EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Pictures and Skydance Productions are moving ahead with a sequel to Jack Reacher, the 2012 film that starred Tom Cruise and is based on Lee Child’s bestselling novel series. A rumor went around that the studio might be trying to squeeze in a Reacher film before Mission: Impossible 5. Paramount has denied that, but I’ve learned it’s trying to fast track another installment. This one will be based on Never Go Back, which was published earlier this fall. In it, Reacher heads back to his old military base in Virginia to take a woman to dinner who is now the commanding officer. By the time he gets there, she has been arrested, and Reacher finds himself being charged with pummeling one guy and fathering a child with a woman. He can’t remember either transgression but gets to the bottom of it with cunning and sometimes brute force.
Related: Tom Cruise On ‘Jack Reacher’
The studio is out to writers; Jack Reacher director Christopher McQuarrie adapted the first one, but is too busy prepping MI5 for a summer production start. Cruise and the studio hope McQuarrie will direct the sequel. Why are they making a sequel? The original cost around $57 million in production costs, grossed $218 million worldwide and has done well in ancillaries. Before studios got tentpole crazy, trying to launch franchises with massive-budget originals, that was exactly the kind of numbers that made studios go back for more and try to grow a franchise, particularly when there is popular source material like the Child novels.
Related: ‘Mission: Impossible 5′ Gets Christmas 2015 Date
Cruise’s new film, Edge Of Tomorrow, will get its first trailer this week, one that will play this Friday on all prints of the Peter Jackson-directed The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug. While Cruise most certainly won’t do the Reacher film before MI5, it is possible he might squeeze in one of the other films he has percolating, including Go Like Hell. He’s going to play Mustang designer Carroll Shelby in a film about the battle between Ford and Ferrari for sports car supremacy at Le Mans in the 1960s in what shapes up as The Right Stuff for sports cars. Oblivion helmer Joseph Kosinski is prepping to reteam with Cruise in that film.
Related: Comic-Con: Tom Cruise Shows Up For ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ Panel
EXCLUSIVE: Greg Mooradian is joining Fox 2000 as EVP Production. He reports to Fox 2000 president Elizabeth Gabler. Mooradian joins from Paramount, where he was SVP Production and helped initiate Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters and helped reinvigorate the G.I. Joe franchise with G.I. Joe: Retaliation, a sequel reconstructed at a lower price point. Before joining Paramount in 2009, he ran his own production shingle making youth-driven pictures that included the Screen Gems remake Stepfather, the Percy Jackson films for Fox 2000, and the Twilight Saga films for Summit. Mooradian started as a development exec for producer Arnold Kopelson on films like The Fugitive and Falling Down before becoming production president for Wendy Finerman and working on such films as The Fan and Drumline, the latter for Fox 2000. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Paramount and JJ Abrams and Bryan Burk’s Bad Robot are gearing up on their film about disgraced bike racer Lance Armstrong. I’m told that they are setting D.V. DeVincentis to write the script for a movie centering around the book Cycle Of Lies: The Fall Of Lance Armstrong by Juliet Macur. She’s the reporter who covered Armstrong for more than a decade at The New York Times. That period spanned his near-fatal bout with testicular cancer to his capturing glory with seven Tour de France titles. Those honors have been stripped after Armstrong finally copped to the swirl of rumors that he engaged in doping that upped his endurance and strength and made him unbeatable.
Paramount is in a three-bike race to make movies on Armstrong, and I’m not sure all three of these will happen, as compelling as the arrogant Armstrong’s downfall might be. Paramount was actually the first studio to declare it would make an Armstrong project, but since then, two other substantial film projects have cropped up. That includes the Studio Canal-funded, Working Title-produced pic that Stephen Frears is directing with Lone Survivor’s Ben Foster playing Armstrong and Chris O’Dowd playing journalist David Walsh, from a script by Trance‘s John Hodge. He adapted sportswriter Walsh’s book Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit Of Lance Armstrong. That movie’s almost done shooting, and surely will be first to the screen. Read More »
The last shoe to drop in the 2013 awards race hit Saturday as Martin Scorsese‘s much-awaited The Wolf Of Wall Street was unveiled to SAG voters at a couple of screenings at the WGA theatre in Beverly Hills. I caught the film earlier at a small 10 AM screening for some of the cast members on the Paramount lot and then moderated the Q&A following the 6:30 PM screening of the 3 hour film. To say it was rapturously received would be an understatement. Leonardo DiCaprio received a standing ovation when I introduced him, and co-star Jonah Hill also won huge applause from the packed-to-the-rafters house who also enthusiastically cheered co-stars Rob Reiner (who plays DiCaprio’s dad and stole the show at the Q&A), Jon Favreau, P.J. Byrne, Ken Choi and Cristin Milioti. I heard the film also received the same kind of enthusiastic response at the earlier screening too. Paramount also threw a party to kick things off in style. Celebration was in order since Paramount at one time wasn’t even sure the film would be ready as Scorsese has been editing to make a 2013 date. Originally it was scheduled for a November 15 release but moved to Christmas bumping Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit into January to make room for Wolf‘s wide release awards run.
Formal reviews are embargoed but as an initial observation I would label the movie ”Scorsese’s Satyricon,” a wild ride full of contemporary debauchery to say the least (DiCaprio compared some of it to Caligula), with a fine ensemble and a frenetic pace that belies its three hour running time. Even at that length it never lags. It is the perfect companion piece to Goodfellas and puts Scorsese right back in the thick of the Oscar race, if Academy members, particularly older ones, can deal with the almost non-stop parade of sex, drugs, nudity and rock and roll. Violence, a Scorsese staple in this type of film, is missing but there are a number of remarkable set pieces including a storm-driven yacht voyage that has to be seen to be believed (Rob Legato supervised the special effects team). An NC-17 was avoided by some reported judicious cutting but it’s hard to imagine the stuff that didn’t make it in considering the edgy material that did. Read More »
UPDATE: Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy will be calling a pro curling match during the Tim Horton’s Roar of the Rings, December 1 in Manitoba. (Scroll to the bottom for the announcement vid.)
Paramount‘s marketing team must be working overtime brainstorming PR stunts for their Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues; now they’ve landed Ron Burgundy (AKA Will Ferrell) a gig on Canada’s The Sports Network. “Legendary broadcaster Ron Burgundy will join the network’s team of broadcasters beginning in December,” TSN announced Friday, with details of Burgundy’s new post to be revealed live during Sunday’s Grey Cup. Paramount’s got just under a month to pack in the promo gags before Anchorman 2‘s December 20 bow. Earlier this week Burgundy stopped by Conan to riff on Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s recent headline-making news. Today Paramount released a brief Burgundy video to capitalize on this weekend’s Doctor Who 50th Anniversary mania: Read More »
Paramount will deliver a tentpole sequel to good little boys and girls a couple of Christmases from now. The studio said today that Mission: Impossible 5 — this one directed by Christopher McQuarrie — will … Read More »
This marks the first project to come out of Paramount‘s re-launched television division and signals its plans to mine the studio’s movie library and team with experienced film and TV writers for series adaptations. Oscar winner Akiva Goldsman and veteran showrunner Jeff Pinkner will co-write a pilot script based on the hit 1990 film Ghost, which won Oscars for best original screenplay (Bruce Joel Rubin) and supporting actress (Whoopi Goldberg). (Watch the “Unchained Melody” music video for the paranormal thriller/tearjerker after the jump.) Directed by Jerry Zucker, Ghost follows the recently deceased Sam Wheat (Swayze), who teams up with a psychic (Goldberg) in an effort to reconnect with his fiancee (Demi Moore) and avenge his murder. “We are thrilled to collaborate with Akiva and Jeff, two deeply creative and accomplished talents, on the television adaptation of this classic supernatural drama,” said Paramount TV president Amy Powell. Read More »
The state of the entertainment industry is strong overall, but the state of the industry in California is in serious trouble and our Film and TV Tax Credit program just isn’t cutting it, politicians and studio execs said today at the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce’s second annual State of the Industry Conference. “We need a game changer; this is a very incremental approach,” Paramount Studio Group President Randy Baumberger said of the annual $100 million lottery system program. “Virtually no feature films are shot in LA anymore. What producers need are commitment and consistency. What producers are looking for is to be able to plan out 3 or 4 years,” he added during a panel on keeping jobs in California. “They can’t plan for a lottery on one single day. We need to be able to look out a year in advance and say what is the cost structure for that film. California is at a disadvantage by having all of the money gone in a few hours.”
Politicians Eye Major Upgrade To California Film/TV Tax Credit
Film Czar Tom Sherak: Plan To Boost LA Prod’n Coming By Early 2014
The shortcomings of the state’s current program and the job losses the industry is experiencing in California were the primary topics this morning as speaker after speaker lamented rising runaway production, the ineligibility of tentpoles and network TV for the credit and the much heftier incentives of states such as Georgia, Louisiana and NY. Read More »
While he is under contract to Disney until next year, it looks like producer Jerry Bruckheimer‘s next home is going to be either Warner Bros or Paramount. Both studios are vying hard for the producer to come … Read More »
And with a signature and a date today, the more than $200 million copyright lawsuit by Hollywood against the file sharing site is over. A NYC-based federal judge today granted final approval to Paramount, 20th Century … Read More »
Kate Winslet plays a reclusive single mom whose 13-year-old son struggles to be the man of the house. Their lives change when they meet a guy (Josh Brolin) who persuades them to take him in. Little do they know he’s an escaped convict. Writer-director Jason Reitman‘s film, … Read More »
The latest teaming of Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio will hit theaters just in time for an Oscar run. Paramount‘s The Wolf Of Wall Street is opening December 25. It originally was scheduled … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Just five months after shepherding the Star Trek video game to its epic fail of a release, Paramount SVP Brian Miller is on his way out, Deadline has learned. The Paramount … Read More »
One day after Tom Clancy’s death, Paramount has released the first trailer for the new film based on his most famous character. Chris Pine takes over as the hero of such Cold War-era novels-turned-films as The Hunt For Red October and Patriot Games and brings him to … Read More »
Here’s the first clip from Paramount’s Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, in which Johnny Knoxville punks strangers while in character as senior citizen Irving Zisman. The previous three Jackass films grossed $79M, $84M, and $170M worldwide for Paramount – but they also kept to the show’s signature … Read More »
Paramount has trimmed its staff by 110, with a memo issued just now on the lot. The layoffs happened this morning, and the casualties have been informed. This was not unexpected. Viacom CEO Phillipe Dauman gave a speech at … Read More »
Fanboy gamers often complain that studio meddling somehow ruined a video game tied to a major movie release. It’s less common to hear an A-list filmmaker blame developers for messing with his movie. Star Trek Into Darkness … Read More »
The studio plans to squeeze more life out of its undead hit and space sequel. Paramount and a clutch of exhibitors are going back to the future for a … Read More »
Christopher Nolan has gotten underway on his latest directing effort, the ambitious Interstellar. I’m not big on start of production announcements–we’ve written much about the movie while it was being assembled–but it’s Nolan and here is how the cast stacked up and how he’ll shoot it:
… Read More »