EXCLUSIVE: The former Secret Circle star is getting Vince Vaughn as a Dad. Britt Robertson will play Kristen in the American remake of the 2011 French-Canadian film Starbuck. Kristen is a troubled teen who is one of the 533 children that Vaughn’s character fathered through sperm donation. Ken Scott, who directed and co-wrote the French-language original, is on board for the new version as is original producer Andre Rouleau. Robertson recently finished filming the bully drama White Rabbit. The CW cancelled The Secret Circle, in which Robertson played lead Cassie Blake, in May 2012 after one season. The actress will be seen in Sony Pictures’ upcoming The First Time. The teen romance, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, is due out on October 19. Robertson is repped by Innovative Artists.
TBS is going 2-for-2 with its new comedy series with a renewal of freshman Sullivan & Son executive produced by Vince Vaughn. As part of its return to half-hour sitcoms, TBS launched two new shows behind its blockbuster off-network performer The Big Bang Theory this year, Men At Work and Sullivan & Son. Both have now been picked up for a second season.
EXCLUSIVE: America’s most famous blended TV family is eyeing a comeback. CBS is developing a new take on the cult comedy The Brady Bunch, co-developed and executive produced by Vince Vaughn. The multi-camera comedy project, which has received a script order, will be produced by CBS TV Studios.
The original sitcom, created by Sherwood Schwartz and starring Robert Reed and Florence Henderson, ran on ABC from 1969-1974. It centered on Mike Brady (Reed), a widowed architect with three sons, Greg, Peter and Bobby, who marries Carol Ann Martin (Henderson), a single mother with three daughters, Marcia, Jan and Cindy.
On the new next-generation Brady Bunch, written by Mike Mariano (Raising Hope, My Name Is Earl), a divorced Bobby Brady, with children of his own, is remarried to a woman who also has kids, and together they also share a child. In addition, their ex-spouses are still part of their lives. The new setup reflects the evolution of family dynamics over the past four decades. Back in 1969, Schwartz wanted Carol to be a divorcée but the network refused, so the end of her first marriage was never addressed.
EXCLUSIVE: Wild West Picture Show Productions has used its discretionary fund to acquire the Ridley Pearson novel The Risk Agent. It will be developed as a star vehicle for Vince Vaughn, who’ll produce with his Wild West cohorts Victoria Vaughn and Sandra J. Smith. They’ve already set Michael Lerner to write the script. The book was published last month by Putnam.
The project will be developed for Universal, where Vaughn has his producing deal. It’s a departure for the actor, a thriller that is set in China. When a Chinese National working for an American-owned construction company is grabbed off the streets of Shanghai in broad daylight and his one-man security detail goes missing as well, the call goes out to Rutherford Risk. That firm specializes in hostage extraction, from negotiation to recovery. Since private investigation is illegal in China, the company recruits two experts. One, Grace Chu, is a female forensic accountant who follows the money; the other, John Knox, is well trained in both combat and culture. They overcome their differing styles to try and get the hostages back before it’s too late.
EXCLUSIVE: New Regency has paid high six-figures for Gunslingers, a pitch that Braveheart scribe Randall Wallace will write for Vince Vaughn to star. Vaughn will produce through his Wild West Picture Show Productions banner with Victoria Vaughn exec producing. Wallace is also a producer along with New Regency. Michael Lagnese from WWPS is associate producer.
They are keeping the log line under wraps, but here is what I know: It’s an action adventure set in modern-day Los Angeles, where heroic and iconic characters from the past collide with contemporary urban reality. It’s a movie that explores what real heroism is in a fun and unexpected way. It’s also a two-hander.
Vaughn will next be seen in The Watch, the Fox comedy that opens July 27, and the Stephen Frears-directed Lay The Favorite. He re-teams with Wedding Crasher star Owen Wilson in the Shawn Levy-directed The Internship. Wallace most recently directed Secretariat and is attached to The Conscientious Objector. He’s repped by WME and Media Talent Group’s Geyer Kosinski, while Vaughn is repped by CAA.
EXCLUSIVE: JoAnna Garcia has joined the cast of Interns. Garcia, who also goes by JoAnna Garcia Swisher, will play Vince Vaughn’s girlfriend in the Shawn Levy directed comedy. Interns stars Owen Wilson and Vaughn as two middle-aged guys who lose their jobs and have to start at the bottom in the new American workforce. Interns is filming in Atlanta this summer. The former Privileged star was also recently named as the female lead opposite Justin Kirk in NBC’s upcoming new comedy series Animal Practice. Garcia is repped by WME and Carrabino Management.
Vince Vaughn is in negotiations to star in DreamWorks’ remake of the 2011 French-Canadian drama Starbuck, which premiered at last year’s Toronto festival. The film is about an immature middle-age man who discovers he has fathered over 530 children throughout the years through sperm donations. When 142 of his offspring file a class-action lawsuit to reveal their Dad’s identity, the man — known only as Starbuck on the donation forms — must decide whether he is going to become a real father. Ken Scott, who directed and co-wrote the French-language original, is on board for the remake, as is original producer Andre Rouleau. Vaughn has a pretty full slate this year. His sci-fi comedy The Watch, co-starring Ben Stiller and Jonah Hill, is coming out July 27. The actor is also reuniting with Wedding Crashers co-star Owen Wilson for The Internship. Additionally, Vaughn is set to star in a big-screen version of The Rockford Files for Universal, and the actor has a number of TV projects, including a comedy with Tony Danza, that he is producing.
Here’s 20th Century Fox‘s red-band trailer for the retitled alien invasion comedy The Watch. Fox abandoned its original marketing scheme for the formerly titled Neighborhood Watch to avoid any unintended association with the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin tragedy in Florida. The R-rated comedy concerns a group of suburban men who form a neighborhood watch group and discover an alien plot to destroy the earth. It stars Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill and Richard Ayoade. It was directed by Akiva Schaffer and written by Jared Stern and Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg. Shawn Levy produced. It opens July 27.
ABC is finalizing a development deal for a multi-camera comedy project starring and executive produced by Tony Danza and executive produced by Vince Vaughn. The project, eyed for the next development cycle, is based on an idea by Danza and his manager Dan Farah. It revolves around three guys who are old friends but whose lives took different paths. Now the three, looking for a fresh start, move into a bachelor pad near their children and grandkids. “It’s intended to be a funny and honest comedy about getting older, generational differences, and the message that it’s never too late to start a new chapter in life,” Danza said. Search is underway for a writer to pen the script. Vaughn is executive producing with his producing partner at Wild West Picture Show Prods. Peter Billingsley as well as Danza and Farah. This would mark Danza’s return to ABC, where he starred in the hit comedies Who’s The Boss? and Taxi. He also recurred on The Practice.
Vince Vaughn‘s Wild West Picture Show, unscripted producer Go Go Luckey Entertainment and Oxymoron Entertainment have partnered to develop and produce a new drama TV series set in the world of global private security operatives. Lawrence Konner (Magic City) will write the script. “This compelling yet secretive world we are exploring is one that most audiences don’t even know exists and we’re excited to share its rich and heroic stories,” said Vaughn, who is executive producing with Oxymoron’s CEO Christopher Mallick, Wild West Picture Show’s Peter Billingsley and Michael Lagnese and Go Go Luckey’s founders Gary Auerbach and Julie Auerbach. The project is yet to be set up.
EXCLUSIVE: Universal Pictures has set David Levien and Brian Koppelman to write The Rockford Files, a feature adaptation of the memorable series that ran on NBC from 1974-80 and featured James Garner as the down-and-out private eye. The studio will develop the film as a star vehicle for Vince Vaughn to play Rockford, and Vaughn and Victoria Vaughn will produce through their Universal-based Wild West Picture Show Productions banner.
In the original series created by Roy Huggins and Stephen J. Cannell, Rockford was a private eye who’d spent a few years in San Quentin before being pardoned. He worked and lived out of a mobile home near the beach in Malibu, and unlike most of his TV detective peers, he dressed disheveled, and mostly used his charm and guile to talk his way out of trouble, instead of shooting. Vaughn certainly has that verbal dexterity. Universal’s sister network NBC has been trying to relaunch The Rockford Files as a TV series but put the brakes on it last year.
Vaughn just signed to re-team with his Wedding Crashers co-star Owen Wilson in the Fox comedy The Internship, and will next be seen alongside Ben Stiller and Jonah Hill in the Fox comedy Neighborhood Watch and the Stephen Frears-directed Lay The Favorite. As for Koppelman and Levien, their script Runner Runner was just …
BREAKING… The Twentieth Century Fox comedy will have a June 2012 start. Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson last teamed in the huge hit The Wedding Crashers and now reunite for director Shawn Levy. Fox made the announcement today because filming begins June 25th. In the story, Vaughn and Wilson portray two old school salesmen who find themselves suddenly unemployed and uschooled in the digital world. Yet they try to reinvent themselves by becoming interns at a major tech company. Levy’s 21 Laps Entertainment and Vaughn’s Wild West Picture Show Productions will produce the film that is based on Vaughn’s original script. Jared Stern delivered the rewrite to Fox. That’s two in a row at Fox for both Vaughn and Wilson: Vaughn will star in this summer’s Neighborhood Watch while Wilson co-starred in The Big Year.
EXCLUSIVE: Might we finally have an answer to the question: what film will Tony Scott next direct? Things are starting to look up for Lucky Strike, a project that is gaining steam. In the configuration I’m hearing about, Vince Vaughn would star, with a potential late summer or early fall start date and Emmett/Furla Films funding the $80 million film and 20th Century Fox distributing. That’s where Scott Free has its deal, and Scott Free will produce with Randall Emmett and George Furla. The latter have been footing the bill for a group of high profile projects, the most recent 2 Guns, the drama that has come together with Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg, with Universal is distributing domestically and Sony World Wide Acquisitions buying most territories around the world.
Henry Bean wrote Lucky Strike, an action film in which a DEA agent teams with a drug runner to take down a drug cartel. Scott, who last directed Unstoppable, has liked this project for a long time. He has also been working hard on Hell’s Angels, which was scripted by Scott Frank. And what about that remake of Walter Hill’s The Warriors?
TBS has picked up a second new comedy series, Sullivan And Son, starring comedian Steve Byrne and executive produced by Vince Vaughn and Peter Billingsley. The show, which has received 10-episode order for a summer premiere, joins Men At Work, which received a series order last month. For the second series slot, TBS was to choose between two pilots – Sullivan And Son and the Conan O’Brien-produced BFF. The pilots were part of TBS’ return to original half-hour comedies after flirting with hourlong shows for about a year. Written by Byrne and Cheers veteran Rob Long, who serves as executive producer/showrunner, Sullivan And Son is in the vein of the classic NBC comedy and takes place in a legendary neighborhood bar in a working-class Pittsburgh neighborhood. It centers on Steve Sullivan (Byrne), the son of the bar’s current owner (Dan Lauria) and the grandson of its founder who surprises his Irish-American father and Korean-American mother (Jodi Long) when he decides to leave his job as a successful corporate attorney in New York and return to the neighborhood to take over the bar.
Catherine Zeta-Jones has closed her deal to star in Broken City, joining Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe in the Allen Hughes-directed drama. Zeta-Jones will play the philandering wife of the mayor of New York (Crowe). When a Brooklyn detective (Wahlberg) is hired by the mayor to identify his wife’s lover, and the lover turns up dead, the detective takes it personally and uncovers a wider conspiracy involving his employer. Brian Tucker wrote the script and Randall Emmett, Stephen Levinson, Wahlberg and George Furla will produce. The $50 million film is being fully funded by Emmett/Furla Films and New Regency recently came on as producer, with Fox distributing. Shooting begins November in New York. Zeta-Jones recently completed three big films. She’s coming off the Adam Shankman-directed Rock Of Ages with Tom Cruise, Russell Brand and Alec Baldwin, starred with Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel and Dennis Quaid in Playing The Field, and starred in the Stephen Frears-directed Lay The Favorite with Bruce Willis and Vince Vaughn. She’s repped by WME.
TBS has ordered a half-hour comedy pilot Sullivan And Son, which stars comedian Steve Byrne and is executive produced by Vince Vaughn and producer-director Peter Billingsley. Warner Horizon TV and Vaughn’s Wild West Picture Show banner are producing. Written by Byrne and comedy veteran Rob Long (Cheers), who serves as executive producer/showrunner, Sullivan And Son takes place in a popular and legendary neighborhood bar in a working-class neighborhood in Pittsburgh. It centers on Steve Sullivan (Byrne), the son of the current owner of the bar and the grandson of its founder, who surprises his Irish-American father and Korean-American mother when he decides to leave his job as a successful corporate attorney in New York and return to the old neighborhood to take over Sullivan & Son.
Emmett/Furla Films, a company that has been growing more ambitious in the film financing and production arena, has teamed with Stepan Martirosyan and Remington Chase’s Envision Entertainment to establish a new $250 million revolving equity and debt fund to finance a new slate of star-driven commercial films. The fund was announced as EFF principal Randall Emmett comes to Toronto to make deals on films that include the Allen Hughes-directed political corruption drama Broken City, which stars Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe, and Frozen Ground, the fact-based thriller about a serial killer in Alaska that will star Nicolas Cage and John Cusack. Martirosyan and Chase are executive producers on the latter.
The fund carries no set restrictions on how and where capital is allocated, but it will continue EFF’s momentum. The company recently financed the Stephen Frears-directed Lay The Favorite — with a cast that includes Bruce Willis, Rebecca Hall, Vince Vaughn and Catherine Zeta-Jones — with films in the works that include the David Ayer-directed crime drama End of Watch with Jake Gyllenhaal and Anna Kendrick; Fire with Josh Duhamel, Willis and Rosario Dawson; and Freelancers, a drama that stars Robert De Niro, Forest Whitaker and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. EFF’s Emmett continues to be Jackson’s partner in Cheetah Vision Films, which has a deal at Lionsgate. EFF will make nine films this year.
Last year’s Toronto Film Festival started slow for acquisitions, but finished with a flurry of modest distribution deals that served notice the specialty film business had finally pulled out of its nosedive. This year’s festival hasn’t started and already there are fireworks. Deadline broke news yesterday that Harvey Weinstein would start a VOD business, making the acquisitions market for fringe films more competitive; and last night, I heard that a bidding battle had already broken out for the Steve McQueen-directed Shame, which should be sold by the time it screens Sunday. Fox Searchlight is the favorite, Sony Pictures Classics is in the mix and I’ve heard that The Weinstein Company is hovering. Bidding began right after its Telluride screening, and the mid-six figures thrown around yesterday will probably go higher. That’s huge, considering the movie is an unabashed NC-17, McQueen has final cut, and the sex-obsessed protagonist is unlikable. Oh, yeah, and the sellers want it released this year for Oscar consideration to capitalize on Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan’s Oscar-caliber performances.
Does this mean we’re in for a drunken buying frenzy? Hardly, buyers tell me. They are eager to see the films, but say there’s no title here that’s going to guarantee somebody will overpay. They are also mindful that many of last year’s deals turned out to be box office busts. More deals will be made than …
As the 20th Century Fox 3D Fantastic Voyage continues to take forever to get underway (script is there, but it’s pricey and they’ve had trouble casting it), I’m hearing persuasively that director Shawn Levy will likely take another Fox film, Frankenstein, as his next effort. John Davis is producing it. Fox wants to move quickly on the Max Landis-scripted thriller based on the classic monster from Mary Shelley’s public domain novel, and I’m told the studio wants Levy. They are beginning creative conversations with an eye toward this filling his winter/spring slot. The studio is eager to get out in front of the seven other Frankenstein films that are percolating all over town. Levy’s latest film, the Hugh Jackman-starrer Real Steel, will be released Oct. 7 by Touchstone. He’s eyeing a handful of possible next projects, but I’m putting my money on it being Frankenstein. Meanwhile, Levy is producing Neighborhood Watch, the Akiva Schaffer-directed Fox comedy that stars Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller, and which just got Jonah Hill aboard.