EXCLUSIVE: Cross Creek Pictures has stepped up to finance A Walk Among the Tombstones, an adaptation of the Lawrence Block novel that seemed to have been put to rest more than a decade ago. DJ Caruso is in discussions to direct a script by Scott Frank. It is one of two pictures Caruso is considering for his next film. The other is Preacher, the John August-scripted film for Sony Pictures and producer Neal Moritz.
Double Feature partners Michael Shamberg and Stacey Sher are producing with Danny DeVito and Cross Creek president Brian Oliver. Shamberg, Sher and DeVito first got Frank to write a script while they were partners in Jersey Films. It had been set at Universal and once had Harrison Ford interested in playing Matthew Scudder, an alcoholic former cop who spends his retirement doing favors for friends, the kind that take him deep into the underbelly of New York City. In A Walk Among the Tombstones, a heroin kingpin’s wife is kidnapped and those kidnappers begin to send her back in pieces. The Scudder character was previously seen in 8 Million Ways To Die. Read More »
Billy Bob Thornton has set Robert Duvall, John Hurt, Kevin Bacon, Robert Patrick and Ray Stevenson to star with Thornton in Jayne Mansfield’s Car, the first dramatic feature that Thornton has directed since 2001′s Daddy and Them. The film is being funded by AR Films, whose principal, Alexander Rodnyansky, will produce with Media Talent Group’s Geyer Kosinski. Production begins June 22 in Georgia.
Thornton, who co-wrote the script with frequent collaborator Tom Epperson, has been mobilizing the picture for a while and just locked his final cast. He has also set John Patrick Amedori to play a lead in the film. A comedy with dramatic overtone, it revolves around the culture clash of two families, from different continents, in 1969.
Rodnyansky is the founder of the Ukrainian TV channel 1+1 and former CEO of CTC Media when it became the biggest independent publicly traded media conglomerate in Russia with five channels in three countries. He has produced over 20 TV series and 30 films including Elena, which received the Special Jury Prize in the Un Certain Regard category at Cannes last month. “I’ve started to look for opportunities in America, and this is definitely not a single picture strategy,” he told me. “When I read that script, I fell in love with it. I was a fan of Sling Blade and Billy Bob’s other movies. No matter where you are making movies, it’s all about the script.” Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Starz has made a 10-episode commitment to Magic City, a period drama series that captures the collision of mobsters, politicians and entertainers at a posh Miami hotel just as Fidel Castro takes control of Cuba and shuts down Havana as a gambling haven. Mitch Glazer created the series and has written the first three episodes — he’ll write five more — of a series that will start production early next year in Miami and will air on Starz in 2012. It’s being produced by Media Talent Group, whose CEO, Geyer Kosinski will be executive producer with Glazer and Tony To. The subject matter is a tightrope in dealing with the mob, his own complicated family, racial tensions and a city that is about to blow up as a destination for decadence. “Mitch has created a world populated with unforgettable characters and with a big dynamic story,” said Starz president/CEO Chris Albrecht in a statement. “The talented creative team that has come together for Magic City will ensure a show that we think audiences won’t want to miss.” Glazer based the series on his own recollection of growing up in Miami. “I was born and raised in Miami Beach, grew up in those swank hotel lobbies,” Glazer said. “I love that world and those stories. Miami in the early ‘60s was a tropical crossroads, America’s Casablanca. The Rat Pack, CIA, the mob, JFK and anti-Castro warriors, all hanging out in the same Collins … Read More »