Sony Animation has picked up Instant Karma, a live action/CGI project previously at New Line. Paul Hernandez wrote the script and will direct. The plot: a misguided safecracker from New Orleans survives a near-death experience only to find himself reincarnated as a fly. He needs to perform good deeds to up his karma rating, and when he does, he moves up the flood chain by becoming such animals as a frog, raccoon and dog. His goal is to redeem himself enough to reclaim his human body and the woman he loves. Shrek and Pirates of the Caribbean scribe Terry Rossio has boarded the project as producer.
EXCLUSIVE: Disney has closed a deal with Terry Rossio to write the fifth installment of Pirates of the Caribbean. This will be the first one without Ted Elliott, his screenwriting accomplice on the first four pictures. The studio is also making moves to bring back director Rob Marshall for his second voyage on the franchise. This comes as his first effort, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, is moving through post-production for a May 20, 2011 release. I’m told that Johnny Depp has a deal structure to return for a fifth film that will clearly be drawn up for him to reprise Jack Sparrow, though it’s too early to consider him locked. The studio and Jerry Bruckheimer are consumed with the fourth installment, but Rossio’s deal is done.
Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski is venturing into television with a drama project at Fox, which puts a supernatural twist on the cop/legal genre. Titled Magical Law, the project is being written by Pirates scribe Terry Rossio. It is set in a world where the existence of supernatural beings is commonplace and follows the specialized cops and lawyers who face the unique challenges of prosecuting otherworldly crimes.
20th Century Fox TV and Verbinski’s Blind Wink Prods. are producing Magical Law, which has received a script commitment with penalty from the network. Verbinski and Rossio are executive producing with veteran TV writer-producer Jeff Rake, who is supervising the writing, and Blind Wink’s Jonathan Krauss. Verbinski could possibly direct the project if it goes to pilot. CAA-repped Verbinski and Rossio worked together on the first 3 Pirates of the Caribbean movies, which Verbinski directed and Rossio co-wrote. Rossio most recently co-wrote the upcoming fourth installment in the Pirates franchise, while Verbinski is in post-production on his animated feature Rango.