The busy James Franco — actor, writer, director, producer and languid one-time Oscar host — is hitting the Croisette with As I Lay Dying, an adaptation of William Faulkner’s Depression-era novel about a Mississippi family that sets out to fulfill their matriarch’s final wish. Franco directed, co-scripted (with Matt Rager) and stars in the film, along with Tim Blake Nelson, Danny McBride and Logan Marshall-Green. Millennium Films produced As I Lay Dying, which unspools in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes. Watch the trailer below:
EXCLUSIVE: James Franco, whose film As I Lay Dying screens in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes next month, has locked in his next directorial outing. He’ll helm and play a starring role in Garden of Last Days, an adaptation of the bestselling book by House Of Sand And Fog author Andre Dubus III. Shooting will begin July 8 in New York. Millennium Films is financing.
The film is being produced by Gerard Butler, Alan Siegel, Danielle Robinson and Hanna Weg. Weg, who scripted the Michael Apted-directed Enigma, wrote the script. Longtime Franco collaborators Vince Jolivette and Miles Levy will also produce. Pic is a contemporary thriller set in the seamy underside of American life about three interwoven and ultimately explosive stories: A stripper out of options who brings her 3-year-old daughter to work; an angry, lonely man who gets thrown out of the club; and a foreigner with an endless supply of cash on the brink of committing a terrifying act.
BREAKING: Millennium Films is starting production at the end of May in London on Good People, which will star James Franco, Kate Hudson and Omar Sy and be directed by Henrik Genz, who ismaking his English-language debut. The contemporary thriller centers on an American couple living in London who fall into severe debt renovating her family’s home. When the tenant in their downstairs apartment passes away and leaves 200,000 pounds in cash, they take it, and that’s when very bad things start happening to good people. Kelly Masterson, Paul Grellong and Christina Hodson wrote the script based on Marcus Sakey’s novel.
UPDATE: The deal is official, with Radius-TWC planning a fall 2013 release date. The company’s release is after the original story.
EXCLUSIVE: After a late-night Sundance courtship, Radius-TWC is closing a deal to acquire Lovelace in a deal that will climax in the range of $3 million, I hear. Directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, the film stars Amanda Seyfried as Linda Lovelace, who headlined the 1972 pornographic film hit Deep Throat, which captured the zeitgeist. But she was manipulated and bullied into participating in a film which became a financial juggernaut by her coercive boyfriend Chuck Traynor, who is played by Peter Sarsgaard. Hank Azaria, Adam Brody, James Franco and Sharon Stone also star.
The picture, which premiered Tuesday night at the Eccles Theatre, had several buyers massing, but Radius-TWC heads Tom Quinn and Jason Janego moved aggressively to make a deal with Millennium Films heads Avi Lerner and Mark Gill. Millennium financed a film whose edgy, racy subject matter and star casting should hit a strong mark as a multi-platform title. This goes down as the third Sundance deal for the multi-platform division of The Weinstein Company, which got underway last year as it landed Bachelorette and made that edgy comedy a big VOD hit. Radius-TWC got this fest off to a start when it acquired the acclaimed docu on backup singers Twenty Feet From Stardom, and then bought the drama Concussion.
EXCLUSIVE: What could Avi have been thinking? Last night, after a long day and fueled by quotes from Millennium Films chief Avi Lerner, I broke a story that another Texas Chainsaw Massacre film would move forward later …
EXCLUSIVE: After Leatherface cut The Hobbit down to size last weekend to become the country’s top-grossing film, he’s headed back to the slaughterhouse for another helping of Texas Chainsaw Massacre mayhem. Millennium Films is moving ahead with Texas Chainsaw 4, with production to begin later this year in Louisiana.
The next installment will be spearheaded by producer Carl Mazzocone, exec producers Mark Burg, Avi Lerner, Tobe Hooper, Trevor Short, John Thompson, Danny Dimbort, Lati Grobman and Christa Campbell.
A stuntman injured during an explosion scene that left one man dead on The Expendables 2 today filed suit for damages against Millennium Films and others involved in the action movie’s production. Nuo Sun’s suit (read it here) says he was in a rubber boat on October 27, 2011 on Bulgaria’s Ognyanovo Reservoir during second unit filming on the sequel when “explosives and other similar ultra-hazardous activities” caused an unexpected explosion. “As a direct and proximate result of defendants’ negligence, carelessness and unlawful conduct, plaintiff was hurt and injured in plaintiffs health, strength and activity, sustaining severe shock and injury to and upon plaintiffs nervous system, neck, head, body, arms and legs, all of which injuries may be permanent and all of which injuries have caused and continue to cause plaintiff great mental, physical and nervous pain and suffering, for which plaintiff seeks general damages,” says the 12-page filing. This is not the first legal action to come from that stunt.
Millennium Films has acquired to rights to Eliza Graves, a thrilller to be directed by Brad Anderson (The Machinist). The movie is about a new physician who arrives to apprentice at a mental institution where he falls in love …
It took him 20 years, but Millennium Films’ Avi Lerner has notched his first film to pass the $300 million worldwide gross mark. The Expendables 2 just crossed that threshold. The movie, which the company said has grossed over …
EXCLUSIVE: After grossing $563 million worldwide on The Expendables and its recently released sequel, Millennium Films has set Legally Blonde scribes Karen McCullah Lutz and Kirsten Smith to write ExpendaBelles, the title of the spinoff action film that will show the feminine side of the mercenary business. The intention is to hatch a franchise that will be driven by actresses who’ve logged time in action films over the years, much the same way that The Expendables team is comprised of action film staples. Millennium will finance with Avi Lerner and Mark Gill producing, along with Heidi Jo Markel of Eclectic Pictures and Julie Kroll of Summertime Entertainment and Boaz Davidson. Trevor Short will be executive producer.
The action game hasn’t been as steady for actresses as it has been for their male counterparts, but certainly Angelina Jolie thrives and Underworld‘s Kate Beckinsale, Resident Evil‘s Milla Jovovich, Haywire‘s Gina Carano, and Kill Bill‘s Uma Thurman have done well in the butt-kicking action realm. And there is also Alien‘s Sigourney Weaver, Long Kiss Goodnight‘s Geena Davis, Elektra‘s Jennifer Garner, Crouching Tiger‘s Michelle Yeoh, Red Sonja‘s Brigitte Nielsen, and action genre matriarch Pam Grier. Who am I missing?
The parents of a stuntman killed last year in an explosion on a 2nd unit location for The Expendables 2 in Bulgaria have filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court against NuImage, Millennium Films and …
Less than two months before The Expendables 2 comes out, Sylvester Stallone today scored an action hero legal victory. Judge Jed Rakoff rejected Marcus Webb’s claims that The Expendables was his original idea and Sly stole it. Webb …
CANNES (May 19, 2012) — Millennium Films has signed a $100 million co-financing/co-production agreement with West Coast Film Partners. The agreement runs for three years and calls for the parties to co-finance two to three wide-release feature films per year.
The first movie West Coast will co-finance and co-produce is “White House Taken,” directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring Gerard Butler. It’s an action movie about a U.S. Secret Service agent who has fallen from grace – until the White House is attacked and taken over by a team of North Koreans armed with extraordinary technology. Everything the Pentagon throws at the problem fails. But our hero knows the building like nobody else, and is the last chance we have to save, not only the President, but the entire country.
The deal was put together by Millennium President Mark Gill and West Coast CEO Klay Shroedel.