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Specialty Box Office: ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,’ ‘First Position,’ ‘Last Call At The Oasis,’ ‘The Perfect Family’

By | Friday May 4, 2012 @ 7:04am PDT

Participant Media has two very different projects with theatrical releases this weekend. The company partnered with producers of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, starring Dame Judi Dench, which Fox Searchlight is taking to theaters in the U.S. ATO Pictures meanwhile collaborated with Participant on its water crisis doc Last Call At The Oasis, which is set for a limited rollout via ATO. Also opening in the specialty arena today are the doc First Position from Sundance Selects and The Perfect Family, starring Kathleen Turner which will has a decidedly more DIY release strategy.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Director John Madden
Writers: Ol Parker (screenplay), Deborah Moggach (novel)
Cast: Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith
Distributor: Fox Searchlight

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel producer Graham Broadbent and his team optioned novelist Deborah Moggach’s These Foolish Things because the concept of “personal crisis” had an appeal. The film centers on British retirees who travel to what they believe is a plush resort in India, only to find out it is less than expected. “We developed the script in the UK and landed [the final version of the script] from Ol Parker,” Broadbent told Deadline. “We approached Participant and asked if it fit in with their [focus] on social issues and then started talking to Fox Searchlight.” After partnering with Participant and Searchlight, there were some re-writes, but the production team was pleased with the results. They also tapped the experience of their producing partners. “Searchlight has had great experience shooting in India with The Darjeeling Limited and The Namesake,” he said.
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Howard Stern’s Agency Don Buchwald & Associates Teams With Fortitude

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: Don Buchwald President Tim Angle Exits In Fallout From Merger With Fortitude

EXCLUSIVE: Don Buchwald & Associates, the agency best known for repping Sirius XM Radio’s signature star Howard Stern, is joining forces with West Coast based talent agency Fortitude. Fortitude founders/partners Ben Press and Michael McConnell  and DB&A executive vice president Julia Buchwald will serves as co-heads of Don Buchwald & Associates/Fortitude. The consolidated companies will operate out of DB&A’s existing space at 6500 Wilshire Blvd.

DB&A will remain in its Gotham offices, where it has its broadcast, commercial, voiceover, theater, legal and business affairs departments and talent and lit departments. Formed four years ago, Fortitude has lit and talent clients that include Joss Stone, Angela Lansbury, Peter Iliff, Julia Jones, Crispin Glover, Daisy Lowe, Mario Van Peebles, Elle Macpherson, Cymphonique Miller, Cybill Shepherd, Jordan Bridges, Sean Patrick Flanery, Loren Dean, Lolita Davidovich, Romeo Miller and Kathleen Quinlan.

DB&A, which is 35 years old, has a talent list that includes Ethan Suplee, Ralph Macchio, Paz de la Huerta, Norman Reedus, Fairuza Balk, Kathleen Turner and Shannen Doherty. Don Buchwald remains CEO/President, and continues to be the exclusive agent for Stern, who just re-upped at Sirius XM.

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Perfect Family’

By | Thursday April 21, 2011 @ 5:08am PDT
Mike Fleming

Kathleen Turner didn’t fare so well on Broadway this week when the addiction play High announced it would close days after its opening. She’s got another project premiering at the film festival further downtown. In The Perfect Family, Turner stars as a meddling matriarch and devout Catholic whose nomination for a church award makes her more determined to rein in her husband and two grown children into her image of what the perfect family should look like. The film also stars Emily Deschanel, Jason Ritter, Richard Chamberlain, Sharon Lawrence, Elizabeth Pena and Michael McGrady. Anne Renton makes her feature directing debut on a script written by Claire V. Riley and Paula Goldberg. The film gets its debut screening April 24. Here is a scene from the film that is exclusive to Deadline:

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Writers Guild East Sets Awards Roster; ‘Bourne’ Scribe Tony Gilroy To Present Dad Frank Gilroy Lifetime Achievement

Mike Fleming

NEW YORK CITY – Television, film, stage, and news headliners are set to take the stage for the 2011 Writers Guild of America Awards ceremony in New York City. Kristen Schaal (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and Flight of the Conchords) will host the 63rd annual Writers Guild Awards in New York City on Saturday, February 5, 2011 at the AXA Equitable Center.

Award presenters include: Kathleen Turner, John Larroquette, Donnie Wahlberg, Judah Friedlander, Merritt Wever, Vincent Piazza, Gretchen Mol, Erica Slezak, Matthew Settle, John Hodgman, John Waters, Peter Riegert, Marshall Brickman, Jenny Lumet, and Chris Wragge. Additional presenters are expected to be added to the line-up.

In addition:

* Tony Gilroy will present his father Frank Gilroy with the Hunter Award for Lifetime Achievement in Writing.
* The Television Academy Foundation’s Archive of American Television will receive the Burkey Award for contributions that have brought honor and dignity to writers.
* Marianne Pryor will receive the Jablow Award for devoted service to the Guild.

The 63rd annual Writers Guild Awards will take place on Saturday, February 5, 2011 in New York City at the AXA Equitable Center and simultaneously in Los Angeles at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel-Grand Ballroom.

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