Director Paul Feig, writer Katie Dippold and producer Peter Chernin must have found strong chemistry when working together on the upcoming action comedy The Heat because they’ll be reteaming for an untitled picture in the same genre. According to THR, Chernin Entertainment paid $1 million for Dippold’s pitch, but details on the project are being kept under wraps.
While Feig is attached to direct and produce, the untitled picture joins a couple of other projects he might direct. The Bridesmaids helmer is also on board for the comedy The Better Woman and possibly Dumb Jock. The Heat is one of my most-anticipated films of the summer, and if it’s as funny as I think it will be, then hopefully the next collaboration between Feig, Dippold, and Chernin will hit the fast track.
Reese Witherspoon (This Means War) is set to return to the world of romantic comedies in The Beard, a Chernin Entertainment picture scripted by Becca Greene (Good Vibes). The film features Witherspoon’s character
growing a beard and attempting to enter a lumberjack competition as a woman who appears in public as a date for gay men, to give the illusion that they’re actually heterosexual. THR reports that Witherspoon will produce Greene’s first feature script alongside Peter Chernin.
Witherspoon is currently shooting Atom Egoyan’s West Memphis Three picture, Devil’s Knot and has the indie drama Mud, opposite Matthew McConaughey, wrapped up.
Mark Twain‘s Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn are memorable, entertaining characters, but they also provided sharp-witted and sly social critiques on the American character, particularly with regards to the Gilded Age. But who wants that when you can make the characters adults and throw in “supernatural elements”? According to Heat Vision, that’s how Paramount and producers Peter Chernin, Dylan Clark (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), and Matt Lopez want to treat Twain’s literary creations. Andy Burg‘s script, Huck and Tom, is being kept under wraps (maybe the fence has to be whitewashed with DEMON BLOOD?!?!), “but the project is described as a re-imagining in the vein of Snow White and the Huntsman.”
That’s a strange comparison. I like the look of Huntsman, but it still has a fairy-tale vibe to it. Snow White is still a young woman, and the evil queen is still a queen. If Tom and Huck are now adults and they’re in a story with supernatural elements, how far does that remove them from Twain’s very specific setting? At what point do they stop bearing any resemblance to the original characters?
Chernin Entertainment is near a deal to acquire an untitled pitch by Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless after a bidding war. Deadline neglects to offer a logline, but describes the story as “a futuristic Jungle Book.” I am not sure how literally we’re meant to take the comparison, or even what the evolutionary Mowgli looks like. Maybe he is raised by space wolves?
Peter Chernin and Dylan Clark of Chernin Entertainment will produce alongside Gore Verbinski and John Krauss of Blind Wink. Sazama and Sharpless are also working with Verbinski on the live-action adaptation of the board game Clue. Their first produced credit is still on the horizon, but in recent years Sazama and Sharpless have been tasked with a Missile Command, Flash Gordon, and Dracula Year Zero. In case it’s relevant, I have included a synopsis of Rudyard Kipling’s book after the jump.
Universal Pictures has just acquired a pitch for The Nutcracker, a new version of the classic tale. The live-action adventure movie comes from John Mann and Jon Gunn, and Heat Vision reports that Peter Chernin and Dylan Clark (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) will produce. This version of the story will focus on a 12-year-old girl who receives a Nutcracker doll from her clockmaker-inventor grandfather on Christmas Eve. She then embarks on an adventure that night that includes a war featuring “a seven-headed Mouse King and his army of mice, curses and themes of ugliness and beauty.” No other plot details are known, but it appears that Universal is planning on a big-budget adventure movie.
Fox 2000 and Chernin Entertainment have picked up the rights to Howard Blum’s upcoming fact-based novel The Floor of Heaven. The story is set during the 1897 Yukon Gold Rush and follows the intertwining lives of Pinkerton agent Charlie Siringo, American marine and gold-discoverer George Carmack, and crime boss Soapy Smith. Reading over the synopsis of the book, the story sounds like a brilliant mix between a western and a crime saga. Blum’s novel doesn’t hit shelves until April 26th, but Deadline reports that the deal for the screen rights was low against high six-figures.
Hit the jump for a synopsis of the novel, which I have now added to my infinite must-read list.
Because movies based off of videogames always means high quality and big profits except in the case of never, Fox is adapting the 1980 Atari arcade game Missile Command. According to Variety, screenwriters Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama (reboot of Flash Gordon and Dracula: Year Zero) will pen the script while Peter Chernin and Dylan Clark will produce. Like pretty much every video game released in 1980, Missile Command lacks a story. The object of the game is to protect cities from a barrage of missiles, possibly from a command center.
This is the third Atari videogame getting a film adaptation. Universal picked up Asteroids back in July 2009 while Sony Pictures Animation acquired Rollercoaster Tycoon last May. While the lack of a story beyond “Fight missiles” could free up Sharpless and Sazama to do something creative, I’m betting the film will ultimately be a generic military thriller with maybe a sci-fi spin for good measure.
Last we checked in on Terra Nova, the in-development series that follows a futuristic family as they travel 150 million years to an era ridden with dinosaurs, there was talk that Fox might order it straight to series (rather than the usual pilot episode) to keep the elaborate production cost-efficient. Deadline hears much of the same, and reports that the Fox has “unofficially” ordered 13 episodes of Terra and given producers Steven Spielberg and Peter Chernin the go-ahead to start staffing.
Behind the camera, that staff will be headed by Brannon Braga (24), who will serve as the showrunner and executive producer. In front of the camera, EW reports that Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights) is in talks to lead the cast. Details after the jump:
Steven Spielberg may never return to Jurassic Park again, but it looks like he hasn’t lost his love of dinosaurs. Variety reports that Spielberg and producer Peter Chernin are in talks to join the drama series Terra Nova, which follows, “a family from 100 years in the future who travel back in time 150 million years to the strange and inhospitable environs of prehistoric Earth.” Perhaps the protagonists will be named Marshall, Will, and Holly and they’ll be on a routine expedition. It’s possible they may encounter the greatest earthquake the world’s ever known.
Since the project would require elaborate sets and special effects, Fox is talking about picking up the series without the creation of a pilot “because it would be too expensive to shut down and start up again during the downtime.” Additionally, there’s the added expense of paying the guy whose sole job is to whistle the theme from Jurassic Park.
Dennis Lehane has previously provided the source material for the critically acclaimed Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone as well as the upcoming Shutter Island and The Given Day. Now Variety reports that he’s finally going to adapt one of his own stories because other writers shouldn’t have all the fun. Lehane will adapt his short story Animal Rescue for Fox 2000 through Peter Chernin’s production company, Chernin Entertainment. The story, via Variety, “revolves around a killing that results from a lost and contested pit bull. The story appeared in the Akashic Books anthology Boston Noir, which Lehane also edited.”
Lehane has been approached in the past to adapt his own work, but this is the first time he’s done it and it will also be his first feature film. His only previous work for the screen were for three episodes of The Wire, so I don’t think there’s much to worry about as far as his screenwriting talent is concerned.
The Hero Complex is reporting David Scarpa (The Day the Earth Stood Still) has been hired to write the reboot of Daredevil at the 20th Century Fox affiliated production company New Regency. While rumors of Fox wanting to reboot Daredevil were online last year, this is the first news about anyone being hired. While I’d love to say I’m excited by this hiring…I’m not. More after the jump:
by Bob Starr Posted: January 22nd, 2010 at 3:45 pm
Good news Planet of the Apes fans, it appears a reboot of the classic film franchise may in fact be moving forward. While the project was originally thought to be dead, reports indicate that Twentieth Century Fox is eager to get a new film underway. Sources close to the project have said, “…the studio is now more determined than ever to make the film”
Initial speculation about the film not happening came when writer Scott Frank (Minority Report, Marley & Me) left the project. Many thought this was the end of Planet of the Apes, but as it turns out the opposite may be true. Fox has turned the project over to producer Peter Chernin and hired writer Jamie Moss (Street Kings) to revise Frank’s version. Furthermore, scribes Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (The Relic, The Hand that Rocks the Cradle), have returned to the fold to polish the dialogue.
Hit the jump to find out what direction the new Planet of the Apes might take.
It’s been a pretty crazy week for news here at Collider as Steve landed the first photos and full synopses from dozens of upcoming films. If you haven’t seen them, you can check them out here, here, here, and here. That was on top of all the good stuff we bring you on a regular basis. But even with all the news we posted this week, there’s still more and while we didn’t have time to give these stories their own articles, we wanted to make sure you knew about some other cool stuff from the past few days.
Hit the jump to read about how James Franco’s General Hospital stint folds into a larger art project he’s doing, South Park taking their shot at James Cameron’s Avatar, Spider-Man finally arrested for being a menace, and more.
Not to cast aspersions on the network, but I’m willing to bet that in a dark dungeon filled with the screams of liberals, Rupert Murdoch sits atop a throne of skulls and wonders how he can make the Fox network the next [adult swim] but without the truly subversive programming that only late-night cable can provide. Fox’s Sunday night line-up of “Animation Domination” has proved successful as the network recently picked up the back-nine of the “Family Guy”-spinoff, “The Cleveland Show”.
Now Fox has recruited Jonah Hill to fill their insatiable hunger for more animated programming. Hit the jump to learn more while Murdoch enjoys another glass of puppy blood.
The 1956 Cecil B. DeMille classic “The Ten Commandments” is fantastic but it could have been so much better if it had used speed-ramping and buckets of blood. Oh, and maybe a Jewish actor as Moses. It now looks like we might get two out of three as 20th Century Fox has just made a pre-emptive acquisition of a pitch to tell the story of Moses in the style of Zach Snyder’s “300″. Hit the jump to murder some firstborn sons but in a really cool way.