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Sundance: IFC Near Deal On ‘God’s Pocket’ By ‘Mad Men’s John Slattery

By | Tuesday January 21, 2014 @ 8:18pm PST
Mike Fleming

pockeEXCLUSIVE: Capping a rocking day for deals at the Sundance Film Festival, IFC Films is closing a deal to acquired God’s Pocket, the directorial debut of Mad Men star John Slattery. The black comedy stars Philip Seymour Hoffman, Richard Jenkins, Christina Hendricks, and John Turturro. Slattery wrote the black comedy with Alex Metcalf. Slattery, Sam Bisbee Lance Acord, Jackie Kelman Bisbee, Emily Ziff and Hoffman produced. Hoffman plays Mickey, who, after his nutty stepson gets killed in a construction “accident,” tries to hide the truth from a newspaper columnist (Jenkins) who profiles the people of God’s Pocket. And though he’s gone to seed, he might uncover the truth unless Mickey can stop him. The film is playing in the U.S. Dramatic Competition, and it has been a buzz title since it premiered late Friday afternoon at the Eccles Theater. The film is being repped by Gersh.

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Sundance: Lionsgate, Roadside Attractions, Sony Pictures Worldwide Pays $3.5 Million For ‘Skeleton Twins’
Sundance: Lionsgate Acquires Rights To ‘Cooties’

The dam finally broke on film deals after a slow start. The numbers aren’t huge, but nobody expected them to be. I’d ask people about films, and they liked many of them. When I asked if they had commercials potential, the reviews weren’t so stellar. Many left the festival today, and … Read More »

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Cannes: Philip Seymour Hoffman Finds Place In ‘God’s Pocket’

Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Park Pictures Features signed Philip Seymour Hoffman to star in God’s Pocket, the upcoming film directorial debut from John Slattery, who adapted the Pete Dexter novel with Alex Metcalf. Richard Jenkins, Christina Hendricks and John Turturro will co-star. Gersh is selling. Park Pictures Features is producing with Hoffman’s Cooper’s Town Productions and Slattery’s Shoestring Pictures, which makes its producing debut. Producing is Sam Bisbee, Jackie Kelman Bisbee, Slattery, Lance Acord and Galt Niederhoffer for Park Pictures and Emily Ziff and Hoffman for Cooper’s Town. Read More »

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EMMYS: When Is A Guest Star Really A Guest Star?

Nellie Andreeva

Cloris Leachman today landed her 22nd career Emmy nomination for her role on Fox’s freshman comedy Raising Hope and may add to her haul of eight Emmy Awards, which is already a record for a female performer. But, despite being featured in the main credits of the show before the title card, listed as a cast member on Fox’s website and included on panels for the series, Leachman, who appeared in 20 of Raising Hope‘s 22 episodes, was nominated not as a supporting actress in a comedy series but as a guest star. The move probably helped the Oscar winner to snag a nomination in the less-crowded guest star field, but it also raises the issue of what really constitutes a guest star on a TV series as the line between a guest and supporting actor has blurred in recent Emmy races.

According to Emmy’s rulebook, “Comedy/Drama series guest performers with ‘guest star’ billing, or who are contracted as such, are eligible in the guest performer categories without regard to the number of episodes he/she appeared in.” The definition was originally limited to a single episode but was later expanded to three episodes and eventually the limit on the number of episodes was lifted altogether. Per 20th Century Fox TV, which produces Raising Hope, Leachman was technically a guest star on the first season of the show despite appearing in virtually every episode, so she was eligible for the guest starring category, something she won’t be next year as she is being promoted to a regular for Season 2.

Leachman’s guest starring nomination is part of a growing trend of the TV Academy moving away from the traditional guest starring stints involving a splashy performance in a single episode and awarding nominations for playing characters built over the course of one or more seasons that often feel like supporting roles. Not a single actor from a primetime series nominated in the guest starring categories this year has done only one episode of the show they got nominated for. Read More »

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‘Mad Men’ Cast Options Set To Expire Amidst Series Renewal, Matt Weiner Talks

Nellie Andreeva

It looks like we’re in for another round of drawn-out Mad Men negotiations between AMC and Lionsgate TV and between Lionsgate and series creator/showrunner Matthew Weiner. And while talks on both fronts are underway, another deadline is looming – the options on the cast expire at the end of the month. That certainly complicates things as the producing studio may have to make a decision on the cast before the show’s future is certain. But if you can’t imagine Mad Men without Jon Hamm or Elisabeth Moss or January Jones or John Slattery, you don’t have to. While it appears that there may not be a deal for the show’s renewal by the end of the month, I hear Lionsgate fully intends to exercise the actors’ options before the Dec. 31 deadline. That is a good sign that the studio anticipates that Mad Men will be back for a fifth season. Negotiations on Weiner’s previous deal with Lionsgate two years ago dragged well into January and closed days after Mad Men triumphed at the Golden Globes for a third consecutive year as best drama series. This week, the period drama landed 3 Golden Globe nominations: for best drama series, best actor Hamm and best actress Moss, as well as 3 SAG Award nominations: for best drama series cast, best drama actor, Hamm and best drama actress, Moss.

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