Production on the creepshow starts this week in, appropriately, Transylvania with rookie helmer Andrei Konst. Lady Of Csejte follows the murderous doings of Hungary’s Elizabeth Bathory, the sadistic 16th century “Blood Countess” remembered as history’s most prolific female serial killer. Svetlana Khodchenkova and Isabelle Allen star in the pic, which is being produced by Steven Schneider (Paranormal Activity, Insidious) as the first of a new four-picture producing deal he signed with Glacier Films. Schneider and Glacier – which launched at Cannes last year — also teamed on the horror comedy Cooties, which premieres at Sundance next week. Tove Christensen, Sarik Andreasyan, Gevond Andreasyan, Georgy Malkov and Vladimir Poliakov also produce Lady Of Csejte, which was penned by Matthew Jacobs. Wendy Rhoads and Glacier’s Hayden Christensen are exec producing.
Los Angeles/Toronto – February 6, 2012 – Independent studio Entertainment One (eOne) has entered into a multi-year film and television production pact with ROOM 101, Inc. partners Steven Schneider (Paranormal Activity 1, 2 & 3, Insidious, The Devil Inside) and Adi Shankar (The Grey).
Under the terms of the deal, ROOM 101 will deliver on average two premium micro-budget genre titles annually to eOne. The projects will be high-concept and filmmaker-driven, and will encompass both acquisitions and original productions. eOne will finance, co-produce, and distribute globally, with the exception of the United States where distribution will be handled on a per-project basis.
EXCLUSIVE: After making his directing debut on the documentary God Bless Ozzy Osbourne, Mike Fleiss has made a deal to make his narrative directing debut on an untitled low-budget horror film. He is partnered on the project with Steven Schneider, producer of the Paranormal Activity films and Insidious. Fleiss, whose documentary opens this week, has certainly gained experience in making low-cost/high-gross genre films. He was a producer on Hostel and Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and his latest, Shark Night 3D, opens in nine days. Fleiss is also the TV producer behind The Bachelor, The Bachelorette and other reality series. The Fleiss-Schneider film is described to me as a big idea with a low price tag, which seems to be the best way to make genre nowadays. It’s being packaged and will be sold by WME Global to start production by year’s end. Fleiss is also working on a narrative film based on dolphin activist Richard O’Barry. He was the hero of The Cove, the shocking documentary that covertly filmed the carnage in a cove in the small former whaling village of Taijii. Fishermen annually herd thousands of dolphins into the cove, and slaughter them in a frenzy that actually makes the waters run blood red. The film created a global uproar. WME Global will package that film as a follow-up film for Fleiss to direct.
EXCLUSIVE: CBS Films has acquired Flight 75, a pitch for a thriller that will be directed by The Grudge helmer Takashi Shimizu. Project was bought on a treatment by Shimizu and a writer will be set momentarily. It is described as a claustrophobic thriller set on a transpacific airliner where the passengers encounter what appears to be a supernatural force. Shimizu reteams with Grudge producer Taka Ichise, who’ll produce with The Ring‘s Roy Lee and Insidious‘ Steven Schneider. John Middleton is exec producer. Shimizu has been looking for the right fit for his next English-language project and this is expected to be it. They hope to get it mounted by the fall. It becomes another in a flurry of projects set up by CBS Films, which has Gambit in production with Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz; just put Ed Zwick on the Vince Flynn bestseller American Assassin; and an adaptation of the Marie Lu novel Legend, to be directed by Jonathan Levine (Warm Bodies). ICM reps Shimizu.
EXCLUSIVE: Conan the Barbarian helmer Marcus Nispel will next direct Backmask, a $10 million film that will begin shooting this summer. It’s based on an idea by Nispel, whose recent films include The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Friday the 13th. Kirsten Elms is writing the script. Nispel is keeping the plot close to his vest, allowing only that it involves paranoia, possession and the paranormal. The film will be produced by Steven Schneider, one of the architects behind the Paranormal Activity films as well as the haunted kid hit Insidious and the upcoming Barry Levinson-directed eco-thriller The Bay.
Voltage Pictures’ Nicolas Chartier will unveil the title at Cannes this week, where he’ll broker international territories, while WME Global’s Graham Taylor will handle North American sales. The film is being funded by 1821′s Paris Latsis and Terry Dougas, who’ll produce with Schneider and Nispel. The filmmaker is repped by WME, while Elms is repped by Gersh and Generate.
Upstart distributor FilmDistrict has issued a new trailer for Insidious, the horror film by original Saw writer-director team of James Wan and Leigh Whannell, produced by Paranormal Activity’s Oren Peli, Jason Blum and Steven Schneider. The film, which looks like a good old fashioned haunted house movie, opens April 1.
Paramount Insurge, the division formed to generate micro-budget movies following the studio’s success with Paranormal Activity, has made its first acquisition. Insurge just acquired an untitled pic by director and co-writer William Brent Bell for worldwide distribution (it had the working title The Devil Inside but studio says it might change). Par-based Lorenzo di Bonaventura will be exec producer with Paranormal Activity‘s Steven Schneider. Faith is no protection for a young woman whose mother is accused in the mysterious murders of three religious figures. Fernanda Andrade, Simon Quarterman, Evan Helmuth and Suzan Crowley star. The film is produced by Morris Paulson and Matt Peterman, who wrote the script with Bell. CAA and Automatik Entertainment’s Brian Kavanaugh-Jones brokered the deal. Sierra/Affinity sold international rights. Filmmakers are repped by CAA and Generate, Andrade by Genesis Entertainment Partners.
EXCLUSIVE: Rob Zombie has committed to make The Lords of Salem his next directorial outing. The film has been put together by Haunted Films, the company run by the Paranormal Activity team of Jason Blum, Steven Schneider and Oren Peli. The pic is a co-production between Haunted Films and Alliance Films, marking their third film together. The first, the James Wan-directed haunted house thriller Insidious, was acquired by Sony Pictures Worldwide right after its midnight premiere at the Toronto Film Festival last week. Barry Levinson is currently shooting the second, The Bay, in South Carolina. Octane, the genre arm of IM Global, will handle