SpectreVision’s The Boy is rounding out its cast. Rainn Wilson, David Morse, Mike Vogel, Zuleikha Robinson and Bill Sage have signed on to the first film of a planned trilogy tracking the childhood of a serial killer. Based on the short film Henley, which appeared in competition at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, the films will track the killer at ages 9, 14 and 18, respectively, leading to his full transformation to an iconic mass murderer. Wilson plays William Colby, an enigmatic stranger who intrigues and beguiles the young Ted Henley, who will be played by 8-year-old Jared Breeze. Morse portrays John Henley, motel owner and Ted’s father. Vogel and Robinson play a married couple, who along with their son (Aiden Lovekamp) spend the night at the Henley motel. Sage will portray the sheriff of the rural town in which the Henleys reside.
Rainn Wilson, David Morse & More Join SpectreVision’s ‘The Boy’, Kevin Nealon Cast In Indie Comedy ‘Ghost Dog’
After a two-and-and-a-half-year journey at different networks with different writers, the drama adaptation of Leif G.W. Persson’s best-selling Backstrom series of books is finally heading to the screen with a 13-episode order at Fox. The network, which first developed the project during the 2011-12 season, has stepped in to pick up the pilot starring The Office‘s Rainn Wilson, from Bones creator/exec producer Hart Hanson and 20th Century Fox TV, which was ordered by CBS last season. The series centers on Detective Everett Backstrom (Wilson), an offensive, irascible detective, as he tries, and fails, to change his self-destructive behavior. Throughout the series, Backstrom leads his team, the Serious Crimes Unit, as they navigate Portland’s most sensitive cases. The entire cast led by Wilson is set to continue with the exception of Mamie Gummer whose character is being tweaked. Hanson is expected to focus his attention on Backstrom, with his top Bones lieutenant Stephen Nathan, who has performed day-to-day showrunner duties on the long-running Fox procedural, including while Hanson ran Bones spinoff The Finder, taking lead, with Hanson having a final say on major decisions.
The project sparked a slew of bidding wars ever since the Backstom books were shopped by LA literary agency RWSG in summer 2011 — when 20th TV won them in a very competitive situation for Stephen Gaghan to adapt. The project with Gaghan as writer triggered another round of heated bidding among all four major networks until landing at Fox with a put pilot commitment for the 2011-12 season but didn’t go to pilot. In July 2012, with Hanson as writer/showrunner, 20th TV again garnered a lot of interest, landing a pilot production commitment at CBS where the script went to pilot last season. After a lengthy and difficult casting process, the pilot got Wilson for the lead and was considered a solid contender but didn’t make the cut to series in May. 20th TV remained high on the project, extending the options on the entire cast through the end of 2013. But it couldn’t make a move as CBS did not release the pilot until its option expired on December 15 when the studio took the project to its original network, Fox, which quickly began negotiations on a series order. “Naturally, all of us who worked on Backstrom thought it was too promising a series to die unseen and (20th TV chairmen) Dana (Walden) and Gary (Newman) were relentless in their support of the project,” said Hanson. “Imagine our delight to find that Kevin Reilly and his team at Fox agreed enough to pick it up and give us a good home. Thanks Fox!”
Elijah Wood Horror-Comedy ‘Cooties’ Catches Alison Pill, Rainn Wilson, Jack McBrayer, Jorge Garcia, Nasim Pedrad
EXCLUSIVE: SpectreVision and Glacier Films have fleshed out the crew of teachers who’ll take on the ultimate school outbreak in prepubescent horror comedy Cooties. Pic, written by Leigh Whannell (Insidious, Saw) and Glee co-creator Ian Brennan, follows a zombie-like epidemic originating from an infected chicken nugget that turns elementary school students into rampaging savages. Joining Elijah Wood as a substitute teacher leading a ragtag band of educators in a fight for survival are Alison Pill as Lucy, an eternally optimistic 4th grade teacher, and Rainn Wilson as ex-athlete turned PE teacher Wade. Jack McBrayer (30 Rock), Jorgé Garcia (LOST), Nasim Pedrad (SNL), and Whannell also co-star. Filming is set to begin July 15 in LA with HONEST duo Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion directing. Wood is also producing the pic alongside SpectreVision partners Daniel Noah and Josh C. Waller, with Steven Schneider (Paranormal Activity) and Glacier Films’ Tove Christensen and Georgy Malkov also producing. Glacier’s Vladimir Poliakov, Sarik Andreasyan, Gevond Andreasyan and Hayden Christensen are exec producing. Paradigm arranged financing and is handling North American sales.
Cooties marks the latest genre project for Wood, who played the flip side of campus horror as an alien-battling teen in 1998′s The Faculty. It’s also one of multiple recent projects he’s come aboard as producer including Nacho Vigalondo’s Open Windows with Sasha Grey, which he stars in and exec produced.
As the pilot casting season gradually shifts from straight offers to tests — a lot of tests — the broadcast networks are racing against the clock to lock in names as the leads of its pilots. Of the early offer magnets, Rose Byrne and Kevin Kline passed on everything they …
It’s not surprising when a video goes viral for parodies to start cropping up. That is the case with Two And A Half Men co-star Angus T. Jones, whose “‘stop watching’ Men because it’s ‘filth’” testimonial spurred a string of video skits. But entrepreneurial actors who have comedy series on the air are using Jones parodies to plug their shows, as is the case with these mildly amusing videos of Matthew Perry of Go On and Rainn Wilson of The Office. Of course, neither of the shows hail from CBS or Warner Bros. TV, the network and studio behind Men.
Ellen Page has made a deal to join Woody Allen’s next film. Deadline told you Monday about Alec Baldwin and Jesse Eisenberg starring, and Penelope Cruz had been announced in early April. The pic shoots in Rome.
Page has been …
EXCLUSIVE: IFC Films has made yet another significant acquisition of a Toronto International Film Festival film, paying a low seven-figure minimum guarantee for domestic distribution rights on Peep World, the Barry W. Blaustein-directed film that stars Michael C. Hall, Sarah Silverman, Rainn Wilson, Ben Schwartz, Judy Greer, Kate Mara, Taraji Henson, Lesley Ann Warren and Ron Rifkin. The deal was made by CAA, which repped Peep World producers Occupant Films. Occupant principals Joe Neurauter, Felipe Marino and Keith Calder produced the picture.