We’ve got 18 new images today from the set of Akiva Goldsman’s Winter’s Tale. The adaptation of the Mark Helprin novel centers on a a thief (Colin Farrell) who breaks into the home of a bed-ridden young woman (Jessica Brown Findlay) and ends up falling in love with her. Russell Crowe stars as Pearly Soames, a violent crime lord and leader of the Short Tail gang who is after the thieving protagonist. In charge of tracking him down is Romeo Tan (Kevin Corrigan), Soames’ ruthless right-hand man who acts as his boss’s enforcer in 1916 New York. The picture also co-stars William Hurt, Jennifer Connelly, Matt Bomer, Eva Marie Saint and Will Smith, who will cameo as a judge. Hit the jump to check out the images from Winter’s Tale.
Zac Efron is heading into fantasy territory. Fresh off his role in Lee Daniels’ The Paperboy, Heat Vision reports that Efron is teaming up with producer Akiva Goldsman for a mystery supernatural project at Warner Bros. called The Falling. The logline is being kept under wraps for now, but the story is said to be “an edgy thriller centering around an otherworldly being.” Efron will star in the film and will produce alongside Goldsman, Tory Tunnell, and Joby Harold (All You Need Is Kill).
The story idea was brought to Goldman’s attention by Warner Bros., and Goldsman then hammered out a full story with Harold. The search now begins for a screenwriter to pen the script. Goldsman most recently wrapped his directorial debut, a fantasy pic called Winter’s Tale. A screenwriter by trade, Goldsman won the Oscar for penning A Beautiful Mind and was also responsible for writing I Am Legend and I, Robot.
Recently seen battling the unded in Resident Evil: Retribution, Boris Kodjoe will next battle sex-addiction in the Lionsgate drama, Addicted. Paul Hall will produce with Bille Woodruff (Honey) attached to direct. The picture centers on a supposedly happily-married mother of three children who satisfies her sex addiction by sleeping around. Sex addiction tales seem to be a trend on the rise (Shame, Thank You For Sharing), all paving the way to the inevitable Fifty Shades of Grey. Variety’s report shares no details as to Kodjoe’s role, so it’s unclear as to which side of the addiction he will be on. Kodjoe can next be seen in another film that deals with infidelity in brutal ways in director Douglas Aarniokoski’s Nurse 3-D.
Hit the jump for news on the newest addition to Akiva Goldsman’s directorial debut, Winter’s Tale, starring Russell Crowe.
We’ve got a couple of casting stories to share this morning. First up, Ewan McGregor will topline the Australian heist thriller Son of a Gun. The story centers on the relationship between a veteran thief and his young protégé, with McGregor set to play the thieving expert. Variety’s report is short on further details, but Julius Avery will make his feature directorial debut on the project from a script that he also wrote. The thriller is set to begin filming in Perth, Kalgoorlie, and Western Australia early next year.
McGregor is currently in Oklahoma (Boomer Sooner) filming the star-studded adaptation of the stage play August: Osage County. Produced by George Clooney and directed by John Wells (ER, The Company Men), the pic stars Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, and many, many more. McGregor will next be seen in the disaster drama The Impossible, opening later this year. Hit the jump for casting news concerning the fantasy Winter’s Tale.
Academy Award-winning scribe Akiva Goldsman’s directorial debut is filling out its cast. The A Beautiful Mind screenwriter already has Colin Farrell set as the lead in his adaptation of Mark Helprin’s novel Winter’s Tale with Russell Crowe and Will Smith taking (relatively small) supporting roles, and now Deadline reports that Matt Bomer (White Collar), Lucy Griffiths (True Blood) and legendary actress Eva Marie Saint (North By Northwest) have joined the cast. The fantasy tale tells the story of a thief, a dying girl, and a flying white horse in 19th century and contemporary Manhattan, with Farrell playing the thief.
Bomer and Griffiths will play Farrell’s parents, but Saint’s pivotal role is being kept under wraps. The report also adds that Hans Zimmer will perform scoring duties on the pic. Goldsman has rounded up an impressive supporting cast, including William Hurt and Jessica Brown Findlay, with production set to begin in New York on October 27th. Hit the jump for a synopsis of the novel.
Is John Travolta about to pick up the mop and slop bucket in the leading role of The Toxic Avenger remake? Probably not, but that’s the rumor of the day. The original 1984 film from Troma Entertainment featured nerdy janitor Melvin (Mark Torgl) being tossed into a barrel of nuclear waste by a pack of bullies. He then became the hideous, yet superpowered Toxic Avenger (Mitch Cohen). The remake, directed by Steve Pink (Hot Tub Time Machine) from a script by Daniel C. Mitchell, has apparently been re-imagined as a family-friendly, pro-environment PG-13 flick (completely different from the original B-film that was filled with nudity, sex and grotesque violence). Travolta simply does not fit as the hero of this picture, but hit the jump for what role may suit him, along with the synopsis and trailer for the original film.
It was a little more than two weeks ago that we brought you the sobering news that Imagine’s adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series had a go/no-go deadline looming. That deadline has now come and gone and it looks as if Warner Bros. has passed. This comes as yet another setback to the project, which has seen its share of woes: being let go by Universal, several budgetary concerns and difficulty landing a lead. The latest iteration of the script from Akiva Goldsman had Russell Crowe showing an interest if the project were to be greenlit. Sadly, that did not happen at Warner Bros. But there may yet be hope for Roland Deschain and director/producer Ron Howard. Hit the jump for more.
[Update: Deadline reports that Media Rights Capital is in "serious talks" to finance the project, in part because MRC executive Modi Wiczyk is apparently a big fan of the books. The original story follows after the jump.]
When last we reported on the beleaguered adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, it was to tell you that the property had moved from Universal to Warner Bros. and that principal actor Javier Bardem may have been lost in the transition. Now we have word that Russell Crowe is in talks to star as the gunslinger, Roland Deschain. There’s no deal currently inked out, but the studio will be factoring Crowe’s involvement with the picture into their decision on whether or not to greenlight the film at all. Here’s the rub: the yay or nay will come within the next two weeks. Much more on the latest developments surrounding The Dark Tower after the jump.
We have a few new casting additions to share with you today. Here they are in brief:
- Vanessa Hudgens (Journey 2: The Mysterious Island) is the latest addition to Machete Kills, the sequel directed by Robert Rodriguez and starring Danny Trejo.
- William Hurt (The Incredible Hulk) will join Akiva Goldsman’s directorial debut, Winter’s Tale. The adaptation of the Mark Helprin novel stars Colin Farrell and Downton Abbey’s Jessica Brown Findlay.
- Margo Martindale (Million Dollar Baby) joins the family in August: Osage County, based on the Tracy Letts play and starring Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and Chris Cooper.
Hit the jump for more on each project.
Colin Farrell has been offered the male lead in Akiva Goldsman’s directorial debut, Winter’s Tale. The female lead is set with Jessica Brown Findlay playing a dying young woman who falls in love with a thief who breaks into her West Side Manhattan mansion. Farrell, if he takes the role in the Warner Bros. picture, would play the thief in this supernatural drama that occurs both in the 19th century and in contemporary times. Winter’s Tale, based on the 1983 novel by Mark Helprin, also stars Russell Crowe and Will Smith in supporting roles. Shooting is set to begin in New York on October 15th. Hit the jump to see who else could fill the role if Farrell opts out.
The long-in-development feature film adaptation of the DC Comic Lobo now has new life. Deadline reports that Journey 2: The Mysterious Island director Brad Peyton has been set by Warner Bros. to rewrite and direct an adaptation of the alien bounty hunter character. Guy Ritchie was previously attached to direct the project, but subsequently fell out. The character is an anti-hero who was created by Roger Slifer and Keith Giffen “as an indictment of the Punisher, Wolverine, hero prototype” but ironically became popular for his violent tendencies.
One could see Guy Ritchie making a fairly entertaining adaptation of the character, but choosing the guy who made Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore to direct is just baffling. It’s slightly possible that his take could be just as raw and edgy as the comic calls for, but I’m doubtful. Whatever the case, WB must have taken a liking to Peyton’s pitch as he’ll be handling a rewrite of the script himself. First up, though, Peyton has a third installment of the Journey franchise to direct.
Several weeks ago, we reported that Jessica Brown Findlay (Downton Abbey) was in the running for the lead female role in writer-director Akiva Goldman‘s adaptation of Mark Helprin‘s novel Winter’s Tale. Today, Deadline reports that Findlay has nabbed the role of “the dying young woman who falls in love with a thief who breaks into her home, a palatial West Side mansion, in a drama that takes place in 19th Century and contemporary Manhattan.” Deadline adds that Aaron Johnson and Garrett Hedlund are the frontrunners to play the thief. As we previously reported, Russell Crowe and Will Smith, who worked with Goldsman on A Beautiful Mind and I Am Legend, respectively, will have small supporting roles in the film. Goldsman is making his directorial debut on Winter’s Tale, and shooting is set to begin on October 15th in New York.
I haven’t seen Downton Abbey, but I’ve only heard raves about the show, so I’ll assume that Findlay is great on it. Hit the jump for a synopsis for Helprin’s novel.
Fans of Stephen King’s post-apocalyptic epic The Dark Tower will be happy to hear that the troubled film adaptation has some new life at a new studio. We have reports that Warner Bros. is close to a deal that would give the go-ahead on the project with Ron Howard directing at least the first film. Javier Bardem has also been mentioned as possibly starring as gunslinger Roland Deschain. After Universal passed on Howard’s script last summer, screenwriter Akiva Goldsman and producer Brian Grazer toyed with the idea of turning the property into a television series and made significant budget cuts to get the project moving. With the TV series set up at HBO, it was up to Howard and Grazer to find a home for the feature. It looks like that’s got some legs now, as Warner Bros. is paying Goldsman to do a polish on his script. While Bardem was previously attached when the picture was at Universal, his involvement going forward will depend on his availability. Projections have the film slated to begin production in early 2013. Hit the jump for more on The Dark Tower.
As The Office wanders the airwaves like Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense (refusing to admit it’s been dead this whole season), Steve Carell continues to prove that he most assuredly won the break-up with a host of interesting and lucrative projects. Now comes word that the in-demand comedian is attached to Warner Bros.’ blockbuster comedy Magic Kingdom For Sale—Sold!.
Adapted from fantasy author Terry Brooks’1986 novel, Kingdom will see Carell slide into the role of lawyer Ben Holiday who, desperate to start over in the wake of his pregnant wife’s death, shells out $1 million to purchase the rights to a magical kingdom he sees in a catalog. After being magically transported to this magic kingdom, however, Ben finds himself with a bit of a lemon, as the land is in utter disarray and in danger from a malevolent evil, a malevolent evil that, presumably, can only be defeated by Carell’s signature good-natured hilarity. Written by Craig Wright (Lost), the film is currently in need of a director. Hit the jump for more.
Warner Bros. and writer-producer Akiva Goldsman (I Am Legend, Fringe) are looking to turn the comic mini-series Lucid into a feature film. Variety reports that WB has picked up the rights to the series for Goldsman to develop and produce as a potential new franchise. The studio has been pretty aggressively on the hunt lately for new titles to fill the Harry Potter void, and this project is right up the fantasy alley. Described as “a tale of what would happen to Harry Potter if he grew up and joined the CIA,” the four-book series takes place in a world where magic is real and our world leaders have secret agents working to stave off supernatural threats. The protagonist is a young agent, “recently appointed ‘Protector of the Realm’ ” who is tasked with combating an occult technology dealer with his skills as both a covert spy and and expert in magic. Hit the jump for more.