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Hot Trailer: ‘Deliver Us From Evil’

By | Wednesday May 14, 2014 @ 2:15pm PDT

Scott Derrickson (Sinister, The Exorcism of Emily Rose) helms Screen Gems’ summer scarer about Irish Catholic NYC cop Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana) who teams up with a renegade priest (Edgar Ramirez) to investigate a demonic plague working its way across the city – and into family man Sarchie’s home. Derrickson wrote the script with Paul Boardman, his collaborator on Screen Gems’ Exorcism of Emily Rose. Deliver Us From Evil also reunites Bana with producer Jerry Bruckheimer, for whom he starred in Black Hawk Down. Olivia Munn and Joel McHale co-star in the July 2 release which the studio’s hoping might launch a new paranormal franchise. Check out the new trailer:

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Eric Bana To Distribute Focus Features Thriller ‘Closed Circuit’ In Australia

By | Monday October 7, 2013 @ 8:22am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Actor Eric Bana is making his first foray into film distribution. Before the shakeup at Focus Features last week, Bana met with and got the company’s top executives James Schamus and Andrew Karpen to agree to sell him the Australian distribution rights to Closed Circuit, the John Crowley-directed paranoid thriller that stars Bana and Rebecca Hall as defense lawyers representing a terrorist charged with blowing up London’s Borough Market. The former lovers realize a conspiracy is afoot and their lives are in danger. Jim Broadbent, Julia Stiles and Ciaran Hinds also star. They plan a December 5 theatrical release.

The film opened to mixed reviews in the U.S. in August and grossed $5.7 million, with marketing that played up timely subjects like hi-tech surveillance and government leakers. Bana has teamed on the deal with Robert Connolly, who directed the Julian Assange pic Underground, and produced and was second unit director on the Bana-starrer Romulus, My Father. “We share an office and bounce idea off each other all the time, but this is the first time since Romulus we connected on something,” Bana told me. “We thought there was no reason we couldn’t look at distributing boutique releases in our backyard. Robert has navigated those waters before with his company Cinema Plus, and has been extremely involved in securing cinemas and has longstanding relationships with exhibitors here. I have logged many years on the publicity trail, and the relevant outlets know me and I know them. On paper, it’s fresh waters, but in reality it isn’t really. We can have a level of control, and to us it makes a helluva lot of sense and is something I wish I had done earlier. I have a great relationship with Focus, presented the offer in New York, and James and Andrew liked the idea.” Read More »

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Screen Gems Sets Eric Bana, Edgar Ramirez And Olivia Munn For Exorcism Pic ‘Beware The Night’

By | Tuesday April 9, 2013 @ 1:14pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Screen Gems has set Eric Bana, Edgar Ramirez and Olivia Munn to star in Beware The Night, a film that re-teams Clint Culpepper’s Sony-based company with The Exorcism Of Emily Rose tandem of Scott Derrickson and Paul Boardman. The film is a paranormal thriller that will be produced by Jerry Bruckheimer Films. Derrickson will direct a script he and Boardman wrote and shooting will begin May 20 in the Bronx.

The film reunites Bana with Bruckheimer; they previously worked together on Black Hawk Down, one of the films that sprung Bana’s movie career. Here, Bana plays an Irish Catholic cop working a case when he meets a renegade priest. Despite the cop’s beliefs, he’s convinced by the priest that there is a demonic element and together they work to solve the case and combat the paranormal forces working against them. Ramirez plays the priest. Munn plays the cop’s wife, who also has a tie to the case. Screen Gems is hoping this will blossom into a franchise. Chad Oman and Mike Stenson will be exec producers.

Beware The Night is a project we’ve been developing for many years, confident that a story which combines the paranormal with a gritty New York City police story is both original and strongly appealing to audiences,” Bruckheimer said. “We’re … Read More »

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Eric Bana Negotiating For ‘Lone Survivor’

By | Monday August 13, 2012 @ 12:29pm PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Eric Bana is in talks to costar in Lone Survivor, the Peter Berg-directed drama that is being financed by Emmett/Furla Films for a September 25 start in New Mexico. Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Emile Hirsch and Ben Foster are already poised to play the other main roles in the drama centered around four Navy SEALs. Universal Pictures, which developed the movie, will distribute. An adaptation of the book by Marcus Luttrell (Wahlberg), Lone Survivor tells the harrowing story of how Luttrell and his Navy SEAL team members fought to stay alive after being ambushed in Afghanistan in 2005 by Taliban forces during a covert mission in the Hindu Kush mountain region, where the team went to kill a terrorist leader. Film 44 partner Sarah Aubrey, Akiva Goldsman, Barry Spikings are producing with Emmett/Furla’s Randall Emmett and George Furla, and Wahlberg and Stephen Levinson.

I am told Bana will play fallen Navy SEAL hero Erik Christensen. Bana is convincing in these roles, including his Hollywood breakout in the Ridley Scott-directed Black Hawk Down, and in the Steven Spielberg-directed Munich. He most recently completed the John Crowley-directed Closed Circuit for Focus Features, and has Deadfall coming as year’s end. He’s repped by WME and Robert Offer.

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Eric Bana, Rebecca Hall Start Focus Thriller

By | Thursday February 2, 2012 @ 9:41am PST
Mike Fleming

Focus Features and Working Title Films begin production April in the U.K. on an untitled international suspense thriller that stars Eric Bana (who’s coming off Focus’ Hanna) and Rebecca Hall. John Crowley (Boy A) The film was scripted by Steven Knight, who wrote the Focus film Eastern Promises. Focus CEO James Schamus and president Andrew Karpen announced it with Working Title co-chairs Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner. Bevan and Fellner will produce with Chris Clark and Focus will sell overseas territories at Cannes.

Two ex-lovers, Martin (Bana) and Claudia (Hall) find their loyalties tested and their lives at risk when they are joined together on the defense team in a terrorism trial. “Working Title and John Crowley have not only crafted a nail-biting thriller, but an emotional rollercoaster as well – one that speaks to the heart of the human condition in our time,” said Schamus and Karpen.

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Armie Hammer Joining Eric Bana In Sheldon Turner’s ‘By Virtue Fall’

By | Wednesday December 7, 2011 @ 8:30am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: After he finishes playing the title role opposite Johnny Depp in Disney’s The Lone Ranger, Armie Hammer is planning to take a dark turn in By Virtue Fall. That is the gritty drama that will mark the directing debut of Up In The Air co-scribe Sheldon Turner. Hammer will play an ATF agent framed on a corruption beef and sent to a maximum security federal prison. He turns into a badass to survive, and when he emerges from that hellhole, he devotes himself to getting revenge on the person who destroyed his life: his former partner (Eric Bana). QED is funding the film and Jennifer Klein is producing with Turner. Hammer will be busy with The Lone Ranger until the summer, and the film will start later this year. Turner wrote the script.

By Virtue Falls gives Hammer the opportunity to play a different kind of character after the Winkelvoss twins in The Social Network, Clyde Tolson in J Edgar and Prince Charming in the upcoming Mirror Mirror. Hammer plans to bulk up and shave his head to play the ATF agent, who puts on the bulk to survive in prison. It will also remind Hollywood Hammer was once set to play Batman in the Justice League movie before Warner Bros halted that film to focus on separate Batman and Superman films. Hammer is repped by WME.

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AFM: K5 Deals For Foreign On Eric Bana-Danny Huston Pic ‘Elvis & Nixon’

By | Tuesday November 8, 2011 @ 1:17pm PST
Mike Fleming

Eric Bana Plays Elvis Presley, Danny Huston Is Richard Nixon In Indie Feature

Los Angeles, CA (November 8, 2011) – K5 International, a division of K5 Media Group has picked up international rights to Benaroya Pictures’ ELVIS & NIXON. The comedy will mark Cary Elwes’ directorial debut and stars Eric Bana as Elvis Presley and Danny Huston as Richard Nixon. ELVIS & NIXON is produced by Michael Benaroya of Benaroya Pictures and Holly Wiersma. Bana’s Pick Up Truck Productions is executive producing, marking the company’s first U.S. production.

ELVIS & NIXON tells the story about Elvis Presley visiting President Richard M. Nixon at the White House in December of 1970. The meeting was initiated by Presley, who wrote Nixon a six-page letter requesting a visit and suggesting that he be made a ‘Federal Agent-at-Large’ in the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs. Presley brought with him family photos and a Colt 45 pistol as a personal gift to the President.

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Eric Bana Plays Elvis Presley, Danny Huston Is Richard Nixon In Indie Feature

By | Sunday October 23, 2011 @ 4:36pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Eric Bana and Danny Huston will star in Elvis & Nixon, an indie that marks the directing debut of actor Cary Elwes, who wrote the script with Joey Sagal and Hanala Sagal. The film’s funded by Benaroya Pictures. The film is based on a 1970 powwow between Presley (Bana) and Nixon (Huston) when the former petitioned to be a Federal Agent at Large in the war against drugs, which in hindsight seems a bit odd. Presley brought a Colt .45 pistol as a gift to the president. Bana will be exec producer. He’ll next star in the Lakeshore thriller Brilliant and just wrapped Blackbird.

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Castings: Jessica Chastain Joins Tom Cruise In Apocalyptic Drama; Eric Bana Is ‘Brilliant’

Jessica Chastain will star with Tom Cruise in the untitled Universal film that Tron: Legacy helmer Joseph Kosinski will direct. The film was developed at Disney under Oblivion and retitled Horizons, but the sci-fi action film is currently untitled. Cruise plays the last man on Earth who patrols and blasts predatory aliens until he discovers a beautiful intruder who makes him question his role on Earth, which has become a practically uninhabitable place. I think they still have to set the intruder. …

Eric Bana is in talks to star in Lakeshore’s Brilliant, a thriller that Robert Luketic will direct from a Gillian Gorfil script. The film revolves around a small-time crook who joins accomplished thieves in a diamond heist. WME and Robert Offer rep Bana.

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CANNES: Weinstein Company Near Deal For ‘Wettest County’ While Distribs Fret Over Buying Pics Sight-Unseen

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: The Weinstein Company, already on a Cannes acquisition spree, has emerged as the clear frontrunner for  domestic distribution rights on The Wettest County in the World, after another all-night bargaining session between Harvey Weinstein’s acquisition team and CAA. I’m told a deal is very close. Considering how many distributors showed interest going into the weekend, it might  seem surprising that the Wettest County in the World has taken this long. Relativity Media had been the favorite all weekend since posting the highest bid, north of $5 million. I heard they got word from the producers last night that it wasn’t going to happen with them. I suspect what gave TWC the edge is its awards season experience, and a relationship that is growing between Harvey Weinstein and Megan Ellison, who financed the picture with Michael Benaroya. Ellison just sold to Weinstein world rights to the untitled Paul Thomas Anderson-directed film, which starts production next month with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix starring. I believe that The Wettest County in the World will get a platform release at year end, and open wide in early 2012.

The behind the scenes drama that has been going on all weekend illustrates the predicament for distributors on the Croisette who are trying to maintain some discipline in the closest thing to a sellers market that Cannes has seen in years. Buyers in this case wanted some control over a film that is done … Read More »

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Jason Statham Circling ‘Echelon’ Thriller

EXCLUSIVE: Eric Bana was previously attached but now I’ve learned that action star Jason Statham is interested but hasn’t signed yet. Hyde Park International will start selling the pic in Berlin. Echelon is based on the novel Firewall, the 3rd book in pseudonymous author Andy McNab’s 13-book series. It will be the 3rd movie financed through the $250 million Hyde Park/Imagenation Abu Dhabi deal after Ghost Rider 2 and The Double. Simon Crane, stunt coordinator on The Tourist and Salt, will make his feature directing debut on this adaptation of the action thriller novel by bestselling novelist Andy McNab. Ashok Amritraj of Hyde Park Entertainment is producing alongside veteran casting agent Bonnie Timmermann (Public Enemies) and Steve Chasman, who’s worked with Statham ever since Transporter (2002). Statham would play Nick Stone, an SAS soldier who finds himself caught between the Russian Mafia and western secret agents trying to get their hands on the Echelon computer program. McNab is an ex-SAS soldier who wrote the bestselling non-fiction account Bravo Two Zero of going behind enemy lines in the first Iraq war. Then the author branched out into thrillers featuring his Nick Stone character and a series of Young Adult books.

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Hot Trailer: ‘Hanna’

By | Monday December 20, 2010 @ 7:59pm PST
Mike Fleming

Focus Features has released a trailer for the Joe Wright-directed Hanna, with his Oscar-nominated Atonement discovery Saoirse Ronan playing the badass daughter of an ex-government operative who has turned her into a killing machine who’ll use all her skills to be reunited with her dad. Eric Bana and Cate Blanchett also star.

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Comic-Con 2010 Preview: Saturday, July 24

comicon 2010



Luke Y Thompson covers Hollywood events at the Con for Deadline:

10:00-11:00 AM: Mad about MAD! I used to love Mad Magazine, but in the years since it started accepting advertising, it has gone way downhill. Apparently there’ll be some sort of new TV venture announced, though not necessarily a spiritual successor to the late MADtv. Magazine vets Sergio Aragones, John Ficarra, and Sam Viviano will be onhand. Room 7AB

10:00-11:00 AM: Twilight Fanfiction Author Fangroup. Why is it that I have a sneaking suspicion most TWILIGHT fan fiction is actually better written than the prose of Stephenie Meyer? Santa Rosa Room, Marriott Hotel and Marina

11:00-11:45 AM: Family Guy. Clips from the upcoming third STAR WARS parody? You know it. Beyond that, we all know this is a love it or hate it show. I used to hate it, but I’m warming up. Ballroom 20

11:45 AM-12:30 PM: The Cleveland Show. Ditto to everything I said above about FAMILY GUY, except for the STAR WARS part. Ballroom 20

11:45 AM-1:15 PM: Warner Bros.: Green Lantern, Sucker Punch, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Aside from the Marvel movie panel, this will be the big deal. Here’s why: GREEN LANTERN is an iconic DC character finally getting his own live-action movie. SUCKER PUNCH is the first original, non-adapted movie from visual stylist Zack Snyder (WATCHMEN/300), and no-one really knows what to expect yet. As for HARRY POTTER, well, people know almost exactly what to expect from that … Read More »

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Colin Farrell, Eric Bana Circling Sheldon Turner-Directed ‘By Virtue Fall’

Mike Fleming


eric_bana1EXCLUSIVE: Colin Farrell and Eric Bana are in early talks to team on By Virtue Fall, an independent drama that will mark the directorial debut of Sheldon Turner, who shared an Oscar scripting nomination with Jason Reitman for Up in the Air. Nicolas Chartier’s Voltage Pictures is setting up the financing and producing with Jennifer Klein and Turner.

While both Farrell and Bana sparked to Turner’s script and want to do the film, the fragile nature of mounting a two-handed character indie drama makes this one no slamdunk. I’ve monitored the progress of the talks for the past week, and basically, reps for the actors remain underwhelmed by the money offered so far by Chartier. The feisty Frenchman will have to up the ante if he wants these two. Bana is further along than Farrell.

The drama charts a professional and personal relationship between two characters that evolves from friendship to betrayal and retribution. The Irish and Australian actors make an interesting match for a blood feud.

Chartier hasn’t yet made a domestic distribution deal. The producer, famous for winning the Best Picture Oscar for The Hurt Locker and being locked out of the ceremony, has been raising funds to put the picture into production this fall. The CAA-repped Farrell is next booked to play the vampire in the DreamWorks’ 3D remake Fright Night, and the New Line comedy Horrible Bosses. WME-repped Bana just wrapped … Read More »

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