Justin Lin (Fast Five, Fast & Furious 6) is still directing the fifth installment of Universal’s Bourne franchise, but it won’t be hitting theaters next summer after all. The studio has pushed back the untitled Bourne sequel nearly a year from August 14, 2015 to July 15, 2016. In its place on the schedule Universal today also slated the N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton.
So far Uni’s only competition that weekend is another blockbuster five-quel: Fox’s Ice Age 5. Jeremy Renner is set to return as super spy Aaron Cross, with Frank Marshall producing again alongside Jeffrey Weiner and Ben Smith for Captivate Entertainment. Lin is also producing for Perfect Storm Entertainment. He was hired last November to helm the film. Bourne Legacy grossed $276 million worldwide in 2012 and introduced Renner’s new protagonist to the franchise based on Robert Ludlum’s novels.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier directing duo Anthony and Joe Russo have joined forces with Fast & Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin and producer and former Caviar COO Todd Makurath to form branded entertainment production company Bullitt. The company’s aim is to create content for agencies, brands, and other businesses by well-known narrative feature and television directors, merging the entertainment and advertising worlds. Bullitt’s already partnered with Google ATAP and Harley-Davidson on campaigns integrating narrative content and is headquartered out of the offices of Ridley Scott‘s commercials production company RSA. The strategic partnership between Bullitt and RSA came together under RSA President Jules Daly. Bullitt is repped by Maven Label, The House of Representatives, and Venable LLP. Lin’s repped by CAA.
Gaumont International Television (Hannibal) has teamed with filmmaker Justin Lin and his Perfect Storm Entertainment for Radiant Doors, a drama that has been set up at WGN America. The project, from writer Jeremy Doner (The Killing), has received a script against a series commitment, meaning that it would go straight to series if the pilot script gets WGN’s approval. An adaptation of the short story by Michael Swanwick, Radiant Doors is described as a gripping drama series exploring how our society deals with the sudden arrival of a flood of refugees from a dystopian future. Lin is set to direct and executive produce with Doner and Perfect Storm’s Danielle Woodrow and Troy Craig Poon, with Ryan Andolina serving as co-producer. “We have been wanting to work with both Justin and Jeremy and are so happy to have them come together on this project,” said GIT CEO Katie O’Connell. “The award-winning short story really captivated all of us with its transcendent themes.” Both WGN America and GIT are in the straight-to-series business. WGN’s first original drama, Salem, premieres April 20. Lin and Doner are repped by CAA.
EXCLUSIVE: Focus Features has acquired the Taylor Materne & Jacob Rubin’s Black List script Times Square for Justin Lin to direct. The film will be produced by Chernin Entertainment, Perfect Storm Entertainment and Far Hills Pictures. The crime thriller is set in the last days of the old Times Square, when it was transitioning from a seedy lawless Midtown Manhattan dump to a family-friendly corporate mecca. In that backdrop, when a secret from his past is unearthed, a young man’s loyalties are divided between his neighborhood boss who raised him and the grizzled ex-cop who swore to protect him.
Lin and Troy Craig Poon are producing for Perfect Storm with Chernin Entertainment. Stone Douglass is exec producer and Mike LaRocca brought in the project. After stepping away from steering the Fast & The Furious franchise, Lin is right now helming the CBS pilot Scorpion and will then helm the next installment of the Bourne franchise with Jeremy Renner starring. He’s also still attached to helm L.A. Riots, which was scripted by Oscar-winning 12 Years A Slave writer John Ridley for Universal and Imagine’s Brian Grazer.
Materne & Rubin are represented by WME, Oasis Media Group and lawyer Howard Abramson, while Lin is repped by CAA, Cinetic Management and Sloss Eckhouse Law Co.
The Unit alum Robert Patrick is back at CBS with a co-starring role in another drama project, pilot Scorpion, from writer Nick Santora, director Justin Lin, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci. It centers on an eccentric genius and his international network of super-geniuses who form the last line of defense against the complex threats of the modern age. Patrick, repped by Gersh, McKuen Frankel Whitehead and the Coronel group, will play Cabe Gallo, a no non-sense, blue collar Federal Agent who works with the group. He is currently on El Rey’s From Dusk til Dawn and has Kill the Messenger coming out.
CBS has given a pilot order to Scorpion, a drama from Nick Santora, Justin Lin, Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci. The project, which had a put pilot commitment, was written by Breakout Kings co-creator Santora and will be directed by Fast & Furious’ Lin, with CBS TV Studios producing. It centers on an eccentric genius and his international network of super-geniuses who form the last line of defense against the complex threats of the modern age. Read More »
The wild tale of the Portland Mavericks looks to be coming to the big screen via one of its former employees. Little Children director and former Mavericks batboy Todd Field is in talks to direct and write an adaptation of the documentary The Battered Bastards Of Baseball, I’ve learned. Helmed by Chapman Way and Maclain Way and featuring multiple appearances by their uncle and former Maverick himself Kurt Russell, the docu launched in the Documentary Premiere section of this year’s Sundance Film Festival on January 20 and has its final screening tomorrow. Despite reports earlier today that pitched Justin Lin as directing the adaptation, the former Fast & Furious helmer in fact is producing the adaptation through his Perfect Storm company. In play right now with several buyers at Sundance, according to sources close to the film, Battered Bastards chronicles how in 1973 Bonanza actor Bing Russell formed what at the time was America’s sole independent baseball team. Seen as a real-life version of the Bad News Bears, the Mavericks lasted three years before they were pushed out of Portland by the return of the major-league-backed Portland Beavers. Field is repped by CAA.
They also take their weekly look at the global box office, marked this time around by one of Walter Mitty’s biggest dreams, or at least that of his producers; Jack Ryan’s Chinese debut; and The Wolf of Wall Street, set loose in Europe’s box offices.
Justin Lin is making his first filmic foray into China, and into 3D. The director plans to helm a remake of 1982’s The Shaolin Temple which starred Jet Li in his debut role. Hot off a press conference in Beijing to announce the project, Lin’s partner at Perfect Storm Entertainment, CEO Troy Craig Poon, tells me the plan is to hire “an A+ list Hollywood writer to tackle the story” although there is no start date for now. “We will commence only when we feel this is ready,” says Poon. The 1982 Shaolin Temple was a Hong Kong martial arts movie directed by Chang Hsin Yen. The original story was based on Shaolin folklore and set during the transition period between the Sui Dynasty and the Tang Dynasty. When the Tang emperor is betrayed by one of his generals, the son of one of his slave workers escapes to the temple, trains in kung fu, and sets out to kill the traitor. The remake project is a collaboration of Beijing Enlight Pictures, Bruno Wu’s Seven Stars and Perfect Storm. Poon, Wu and Enlight’s Wang Changtian will produce. Poon says the budget will be north of $100M and that the idea is for it to be a “blockbuster unlike ever seen for (the Chinese) market.” He believes the timing of the film could coincide with China becoming the world’s No. 1 movie market. Read More »
Universal Pictures today set an August 14, 2015 release date for the fifth installment of the Bourne Identity franchise and confirmed Deadline’s scoop last month that Fast & Furious helmer Justin Lin will direct the pic. Jeremy Renner returns as Aaron Cross for this chapter and Frank Marshall once again produces, alongside Jeffrey Weiner and Ben Smith for Captivate. Lin will also produce for his Perfect Storm Entertainment. Universal also announced today that the Scarlett Johansson-starrer Lucy will be released on August 8, 2014. Luc Besson directs the action thriller.
Fox has put in development Three The Hard Way, a comedy inspired by NBA superstar Dwyane Wade and his bestselling book A Father First, in which Wade reflects on being a father to two boys. Written by Ben Watkins (Burn Notice), the Fox project, from Sony Pictures TV, centers on NBA superstar Daryl Wade and his entourage of eccentric friends as they find themselves parenting by committee when he gets full custody of his two young sons. The premise draws parallels to the 2011 Fox comedy pilot Council Of Dads starring Kyle Bornheimer. Watkins and Wade are executive producing Three The Hard Way with Mike Tollin of Mandalay Sports Media and Justin Lin, Danielle Woodrow, and Troy Craig Poon through Lin’s Perfect Storm Entertainment. The project was originally set up at Fox by Wade and Tollin earlier this year. Lin joined in June drawn by his love for basketball and his own experience raising a young son. Tollin then brought in Watkins, with whom he has a long-standing relationship, as writer. This marks father-of-four Watkins’ return to comedy writing. Three The Hard Way also marks the first television development project for Wade’s ZZ Prods. He is repped by CAA and L. Londell McMillan. Watkins is with CAA and David Matlof; Tollin with CAA and Jared Levine; Perfect Storm with CAA and Jackie Eckhouse.
EXCLUSIVE:Universal Pictures has tapped the director of one of the studio’s most lucrative and successful franchises to take on the fifth installment of The Bourne Identity franchise. Justin Lin will direct the sequel to the Tony Gilroy-directed The Bourne Legacy, the pic that kicked off storyline of Aaron Cross, the character played by Jeremy Renner. Renner is set to return as Cross in a story hatched by ‘Invictus’ and ‘Sherlock Holmes’ scribe Anthony Peckham. Frank Marshall and Captivate Entertainment’s Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner are also back as producers, and Lin also will produce through his Perfect Storm banner. I’m hearing a summer 2015 release is being eyed for this one, though the studio is saying it doesn’t know when it will open. Universal chairman Donna Langley, co-president of production Peter Cramer, and VP Production Anikah McLaren will oversee the project for the studio. Bourne Legacy, released in 2012, grossed $276 million worldwide.
Lin has plenty of fans at Universal, where he came aboard a flagging Fast & Furious franchise and put it back on the fast track: the last three installments have grossed $1B collectively. He was key to making it probably the studio’s most valuable franchise — especially overseas and among younger fans. Universal has a seventh installment in the works as well as new installments of The Mummy and Jurassic Park.
EXCLUSIVE:Shawn Ryan is heading back to the fifties with a new drama project, which has landed at Fox with a put pilot commitment. Co-written by Ryan and Davey Holmes (Shameless), with Fast & The Furious‘ Justin Lin directing, the untitled project is set in 1957 in the Territory of Hawaii, which is on a path to become the 50th state in the Union two years later. Statehood and tourism are about to make a few men very rich, and when the brother of a small-time Hawaiian hustler is murdered, he resolves to wage war on the most powerful man on the island. Sony Pictures TV, where Ryan’s MiddKidd Prods. is based, is producing, with Ryan, Lin and Holmes executive producing alongside MiddKidd’s Marney Hochman and Danielle Woodrow of Lin’s Perfect Storm Entertainment. The Hawaii project reunites Ryan and Holmes with Fox where the two previously worked on the Ryan-created cop drama The Chicago Code. This is Ryan’s second broadcast sale this season. He also reunited with his Last Resort collaborator Karl Gajdusek for a new ABC drama project, which has a sizable penalty. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Having launched a TV division in April, Perfect Storm Entertainment has found its first project for the small screen – and it comes from the pen of Bruce Lee. Fast & The Furious 6 director Justin Lin and Seven Stars Studios’ Bruno Wu’s joint venture has partnered with Bruce Lee Enterprises for a TV series based on material written by the iconic Enter The Dragon actor. Details are sketchy on the one-hour drama, but it looks like Lin could direct the pilot, my sources say. CAA is repping the drama and Perfect Storm is planning to begin meeting with potential showrunners soon. This project — a passion for Lee, I’ve heard — is the first one Lin has formally gotten involved with since F&F6 came out in May. In February, Deadline’s Mike Fleming Jr reported that Lin is attached to direct an adaptation of Patrick Lee’s upcoming The Breach novel for Warner Bros. Lin is producing that one with Michael De Luca.
Chinese media entrepreneur Bruno Wu in his recent interview with me touts ”a next-generation entertainment company that’s lean and mean and scalable. Building an ecosystem for the bigger Chinese movie scene. Exploring a new pathway and being a pioneer. As we say in Chinese, ‘Being the first brave man who has the guts to taste the crabs.’” Here are the bullet points:
– On his complex network of companies: Of the $800 million he claims his new Harvest Seven Stars Media Fund has raised, Wu says about $500M is committed for eventual acquisitions and investments. But the capital won’t be called until a target is identified. “We’re actively looking for takeovers,” he says. “An exhibitor is not very interesting for me. My personal interest is mainly in digital distribution, or top-tier IP ownership.” As for individual movie projects, “Our position is we are always prepared to finance it all.”
– On skepticism about all the partnerships and deals he’s announced over the past 15 months: “In a way, I understand the skepticism but I’m not bothered by it. To me, I focus on the fundamentals of business. It’s how do I build lean-and-mean scalable high-value creation, great IP creation, great brand creation with the best talent for the content, very strong digital distribution, all distribution, partnerships with best partners in every silo, control pay and platform digital distribution and control the … Read More »
Perfect Storm Entertainment has added a television division to its company and brought aboard former FX executive Danielle Woodrow to run it. Formed last March as a joint venture by Fast & The Furious 6 director Justin Lin and Seven Stars Studios Bruno Wu, the newly created TV division will focus on developing scripted dramas and comedies for network, cable, digital formats, and the international marketplace. It recently inked a first-look comedy deal with Sony Pictures Television. Before leaving FX in July 2011 to take a sabbatical from TV, Woodrow was the network’s SVP Original Programming, running the Current Series department. “Danielle brings exceptional experience in television and adds an important element to Perfect Storm Entertainment. We are ecstatic to have her become a principal in the company,” said Lin today in a statement. PSE VP Ryan Andolina will work closely with Woodrow in the TV unit, which will be run out of the companies’ offices in LA, NYC, Beijing and Shanghai.
Justin Lin made it clear back at the Sundance Film Festival in January that he wasn’t going to direct the next pic after revitalizing that franchise and helming its last four installments including the upcoming May 24 opener Fast & Furious 6. He wanted to take a break, and while he wasn’t going back to The Terminator, he still considered the reboot of Highlander a possibility at Summit. Universal Pictures has had plenty of time to consider who’ll take over the race car franchise, and recently they have been working from a very short list. Among the directors they’ve spoken to are Baltazar Kormakur, who helmed Contraband, The Deep and the upcoming 2 Guns with Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg (I don’t think Kormakur is available); Kick-Ass 2 helmer Jeff Wadlow; and The Karate Kid helmer Harold Zwart, whose next is The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones. Wan, who helmed the first installment of Saw, more recently directed the horror smash hit Insidious, and has The Conjuring upcoming.
The next film brings back longtime producer Neal H. Moritz of Original Film, and Chris Morgan is returning to write … Read More »
The untitled action thriller was just auctioned in a big pre-emptive, three-book deal that will be published next winter by Macmillan. The book is the first of a series featuring an ex-special operative named Sam Dryden. In the character-driven thriller, Dryden runs into a mysterious young girl who is not quite what she seems, and he embarks on a journey to keep her safe from a powerful government agent intent on hunting her down.
This comes as Lin puts the finishing touches on Fast & Furious 6 for Universal, which he directed and produced. That marks his fourth turn in the high-octane action series he helped revive, and Lin is now looking for other films to do through his Barnstorm Pictures banner. Barnstorm president of production Elaine Chin is also producing with Pouya Shahbazian, who manages the author. Read More »
Here’s Universal‘s new theatrical trailer for Justin Lin‘s latest high-speed hijinks with Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese, and Ludacris. Fast & Furious 6 opens May 24: