A narrative feature populated with LEGO characters just cleaned up for Warner Bros, so how about a documentary on the toy itself? RADiUS bought rights in most of the world to release the Daniel Junge/Kief Davidson-directed Beyond The Brick: A LEGO Brickumentary, a film that played Tribeca. Pic focuses on the global phenomenon that is the building block toy franchise that spans 400 billion bricks sold since the toy was hatched in 1958. I was more of a Lincoln Logs man as a child, but the ambition of some of these LEGO works is pretty spectacular.
Said RADiUS co-presidents Tom Quinn and Jason Janego “We’ve been looking for a film that families can enjoy together and Beyond The Brick: A LEGO Brickumentary surpasses all of those expectations. The movie is an amazing ride and will appeal to Lego fans around the world.” Submarine’s Josh Braun repped the filmmakers in the deal.
Jason Bateman has come aboard to narrate LEGO docu Beyond The Brick: A LEGO Brickumentary, which will make its debut this month at the Tribeca Film Festival. Pic, from Oscar-winning director Daniel Junge (Saving Face) and Oscar-nominated helmer Kief Davidson (Open Heart), is the first official LEGO documentary and tracks the globally popular toy line, as well as the community of fans that have loved them for generations. Bateman recently starred in and directed comedy Bad Words and also pulls narrator duty on NBC sitcom Growing Up Fisher. Submarine is repping domestic sales on the Lego “brickumentary” while financier GEM Pictures handles international rights, using a distribution system that allows publicly listed companies to buy film rights using shares instead of cash. Beyond the Brick premieres April 20 at Tribeca.
Woo-Hoo! ‘The Simpsons’ Lego Set Coming Next Year
Lego said Monday that it will launch its first set based on The Simpsons next year. A spokesman for the privately held Danish toymaker wouldn’t single out which characters will be Lego-ized, but he said the company hopes the set will “appeal to fans of the Simpsons family”. Fox’s The Simpsons, which starts its record 25th primetime season in the fall, joins such big-name Lego properties as Star Wars and The Hobbit.
Locarno Film Festival Kicks Off Wednesday With ’2 Guns’ International Premiere
The 66th Festival del film Locarno, the first edition with Carlo Chatrian as Artistic Director, begins Wednesday with the Piazza Grande Opening Ceremony. The evening will begin with the presentation of the official juries and preview extracts from films taking part in the Concorso internazionale. The Moët & Chandon Excellence Award then will be presented to Christopher Lee, followed by the international premiere of the Denzel Washington-Mark Wahlberg action-comedy 2 Guns — which topped the domestic box office this past weekend — introduced by director Baltasar Kormakur. The festival, which runs through August 17 in the Swiss city, will screen 250 films from 40-plus countries across 10 venues. Among the boldfaced names set to appear are Werner Herzog, Faye Dunaway, Jacqueline Bisset, Brie Larson and Moritz Bleibtreu. Special effects wizard Douglas Trumbull will … Read More »
Kathleen Fleming, who developed and produced several LEGO and LEGO Star Wars projects as Director of Entertainment Development at the company, died in an accident over the weekend. She had most recently been working on Warner Bros’ February 7 release The Lego Movie: The Piece Of Resistance as a liaison managing studio relationships on entertainment projects. Fleming joined the company after working with LEGO as Account Manager at ad agency Ammerati Puris Lintas. She officially came aboard LEGO in 2009 as Senior Manager of Entertainment Development for LEGO Group. Her credits include LEGO Star Wars: The Padawan Menace and LEGO Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Out which she exec produced, as well as the NINJAGO: Master of Spinjitzu TV series and the soon-to-be-aired LEGO Legends of CHIMA series and LEGO Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles miniseries. “We are devastated by the passing of Kathleen, as she was an amazing collaborator, advocate and friend” Lego Movie producer Dan Lin said Wednesday on behalf of the filmmakers. “We often joked that we started out as business associates but we later became family. We not only worked together, but we ate together, traveled together and even went to Devo concerts together. Her positive attitude and love for life will be sorely missed but we vow to make this movie the best it can be to honor her life and contribution.”
EXCLUSIVE: Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson, Nick Offerman and Alison Brie have joined Warner Bros and Village Roadshow’s Lego feature film. They join Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett and Morgan Freeman in the 3D animated pic, which is set for a February 7, 2014 release. The plot follows Emmet (Pratt), an ordinary, rules-following, perfectly average Lego minifigure who is mistakenly identified as the most extraordinary person and the key to saving the world. He is drafted into a fellowship of strangers on an epic quest to stop an evil tyrant. Ferrell will play Emmet’s primary adversary, President Business; Neeson is the president’s powerful henchman, Bad Cop; Offerman is a craggy, swaggering pirate obsessed with revenge on President Business; and Brie is a member of Emmet’s team with a powerful secret.
Phil Lord & Christopher Miller (21 Jump Street) are directing from their original screenplay — with story by Dan Hageman & Kevin Hageman and Phil Lord & Christopher Miller — based on the kids toy line. Lin Pictures and Vertigo Entertainment are behind the pic; Dan Lin and Roy Lee are producing.
Related: Warner Bros Shifts ‘Lego’ Release Date
The CGI-animated 3D film originally was slotted for February 28, 2014, but now will open three weeks earlier on February 7. Morgan Freeman, Elizabeth Banks, Chris Pratt and Will Arnett will voice characters in Lego, about an ordinary Lego mini-figure, mistakenly thought to be the extraordinary MasterBuilder, is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil Lego tyrant from gluing the universe together. Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (21 Jump Street) direct the Warner Bros tentpole, wrote the script and share story credit with Dan Hageman and Kevin Hageman. Dan Lin and Roy Lee are producing.