Cottage Country is a dark comedy starring Malin Akerman, Tyler Labine, Daniel Petronijevic and Lucy Punch and directed by Peter Wellington. Victor Elizalde of indie Viva Pictures and Uncork’d Entertainment’s Keith Leopard said today they have acquired U.S. theatrical, VOD, home vid and digital rights while in Cannes. The story centers on Todd (Labine), who wants everything to be just perfect at the family cottage where he plans to propose to Cammie (Akerman). But things go awry with the arrival of Todd’s slacker brother Salinger (Petronijevic) and his free-spirited girlfriend Masha (Punch). When Todd accidentally dispatches his irksome sibling with an axe, Cammie is determined not to let murder stand in the way of their happiness.
Malin Akerman is now set to star in ABC‘s recently picked-up single-camera comedy pilot Trophy Wife, written and executive produced by Emily Halpern and Sarah Haskins and executive produced by Bad Teacher scribes Lee Eisenberg & Gene Stupnitsky. Akerman had been in negotiations for the lead in the project, which received a cast-contingent pilot order earlier this month. With her on board, the contingency is lifted, and the pilot will be heading to production. Trophy Wife was originally developed last season, and I hear ABC’s decision to give it a pilot order hinged on the producers being able to land Akerman.
EXCLUSIVE: ABC is moving swiftly on casting its newly picked up single-camera comedy pilot Trophy Wife, written and executive produced by Emily Halpern and Sarah Haskins and executive produced by Bad Teacher scribes Lee Eisenberg & Gene Stupnitsky. Malin Akerman is in negotiations for the lead in the project, which received a cast-contingent pilot order on Friday.
EXCLUSIVE: Tom Cruise has committed to star for Universal Pictures in Oblivion, the science fiction film that will be directed by Joseph Kosinski, who last helmed Tron: Legacy. Production will begin in October. Cruise had been loosely attached to the Radical Publishing graphic novel adaptation when Disney let it go and Universal committed to finance and distribute the $100 million film, which came with a William Monahan script that was being rewritten by Karl Gajdusek. Kosinski hatched the idea for the project and set it to be published by Barry Levine’s graphic novel imprint as a calling card for a movie when Kosinski was busy for so long directing Tron: Legacy, which topped out at $400 million worldwide gross.
Disney acquired the graphic novel in a heated auction last summer, and Universal was one of the studios that also chased it. It takes place in an apocalyptic future where most of the population lives in clouds above an earth surface that has been rendered uninhabitable. Cruise will play a soldier who’s stuck alone on the planet, repairing the drones that patrol and destroy a savage alien life form. He encounters a beautiful woman who crashes in a craft, and their experience together forces him to question his world view. Disney allowed Kosinski to shop it because it didn’t fit its family-film mold and attempts to rein it in to a PG rating was creatively strangling the project. It will be PG-13.
EXCLUSIVE: 127 Hours star James Franco is in discussions to play pornographer Chuck Traynor in a Linda Lovelace film that will be directed by his Howl helmers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. Kate Hudson has the offer to play the title role in Lovelace, the W. Merritt Johnson-scripted adaptation of Eric Danville’s book The Complete Linda Lovelace.
Traynor was Lovelace’s husband and a pornographer when she starred in the notorious 1972 porn blockbuster Deep Throat. Later, when she quit the business, divorced Traynor and reclaimed her name Linda Boreman, she accused her ex of coercing her into prostitution and pornography through bullying, beatings and even hypnotism.
Epstein and Friedman unveiled the Franco-starrer Howl at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and the filmmakers have been trying to mount this film as their next project ever since. Franco is not a certainty because his schedule is so busy. Franco, who finds out tomorrow morning if he’ll be a Best Actor nominee, is hosting the Oscarcast with Anne Hathaway. He’s unveiled plans to direct two movies, and he’s joining Nicole Kidman on Broadway this fall in the David Cromer-directed Sweet Bird. All this makes the Traynor role uncertain, but Franco is certainly in discussions. The CAA-repped Franco next stars in the Fox tentpole Rise of the Apes.
Tribeca Film has acquired U.S. rights to The Bang Bang Club, a drama based on the lives of photojournalists during the last stages of apartheid in South Africa. It stars Ryan Phillippe and Malin Akerman and was written and directed by Steven Silver. The film had its world premiere at the Toronto International …