Things are moving very quickly on director David Ayer’s WWII film Fury. The writer/director sold his spec script to QED in February for a cool $1 million off the success of his 2012 cop drama End of Watch, and last week he landed some major starpower by way of Brad Pitt who signed on to topline the film as an army sergent named “Wardaddy.” Now Columbia Pictures has acquired domestic distribution rights for the film and has set a November 14, 2014 release date, with production poised to begin this coming September. The pic will open opposite Matthew Vaughn’s comic book adaptation The Secret Service and will be sandwiched between Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi pic Interstellar and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1.
The story of Fury takes place in 1945 as the Nazi regime collapses and the five-man crew of an American tank called Fury battles a desperate German army. Hit the jump for more, including the full press release.
Ayer most recently helmed the Arnold Schwarzenegger/Sam Worthington thriller Ten (which opens next January), but he’s expected to nab a budget of around $80 million for Fury. The film puts Pitt back in WWII territory after starring in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds, and I’m interested to see what kind of cast Ayer puts together to fill the pic out. Read the full press release below.
LOS ANGELES, CA (April 10, 2013) – Columbia Pictures has acquired domestic distribution and a good portion of the available international distribution rights to David Ayer’s epic war film FURY, with Brad Pitt set to star in the leading role, it was announced today by QED International CEO Bill Block and Doug Belgrad, President of Columbia Pictures. QED is producing the film with John Lesher’s Le Grisbi Productions and Ethan Smith. Alex Ott is co-producing the feature with Ayer. Principal photography is set to begin in September 2013 and Columbia anticipates releasing FURY on November 14, 2014.
FURY is set at the very end of World War II, in April 1945. As the Allies make their final push in the European Theater, a battle-hardened army sergeant named Wardaddy (Brad Pitt) commands a Sherman tank and her five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Outnumbered and outgunned, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
“We loved this script from the moment we read it,” Belgrad said. “This is epic and authentic storytelling at its finest and we couldn’t be more excited to be in business with David Ayer and Brad Pitt on this incredible story of sacrifice and heroism.”
QED and the studio previously partnered on the worldwide hit DISTRICT 9. FURY is Ayer’s second film with QED, which is financing and producing his ensemble action thriller TEN, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sam Worthington and Mireille Enos, and which is set for release from Open Road Films in January 2014. FURY also reteams Ayer with John Lesher, who produced his last film, END OF WATCH.