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Taylor Hackford’s CW Pilot ‘Company Town’ Casts Lead

By | Saturday February 16, 2013 @ 9:09am PST
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Gage Golightly (Teen Wolf) has been cast as a lead in the CW‘s drama pilot Company Town. Written by Sera Gamble and to be directed by Taylor Hackford, Company Town chronicles the aftermath of a scandal at a Naval base in Virginia, which touches the lives of both civilians and military personnel in the area. The multigenerational, multi-class, family and relationship series centers around two early 20-something women — Krista (Golightly) and Page — who grew up together, were once best friends, but now are on opposite sides of the Townie/Military divide. Krista has always lived a charmed life and is happily engaged to Paul, a lieutenant in the Navy, but begins to show her vulnerable side when Paul gets involved in the scandal. Read More »

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Taylor Hackford Won’t Seek 3rd DGA Term

By | Thursday January 31, 2013 @ 4:09pm PST

Taylor Hackford says he won’t run for a third term as president of the Directors Guild of America. Hackford, whose latest feature Parker opened last weekend and who’s directing the pilot Company Town for The CW, revealed his decision in an interview posted by Deadline sibling Variety ahead of Saturday’s DGA Awards ceremony. Elections will take place at the DGA’s upcoming convention in June. Taylor, who was elected at the Guild’s biennial convention on July 25, 2009, will pass the baton to his successor after this year’s confab.

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DGA “Concern” For Missing Syria Producer

By | Thursday September 6, 2012 @ 4:34pm PDT

Los Angeles – Directors Guild of America President Taylor Hackford made the following statement about the disappearance of Orwa Nyrabia, the Syrian producer and director of the DOX BOX documentary film festival, on August 23, 2012 as he waited to board a plane from Damascus to Cairo:

“The Directors Guild of America joins together with the international film community in expressing our serious concern over the disappearance of filmmaker Orwa Nyrabia two weeks ago.

“A society or government that fails to protect an artist’s freedom to express his or her creative vision without fear of censorship, retribution or government reprisal is surely one in which respect for liberty, civil and human rights is similarly tenuous. We call for Nyrabia’s immediate and safe release along with any other filmmakers and other artists who have been detained and prohibited from full freedom of expression.”

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R.I.P. Bruno Rubeo

By | Tuesday November 15, 2011 @ 8:21am PST

Oscar-nominated production designer Bruno Rubeo, who was a frequent collaborator with Taylor Hackford and Oliver Stone, died November 3rd in Trevi, Italy of complications from pneumonia. He was 65. According to his official bio, Rubeo was born in Rome and served in the Italian Navy before immigrating to Canada where he worked as an Art Director on several TV and independent film projects. His big break came in 1986 when Stone tapped him to design Salvador. Stone and Rubeo collaborated on three more films: Best Picture Oscar winner Platoon as well as Talk Radio and Born On The Fourth Of July. In 1989, Rubeo served as Production Designer on Bruce Beresford’s Academy Award winner Driving Miss Daisy and received an Academy Award nomination. In 1992, Rubeo began working with Hackford on the Chicano gang epic Blood In, Blood Out. This relationship became Rubeo’s longest professional collaboration, resulting in five films, including Dolores Clairborne, Devil’s Advocate, Proof Of Life, and Love Ranch. (Rubeo joked that his relationship with Hackford was “A marriage without sex”.) Rubeo also designed films for Ivan Reitman, Mike Newell, John McTiernan, and John Amiel. His wife is Costume Designer Mayes Rubeo (Apocalypto, Avatar, John Carter),  and his son is prolific Art Director Marco Rubeo.

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DGA Reaches Tentative Deal On Ads Pact

By | Monday October 17, 2011 @ 3:36pm PDT

New York – The Directors Guild of America today announced that the National Board of Directors has approved a tentative new national commercial contract to be sent to the membership for ratification.

The agreement covers a three-year term from December 1, 2011 through November 30, 2014 and addresses wage increases (2% per year, plus a wage increase of 15.8% for 2nd 2nd assistant directors in the first year of the contract); health coverage (including a 17.65% increase in the employer contribution rate for all members plus additional contributions for directors); and the global marketplace for commercials (provides producers with additional flexibility to compete for jobs outside of North America while preserving existing employment opportunities for 1st assistant directors).

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DGA Honors Host & Presenters Unveiled

By | Monday October 10, 2011 @ 3:24pm PDT

NEW YORK, NY – DGA President Taylor Hackford today announced the host and presenters for the eighth Directors Guild of America Honors, to be held at the DGA Theater in New York City on Thursday, October 13, 2011 and followed by an after-party at Nobu 57.

Comedian, actor, talk-show host and author Richard Belzer will serve as the event’s Master of Ceremonies.  He previously hosted DGA Honors in 2002, 2003 and 2008.

Following is a list of confirmed presenters:

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R.I.P. Joseph R. Aceti

By | Wednesday October 5, 2011 @ 3:32pm PDT

The Directors Guild announced today that retired TV broadcast network sports director and DGA Lifetime Achievement recipient Joseph R. Aceti has died. Here is the statement by DGA President Taylor Hackford:

We are saddened to hear of the passing of Joseph R. Aceti, beloved DGA member and the ninth recipient of the DGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Sports Direction. Joe received the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006, capping a career that by all measures placed him in the pantheon of sports direction. Present at most of the seminal sporting events since the late 1960s, Joe worked for all four major networks on every type of major sporting event including

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Nick Nolte Joins ‘Gangster Squad’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Nick Nolte continues his recent career resurgence. He’s been set to join the cast of the Ruben Fleischer-directed Warner Bros drama Gangster Squad. Nolte will play Bill Parker, the new chief of police in Los Angeles, and the first in a awhile who hasn’t been corrupted by Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn). The chief, a Purple Heart recipient at Normandy, is the one who starts the Gangster Squad, a crack team designed to bring down organized crime. Ryan Gosling, Josh Brolin, Emma Stone, Mireille Enos and Anthony Mackie star.

Nolte stars in the Gavin O’Connor-directed Warrior, and he just wrapped the Taylor Hackford-directed action film Parker for FilmDistrict opposite Jason Statham, Jennifer Lopez and Michael Chiklis. Nolte is about to begin work on the Robert Redford-directed The Company You Keep opposite Redford and Shia LaBeouf, and he also stars with Dustin Hoffman in the David Milch/Michael Mann HBO series Luck.

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Michael Chiklis Is The Bad Guy In ‘Parker’

EXCLUSIVE: Michael Chiklis has signed on to play Jason Statham’s nemesis in Parker, the Taylor Hackford-directed thriller based on the Donald E. Westlake novel series that will be distributed by FilmDistrict. Production on the film begins in August in New Orleans. Jennifer Lopez is in talks to play the female lead. Casting up quickly, the movie was a prominent sales title during the Cannes Film Festival, where Sierra/Affinity’s Nick Meyer sold the rights. Chiklis is repped by WME and Management 360.

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FilmDistrict Near U.S. Distribution Deal For Ryan Gosling-Nic Refn ‘Only God Forgives’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: In a low-seven-figure minimum guarantee deal, FilmDistrict has acquired U.S. rights to Only God Forgives, a drama that will reteam Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn with Ryan Gosling. Several distributors were in the mix, but FilmDistrict’s Peter Schlessel had an edge because Refn was pleased with the way FilmDistrict’s Bob Berney has set up the marketing for Drive. That film, which stars Gosling as a stunt driver who moonlights as the wheel man for a heist crew, played the Cannes Film Festival and drew raves. It will be released Sept. 16. Funded by Wild Bunch, Only God Forgives will shoot in late summer in Thailand, with Gosling playing a guy on the run from British police. He runs a Thai boxing club in Bangkok that is a front for a drug-smuggling operation. He winds up getting in the ring for a shot at redemption. Buyers this week read a script and started making offers this week. Gosling is next starring for his Blue Valentine director Derek Cianfrance in A Place Beyond the Pines and he’s also starring with Sean Penn, Josh Brolin and Anthony Mackie in the Ruben Fleischer-directed Gangster Squad for Warner Bros. He’s also set to star for Refn in a remake of Logan’s Run at Warner Bros, where he’ll next be seen starring with Steve Carell and Julianne Moore in Crazy, Stupid, Love.

It is another … Read More »

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Taylor Hackford Re-Elected DGA President

LOS ANGELES – Director Taylor Hackford was re-elected President of the Directors Guild of America by acclamation at the Guild’s National Biennial Convention held today at DGA National Headquarters in Los Angeles. Additionally, 140 delegates representing the 14,500 members of the DGA elected a new slate of officers and members of the National Board of Directors. Steven Soderbergh was re-elected National Vice President; Gilbert Cates, who formerly served two terms as DGA president, was re-elected Secretary-Treasurer. Also elected were First Vice President Paris Barclay; Second Vice President William M. Brady; Third Vice President Betty Thomas; Fourth Vice President Gary Donatelli; Fifth Vice President Thomas Schlamme; Sixth Vice President Vincent Misiano; and Assistant Secretary-Treasurer Scott Berger.  A complete list of the new officers and board members is below.

Complete List of DGA Officers and Board Members

President – Taylor Hackford
National Vice-President - Steven Soderbergh
Secretary-Treasurer - Gilbert Cates
Assistant Secretary-Treasurer - Scott Berger
First Vice-President - Paris Barclay
Second Vice-President - William M. Brady
Third Vice-President - Betty Thomas
Fourth Vice-President - Gary Donatelli
Fifth Vice-President - Thomas Schlamme
Sixth Vice-President - Vincent Misiano
Board Members – Michael Apted, Kathryn Bigelow, Stephen Glanzrock, Lesli Linka Glatter, Cleve Landsberg, Michael Mann,
Donald Petrie, Scott L. Rindenow, Liz Ryan, Ed Sherin, Jesus Treviño
Associate Board Members - Alan Curtiss, Duncan Henderson, Dennis Mazzocco, Barbara Roche, Mary Rae Thewlis, Alternate Board Members – Laura Belsey, Theodore Bogosian, Jon Favreau, Victoria Hochberg, Rod Holcomb, Jeremy Kagan,
Randal Kleiser, Linda Laundra, Garry Marshall, Oz Scott, Millicent Shelton,
Michael Zinberg
Second Alternate Board Members – Lee Blaine, Tim Engle,
Julie Gelfand, Kathleen McGill, Jennie O’Keefe, Joyce Thomas

Read More »

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Jennifer Lopez In Talks For ‘Parker’ And ‘What To Expect When You’re Expecting’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: There has been much speculation over whether Jennifer Lopez will return for another season as judge on American Idol. Adding to the intrigue: she is in talks to star in not one, but two feature films. I’m told that Lopez is in discussions to play the female lead opposite Jason Statham in Parker, the Taylor Hackford-directed action film adaptation of the Donald Westlake mystery novel series. Deadline revealed yesterday that the picture was acquired for U.S. distribution by FilmDistrict CEO Peter Schlessel. Statham will play Parker, a thief who follows a strict moral code, but a hard guy who’s willing to kill if crossed. That character was previously played by Mel Gibson in Payback and Lee Marvin in Point Blank. The hope is to hatch an action franchise. John J. McLaughlin wrote the script and Steve Chasman is producing with Kimmel, Hackford, Les Alexander and Jonathan Mitchell. Lopez plays the female lead, a character named Leslie, who gets involved with Parker as he executes a heist.

The film is being financed by Incentive Filmed Entertainment and Sidney Kimmel Entertainment, and Sierra/Affinity’s Nick Meyer brokered that distribution deal and sold most worldwide territories at last month’s Cannes Film Festival. Production on the film begins in August.

At the same time, Lopez is also circling What To Expect When You’re Expecting, the Kirk Jones-directed Lionsgate film based on the bestselling how-to guide to preparing for childbirth. Cameron Diaz and Matthew Morrison … Read More »

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FilmDistrict Acquires Taylor Hackford-Helmed ‘Parker’ With Jason Statham

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: FilmDistrict is closing a deal for U.S. distribution rights to Parker, the Taylor Hackford-directed thriller that will star Jason Statham. Production starts in early August. The John J. McLaughlin-scripted film is an adaptation of the Donald E. Westlake novel series, and Statham is playing a character that Mel Gibson played in the Brian Helgeland-directed Payback and Lee Marvin played in the John Boorman-directed Point Blank. Parker is a thief, but one who follows a strict moral code he’ll kill to uphold. The producers are Steven Chasman, Sidney Kimmel, Les Alexander, Jonathan Mitchell and Hackford. The film’s casting up quickly, and the movie was a prominent sales title during the Cannes Film Festival where Sierra/Affinity’s Nick Meyer sold offshore rights and made the domestic deal. Meyer has sold most world territories. Incentive Filmed Entertainment funded the film, and produced with Sidney Kimmel Entertainment and Sierra/Infinity. Sierra/Infinity and Incentive Filmed Entertainment previously teamed on Shark Night 3D, a movie that will be released in September. Read More »

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No ‘Idolmaker’ For Ryan Gosling

Mike Fleming

Here’s how fast things move in Hollywood. At Cannes, I got my confirmations and revealed that Ryan Gosling would direct and star in MGM’s remake of The Idolmaker. Now, a couple weeks later, I get to report that he’s had to back out of the picture, at least for now. He just informed the studio he would be too busy. He’s in pre-production on A Place Beyond the Pines, which reteams him with Blue Valentine director Derek Cianfrance, and then Gosling moves immediately into the Ruben Fleischer-directed Gangster Squad, starring with Sean Penn and Josh Brolin in the period crime drama for Warner Bros. MGM is convinced that Idolmaker is a plum project and the studio and will continue developing the picture. If Gosling is available, they will revisit it down the line. It is fun to watch Gosling’s transformation from darling of the independent film set to arguably the most coveted young leading man for studio films. After turning down lead roles in recent years I’ve heard included Superman, Jack Ryan, Akira and The Lone Ranger, Gosling is suddenly giving the studios a chance. He impressed the Cannes set with the Nicolas Refn-directed Drive, and Warner Bros is offering him everything after testing Crazy, Stupid, Love, with the studio getting Gosling to reteam with Refn in a remake of Logan’s Run. Read More »

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‘True Grit’ Wins Best Sound Mixing Award

The Cinema Audio Society consisting of Sound Mixers and Associates from the film and television industries handed out its 47th Annual CAS Award Winners Saturday. The Society was founded to create a proper channel of communication between the related sound crafts and between those instrumental to the production and distribution of film and television soundtracks:

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for
Motion Pictures:

True Grit
Production Mixer
Peter F. Kurland, CAS
Re-recording Mixers
Skip Lievsay, CAS
Craig Berkey, CAS
Greg Orloff, CAS

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for a Television Movies and Mini-Series:

Temple Grandin
Production Mixer
Ethan Andrus
Re-recording Mixer
Rick Ash

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for a Television Series:

Boardwalk Empire (A Return to Normalcy-Episode 12)
Production Mixer
Franklin D. Stettner, CAS
Re-recording Mixers
Tom Fleischman, CAS

Oustanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for
Television – Non-Fiction, Variety or Music -
Series or Specials:

Deadliest Catch: Redemption Day
Re-recording Mixer
Bob Bronow, CAS

7th Annual CAS Technical Achievement Awards:

Production:
Schoeps Super CMIT 2U

Post Production
Izotope Izotope RX-2

2011 CAS Filmmaker Award Honoree:
Taylor Hackford

2011 CAS Career Achievement Honoree:
Jeffrey S. Wexler, CAS

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for
DVD Original Programming:

30 Days of Night: Dark Days
Production Mixer
Michael Williamson, CAS
Re-recording Mixers
Eric Lalicata, CAS

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