Sony Pictures is hoping to get a jump on the presumed-hype for director Antoine Fuqua’s upcoming thriller The Equalizer, starring Denzel Washington, by getting the ball rolling on the sequel well in advance. The first pic doesn’t open in theaters until September, but it apparently scored through the roof during a recent test screening, bringing back the highest scores for an R-rated film in Sony’s history. As a result, the studio is keen on developing the follow-up in the hopes that the film makes waves when it hits theaters this fall. Hit the jump for more.
With director Jeff Wadlow’s Kick-Ass 2 opening this weekend, I recently got to speak with some of the cast in New York City. The sequel takes place a few years after the first film and finds Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s Kick-Ass and Chloe Grace Moretz’s Hit Girl inspiring a new wave of masked superheroes to join in the fight against a league of villains led by the Motherfucker (Christopher Mintz-Plasse). For more on the film, watch five clips, a red-band featurette, video interviews with Wadlow and Mark Millar, or click here for all our previous coverage.
During the interview, Moretz talked about making the sequel, how she got to sit on the purple ducati but not ride it due to insurance reasons, what it was like to run around the streets of Toronto in costume with people watching, what she collects, and the experience of working with Denzel Washington on The Equalizer. Hit the jump to watch.
Sony has decided that it’s better for Denzel Washington to fight bad guys in the fall than the spring. According to Box Office Mojo, Antoine Fuqua‘s adaptation of the 1980s series The Equalizer has moved from April 11, 2014 to September 26, 2014. Washington stars a former covert operations officer who dedicates his life to helping people in trouble. The film also stars Chloe Grace Moretz, Melissa Leo, Marton Csokas, and Haley Bennett.
The move gets The Equalizer away from the family-friendly fare of Rio 2 and Stretch Armstrong (although with absolutely no movement on Stretch Armstrong since Breck Eisner signed on to direct a year ago, I seriously doubt it will make a release that’s less than a year away). Fuqua’s movie will now face off against Laika’s stop-motion animated The Boxtrolls and Tarsem‘s thriller Selfless starring Ryan Reynolds. The Equalizer probably has a better shot here because both Boxtrolls and Selfless will probably have odd styles that some audiences may find off-putting, and they can run into the safe arms of a Denzel Washington action movie. If Equalizer stuck around on April 11th, it would have to deal with not only Rio 2, but also Captain America: The Winter Soldier in its second weekend.
Check out the latest casting news below:
- Idris Elba (Luther) and Jasmine Trinca (The Son’s Room) are set to join director Pierre Morel’s action thriller The Gunman, starring Sean Penn and Javier Bardem.
- Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) is in final talks for director Terry Loane’s coming-of-age drama, Measure of a Man, also starring Riley Griffiths (Super 8).
- Haley Bennett (Marley & Me) has signed on for Sony’s adaptation of The Equalizer, directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring Denzel Washington, Melissa Leo and Chloë Grace Moretz.
Hit the jump for more on each casting announcement.
Great casting news to report tonight:
- Forest Whitaker is in talks to play Martin Luther King Jr. in Memphis, a biopic written and directed by Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Ultimatum) that follows the civil rights icon over his final days in Memphis.
- Melissa Leo is in negotiations to join Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz in The Equalizer, a feature adaptation of the 1980s television series directed by Antoine Fuqua (Olympus Has Fallen).
- Paul Thomas Anderson cast relative newcomer Katherine Waterston as the female lead in Inherent Vice. Joaquin Phoenix is set to star—Benicio Del Toro, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Martin Short and possibly Sean Penn co-star.
More on each project after the break.
Check out today’s casting news:
Hit the jump for more on each casting announcement.
The cast of the long-in-development adaptation of the 1980s TV series The Equalizer is starting to come together. Denzel Washington has been set for quite some time in the lead role of a former covert operations officer who dedicates his life to helping people in trouble. The production has seen both Nicolas Winding Refn and Rupert Wyatt enter and exit the director’s chair over the past couple of months, but Washington’s Training Day helmer Antoine Fuqua is now firmly set to bring the film to fruition. As they move towards a production start date later this year in anticipation of an April 11, 2014 release date, Fuqua has now cast his female lead, and it’s a bit of a surprising choice: Chloe Grace Moretz.
Hit the jump for more, including information on the Taxi Driver-esque character that Moretz will play and a continuation of the original character in book form.
A reunion might be in the future for Training Day director Antoine Fuqua and Denzel Washington. Fuqua, who has his latest directorial effort, Olympus Has Fallen, debuting tomorrow, is in early talks to direct Washington in the thriller The Equalizer. The film is based on the 1980s crime TV series of the same name and written by Richard Wenk (The Expendables 2). Sony Pictures is looking to The Equalizer as a possible franchise for Washington, who most recently received an Oscar nomination for playing a beleaguered pilot in Flight.
While the film deviates from the original series by creating a spin on the story catered to Washington’s talents, teaming him up with Fuqua again could lead to another intense and captivating performance similar to Washington’s in Training Day, which nabbed him a Best Actor Oscar. Hit the jump for more about the project.
The feature film adaptation of the 1980s crime series The Equalizer just can’t catch a break. Drive director Nicholas Winding Refn was initially attached to take the helm before departing the project in January. Rise of the Planet of the Apes director Rupert Wyatt subsequently entered early talks to direct late last month, but now it appears those talks have broken off as Deadline reports that a scheduling conflict forced Wyatt to drop out of the director’s chair. Presumably the dates conflicted with Wyatt’s upcoming WWI drama Birdsong, which recently landed Nicholas Hoult as the lead.
Sony and Escape Artists are itching to get The Equalizer going and are expected to attach a new director shortly. Denzel Washington has long been set as the lead as a former covert operations officer who dedicates his life to helping people in trouble. Hopefully the next director attached to the project sticks.
It appears as though the feature film adaptation of The Equalizer may have found a director. The adaptation of the 1980s crime series has seen a number of filmmakers flirt with the idea of taking the helm, with Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn most recently attached to direct before dropping out last month. With an eye towards starting production in June and Denzel Washington set to star, Sony is ready to get this thing moving, and now it looks like Rise of the Planet of the Apes director Rupert Wyatt might be the man for the job as he’s entered early negotiations to take the helm. Hit the jump for more.
In December, we reported the exciting news that Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn was in talks to direct Denzel Washington in an adaptation of the 1980s crime series, The Equalizer. The show centered on Robert McCall (originally played by Edward Woodward), a former covert operations officer who dedicated his life to helping people in trouble. Washington will play McCall in the adaptation, although the movie will only share the conceit of the show. Unfortunately, we’ve learned that while Sony was close to closing a deal with Refn, the deal fell apart at the last minute due to unknown reasons.
We’ve also learned that Sony remains hot on adapting The Equalizer, and is continuing to search for a new director to start shooting in May with Washington still attached to star. If you want to get a better sense of the TV series, hit the jump to see the intro for The Equalizer. Refn’s new film, Only God Forgives, opens on May 23rd. The director is still attached to the remake of Logan’s Run and an adaptation of the graphic novel, Button Man.
Quite the interesting director/star pairing looks to be in the works. A remake of the 1980s crime series The Equalizer has been in development for the past few years, with Denzel Washington most recently signing on to star. Last we heard, Sony was compiling a shortlist of directors for the project, and on that list was Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn. The studio has finally made a decision on who will take the helm of the project, and it is indeed Mr. Refn. Hit the jump for more details, including a release date for Refn’s next film Only God Forgives.
Sony Pictures is getting a move-on with the feature film adaptation of the 1980s CBS crime series The Equalizer. Denzel Washington has been set to star as far back as last December, and Sony is hoping to make the film the first in a franchise. The TV series centered on a former covert operations officer who dedicated his life to helping people in trouble. The film will retain that main conceit, but is only loosely based on the show. Deadline reports that an April 8th start date has been set for the feature, most likely in Boston, but the next order of business is finding a director. Hit the jump to see who’s landed on Sony’s shortlist.
Escape Artists’s first-look deal with Sony Pictures has been reupped, extending the relationship between the two companies through 2015. Escape Artists has been with Sony since 1998, and produced its first film independently in 2001: A Knight’s Tale. The relationship between Sony and Escape Artists has birthed The Pursuit of Happyness, Seven Pounds, and the remake of The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3. Included in the release is news of Escape Artists’s upcoming slate.
An interesting tidbit included mentions that Denzel Washington is now attached to the feature film adaptation of the 1980s CBS crime series The Equalizer. The project was initially developed for Russell Crowe and director Paul Haggis, but this new report only makes mention of Washington and producer Alex Siskind. Hit the jump to find out what else the upcoming Escape Artist slate includes.
Russell Crowe may reunite with his The Next Three Days writer-director Paul Haggis for The Equalizer. Heat Vision reports that Haggis is in negotiations to pen the script which is based on the 1980s CBS crime series. In the original series, Edward Woodward played private detective Robert McCall, “a sophisticated former government agent atoning for the sins of his past by righting the wrongs of a flawed legal system.” As we reported back in June, Crowe is attached to star and produce. Haggis is not attached to direct at this point, but that could easily change since his only other project, Ranger’s Apprentice, was at United Artists and UA’s parent company MGM is stuck in a seemingly never-ending financial meltdown.
The Next Three Days also stars Liam Neeson, Elizabeth Banks, and Olivia Wilde. It opens November 19th.