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SXSW 2013: Line-Up Includes Joss Whedon’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ U.S. Premiere & ‘Bates Motel’ Pilot Preview

By | Thursday January 31, 2013 @ 12:02pm PST

It’s not The Avengers 2 but Joss Whedon’s other new movie is making its stateside premiere at this year’s SXSW Film Festival. Much Ado About Nothing, which debuted at the Toronto Film Festival last year, joins 108 other feature films at the March 8-16 fest in Austin, SXSW announced today. Along with the previously announced world premieres of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, starring Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi and Jim Carrey, and the reimagined Evil Dead, this year’s SXSW has an on-stage interview with sometimes Austin resident Matthew McConaughey, new films from John Sayles and Nick Cassavetes, a preview of A&E’s Bates Motel pilot, a documentary about home movies from the Nixon White House and, Austin being Music City, a lot of music movies. Here are SXSW’s descriptions of the movies, panels and other events unveiled today:

NARRATIVE SPOTLIGHT
High profile narrative features receiving their World, North American or U.S. Premieres at SXSW.

Much Ado About Nothing
Director: Joss Whedon
Shakespeare’s classic comedy is given a contemporary spin in Joss Whedon’s film, Much Ado About Nothing. Cast: Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Nathan Fillion, Fran Kranz, Jillian Morgese (U.S. Premiere)

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‘Avengers’ Helmer Joss Whedon Steps Back Into Spring–This Time With Shakespeare

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Joss Whedon, who late last spring set the blockbuster tone for summer with the May release of The Avengers, will venture further into the warm weather season with his next film — this time aiming for the counter-programming buck. Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate have set a June 7 opening for Much Ado About Nothing, Whedon’s contemporized adaptation of the William Shakespeare play. The film will open that day in five markets and then broaden out June 21. Read More »

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Joss Whedon “Endorses” Mitt Romney?

By | Sunday October 28, 2012 @ 3:59pm PDT

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Toronto: Joss Whedon’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ Goes To Lionsgate

By | Tuesday September 11, 2012 @ 5:42pm PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Lionsgate acquired North American distribution rights to Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing, the low budget film by The Avengers helmer that played at Toronto this past weekend. Lionsgate sister company Roadside Attractions is in the mix, as it was on Imogene and Thanks For Sharing.

The Shakespeare classic comedy with a contemporary spin stars Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Nathan Fillion, Fran Kranz, Jillian Morgese, Sean Maher, Clark Gregg, and Reed Diamond. Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group Chairmen Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger, Lionsgate’s co-COO and Motion Picture Group President Steve Beeks, and Roadside’s co-President Howard Cohen were in the mix and CAA repped the filmmakers. Read More »

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ABC Greenlights ‘S.H.I.E.L.D’ Marvel Pilot, Joss Whedon To Co-Write & Possibly Direct

By | Tuesday August 28, 2012 @ 6:14pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Joss Whedon SHIELD PilotEXCLUSIVE: ABC has ordered a pilot for S.H.I.E.L.D, a live-action series from The Avengers writer-director Joss Whedon, Marvel TV and ABC Studios. The project is based on Marvel’s peacekeeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D (which stands for Strategic Hazard Intervention Espionage Logistics Directorate or Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division) found in both the Marvel comic book and feature film universes, including the blockbuster 2012 movie The Avengers, in which S.H.I.E.L.D director Nick Fury, recruits Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk, and Thor to stop Thor’s adoptive brother Loki from subjugating Earth.

S.H.I.E.L.D. will be written by Whedon and frequent collaborators, his brother Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen. Joss Whedon also is set to direct the pilot, schedule permitting. Production on the pilot, which marks the first live-action Marvel TV project to get a green light, will start immediately. Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon and Tancharoen executive produce with Jeffrey Bell and Marvel TV’s Jeph Loeb.

Related: ABC And Marvel Eying ‘Avengers’-Themed TV Series

The project had been in the works at Marvel TV and ABC Studios for some time. Earlier this month, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced that it had signed an exclusive film and TV deal with Joss … Read More »

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Mike Birbiglia & Ira Glass Vs. Joss Whedon

By | Thursday August 16, 2012 @ 1:21pm PDT

Mike Birbiglia and Ira Glass have responded to Joss Whedon’s YouTube video earlier this week with suggestions on how their Sleepwalk With Me, which opens August 24th, might compete with Whedon’s blockbuster Marvel’s The Avengers:

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Joss Whedon Vs. ‘Sleepwalk With Me’: Video

By | Tuesday August 14, 2012 @ 3:00pm PDT

Joss Whedon says he’s concerned that Mike Birbiglia’s Sleepwalk With Me, which opens August 24 via IFC, is “creeping up” on Marvel’s The Avengers and might eclipse the superhero movie’s dwindling weekend take when it debuts. The $1.46B global grosser Avengers took in about $271K from 220 theaters last weekend. Produced in conjunction with the radio show This American Life, Birbiglia’s movie is based on his sleepwalking and life misadventures and one-man show. His movie was a favorite this year at Sundance and South By Southwest. Fan fervor, Whedon notes, has resulted in the doubling to 80 the number of theaters opening Sleepwalk With Me. Whedon says, “That makes me nervous…”:

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Joss Whedon To Write & Direct ‘Avengers 2′

By | Tuesday August 7, 2012 @ 4:40pm PDT

UPDATE: Marvel Studios has weighed in with a statement that confirms the 2015 release date that Deadline had heard about the sequel to The Avengers. “Joss Whedon has signed an exclusive deal with Marvel Studios for film and television through the end of June 2015. As part of that deal, Whedon will write and direct Marvel’s The Avengers 2 as well as help develop a new live action series for Marvel Television at ABC. He will also contribute creatively to the next phase of Marvel’s cinematic universe.”

EARLIER, 5:27 PM EST: Well, this didn’t exactly seem much of a cliffhanger, but Disney CEO Bob Iger announced at today’s earnings call that Joss Whedon will be back to write and direct a second installment of The Avengers. Not only that; Whedon, who took the subpar film Buffy The Vampire Slayer and turned it onto a huge TV hit, will develop a live-action TV series involving Marvel characters as Disney continues to make the most out of its $4 billion acquisition of the superhero factory. It hasn’t been determined whether the series Whedon will work on will be the Avengers-themed drama Marvel and ABC already have in the works. Iger didn’t mention a release date for Avengers 2, or provide its official title, but we are probably looking at 2015.

The announcement comes just a few weeks after Whedon told an audience at Read More »

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Comic-Con: Joss Whedon Says His ‘Dr Horrible’ Web Series To Air On The CW

By | Friday July 13, 2012 @ 6:53pm PDT

Joss Whedon‘s web series Dr Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog is coming to the CW next year, the director of Marvel’s The Avengers director said this evening at Comic-Con. He did not say when the series would air, nor whether new episodes will be made for TV. The network didn’t have dates or times either. The original series stars Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day and streamed online over three acts in July 2008. Whedon directed and wrote the miniseries with his brothers Zack and Jed and wife Maurissa Tancharoen. His announcement today came at the end of a wide-ranging discussion by the director on a number of topics at a panel for Dark Horse Comics. Whedon has been a noteworthy presence at Comic-Con this year, appearing on several panels and events including today’s 10th anniversary panel for his cult sci-fi series Firefly. While there, he said he remains undecided about abwhether to return to the director’s chair for a sequel to The Avengers.

Related: Comic-Con: Joss Whedon Remains Undecided About ‘Avengers 2′

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Comic-Con: Joss Whedon Remains Undecided About ‘Avengers 2′

By | Friday July 13, 2012 @ 3:46pm PDT

Anthony D’Alessandro is a Deadline contributor.

Joss Whedon said today during a Comic-Con press conference for his series Firefly‘s 10-year anniversary that he hasn’t committed to making the sequel to Marvel’s The Avengers, this year’s massive Disney tentpole that he directed and co-wrote. “I have not come to a decision on directing Avengers 2 yet,” he said. “I am having too much fun with this (Firefly reunion) now.” The Marvel superhero pic is the third-highest-grossing movie of all time to date, and has racked up $612.3 million domestically and $1.46 billion worldwide, so having the architect back for a sequel is top of mind.

Related: Disney Passing $1B Domestic Box Office Read More »

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‘Hunger Games’ Passes $500M Global Cume, Scores #1 Domestic B.O. For 4th Weekend; ‘Three Stooges’ #2, ‘Cabin In Woods’ #3; ‘Battleship’ Builds $58M Foreign War Chest

April 13-15 Weekend Actuals

1. The Hunger Games (Lionsgate) Week 4 [3,916 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $6.4M, Saturday $9.3M, Sunday $5.4M, Weekend $21.1M (-36%), Cume $336.7M

2. The Three Stooges (Fox) NEW [3,477 Theaters] PG
Friday $5.6M, Saturday $7M, Sunday $4.4M, Weekend $17.0M

3. The Cabin in The Woods (Lionsgate) NEW [2,811 Theaters] R
Friday $5.6M, Saturday $5.7M, Sunday $3.5M Weekend $14.7M

4. Titanic 3D (Paramount/Fox) Week 2 [2,697 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $3.3M, Saturday $5.2M, Sunday $3.4M, Weekend $11.9M (-31%), Cume $44.7M

5. American Reunion (Universal) Week 2 [3,203 Theaters] R
Friday $3.4M, Saturday $4.4M, Sunday $2.6M, Weekend $10.5M (-51%), Cume $39.7M

6. Wrath of The Titans 3D (Warner Bros) Week 3 [3,102 Theaters] PG13
Friday $1.9M, Saturday $3.0M,Sunday $1.9M, Weekend $6.9M (-53%), Cume $71.3M

7. Mirror Mirror (Relativity) Week 3 [3,206 Theaters] PG
Friday $2.1M, Saturday $3.0M, Sunday $1.8M, Weekend $6.8M (-38%), Cume $49.3M

8. 21 Jump Street (Sony) Week 5 [2,735 Theaters] R
Friday $2.0M, Saturday $2.9M, Sunday $1.6M, Weekend $6.6M (-34%), Cume $120.3M

9. Lockout (FilmDistrict) NEW [2,308 Theaters] PG13
Friday $2.2M, Saturday $2.5M, Sunday $1.5M, Weekend $6.2M

10. Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax 3D (Universal) Week 7 [2,112 Theaters] PG
Friday $866K, Saturday $1.3M, Sunday $865K, Weekend $3.1M, Cume $204.5M

SATURDAY PM/SUNDAY AM, 5TH UPDATE: Overall the North American weekend looks to be down around -11% from last year which may make Hollywood nervous going into the all-important summer movie season starting in May after a super-heated 2012 first quarter. The difference in this weekend’s close finishes were a matter of MPAA ratings and theater counts with 22% of K-12 out of school Friday. Lionsgate’s PG13-rated The Hunger Games scored the most locations in the U.S. and Canada this weekend and beat its domestic competition for the 4th straight weekend. As of Sunday morning, its global cume is now a gargantuan $500+ million! Fox received its hoped-for Friday (#1 after matinees) and Saturday (+24%) family fare bumps for the Farrelly Brothers’ PG-rated The Three Stooges, which played in more runs than Lionsgate’s R-rated The Cabin In The Woods. Interesting to note that both Stooges and Cabin were greenlit by then MGM production chief Mary Parent — and then taken over by other studios when MGM couldn’t handle its debt load. CinemaScores were as follows: Fox’s The Three Stooges ‘B-’ (‘A’ from audiences  under 18, ‘C’ from 25 and older), Lionsgate’s The Cabin In The Woods ‘C’ (‘D+’ from females), FilmDistrict’s Lockout ‘B-’. Interesting how the Stooges reviews were better than expected, especially from top-end critics who found genius in that silliness. But not as good as Joss Whedon’s horror pic which received truly stellar reviews, including 93% positive on Rotten Tomatoes.

The Three Stooges will be Peter and Bobby Farrelly’s 3rd highest opener.

Universal’s Battleship continues to screen strongly overseas with estimates bringing the 72-hour total to $58 million now that all 26 international territories are open. Director Peter Berg’s military vs alien actioner debuted to #1 in 24 of those new territories. For months the studio has fought bad buzz about how risky this expensive pic has been. Especially when the studio is claiming it came in at $209M — and everyone else is saying $250+M. And there’s still the possibility that, in the United States at least, it could become a disappointing ”John Carter in gunmetal grey”. But the film is performing well enough to allay fears that the rah-rah-USA patriotic theme in 2D might not do well internationally in a crowded foreign marketplace (against The Hunger Games, Titanic 3D, American Pie Reunion, and The Wrath Of The Titans). Universal pursued an unorthodox, even daring, strategy to open Battleship internationally more than a month before it debuts May 18th in North America. But it may pay off. My sources project the film could steam past $300M foreign box office based on current trends. The film rolls out to another 24 territories including big guns Russia and China next weekend.

My sources estimate these early Top Ten grosses for Friday, Saturday, and the weekend in North America:

1. The Hunger Games (Lionsgate) Week 4 [3,916 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $6.5M, Saturday $9.5M, Weekend $21.7M, Cume $335.7M

2. The Three Stooges (Fox) NEW [3,477 Theaters] PG
Friday $5.6M, Saturday $6.9M, Weekend $17.1M

3. The Cabin In The Woods (Lionsgate) NEW [2,811 Theaters] R
Friday $5.5M, Saturday $5.9M, Weekend $15.1M

4. Titanic 3D (Paramount/Fox) Week 2 [2,697 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $3.3M, Saturday $5.1M, Weekend $11.4M (-34%), Cume $44.1M

5. American Reunion (Universal) Week 2 [3,203 Theaters] R
Friday $3.4M, Saturday $4.4M, Weekend $10.6M (-51%), Cume $39.8M

6. Mirror Mirror (Relativity) Week 3 [3,206 Theaters] PG
Friday $2.0M, Saturday $3.1M, Weekend $7.2M, Cume $49.6M

7. Wrath Of The Titans 3D (Warner Bros) Week 3 [3,102 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $1.9M, Saturday $3.1M, Weekend $7.0M, Cume $71.3M

8. 21 Jump Street (Sony) Week 5 [2,735 Theaters] R
Friday $2.0M, Saturday $3.0M, Weekend $6.8M, Cume $120.0M

9. Lockout (FilmDistrict) NEW [2,308 Theaters] PG-13
Friday $2.2M, Saturday $2.6M, Weekend $6.4M

10. Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax 3D (Universal) Week 7 [2,112 Theaters] PG
Friday $880K, Saturday $1.3M, Weekend $3.0M, Cume $204.7M
Read More »

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APA Signs ‘Cabin In The Woods’/'Spartacus’ Actress

By | Friday April 13, 2012 @ 1:24pm PDT

EXCLUSIVE: Anna Hutchison who’s a co-star in The Cabin in The Woods and just landed a recurring role on Starz’s Spartacus has signed with APA in all areas. The 26-year old former New Zealand soap star will still be repped by Matt Andrews and David Sheridan of Australia’s Marquee Management.

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Avengers’

By | Wednesday February 29, 2012 @ 11:23am PST

The Marvel superheroes pic is written and directed by Joss Whedon, which only serves to ramp up expectations among the fanboy set. So does the cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddleston, Stellan Skarsgard and Samuel L. Jackson. Here’s the second trailer for the tentpole, which Disney releases May 4.

Loading video...
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‘Shameless’ Regular Steve Howey Cast In Indie ‘In Your Eyes’

By | Thursday February 23, 2012 @ 1:10pm PST

EXCLUSIVE: Howey will star along with Zoe Kazan and Mark Feuerstein in the romantic-horror film currently in pre-production. Directed by Brin Hill and written by Joss Whedon, In Your Eyes revolves around two polar opposites who have surprising connections. Howey is a regular on Showtime’s Shameless and recently starred in Warner Bros’ Something Borrowed. He is repped by UTA and manager J.B. Roberts at Thruline Entertainment.

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Joss Whedon’s ‘In Your Eyes’ Lands Leads

By | Wednesday February 15, 2012 @ 11:31am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Michael Stahl-David and Zoe Kazan have signed on to star in the sci-fi/romance indie In Your Eyes, which Brin Hill will direct from a script by Joss Whedon. Whedon’s Bellwether partner Kai Cole producing along with Night & Day Pictures’ Michael Roiff and David Rothernberg. The film is a described as a metaphysical love story about two seemingly polar opposites who are deeply connected in ways neither could have ever imagined.

Stahl-David stars as Dylan, a boyish-looking man who served time in jail for robbery when he refused to rat on his accomplices. Now, he is living in a trailer in New Mexico. Kazan stars as Rebecca, an attractive but skinny and slightly awkward woman, who is married to an older doctor and living in Connecticut. The two have a powerful connection, and they can hear and see each other, even though they have never met. The film will start production soon in Los Angeles and New Hampshire. Stahl-David made his feature film debut as the lead in JJ Abrams’ Cloverfield for Paramount, and last starred in ABC’s My Generation. He is repped by Management 360 and ICM. Kazan, who scripted the Jonathan Dayton-Valerie Faris-directed He Loves Me,  is repped by Parseghian/Planco and Gersh.

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Super Bowl Spot: ‘Marvel’s The Avengers’

By | Sunday February 5, 2012 @ 5:44pm PST

Written and directed by fanboy fave Joss Whedon, The Avengers brings together members of the Marvel universe to battle Loki and his minions. Opens May 4.

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Film Briefs: Playing Catch-Up On ‘Hunger Games’ Sequel ‘Catching Fire’ And Joss Whedon’s Next Film

By | Tuesday January 17, 2012 @ 6:19am PST
Mike Fleming

There are reports today that Lionsgate has started moving on Catching Fire, the second installment of The Hunger Games trilogy, with Simon Beaufoy adapting the Suzanne Collins novel, and Gary Ross returning as director of a film set for release November 22, 2013. Deadline readers might recall we told you all this last November, when progress actually began on the sequel…

The Avengers director Joss Whedon probably had his own designs on how to reveal his next film, but Mad Men‘s Abigail Spencer did it for him by telling Vulture she would be in the cast of his next film, that it would start production next month, and that it is a supernatural romance. The cynical part of me wonders if this is the supernatural romance In Your Eyes, which Whedon unveiled last Halloween as the second film (after Much Ado About Nothing) from his new microbudget feature factory Bellwether. Last I heard, Whedon wrote the script but Brin Hill will direct with Whedon’s Bellwether partner Kai Cole producing along with Night & Day Pictures’ Michael Roiff. In Your Eyes is a metaphysical love story about two seemingly polar opposites who are deeply connected in ways neither could have ever imagined.

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Cabin In The Woods’

The trailer for The Cabin In The Woods went online today. The horror thriller that stars Chris Hemsworth was finished before his breakthrough as Thor. Directed by Cloverfield scribe Drew Goddard, who co-wrote it with Joss Whedon, the MGM project stalled because of that company’s financial problems and Lionsgate made a deal to distribute it, eventually setting it to open April 13, 2012. Cast includes Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford, Jesse Williams, Kristen Connolly, Anna Hutchison, Brian White, Amy Acker, Reila Aphrodite and Jodelle Ferland.

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Chris Evans Replacing James Franco In ‘The Iceman’

By | Monday November 21, 2011 @ 11:50am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Captain America’s Chris Evans is taking a turn to the darkside. Evans has made a deal to replace James Franco in The Iceman, the Ariel Vromen-directed drama based on the Anthony Bruno book about Richard Kuklinski, a contract killer for the mob. Michael Shannon is attached to play Kuklinski, aka The Iceman, and Franco was going to play his mentor, Robert Pronge. Millennium Films/Nu Image is starting production on the picture next month. Aside from playing the title character in Captain America: The First Avenger, Evans starred in Puncture and is reprising his Captain America role in the Joss Whedon-directed The Avengers. He’s repped by CAA and 3 Arts.

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