Our own Steve Weintraub recently had the chance to catch up with 21 Laps Entertainment higher-ups Shawn Levy (Founder & Principal), Dan Levine (President) and Dan Cohen (SVP) to talk about the status of some of the production company’s many projects. Over the last few years, 21 Laps has broadened their scope of projects to include TV shows and movies outside of Levy’s normal purview. That plan of attack led them to produce The Spectacular Now, which further opened the door for collaboration with creative sorts like Matt and Ross Duffer, the minds behind Netflix’s Stranger Things, the new hit series of the summer.
But the production banner is just getting started. The team has more projects debuting later this year, and the early part of 2017 is already slated with 21 Laps’ productions. Levy & Co. also have other irons in the fire, which Steve talked to them about during this recent interview. For more on what’s already on the company’s release schedule and for the status on movies that are in the works, take a look at what we know (and what we’ve learned) below:
Arrival - (November 11, 2016) The latest effort from Denis Villeneuve (Sicario) stars Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner in a movie that sees the Earth visited by aliens. The plot centers on an expert linguist recruited by the military to determine whether or not the aliens have peaceful or warlike intentions in mind.
Why Him? – (December 25, 2016) A comedy from writer-director John Hamburg and starring Bryan Cranston as a father who develops a rivalry with his daughter’s younger, richer boyfriend, played by James Franco.
Table 19 - (January 20, 2017) Leading off the 2017 slate is this dramedy written by Jay and Mark Duplass and directed by Jeffrey Blitz. It stars Anna Kendrick as Eloise, a young woman dumped by her boyfriend (who’s the Best Man at the wedding) and relieved of her Maid of Honor duties. When she attends the wedding anyway, she’s lumped in at the loser’s table, along with random guests played by Craig Robinson, June Squibb, Tony Revolori, and more.
Fist Fight – (February 17, 2017) When Charlie Day gets another teacher – played by Ice Cube – fired, he gets challenged to an after-school fight. Do you need to know any more than that? Well, the hard R-rated comedy also stars Christina Hendricks, Dean Norris, JoAnna Garcia Swisher and features the return of Tracy Morgan to the big screen.
Bagman - (March 3, 2017) This feature-length character-based action drama adapted from the short film of the same name is being developed alongside writers/directors (and brothers) Josh and Jonathan Baker and No Trace Camping, one of the production teams that made Room. They’re in the process of casting the film with a plan to shoot it later this year.
The Darkest Minds – This adaptation of the bestselling YA novel by Alexandra Bracken centers on Ruby, a teenage girl who has survived a devastating worldwide plague and has developed supernatural abilities in the process. Jennifer Yuh Nelson (Kung Fu Panda 3) will direct for 20th Century Fox.
Kodachrome – After being in various states of development for a few years, this film is finally getting made this fall. Written by Jonathan Tropper (This Is Where I Leave You) and based on the 2010 New York Times’ article by A.G. Sulzberger, Kodachrome is a father/son redemption story told on their road trip to get a final roll of Kodachrome film developed before the world’s last lab closes its doors for good.
Levy’s not directing; that privilege goes to Mark Raso (Copenhagen). When Levy couldn’t get the director’s chair for This Is Where I Leave You, he collaborated with Tropper, who wrote this script for 21 Laps. The film stars Ed Harris, Jason Sudeikis, and Elizabeth Olsen, who are all basically doing the film for scale since it’s a character-driven passion project put together on a shoestring budget.
Look for more with Shawn Levy, Dan Levine and Dan Cohen soon.