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Undead Mashup ‘Pride, Prejudice And Zombies’ Gets Resurrected

By | Friday March 1, 2013 @ 9:45am PST
Mike Fleming

While Pride, Prejudice And Zombies first surfaced as a movie project before the swarm of undead movies and TV shows cropped up, the picture stalled over casting and director issues. Looks like you can’t keep a good zombie tale from rising again.

Panorama Media announced today they are joining Darko Entertainment, Handsomecharlie Films and producer Allison Shearmur in the production of Seth Grahame-Smith¹s worldwide best seller PRIDE, PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES. The company will come on to produce, finance and will handle foreign sales on the film. Based on the book, the script is written by David O’Russell.

The film will be produced by Darko Entertainment’s Sean McKittrick, Natalie Portman, Annette Savitch and Allison Shearmur of Allison Shearmur Productions. It will be executive produced by Darko’s Edward H. Hamm Jr., Aleen Keshishian and Panorama’s Marc Butan.

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Craig Gillespie Exits Lionsgate’s ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Craig Gillespie is exiting Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, becoming the latest filmmaker to walk away from the Lionsgate project. The screen adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel mixes the 1813 Jane Austen classic with a legion of bloodthirsty zombies. So far, the film hasn’t had much luck with directors, or casting for that matter. Gillespie, who directed the critically acclaimed art house film Lars And The Real Girl and followed with Fright Night, came on to the film after Mike White left. White had replaced David O. Russell, who wrote the script. The split here was amicable but had to do with things like who to cast in the film. Casting has been tough on this one, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Lionsgate doesn’t look for not only a director but a package from an agency that includes cast as well.

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Emma Stone Not Doing ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

By | Friday June 24, 2011 @ 2:36pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Emma Stone passed on the heroine role in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Lionsgate’s adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that mixes the 1813 Jane Austen classic with a legion of bloodthirsty zombies. While talent gets offered and passes on movies every day, Internet reports now trumpet offers, even if the journalists have no idea whether the actor is at all interested in doing the movie. In this case, an offer was made but it never got to the negotiation stage, I’m told.

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Craig Gillespie Set To Direct ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

Lionsgate has made it official. Craig Gillespie has been set to direct Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the movie adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that mixes the 1813 Jane Austen classic with a legion of bloodthirsty zombies. Gillespie, who directed the critically acclaimed art house film Lars and the Real Girl, most recently directed the Fright Night remake that stars Colin Farrell. Deadline told you that Gillespie was the front-runner in early February and that he would be getting the gig earlier this month. This has been one of the hotter genre titles around, and the hope here is that this takes care of the film’s commitment issues and that Lionsgate has found the filmmaker who’ll make the movie. David O. Russell had been attached to the project, and turned in a script that everybody likes before dropping out. He was replaced by Mike White, who dropped out in January, citing commitments to an HBO pilot. Natalie Portman is producing through her handsomecharlie shingle with Annette Savitch, who arranged for Darko Entertainment to acquire screen rights from Quirk Books. Darko’s Richard Kelly, Sean McKittrick and Ted Hamm will also produce. UTA reps Gillespie.

“We are so excited to have Craig Gillespie on board this film,” said Alli Shearmur, Lionsgate president of Motion Picture Production. “His sensibility spans from genre-bending horror to elegant character-driven comedy, which is perfect for this movie.”

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Craig Gillespie Poised To Direct ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

Craig Gillespie will soon be set as director of Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, Lionsgate’s adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that enhanced the Jane Austen classic with a smattering of flesh-eating walking corpses. Now, Gillespie has been a frontrunner on the Lionsgate project since Mike White dropped out. But several other candidates were considered, including  the author and his partner, David Katzenberg. I’m told that the other aspirants have been informed that Gillespie will be getting the gig and that he’ll begin negotiating soon. Gillespie, who helmed Lars and the Real Girl, most recently wrapped the remake Fright Night for DreamWorks, with Colin Farrell in the bloodsucker role.

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Craig Gillespie Frontrunner For ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

Fright Night director Craig Gillespie is front runner to direct Pride And Prejudice and Zombies, the Lionsgate adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel. No deal yet, Lionsgate says. Mike White had the job but  dropped out because of a scheduling conflict. Before that, David O Russell was the director, but before he left, he wrote a killer script that’s had other directors circling.

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Mike White Off ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Mike White has just dropped out of directing Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that injects flesh-eating corpses to Jane Austen’s 1813 literary classic. I’m hearing that White had a preexisting commitment at HBO and they couldn’t make schedules mesh. Lionsgate chose White after David O. Russell exited but left behind a strong script. I just got a confirmation of the exit, and a statement from White: “I loved the project and looked forward to working with Lionsgate. Unfortunately, the timing could not be worked out. I wish them the best with the movie.” The thriller is a big piece of business for Lionsgate, along with The Hunger Games. They are going right back out to filmmakers to get the project back on track.

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Mike White Sinks Teeth Into ‘Pride And Prejudice And Zombies’

Mike Fleming

Lionsgate has closed a deal with Mike White to direct Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that spices up Jane Austen’s time-tested 1813 literary classic with a smattering of flesh-eating walking corpses. David O. Russell stepped out but left behind a script that had filmmakers salivating for the job. White got the formal offer on November 5. Lionsgate can now get busy on casting Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy, and the other characters in the Austen tale. Russell originally had Natalie Portman interested in playing the female lead, but she left the project some time ago as actress, though she is producing through her handsomecharlie banner with Annette Savich, and Darko Entertainment. When she left, Russell wanted Scarlett Johansson and Bradley Cooper. Unclear if they’ll stay, particularly as Johansson was in contention for several other high profile films that were casting up before landing the female lead opposite Matt Damon in the Cameron Crowe-directed We Bought A Zoo.

White, who scripted School of Rock, made his feature directing debut on Year of the Dog. He is repped by UTA.

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Mike White Gets ‘Pride And Prejudice and Zombies’ Offer

Mike Fleming

Lionsgate has made a formal offer to Mike White to direct Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the adaptation of the Seth Grahame-Smith novel that spices up Jane Austen’s time-tested Jane Austen with a smattering of flesh-eating walking corpses. White, who scripted School of Rock, made his feature directing debut on Year of the Dog. Several directors eyed the project since David O Russell exited the project but left behind a strong script and the idea of having Scarlett Johansson and Bradley Cooper play the leads.

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Who’ll Helm James Cameron’s ‘Fantastic Voyage’?

Mike Fleming

Now that the X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2 directing job went to Darren Aronofsky, The Hunger Games was gobbled up by Gary Ross and Zack Snyder got the Superman job, there are only a couple films left that have directors hot and bothered. One is Pride, Prejudice and Zombies, the Lionsgate film that David O Russell departed, and Mike Newell is still frontrunner to direct Scarlett Johansson and Bradley Cooper. But for sheer ambition and budget scale, the big directing job is the James Cameron-produced Fantastic Voyage at 20th Century Fox. I’m hearing that Cameron’s choice is Louis Leterrier, whose last film, Clash of the Titans, grossed around $500 million worldwide for Warner Bros. Cameron and the studio have a strong Shane Salerno script, and Cameron’s Avatar designers have done everything but build sets for a film that could be ready to shoot early in 2011. Of course, the studio is still figuring out the budget and logistics, as is the case with the other major 3D pic that Cameron is producing, the Guillermo del Toro-directed At the Mountains of Madness at Universal. Fantastic Voyage is an ambitious re-imagining of the 1966 original about a team of scientists shrunk into a ship in an attempt to save a colleague’s life. Fox has been wary of the budget of a film that, from early in the script once they go inside the body, … Read More »

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HOT HELMING: With ‘Wolverine 2′ Job Filled At Fox, Next Big Directing Gig Is Lionsgate’s ‘Pride, Prejudice, Zombies’ With Scarlett

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: I’ve begun hearing directing candidates to replace David O Russell for Lionsgate’s Pride, Prejudice and Zombies: Mike Newell (Prince of Persia) is the early front runner, but they are still meeting filmmakers and I am hearing Descent’s Neil Marshall is in the mix. Details below.

EXCLUSIVE: One of Hollywood’s biggest directing gigs looks done. Darren Aronofsky’s deal to direct 20th Century Fox’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2 is close enough that discussion has turned to shooting the sound stage portions of the film in New York so the filmmaker and Hugh Jackman don’t have to inconvenience their families. A March start date is being eyed so that Aronofsky has time to open Black Swan and be available for the inevitable awards season obligations. When the New York scenes are completed, they’ll head to Japan to shoot the bulk of the Christopher McQuarrie-scripted movie. Deadline told you last week that Aronofsky had set his sights on Wolverine after passing on the Warner Bros period crime drama Gangster Squad.

With the Wolverine job all but sealed, what’ll be the next hot job helmers will compete for? I’m told a lot of directors are lining up for Lionsgate’s Pride, Prejudice and Zombies, the Seth Grahame-Smith revisionist novel that enhances Jane Austen’s tale of class and manners in 19th Century England with the much-needed infusion of bloodthirsty brain-eating zombies. I’m told that after Natalie Portman backed out of playing Elizabeth Bennet, David O Russell had Scarlett Johansson ready to play the heroine and Bradley Cooper to play Mr. Darcy. Then, Russell himself left to focus on his collaboration with Vince Vaughn Old St. Louis and  Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune at Sony. Read More »

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Seth Grahame-Smith On ‘Dark Shadows’ As Tim Burton Pic Gets Closer To Start Date With Johnny Depp As Vampire Barnabas

Mike Fleming

dark2 shadowsEXCLUSIVE: Seth Grahame-Smith, who made his Hollywood entry  writing novels that put a macabre twist to literary classics and historical figures, has just snagged the high profile job of writing the new draft of Dark Shadows. The Tim Burton-directed adaptation of the 60s daytime serial will star Johnny Depp  as the vampire Barnabas Collins. The film is slated to begin production in January at  Warner Bros. Depp’s Infinitum Nihil and Graham King’s GK Films are producing.

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Warner Bros has been trying for several years to get to the starting line on the movie adaptation of the TV series that  ran on ABC from 1966-71 and had legions of fans frightened by the moody and atmospheric storyline. (Tim Burton May Push Back ‘Dark Shadows’ Start Date) Barnabas Collins (played by Jonathan Frid) was the central figure in the groundbreaking supernatural soap. As for Tim Burton’s version, John August was the first writer hired to script the project, based on the Dan Curtis-created characters. Grahame-Smith will be writing a new take under Burton. He got the job on the basis of his own bestselling novel, Abe Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Burton and Timur Bekmambetov bought that project out of their own money as producers, and I hear that Bekmambetov is likely to make the film his next directing effort…. Read More »

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