The new NBC drama series Chicago Fire, from Emmy Award-winning executive producer Dick Wolf (the Law & Order franchise) and creators/writing partners Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, follows the lives of everyday heroes committed to one of America’s noblest professions. The job is both exhilarating and highly stressful for the firefighters, rescue squad and paramedics of Chicago Firehouse 51, who save lives by running headfirst into danger when everyone else is running the other way. The series stars Jesse Spencer, Taylor Kinney, Eamonn Walker, David Eigenberg, Charlie Barnett, Monica Raymund and Lauren German.
During this recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, Michael Brandt and Derek Haas talked about how they got involved with Dick Wolf and came to be working in television, how spending time with real firefighters influenced what they wanted the show to be, what they like about getting to tell an open-ended story in the long-term, what a luxury it is to see what they’ve written make it to the screen so quickly, how it was to see the ensemble cast come together and bring their characters to life, and how they will be able to balance their work on the show with feature films. They also talked about how they’re currently working on the second draft of the Wanted sequel, how Overdrive (starring Karl Urban) came about, what led them to adapt Billionaire’s Vinegar for the screen, and why their partnership works so well. Check out what they had to say after the jump.
Some more casting news today to add to the busy day of casting that Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire has been having. Here’s the news in brief:
- Juliette Lewis (The Other Sister) is in negotiations to join the family in August: Osage County, the dark comedy from The Weinstein Co. that stars Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts.
- Sam Claflin (Snow White and the Huntsman) and Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) will join producer Pierre Morel’s European car heist flick, Overdrive, starring Karl Urban.
Hit the jump for more details on each project.
One of the best films I saw at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was writer-director Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal‘s first feature, The Words. The film stars Bradley Cooper as a writer who, after discovering an extraordinary lost manuscript, passes the work off as his own and receives overwhelming critical acclaim. Jeremy Irons plays the man who originally wrote the manuscript, and the film weaves multiple narratives to tell the story. The Words also stars Zoe Saldana, Dennis Quaid, Olivia Wilde, Ben Barnes, and JK Simmons. CBS Films bought the film after its first screening and they plan to release it later this year. It’s definitely a film you should be excited to see.
Shortly after watching the movie, I got to sit down with Ben Barnes for an exclusive interview. We talked about what it means to be at Sundance, how he got involved in The Words and who he plays, karaoke, video games, and and he tells a funny story about how Colin Firth kept him laughing on the set of Dorian Gray. In addition, Barnes talked about his other upcoming projects like The Wedding (which stars Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton, Amanda Seyfried, Susan Sarandon and Robin Williams), The Seventh Son with Jeff Bridges (which he starts to film next month and says it’ll be PG-13), and reveals that Overdrive with Karl Ubran has fallen apart. Hit the jump for more.
Karl Urban and The Chronicles of Narnia star Ben Barnes are set to topline the action pic Overdrive. Antonio Negret (Seconds Apart) will direct the film which centers on two car-thief brothers who “find more trouble than they are looking for in the South of France.” I’m not exactly sure why they were looking for trouble in the first place, as that just seems downright irresponsible. Alex Pettyfer and Matthew Goode were previously in talks for the lead roles, but it looks like things didn’t go though. Heat Vision reports that in addition to Urban and Barnes, Emilia Clarke is in negotiations for the lead female role. The actress is best known for playing the fair-haired Daenerys Targaryen on HBO’s Game of Thrones.
Wanted scribes Derek Haas and Michael Brandt wrote the screenplay for Overdrive, and Taken’s Pierre Morel is producing. The project was initially taken to Fox, but when the studio passed Haas and Brandt set the pic up with Morel. Production is set to begin October 29th in Marseilles. Urban recently wrapped the starring role in Dredd, and will soon be reporting for duty on Star Trek 2. Barnes just wrapped The Wedding and is also set to star in the fantasy The Seventh Son with Jeff Bridges.
Two months after his Dune adaptation collapsed, Taken director Pierre Morel has set up his next movie as a producer, the action thriller Overdrive. Variety reports Alex Pettyfer (I Am Number Four) and Matthew Goode (Leap Year) as “a pair of handsome and adventurous brothers, known for being high-profile car thieves, who travel to the South of France looking for new challenges and come across a tough local crime boss.” Antonio Negret, the Colombian filmmaker who just finished shooting Transit, will direct Overdrive. Michael Brandt and Derek Haas (Wanted) will write the script. The $30 million production should get in front of cameras later this summer for a planned summer 2012 release.
Read quotes from the producers after the jump.