William Hurt Joins Akiva Goldsman’s ‘Winter’s Tale’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: William Hurt has been set in the final major role of Winter’s Tale, the Warner Bros adaptation of the Mark Helprin novel that marks the feature directing debut of Oscar-winning scribe Akiva Goldsman. Goldsman worked for … Read More »

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Comic-Con: ‘After Earth’ Environment Hostile To Humans Will And Jaden Smith

By | Saturday July 14, 2012 @ 11:42am PDT

Luke Y. Thompson is contributing to Deadline’s coverage of Comic-Con.

Despite there being no Will or Jaden Smith and no M. Night Shyamalan, Sony’s panel on After Earth was packed to capacity in Room 6A. Without … Read More »

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Comic-Con: Will And Jaden Smith’s ‘After Earth’ Makes Novel Plans Around M. Night Shyamalan Film

By | Friday July 13, 2012 @ 8:34am PDT
Mike Fleming

Will Smith Jaden Smith After EarthEXCLUSIVE: As Sony Pictures begins to create buzz for the M Night Shyamalan-directed Will and Jaden Smith-starrer After Earth, the studio has also sealed plans to get out in front of the summer 2013 tenpole with a number of other initiatives. Overbrook Entertainment, Sony Pictures Consumer Products, The Random House Publishing Group and Ebury Publishing is set to create a broad line of publishing products based on the film and the universe that was created from the script by Gary Whitta and Shyamalan, based on a story by Will Smith. The film is produced by Caleeb Pinkett, Smith, James Lassiter, and Shyamalan.

RELATED: Will Smith Eyeing Cain And Abel Film As Directing Vehicle Read More »

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Will Smith Eyeing Cain And Abel Film As Directing Vehicle

By | Thursday July 12, 2012 @ 11:31am PDT
Mike Fleming

Will Smith Cain And Abel MovieEXCLUSIVE: With Biblical epics the rage in Hollywood, here’s another. Will Smith is eyeing a film about battling brothers Cain and Abel as his directorial debut. The project is set at Sony in … Read More »

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Sony Pictures Pulls Out The Stops For New York ‘Men In Black 3′ Premiere

By | Thursday May 24, 2012 @ 12:18pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Given the way studios have cut back on lavish movie premieres in recent years, the New York debut of Sony Pictures’ Men In Black 3 was something to behold, and harkened back on to more fun days. The post … Read More »

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Adam McKay Signing On To Direct ‘Uptown Saturday Night’ Remake; Will Smith, Denzel Washington Eyed To Star

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Adam McKay is in negotiations to develop to direct Uptown Saturday Night, the Warner Bros remake that the studio hopes will star Will Smith and Denzel Washington. Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment has been developing the project. Tim … Read More »

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Warner Bros Plans More ‘I Am Legend’ With Will Smith

By | Friday February 17, 2012 @ 8:40am PST
Mike Fleming

I Am Legend SequelEXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has closed deals with Akiva Goldsman and Overbrook Entertainment to produce another installment of I Am Legend, the 2007 hit film. The intention is for Will Smith to reprise his role as scientist Robert Neville, who was the last man on Earth doing battle with a mutated mob in New York City after an apocalyptic man-made virus wiped out the population. A deal was made with Arash Amel to write the script. The film is not being called a prequel, which had been rumored for the past few years. But clearly Warner Bros sees more room to roam on a film that grossed $584 million worldwide. The original film is based on the novel by Richard Matheson. Read More »

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Sony’s ‘Angelology’ Gets Black List Scribe

By | Thursday February 2, 2012 @ 10:58am PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Sony Pictures set Larry Brenner to write a draft of Angelology, based on the Danielle Trussoni novel. Will Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment and Marc Forster’s Apparatus is producing. Brenner wrote Bethlehem, a script that made the most … Read More »

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Simon Cowell & Will Smith Team With Sony TV For International Music Reality Series

Nellie Andreeva

Simon Cowell’s SYCO ENTERTAINMENT has partnered with Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith’s OVERBROOK ENTERTAINMENT on the development and launch of a live, new international TV format to find the world’s greatest DJs.

This new format has already been developed and will be co-produced by SYCO and OVERBROOK. The show will capture the incredible rise of the DJ phenomena. It has been in development for over a year and SYCO, OE and Sony Pictures Television will soon announce their broadcast partners in both the US and the UK.

Read More »

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Will Smith To Host Kids’ Choice Awards

By | Wednesday January 11, 2012 @ 8:51am PST

Will Smith has been picked to host the 2012 Kids’ Choice Awards, which will air on Nickelodeon on March 31 at 8 PM ET/PT live from the Galen Center at USC. It’s the 25th edition of the event; last year, … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘Men In Black 3′

By | Monday December 12, 2011 @ 8:20am PST

Here’s the first-look trailer Sony Pictures announced it is launching all over the planet today — at least this planet. The sci-fi tentpole reunites Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones and director Barry Sonnenfeld, who teamed on the first two films in the franchise — the previous movie in the … Read More »

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WME Signs Director M. Night Shyamalan

By | Friday November 11, 2011 @ 1:31pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: The agency signing wars had been quiet, but they just heated up. WME has signed M. Night Shyamalan. The writer, director and producer has been developing as his next film the Sony Pictures tent pole A.E. which has Will … Read More »

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Queen Latifah To Host Daytime Talk Show Eyed For 2013 From Sony TV & Overbrook

Nellie Andreeva

With a slew of daytime syndicated talk show projects jockeying for a fall 2012 berth, a big one is entering the fray for fall 2013. Queen Latifah is set to host a new daytime talk show that Flavor Unit, her company with Shakim Compere, will co-produce with Will Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television. Compere and Overbrook’s Miguel Melendez, who were instrumental in getting the project together, will serve as executive producers with Queen Latifah and Overbrook’s Lassiter, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith.

Queen Latifah and Smith have a lot in common — both started in hip-hop before segueing into acting and then producing and both have earned Oscar nominations. In fact, Latifah’s first role was an arc on NBC’s The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, which starred Smith, also in his first acting gig. “We’ve had a long and successful history both personally and professionally with Overbrook’s Miguel, JL, Jada and Will,” Compere said. “We share a common vision and have been wanting to collaborate for quite some time.” In addition to Queen Latifah’s work with Smith on Fresh Prince, she starred opposite his wife, Pinkett Smith, in the 1996 movie Set It Off. “We are excited to join forces with Latifah and as well as Sony Pictures TV on this new venture,” Melendez said. “This forum is the perfect place to showcase Latifah’s tremendous range of talents and unique ability to connect and inspire people.” Sony TV’s relationship with Pinkett Smith and Overbrook stems from their recent collaboration on the TNT series Hawthorne, which starred Pinkett Smith and was produced by Sony and Overbrook. Additionally, Overbrook has had a long relationship with Sony on the film side, most recently producing together the hit Karate Kid remake.

Sony could’ve fast-tracked the talk show for a fall 2012 launch but opted to give it time to develop the way the studio did with The Dr. Oz Show, which has been the No. 1 syndicated daytime talk show in women 25-54 for the past three weeks. Sony TV does not have a contender for fall 2012 as the studio has been very selective with daytime projects, taking its time to find one that it feels it can throw its full support behind. Besides, the 2012 field is overcrowded already with talk shows hosted by Katie Couric and Steve Harvey already cleared for launch, Maury spin-off Trisha Goddard close to a go after getting picked up by Sinclair a week ago, and several other shows — including Twentieth’s Ricki Lake, Warner Bros’ Bethenny Frankel and CBS TV Distribution’s Jeff Probst — looking for station clearances. Read More »

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Obama’s High-Priced Hollywood Fundraisers Attract Major Stars & Celebrities & Money

2ND UPDATE, 12:25 AM: First there was the $35,800-per-person fundraising dinner tonight with Will Smith hosted by his Overbrook Entertainment producing partner and manager James Lassiter. Then President Obama headed over to the home of Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith for a somewhat lower-key event aimed at Latino supporters. He was introduced by Eva Longoria who said Obama “knows he’s the president of all Americans” and that “we thank you for everything you’re doing.” Obama leaves town after Tuesday’s Jay Leno taping.

UPDATE (correcting misidentification), 8:01 p.m.: This evening’s Los Angeles traffic snarl at rush hour was just that much worse because President Barack Obama arrived at LAX on board Air Force One at 4:30 PM. He’s attending two Hollywood political fundraisers for the Democratic Party tonight, first at producer James Lassiter’s mansion and then Melanie Griffith’s and Antonio Banderas’ home. Potus will be making a Tonight Show appearance with Jay Leno tomorrow before jetting out of town. According to the White House pool report, Obama first helicoptered to a landing zone in Brentwood and the motorcade made an “off-the-record” visit to Roscoe’s chicken and waffle house. The president ordered at the counter for himself (and nearby aides) the No. 9 “Country Boy” – 3 wings with choice of waffle, potato salad or French fries ($8.90). He then started chatting with diners. I say who cares if you like Obama’s politics or not: he’s got good taste when it comes to LA’s favorite eats.

Then the motorcade traveled to Hancock Park for the first fundraiser hosted by Lassiter, who is Will Smith’s production partner in Overbrook Entertainment which manages the entire Pinkett-Smith family. Here is the pool report written by the Los Angeles Times‘ Peter Nicholas: Read More »

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Hot Scribe Dante Harper Takes On Isaac Asimov’s ‘Foundation’ For Sony And Roland Emmerich

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Sony Pictures has hired Dante Harper to adapt Foundation, the groundbreaking Isaac Asimov science fiction trilogy which Roland Emmerich is developing to direct. Emmerich has been attached since the studio acquired the property in early 2009 when he and … Read More »

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20th Century Fox Sets Isaac Asimov’s ‘The Caves Of Steel,’ Henry Hobson To Direct

By | Thursday September 22, 2011 @ 3:33pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: 20th Century Fox, which tapped into Isaac Asimov’s futuristic robot science fiction for I, Robot, is now working on a live-action adaptation of Asimov’s The Caves of Steel. The studio has set Henry Hobson to direct and John Scott 3 … Read More »

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Survey: Old Is Gold For Endorsements

If you want to sell a product, don’t kid around. That’s the clear message if you buy the results of a survey just released by global market research firm Ipsos. The hottest huckster: 89-year-old Betty White. She is America’s … Read More »

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Universal Drops ‘Clue’; Gore Verbinski Moves Forward With Hasbro Cash And New Writers

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Universal Pictures has quietly dropped out of Clue, one of the seven Hasbro games properties the studio contracted to make into movies in a ground-breaking six-year exclusive deal signed in 2008. Clue becomes the third project out of seven to be dropped by Universal (Monopoly and Magic, The Gathering were also kicked to the curb), but none of those projects are dead. In the case of the murder mystery board game Clue, Hasbro is funding the development and producing the film with Gore Verbinski’s Blind Wink. Verbinski, director of the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films, Rango and the upcoming Lone Ranger, still plans to direct Clue, and he and Blind Wink’s John Krauss are producing with Hasbro’s Brian Goldner and Bennett Schneir.

They’ve just hired Flash Gordon scribes Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama to write the Clue script. The writers will draft a take that Verbinski and his fellow producers came up with that retains the murder mystery spirit of the board game, but broadens the setting to a global stage. Beyond scripting Flash Gordon for Sony Pictures, Sharpless and Sazama are redrafting Dracula Year Zero. That project’s still hanging on at Universal, after being halted just short of the start line because of a high budget, when Alex Proyas was directing and Sam Worthington was going to star. ICM reps the writers.

Is all this a clue that Universal no longer wants to roll the dice on board game movies? Insiders say no. Rather, they tell me that Universal and Hasbro gradually narrowed their focus to the four films that most made sense for the studio: Battleship, the Peter Berg-directed summer 2012 action movie that stars Taylor Kitsch and Liam Neeson, with Universal just releasing its first trailer (below); Stretch Armstrong, which has Rob Letterman directing and Twilight Saga’s Taylor Lautner attached to play the rubbery title character; Candy Land, which is being written by Kung Fu Panda 2 co-writers Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger, who’ve described the film as Lord of the Rings, with edibles; and Ouija, which has McG attached to direct and Platinum Dunes partners Michael Bay, Brad Fuller and Andrew Form producing with Ian Bryce and Hasbro’s Goldner and Schneir. Read More »

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Leonardo DiCaprio In Early Talks For Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Django Unchained’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Talks are about to get underway for Leonardo DiCaprio to play the role of villainous ranch owner Calvin Candie in Django Unchained, the Sergio Leone-style spaghetti Western that Quentin Tarantino wrote and will direct as his next film. DiCaprio … Read More »

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