EXCLUSIVE: The CW is boosting its sci-fi cred with Oxygen, an alien drama in the vein of District 9. It hails from Space Floor TV’s Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg and Olé’s Richard Shepard, Sean Furst and Bryan Furst.
Written by Meredith Averill (The Good Wife) based on a format developed by Daniel Gutman of Pow Wow and Spanish producer Isla Producciones, Oxygen follows a high school pilot program, the first attempt to integrate a group of humanoid aliens stranded on earth who until now have been living in forced segregation. The program is complicated by the prejudices and competing agendas on all sides, and could be saved or destroyed by a burgeoning romance between a human girl and alien boy. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Despite crossing over to features in a big way recently, Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol co-writers Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec are also staying in touch with their TV roots through a pod deal at 20th Century Fox TV’s cable and reality division Fox21. Under the one-year pact, the two will write, supervise and produce projects targeted for cable. Fox21 president Bert Salke, who took the reins of the division exactly a year ago, said that the deal is indicative of his talent strategy. “We’re going to change the types of people we work with and the types of deals we make,” he said. That would often mean writers like Appelbaum and Nemec “that any network would want.” As for Fox21′s deals themselves, while they understandably pay less than network pacts, they are also far less restrictive than the exclusive broadcast deals. “I think that will be the future,” Salke said. For instance, Appelbaum and Nemec’s deal is exclusive in cable, but the two are free to shop broadcast projects on their own. And cable’s year-round development model allows writers who are busy in features like Appelbaum and Nemec the flexibility to pitch whenever they have time. Additionally, “the lines between broadcast and cable are really blurred now,” Salke said, pointing to 20th TV-based producer Ryan Murphy who has both a broadcast series, Fox’s Glee, and a cable one, FX’s upcoming American Horror Story. At Fox21, which produces FX’s Sons of Anarchy, A&E’s Breakout Kings and Showtime’s upcoming Homeland, Salke said he is in a roster-building mode, signing “tons of writer deals.” Read More »
After the writing team of Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec revived one Paramount franchise with their script for Mission: Impossible –Ghost Protocol, the studio has tapped them to rewrite another franchise Paramount is hoping to resuscitate. They will next go to work on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The scribes just did a rewrite of Now You See Me, which Louis Leterrier will direct for Summit Entertainment. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot is being produced by Platinum Dunes partners Michael Bay, Brad Fuller and Andrew Form. The scribes are repped by WME.
What do you know — the Lost castaways have found new primetime land. A fresh hourlong project starring Lost alums Michael Emerson and Terry O’Quinn and executive produced by Lost co-creator/exec producer JJ Abrams has landed at NBC with a big put pilot commitment. Lost‘s home network, ABC, did bid aggressively on the the show and came close to locking it in. But, after the show went down to the wire with ABC, NBC ultimately snagged it. Life on Mars co-creators/exec producers Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec, who worked with Abrams on his ABC spy drama Alias, are writing the pilot for Warner Bros TV and Abrams’ Bad Robot. Appelbaum Read More »
BREAKING:: So Paramount Pictures won’t be screen-testing any young actors to star opposite Tom Cruise after all. I’ve learned that the studio has just chosen Jeremy Renner to infuse new blood in its Mission: Impossible franchise. Renner is the Oscar-nominated star of The Hurt Locker and will star alongside Cruise in the fourth installment of the franchise that will begin production in the fall as a reboot. Brad Bird is directing and Cruise is producing with JJ Abrams.
Paramount has struggled to find the right co-star to play the operative opposite Cruise. One factor was selecting an actor who could potentially carry the series on his own down the line, should Cruise’s Ethan Hunt character not continue to be the emphasis. While Cruise is expected to return for a fifth installment, production chief Adam Goodman wanted a guy who could grow into a leading man in his own right. The studio boss was interested in actors like Tom Hardy and Chris Pine, but they were booked. So the studio planned to test a group of young actors later this week, and Deadline spent all Tuesday going back and forth with the studio over candidates Kevin Zegers, Christopher Egan and Anthony Mackie (the latter of whom starred with Renner in The Hurt Locker). But it was clear that Paramount wasn’t sure what it was going to do. Those tests have been canceled now (Mackie, another seasoned actor poised for … Read More »