EXCLUSIVE: Indie drama Jack Of The Red Hearts has begun filming in New York with X-Men‘s Famke Janssen and The Carrie Diaries‘ AnnaSophia Robb anchoring the cast. Janet Grillo (Fly Away) is directing the film about a teenage con artist who tricks a desperate mother into hiring her as a live-in companion for her autistic daughter. Writer Jennifer Deaton developed the project with Lucy Mukerjee-Brown at Film Independent’s Producers Lab, and Sundial Pictures is producing it hot off the release of the Jenny Slate-starring Sundance comedy Obvious Child. The company’s Stefan Nowicki, Joey Carey, and Morgan White are producing alongside Mukerjee-Brown. CAA reps Robb and Janssen and is handling domestic rights. Robb is also repped by Untitled. Janssen is a client of Brookside Artists. Grillo is repped at Artists House.
EXCLUSIVE: Famke Janssen has closed her deal to reprise her role in Taken 3, opposite Liam Neeson and Maggie Grace. Another film seemed a natural, since the franchise has done more than $600 million in global box office. Janssen has so far been limited to playing the helpless housewife, and I am not sure if it has occurred to the filmmakers at Europa, but Janssen has a very particular set of skills she has acquired over a very long career, skills that would make her a nightmare for the bad guys who show up in these movies. The Dutch actress first came to prominence as the femme fatale Xenia Onatopp in the James Bond film Goldeneye, as she was cracking guys’ spines like walnuts with her aerobicized thighs. As X-Men’s Phoenix, she nearly destroyed the world with her powers. Neeson’s got to be tired by now, so isn’t it time to give Janssen a chance to kick some ass? She will next be seen in Screen Gems’ A Fighting Man with James Caan and Louis Gossett Jr and Eli Roth’s Netflix series Hemlock Grove. She’s repped by CAA and Brookside Artist Management.
Famke Janssen, Bill Skarsgard Cast In Eli Roth’s ‘Hemlock Grove’; Netflix To Air Gaumont-Produced Series In Early 2013
BEVERLY HILLS, CA. — March 21, 2012 — “Hemlock Grove,” a gripping tale of murder, mystery and monsters set in a ravaged Pennsylvania steel town, starring Famke Janssen and Bill Skarsgard and produced by Gaumont International Television, will be available for Netflix members to watch instantly, beginning early in 2013.
“Hemlock Grove” starts with the body of a young girl, mangled and murdered in the shadow of the former Godfrey steel mill. Some suspect an escapee from the White Tower, a biotech facility owned by the former steel magnates. Others believe the killer could be Peter, a 17-year-old Gypsy kid from the wrong side of the tracks, who tells his classmates he’s a werewolf. Or it could be Roman (Skarsgard), the arrogant Godfrey scion, whose sister Shelley is disturbingly deformed and whose mother, Olivia (Janssen), the otherworldly beautiful and controlling grand dame of Hemlock Grove.
As the crime goes unsolved and outlandish rumors mount, Peter and Roman decide to find the killer themselves, confronting unspeakable truths about themselves and Hemlock Grove as the mystery unfolds.
“Eli Roth is a master of this genre and Brian McGreevy’s brilliant novel gives Roth a world where he can create his magic,” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix Chief Content Officer. “‘Hemlock Grove’ is a sly blend of J.D. Salinger and Mary Shelley and will appeal to a broad base of fans captivated by these rich characters and stunning visuals.”
While James Franco and Anne Hathaway have been busy pulling it together to host Sunday’s Oscarcast, Franco’s CAA reps and Disney have closed his deal to play the title role in Oz: The Great and Powerful. That puts the film on track to begin production in July, with Franco reuniting with his Spider-Man director Sam Raimi in the prequel to the L. Frank Baum novel that was scripted by Mitchell Kapner and David Lindsay-Abaire. Joe Roth is producing.
There had been much discussion around town lately about Disney’s gyrations in trying to pare the budget of the film down to a mere $200 million, but they must have figured it out if they locked in Franco. For Franco, the multi-tasking marvel’s dance card for 2011 now looks like this: he’ll first star in the Noah Baumbach-directed While We’re Young, and then will shoot Oz. That brings him to the late fall/winter, when he’ll star in Sweet Bird of Youth, the David Cromer-directed revival of the Tennessee Williams play that will be produced by Scott Rudin. Kidman will play Alexandra Del Lago, the aging voracious movie star, while Franco will play her gigolo paramour Chance Wayne. While Franco has starred in eclectic indies and is even a recurring soap opera star, he has event film experience from the Spider-Man films with Raimi, and stars this fall in Fox’s Planet of the Apes prequel Rise of the Apes. Still, this is a …
Peter Stormare has joined Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, and Famke Janssen to star in Paramount/MGM’s Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters. He plays the villainous town sheriff ‘Berringer’. Stormare recently wrapped the Luc Besson produced feature film Lock Out for Sony. Stormare also stars with Keanu Reeves and Vera Farmiga in Henry’s Crime, and opposite Mel Gibson in How I Spent My Summer Vacation, and in Ed Gass-Donnelly’s Small Town Murder Songs. He’s repped by ICM and The Collective. Stormare also recently had a memorable turn in a Super Bowl ad for Budweiser. It might have been the game’s best commercial, behind Volkswagen’s pint-sized Darth Vader. See below:
The Tommy Wirkola-directed Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters at Paramount Pictures is now set for a March 2, 2012, release date. We hear the budget is pegged at $60 million and that MGM will co-finance because it’s now run by the Spyglass Entertainment guys and they had a close relationship with Paramount for years. (Besides, MGM’s soon-to-close co-financing deal with Sony Pictures, accomplished by leveraging James Bond #23, won’t be exclusive.) Paramount will take worldwide theatrical and home entertainment and domestic television rights, while MGM will handle international television. Hansel & Gretel 3D stars Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the title characters who, 15 years after their narrow fairy tale escape from the gingerbread house, become specialized bounty-hunters looking to take down the witches that almost killed them. Famke Janssen will play the leader of the witches. The movie is being produced by Will Ferrell, Chris Henchy, Adam McKay, and Kevin J. Messick.
Big day for casting female fairy tale villains. Famke Janssen will play the leader of the witches in the Tommy Wirkola-directed Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters at Paramount Pictures. She joins Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the title characters who, 15 years after their narrow fairy tale escape from the gingerbread house, become specialized bounty-hunters looking to take down the witches that almost killed them. Janssen takes the job the same day that Julia Roberts closed to play the Evil Queen in Relativity Media’s The Brothers Grimm: Snow White. Gary Sanchez is producing the witch project. Janssen just wrapped her scripting/directing debut on Bringing Up Bobby. She’s repped by CAA and Brookside Artists.