in Rodanthe,” “Hollywoodland,” “Must Love Dogs,” “Under the Tuscan Sun,” “Perfect Storm,” “My Dog Skip,” “Chaplin,” “The Cotton Club” and “A Little Romance,” to name only a portion.
Charles Roven, Emma Thomas, Christopher Nolan and Deborah Snyder are the producers of the film. 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.
Slated for release in December 2012, the new

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Can ‘Secretariat’ Blindside Oscar Favorites?

Pete Hammond

This same time last year, no one was seriously considering the awards prospects of a little Deep South sports-themed movie called The Blind Side. Not even after I saw the film at a small screening on the Warner Bros lot and wrote in early November 2009 that I thought Sandra Bullock  would, against all expectations at the time, become a major Oscar contender. Instead, commenters and bloggers vilified my prediction. Of course, she not only went on to win, the film received a Best Picture nomination. Now everyone in Oscar punditry is looking for the “next Blind Side” with many eyes focused on the feel-good Disney sports drama, Secretariat that was sneaked last weekend to pump up word of mouth and tracking before its Friday opening. In many ways, the comparisons are apt. Both are true stories about one woman’s singular cause: taking an athlete  from rags to riches. In this case, though, that athlete is a horse and the woman is owner Penny Chenery played by Diane Lane who, unlike Bullock at this point, has already made several  potential Best Actress nominee short lists. And, with 10 nominees to pick for Best Picture,  the “Blind Side slot” for an old-fashioned feel-good movie the Academy falls for as much as the general public, even if critics don’t, is not out of the question for a crowd pleaser like Secretariat. Providing it is first able to achieve hit status at the box office. Its Rotten Tomatoes rating currently stands at 63% fresh and Roger Ebert has called it “a great movie” although the basic critical consensus is mixed, just as it was for Blind Side. Hip factor and critics aside though, the Academy has already shown a predilection for this particular type of “stand up and cheer” movie by nominating Universal’s Seabiscuit for 7 Oscars including Best Pic in 2003 and that was when there were just a measly 5 nominees.

Secretariat director Randall Wallace has previous Oscar experience: he was a screenwriting nominee for the 1995 Best Picture winner Braveheart and is not drawing comparisons. “The Academy has a mind of its own. It’s interesting the whole notion of what makes something Oscar-worthy,” he told me in a phone conversation yesterday. “I’m in the Academy and my criteria has to do with how it affects my heart and whether something is authentic. I don’t know whether Braveheart was thought to be a frontrunner or a dark horse, but you don’t make these movies with the idea of winning awards. You win awards for making a powerful movie.” Read More »

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Frances McDormand Playing Producer Role

By | Tuesday August 10, 2010 @ 4:10pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Appearing in a new role–producer–Frances McDormand has set at HBO a potential series adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Elizabeth Strout novel Olive Kitteridge. Separately, she has attached Diane Lane to star in a Nicole Holofcener-scripted feature adaptation of Laura Lippman’s crime novel Every Secret Thing. McDormand got both projects off the ground and while she will play the town’s seventh grade math teacher Olive Kitteridge if the pilot script Jane Anderson’s writing becomes an HBO series, McDormand doesn’t plan to appear on camera in Every Secret Thing.

Perhaps it’s being in the creative orbit of her writer/director husband Joel Coen, or a way to creatively fill the gaps between acting jobs while raising their family, but McDormand has self-started a producing venture that has no staff or company name. She has made two promising projects happen and has others percolating, including a stage musical. McDormand is using her own money to make the option deals.

McDormand optioned Olive Kitteridge before it won the Pulitzer last year. The book consists of 13 interconnected tales that involve the residents of a fishing village along the coast of Crosby, Maine. Anderson, whose HBO work includes writing/directing the Jessica Lange/Tom Wilkinson drama Normal–is weaving Strout’s storylines into a drama that has enough characters to allow McDormand to play the title role but still have time for her other acting obligations. Her acting … Read More »

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