Following the surprise success of Universal’s Pitch Perfect last year, DreamWorks is getting in on the a capella craze. The studio has picked up a pitch about the story behind the a capella group Straight No Chaser, which was formed by ten Indiana University students in 1996. The group was fairly successful in the late 1990s but disbanded three years after forming, only to see a video of their 1998 performance of “12 Days of Christmas” go viral in 2006 when it was uploaded to YouTube. Atlantic Records CEO Craig Kallman saw the video and quickly got the group back together, signing a five-record deal and bringing Straight No Chaser widespread mainstream success. Hit the jump for more.
Fletch is a property that Hollywood has been trying to bring back to the screen for years. Gregory McDonald wrote the first of eleven mystery novels in 1974. Chevy Chase played the newspaper reporter in 1985′s Fletch (a movie that’s adored but not universally) and the 1989 sequel Fletch Lives. There were talks of another sequel in the 1990s, but nothing ever came of it. By the turn of the century, Kevin Smith was attached to adapt the prequel novel Fletch Won and threw out Ben Affleck, Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Jimmy Fallon, and Adam Sandler as possible stars — before he dropped out. Scrubs creator Bill Lawrence signed on to write and direct Fletch Won for Zach Braff before he was replaced by Steve Pink (Hot Tub Time Machine) in 2007. And here we are, wherever this is.
I suppose Harvey Weinstein’s rights ownership (first via Miramax, then The Weinsten Company) have lapsed in that time, because Warner Bros. has picked up the movie rights for McDonald’s books. Hit the jump for more on the studio’s approach to adapting the property.