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Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Ron Perlman & Joey King Join Roland Emmerich’s ‘Stonewall’

By | Tuesday June 3, 2014 @ 10:32am PDT

Columbia Pictures And Annapurna Pictures' "American Hustle" Special Screening - ArrivalsEE & Esquire Host Pre-BAFTA PartyRoland Emmerich’s Stonewall, the Jon Robin Baitz-scripted pic about the 1969 police raid at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village that became the flashpoint for the gay rights movement, has kicked off production in and around Montreal. Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Ron Perlman and Joey King have joined the cast, which is being toplined by Jeremy Irvine. Jonny Beauchamp and Caleb Landry Jones co-star, Lily Aldridge For Velvet Launch Partyand newbies Karl Glusman, Vlademir Alexis and Alexandre Nachi also have come aboard. The film is being produced by Michael Fossat, Marc Frydman and Emmerich, with Kirstin Winkler and Adam Press executive producing. Emmerich starts shooting on this one, a passion project for him, while he continues prepping the next installment of Independence Day for Fox, which has a July 1, 2016, release date. Read More »

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MGM, Warner Bros Reboot ‘Stargate’

By | Thursday May 29, 2014 @ 4:28pm PDT
Mike Fleming

stargBig day for reboots. First it was Cliffhanger, and now MGM and Warner Bros. announced they are teaming with Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin to create a re-imagined trilogy based on the sci-fi hit Stargate, one of the biggest titles in the MGM library. Emmerich, who directed and co-wrote the original 1994 film with Devlin, is on board to direct this one, with Devlin producing. Those two are already hard at work on a new version of Independence Day at Fox.

Related: Climb Toward ‘Cliffhanger’ Reboot Moving Forward; Joe Gazzam Set To Write

MGM’s Gary Barber called Emmerich and Devlin “world-class creators of the original Stargate,” and said they will “bring their reinvigorated vision of this wildly popular property to audiences of multiple generations.”

gateSaid Emmerich and Devlin: “The Stargate universe is one that we missed terribly, and we cannot wait to get going on imagining new adventures and situations for the trilogy. This story is very close to our hearts, and getting the chance to revisit this world is in many ways like a long lost child that has found its way back home.” MGM’s Jonathan Glickman will oversee it with Warner Bros’ Greg Silverman. Warners will distribute with MGM handling some international territories. Back in its … Read More »

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Fox Taps Carter Blanchard For ‘Independence Day’ Sequel Rewrite

By | Wednesday May 28, 2014 @ 3:39pm PDT
Mike Fleming

id4EXCLUSIVE: Fox has set Carter Blanchard to do a new draft of the Independence Day sequel that Roland Emmerich has committed to direct for a July 1, 2016, release. The first draft was done by Emmerich and Dean Devlin, and then James Vanderbilt. Emmerich is producing with Devlin and Harald Kloser. Emmerich is prepping the film as he simultaneously shoots Stonewall, a drama about the seminal Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village that sparked the gay rights movement. Jeremy Irvine stars.

The scribe is currently adapting Mark Millar’s Kindergarten Heroes for Fox and producer Simon Kinberg, and he just finished a draft of Spyhunter for Ruben Fleischer to direct at Warners. He’s best known for selling the spec Glimmer to DreamWorks and getting a personal call from Steven Spielberg that sealed the deal. Blanchard is repped by Paradigm and Madhouse.

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Roland Emmerich Acquires John Coe Robbins Historical Novel ‘Maya Lord’

By | Monday April 28, 2014 @ 5:07pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Roland Emmerich’s Centropolis Entertainment has acquired MayaLord2screen rights to Maya Lord, the historical novel written by John Coe Robbins.‎ The novel tells the fact-based story of Gonzalo Guerrero, who was shipwrecked in a violent storm in 1511, and found himself cast away on an unknown shore in the New World. He and his Spaniard shipmates were enslaved by a Mayan tribe. With no hope of escape, the brilliant and pragmatic adventurer searches for a way to advance in a strange new culture. As one of the captives eventually joins Cortes in the conquest of Mexico, Gonzalo adopts Maya ways and rises to become a major warlord, defending the Maya against Cortes and other Spanish conquistadors.

Guerrero, who married the daughter of a Maya chieftain, is generally regarded in Mexico as the father of the first Mestizo family. Emmerich has been passionate about Guerrero’s story for years, and his Centropolis execs Aaron Boyd and Kirstin Winkler are overseeing the film. The author, who is repped by attorney Anthony Morris, is a former broadcaster who most recently made the Emmy-nominated documentary Dying To Live.
Read More »

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Caleb Landry Jones In Talks For Gay Rights Pic ‘Stonewall’

By | Thursday April 17, 2014 @ 1:10pm PDT

Caleb Landry Jones StonewallEXCLUSIVE: Caleb Landry Jones (X-Men: First Class, Antiviral) is in negotiations to join the cast of Roland Emmerich‘s Stonewall, about the 1969 Greenwich Village raid on the Stonewall Inn that became a flashpoint for the gay rights movement. War Horse‘s Jeremy Irvine was set earlier this month to lead the cast as Danny, a young man who experiences a political awakening during the riots. Jones will play an eccentric gay street hustler named Orphan Annie who at first resists then warms up to Danny and later participates in the Stonewall uprising. Jon Robin Baitz scripted the Centropolis Films production, which Michael Fossat, Marc Frydman, and Emmerich are producing. Kirstin Winkler and Adam Press are aboard as executive producers. Read More »

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Jeremy Irvine Stars In Roland Emmerich’s ‘Stonewall,’ Ground Zero For Gay Rights

Mike Fleming

jeremyiEXCLUSIVE: War Horse star Jeremy Irvine has been set to star in Stonewall, the next film that Roland Emmerich will direct. Scripted by Jon Robin Baitz, the film is about the June 28, 1969 police raid at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, a mafia-owned bar that was a gathering place for gays and transgender people. It became the flashpoint for the gay rights movement, a galvanizing event that is considered a touchstone even today in the fight for equal rights for the gay and transgender population. Emmerich’s way in is to focus on a young man’s political awakening in the backdrop of those riots.

stonewThe film is being produced by Michael Fossat, Marc Frydman and Emmerich, with Kirstin Winkler and Adam Press exec producing. Carsten Lorenz is line producer and Markus Förderer the cinematographer.‎ After his breakout turn in the Steven Spielberg-directed War Horse, Irvine has been busy. He’ll next be seen in the Colin Firth-Nicole Kidman-starrer Railway Man, which opens Friday. Irvine is currently in production on Fallen, and recently wrapped The Woman In Black: Angel Of Death, as well as The World Made Straight, and The Reach, the latter opposite Michael Douglas. Irvine is repped by CAA, Hatton McEwan Penford and Schreck Rose Dapello & Adams.

Emmerich will start production on his passion project Stonewall while he continues prepping the next installment of Independence Day for Fox, which … Read More »

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Busy With ‘Stonewall’ And ‘Independence Day 2′, Roland Emmerich Buys Arctic Dive Spec

By | Thursday April 3, 2014 @ 10:45am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Roland Emmerich has been at the RolandEmmerichcenter of some of the biggest spec script deals I have ever written about. Usually, he’s the co-writer and some studio is peeling off millions of dollars and making huge gross commitments to one of his global-scale adventure films. Today, Emmerich has completed a spec script deal, but this time, he’s the buyer. I hear his Centropolis Entertainment has acquired rights to an untitled action thriller scripted by actor-writers Nicolas Wright and James A. Woods. Centropolis executive Marco Shepherd, who brought the project to the company, will produce. The film is set on a diving ship in the Arctic.

This is a script that Emmerich will likely eye as a potential directing assignment, but that hasn’t been determined and he’s plenty busy. He’s prepping to next direct Stonewall, a Jon Robin Baitz-scripted drama about a young man’s political awakening in the backdrop of the Stonewall riots. Emmerich is simultaneously prepping with former partner Dean Devlin the sequel to Independence DayDeadline told you that Will Smith decided not to return, but Fox has set the film for a July 1, 2016 release date, so the clock is certainly ticking. Read More »

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Fox Pushes ‘Independence Day 2′ To 2016

By | Tuesday November 12, 2013 @ 5:48pm PST

The world will have to wait another year for its Independence Day 2. Fox said today that it is moving the long-in-coming sequel from July 3, 2015 — a date it had announced in June — to July 1, 2016. That means the Roland Emmerich-helmed pic will arrive exactly 20 years and one day after the blockbuster original, which made a movie star of Will Smith. A look at the Way-Ahead Machine reveals that the ID4:2 (or however it will be texted in 2 1/2 years) will go up against another bombing-themed pic: Sony’s Angry Birds.

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Outgoing Fox Exec Tony Sella Zinged At Charity Auction

20th Century Fox Film chief creative officer Tony Sella isn’t formally out the door yet, as Deadline exclusively revealed yesterday, but his departure is already a sales tool in some Hollywood circles. “You fired Tony Sella, saved some money there,” quipped producer Mark Gordon last night at a charity auction to Fox production president Emma Watts in front of a crowd of powerplayers. Generating a brief giggle from some of those present, the remark from the PGA co-President came during a one-liner filled big ticket auction he was conducting Saturday at the An Evening Under The Stars gala fundraiser for the LA Gay & Lesbian Center at director Roland Emmerich’s house. Gordon went on to say “Tony’s a great guy” but still thought Watts could pony up some dough and successfully bid for one of the several item like 5 days in Emmerich’s London home or 5 days on his yacht off the coast of Thailand that were on the block to raise money for the Center. She declined. Along With Emmerich, Gordon and Watts, CAA’s Bryan Lourd, Glee/American Horror Story boss Ryan Murphy, Independence Day co-writer Dean Devlin, X-Men director Bryan Singer, screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, HBO’s Michael Lombardo, Criminal Minds/Teen Wolf producer Jeff Davis, Scandal actor and writer Dan Bucatinsky and actress … Read More »

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Fox Slates ‘Independence Day 2′ And Tim Burton’s ‘Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children’ For July 2015

By | Thursday June 20, 2013 @ 5:20pm PDT

Who knows how long two Earth decades is to those creepy invading aliens, but it might as well be a millennium in show business. But Fox today secured a July 3, 2015, release date for Roland Emmerich’s Independence Day 2 – 19 years and one day after the original opened en route to becoming the biggest movie of 1996 and making Will Smith a bona fide movie star. Also slated for Fourth of July weekend a couple of years hence is Universal’s Untitled Illumination Entertainment Project, which is being kept under wraps. Fox also said today that Tim Burton’s adaptation Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children will bow four weeks after ID2 on July 31, 2015. As of now, the pic appears to have that weekend to itself.

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Hot Trailer: ‘White House Down’

By | Monday June 10, 2013 @ 8:30pm PDT

Sony‘s ramping up its White House Down campaign with less than three weeks to go until the June 28 Channing Tatum-Jamie Foxx actioner enters the summer blockbuster fray, sandwiched between Paramount‘s World War Z and Disney‘s The Lone Ranger. Here’s the new extra-long four-plus minute trailer for the Roland Emmerich pic that highlights its explosive buddy action:

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Produced By Conference: Producers Who Direct, Or Directors Who Produce?

By | Saturday June 8, 2013 @ 1:57pm PDT

Ray Richmond contributes to Deadline’s conference coverage.

The 5th Annual Produced By Conference, sponsored by the PGA, kicked off this morning on the 20th Century Fox lot with a panel discussion entitled “The Real Deal: Producers Who Direct? or Directors Who Produce?”. Producer Mark Gordon of Grey’s Anatomy fame moderated the discussion in the packed Zanuck Theater, peppering panelists Jon Favreau (Iron Man 1, 2 and 3) and Roland Emmerich (White House Down, Independence Day) with questions about how producers can effectively navigate the directorial waters and vice-versa. Of course, working with filmmakers at the level of Favreau and Emmerich who have abundant experience is rarely a problem, Gordon repeatedly acknowledged.

“There is a comfort level with directors who have a body of work,” said Gordon, who doesn’t direct. “It’s more difficult now because everybody specializes. In the old days of the Hollywood studio system, guys like John Ford and Billy Wilder did it all. They directed comedies. They directed dramas. They directed musicals. Today, you hear, ‘This guy is an action director, this guy directs comedy.’ I don’t believe in that. If you direct, you should be able to direct everything.” But Favreau pointed out that inexperienced directors are becoming less of a dice roll for producers and studios, what with the cost of admission to the club dropping to relative pennies. “There are tremendous filmmakers doing strong pieces of content online,” he said. “Those content walls are coming down. It’s becoming less and less of a guess. It isn’t like picking the new Dalai Lama. You can see what’s being done and say, ‘This kid’s got some vision’.” Read More »

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Roland Emmerich Buys Alien Invasion Sci-Fi Pitch ‘Emergence’ As Directing Vehicle

By | Friday June 7, 2013 @ 8:30am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Roland Emmerich‘s Centropolis Entertainment has acquired Emergence, a pitch for a large scale contemporary science fiction film by scribe Nic Kelman. Emmerich plans to direct the film, which I’ve heard is a new take on an alien invasion story containing hot-button science elements. Here’s why this is significant: studios all over town have been beating the bushes for new IP (intellectual property) with tent pole potential because they don’t develop like they used to, and they are beating sequels into the ground.

Emmerich’s track record, going back to Independence Day, 2012 and The Day After Tomorrow, is to come to the marketplace with a script, a budget, a start date, and his commitment to direct. And studios like Fox and Sony have responded by paying huge sums against extravagant back ends because they could see the whole picture and it enabled them to slot an event film right into their slates. Emmerich’s big-scale movies almost always become big hits globally. So when Emmerich is ready to go on Emergence, I bet studios open their wallets again. It went a little differently on his latest film, the June 28 opener White House Down, which Sony Pictures bought as a $3 million spec script from The Amazing Spider-Man scribe James Vanderbilt, generated with his Mythology Entertainment partners Brad Fischer and Laeta Kalogridis.

Emmerich has other projects in the pipeline that are further along, including Singularity, so it’s unclear which … Read More »

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Roland Emmerich Teams On Lawrence Of Arabia Mini With Fremantle, Marc Frydman

FremantleMedia International is continuing its push into event drama with a six-hour miniseries based on the true story of T.E. Lawrence, aka Lawrence Of Arabia. Roland Emmerich will produce with Marc Frydman. Author Michael Korda, who wrote 2010′s Hero: The Life And Legend Of Lawrence Of Arabia, is historical consultant on the project. British screenwriter Clive Bradley will write. The as-yet untitled series plans to follow the journey of British Army officer Lawrence during World War I. Lawrence was an exceptional diplomat who was an invaluable resource for both Britain and the Arab insurgents he fought with in the war against the Ottoman Empire. He was also the subject of David Lean’s classic 1962 Oscar-winning film. Fremantle’s move into scripted programming began in 2009. Among its current projects under development are Joan Of Arc story The Maid, with Craig Pearce and Pukeko Pictures as well as a Berlin-based drama series project inspired by the book Hitlerland with writer-producer Marshall Herskovitz.

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Channing Tatum In ‘White House Down’ Talks

Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Channing Tatum is in talks to star in the Roland Emmerich-directed White House Down, the James Vanderbilt-scripted action drama. Sony Pictures paid $3 million for the James Vanderbilt spec that is a Die Hard in the White House scenario, focusing on a paramilitary takeover of the White House. Tatum will play a Secret Service agent.  It was the biggest spec script deal of the year so far and a big payday for Vanderbilt, who scripted The Amazing Spider-Man for Sony and is working on the sequel to the Marc Webb-directed 3D film that stars Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone.

Emmerich and his producing partner Harald Kloser are producing with Mythology Entertainment partners Bradley Fischer, Vanderbilt, and Laeta Kalogridis. Reid Carolin, Tatum’s producing partner in Iron Horse Entertainment, will be exec producer.

Tatum has emerged as one of the top young male stars, after scoring a hit in The Vow and 21 Jump Street, the latter for Sony. He’ll next be seen in Magic Mike and the upcoming G.I. Joe: Retaliation. He is also expected to star with Mila Kunis in Jupiter Ascending, the next film by Lana and Andy Wachowski. He’s repped by UTA and Management 360.

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Roland Emmerich in Talks to Helm $3 Million Sony Spec ‘White House Down’

By | Monday April 2, 2012 @ 6:07pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Roland Emmerich is in talks to next direct White House Down, the James Vanderbilt-scripted action drama. Sony Pictures paid $3 million when Vanderbilt and his Mythology Entertainment partners brought the spec script to market last week. The film focuses on a paramilitary takeover of the White House and was compared to Die Hard when it fetched the highest sum for a spec script so far this year for Vanderbilt, who scripted The Amazing Spider-Man for Sony and is working on the sequel to the Marc Webb-directed 3D film that stars Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone.

Emmerich and his producing partner Harald Kloser will join Mythology Entertainment partners Bradley Fischer, Vanderbilt, and Laeta Kalogridis to produce the film. It will be his next project as director, and production is slated to begin in the fall. Emmerich will follow White House Down with Singularity, which remains a priority project at Columbia Pictures. Kloser is also a producer of Singularity. Vanderbilt’s script work includes Zodiac, he’s adapting Red Riding for Steve Zaillian’s Film Rites and Ridley Scott, and is doing a production rewrite on Robocop. Emmerich is repped by CAA.

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Christian Petzold’s ‘Barbara’ Leads Nominations For Germany’s Lola Awards

Barbara LolasThe German Film Academy has announced nominations for its Lola awards, the country’s equivalent to the Oscar. Christian Petzold’s Barbara, the story of an East German doctor transferred to the countryside in 1980, scored eight nods, while Roland Emmerich’s controversial Shakespeare film Anonymous and Andreas Dresen’s Cannes Un Certain Regard title Stopped On Track took seven each. All three are in the best picture category along with Tim Fehlbaum’s Emmerich-produced post-apocalyptic thriller Hell; Christian Zübert’s Three Quarter Moon, about a curmudgeonly taxi driver and a precocious little girl; and David Wnendt’s neo-Nazi picture Combat Girls. Petzold won the best director prize in Berlin last month for Barbara and is nominated in that category along with Dresen and Hans Weingartner for Hut In The Woods. Vying for best actress are Read More »

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ABC Picks Up Roland Emmerich Drama Pilot About The 2012 Presidential Race

By | Wednesday January 4, 2012 @ 12:41pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

The current presidential race has inspired a drama project co-written and directed by filmmaker Roland Emmerich (Independence Day), which just received a pilot order by ABC. In the first pickup of the regular pilot season, ABC has given the green light to the untitled drama to be directed by Emmerich in his TV series debut and produced by Mark Gordon. Written by Emmerich and Harald Kloser on spec, the project is set in New York City against the backdrop of the Presidential race of 2012. It centers on a young astrophysics student  who learns his destiny lies not in science but somewhere between Heaven and Hell. The Mark Gordon Co. and ABC Studios are producing. By picking up such high-concept project in its first drama pilot order this season, ABC brass are indicating that it won’t stick to conventional genres in their choices. That is not entirely surprising given that the network’s biggest drama success this season has been the fairytale-themed Once Upon A Time. This will be the second project set in 2012 for Emmerich and Kloser who also co-wrote the disaster movie 2012, which was directed by Emmerich. In addition to 2012, Emmerich is also behind such blockbusters as Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow and The Patriot. This marks the first pilot order this season for Gordon, whose ABC Studios-based … Read More »

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‘Singularity’ Put On Hold, But Not Because Roland Emmerich Is Peeved Over ‘Anonymous’ Release

By | Thursday November 10, 2011 @ 12:09pm PST
Mike Fleming

Word is spreading that the Sony Pictures film Singularity is in disarray and that it’s related to Roland Emmerich’s disappointment over the studio’s release of the his Shakespeare film Anonymous. That is being denied both by the studio and by sources close to the filmmaker. I’m told that they’ve added the top authority on the subject of Singularity, Ray Kurzwell, to work with Emmerich and Harald Kloser on honing the script. Pre-production has been suspended, but the studio expects the film to start a few months later than its original March date, and stay on track for its tentative May 2013 release date.

As for Anonymous, Emmerich apparently wasn’t averse to the studio’s last minute decision to go from wide to a platform release. It is obviously important to keep Emmerich happy, since Anonymous was an anomaly for him and he generates global blockbusters as consistently as any filmmaker out there.

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