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‘Cinderella’ Wins the Weekend, Josh Gad Joins ‘Beauty and the Beast’, Eddie Murphy Joins Pryor Biopic, Netflix Makes SXSW Buy


cinderella poster

‘Cinderella’ Does the Expected, Clears $70 Million In Its Opening Weekend

The Kenneth Branagh film had the sixth-highest March opening in history, ahead of Run All Night, which finished a distant second with just over $11 million. Those two were followed, in order, by Kingsman: The Secret Service, with $6.2 million, Focus, with $5.81 million, and Chappie, with $5.80 million. The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel was a close sixth, with $5.7 million. (BO)

Bill Condon’s Live Action ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Just Got Even More Star-Studded

Josh Gad joins Emma Watson, Luke Evans and Dan Stevens in the film, based on the Oscar-nominated 1994 animated film, and will play LeFou, the aide de camp of Evans’ evil Gaston. The film will go before cameras this spring and will be in theaters at some point in 2016. (FSR)

It Looks Like Eddie Murphy Is Joining the Richard Pryor Biopic

Comedy legend is in talks to board the film in the role of Pryor’s father, LeRoy "Buck Carter" Pryor, a boxer and WWII veteran. The Lee Daniels project is also said to co-star Oprah Winfrey, and potentially Kate Hudson, and will be produced by the Weinstein Company. Leroy is known to have been an abusive alcoholic who, along with Richard's strict grandmother, frequently beat the young boy. (CB)

Netflix Continues Its Foray Into Feature Films, Makes a Big Buy At SXSW

The online streaming service nabbed Hannah Fidell’s 6 Years, which stars Taissa Farmiga and Ben Rosenfield as young lovers at a crossroads. The move continues the company’s aggressive move, as it recently beat out others for rights to Cary Fukunaga’s feature “Beasts of No Nation” and announced plans to partner with Leonardo DiCaprio on a feature-length documentary about the environment. It will premiere 6 Years later this year. (VAR)

With Sony Having Spent Big On ‘The Seven Five’ Property, It Turns To Scott Frank To Get the Job Done Right

Studio’s feature film adaptation of the hard-hitting ’80s NYPD corrupt-cop documentary that the studio grabbed in a big auction in December amidst the hacking scandal. Yann Demange, the director of the acclaimed British film ’71, is already on board to direct the film, but first a script is needed. Sony is trying to close a deal with the Oscar-nominated writer for that purpose. (DH)

Forget Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker, CBS Has a Different Duo For Its ‘Rush Hour’ Pilot

Justin Hires will play Carter, an “irreverent and wildly confident” LAPD detective whose “unorthodox methods” often land him in trouble with his higher-ups. He joins Jon Foo, recently cast as Carter’s Hong Kong-born partner Lee. Bill Lawrence and Blake McCormick penned the script, and will executive-produce alongside Arthur Sarkissian, Brett Ratner, Jeff Ingold and director Jon Turteltaub. (TVL)

If You’re Keeping Score, It’s Cheyenne Jackson and Matt Bomer In, Jessica Lange Out Of ‘AHS: Hotel’

Michael Chiklis is also in the cast for the upcoming season of the horror anthology. Lange, who has been in each of the first four seasons of the show, will not be returning for season five, which will take place in what one assumes will be a haunted hotel. The upcoming season will star Lady Gaga. (TLF)

‘Empire’ Fans Have a Lot To Look Forward To In Season Two

Co-creator Lee Daniels confirmed that both Oprah Winfrey and Common will appear next season on the smash hit Fox drama. No word yet on who the two stars will be playing, but with the success of the first season — which ends on Wednesday with a two-hour finale — expect more big names to join the cast in the coming months. (SAA)

Directors Talking To Directors: Francis Ford Coppola Discusses His Career With Robert Rodriguez

The legendary director of The Godfather sits down with the director of Machete to talk about his life in film and the future of cinema. This is the latest in a series by Rodriguez, who has also talked with Quentin Tarantino, John Carpenter, and Guillermo del Toro. (TFS)

Screenwriters: Gimmicks, Ground Rules and Gender In ’52 Tuesdays’

The Australian independent feature captures a year in the life of 16-year-old Billie, whose reluctant path to independence is accelerated when her mother reveals plans for gender transition. Sophie Hyde, winner of the Best Director, World Cinema Dramatic for 52 Tuesdays at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, and her co-writer Matthew Cormack, set out with specific ground rules to develop this film. They created the structured rules first and then decided on the story and characters. (SM)

On the Set for 3/16/15: Melissa McCarthy & Ben Falcone Start Filming ‘Michelle Darnell’, Ridley Scott & Simon Kinberg Wrap ‘The Martian’


TAMMY, from left: director Ben Falcone, Melissa McCarthy, on set, 2014. ph: Michael Tackett/©Warner


31 3/10/2015 Logline: Five carnival workers who are kidnapped the night before Halloween try to survive a terrifying game called "31" in which murderous maniacs dressed as clowns are hunting them. Production Company(s): Spectacle Entertainment Group, Protagonist Pictures, Bow & Arrow Entertainment Director: Rob Zombie Producer(s): Rob Zombie, Andy Gould, Edward Vaisman, Michael Sherman, Matthew Perniciaro Cast: Torsten Voges, E. G. Daily, Lawrence-Hilton Jacobs, Daniel Roebuck, David Ury SSN Insight: Rob Zombie completed a 90-day crowdfunding campaign to help finance the project. The film is the first installment of a planned franchise.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip 3/16/2015 Logline: Chipmunks Alvin, Simon, and Theodore feel neglected because Dave is spending too much time with his girlfriend, Samantha, and they try to do everything in their power to prevent Dave from asking for her hand in marriage. Studio: Fox 2000 Production Company(s): New Regency Productions, Bagdasarian Productions, Sunswept Entertainment Director: Walt Becker Executive Producer(s): Karen Rosenfelt Producer(s): Ross Bagdasarian Jr., Janice Karman Cast: Jason Lee, Tony Hale, Kimberly Williams-Paisley Writer(s): Adam Sztykiel, Randi Mayem Singer Details: Sequel to "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked" (2011) directed by Mike Mitchell and starring Jason Lee. SSN Insight: Animation/live-action hybrid like the prior three films. The first film was released in 2007 and grossed $360 million worldwide, followed by the sequel in 2009 that grossed $443 million and the most recent film in 2011 that grossed $337 million.

I.T. 3/16/2015 Logline: A successful businessman, who was once a thug in his youth but has since changed his ways, discovers that his company's new I.T. employee is actually a dangerous madman who's out to destroy the businessman and his family. Production Company(s): Friendly Films Director: John Moore Producer(s): David Friendly, Craig J. Flores, Nicolas Chartier, Beau St. Clair Cast: Pierce Brosnan Writer(s): William Wisher, Daniel Kay SSN Insight: Previously set to start shooting January 12. Stefano Sollima previously attached to direct. Voltage, which recently was behind the Joseph Gordon-Levitt-directed Don Jon, opened sales at AFM. Kay penned the script based on a concept by Friendly through his Friendly Films banner.

In Dubious Battle 3/12/2015 Logline: Based on the John Steinbeck novel, the story takes place in 1930s California, and focuses on an activist who organizes a group of fruit workers in a labor strike. Production Company(s): Rabbit Bandini Productions, That's Hollywood, AMBI Distribution Director: James Franco Producer(s): Andrea Iervolino, Monika Bacardi, Scott Reed, Vince Jolivette, Ron Singer Cast: James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vincent D'Onofrio, Robert Duvall, Ed Harris Writer(s): Matt Rager, Tom Steinbeck Details: Based on the novel "In Dubious Battle" written by John Steinbeck and published by in New York by Covici-Friede in 1936. SSN Insight: Previously in development with Zupnik Enterprises Inc. Alec Baldwin and Brad Pitt were previously mentioned to star.

Jungle Book: Origins 3/10/2015 Logline: A young boy is raised in the wild by wolves and taught the ways of the jungle by various animals. Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Production Company(s): The Imaginarium Director: Andy Serkis Producer(s): Steve Kloves, Andy Serkis, Jonathan Cavendish Cast: Rohan Chand Writer(s): Callie Kloves Details: Based on the book "The Jungle Book," written by Rudyard Kipling in 1894. SSN Insight: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and Steve Kloves were previously in talks to direct. Serkis is best known for playing Gollum in the Lord of the Rings franchise and Caesar in the Planet of the Apes franchise. This marks Serkis' directorial debut after directing second unit on The Hobbit trilogy.

Krampus 3/16/2015 Logline: During the Christmas season, a pagan demon is busy punishing the wicked. Production Company(s): Legendary Entertainment Director: Michael Dougherty Producer(s): Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni Cast: Allison Tolman, Adam Scott, David Koechner, Stefania Owen, Emjay Anthony Writer(s): Michael Dougherty, Todd Casey, Zach Shields SSN Insight: This marks Dougherty’s second outing as writer/director, his first project being 2009’s Trick ‘r Treat for Warner Bros. His screenwriting credits include X2: X-Men United and Superman Returns.

Michelle Darnell 3/12/2015 Logline: A former corporate bigshot attempts to rebuild her image after a prison stint for insider trading, but many of her victims are unwilling to let bygones be bygones. Studio: Universal Pictures Production Company(s): Gary Sanchez Productions, On the Day Productions Director: Ben Falcone Executive Producer(s): Kevin J. Messick Producer(s): Melissa McCarthy, Ben Falcone, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Chris Henchy Cast: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Bell, Peter Dinklage, Kathy Bates, Tyler Labine Writer(s): Melissa McCarthy, Steve Mallory, Ben Falcone SSN Insight: Gary Sanchez’s next films include Get Hard and Welcome to Me and Daddy’s Home has wrapped. A sequel to Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, The House, Crazy U, Devil’s Night, and Manimal are in development at Sanchez.

The Boy 3/11/2015 Logline: To escape her troubled life in the United States, a young woman moves to England and takes a job as a nanny for the eight-year old son of a wealthy English couple, but the boy turns out to be a life-sized doll. Production Company(s): Lakeshore Entertainment, Vertigo Entertainment Director: William Brent Bell Executive Producer(s): John Middleton Producer(s): Tom Rosenberg, Gary Lucchesi, Roy Lee, Matt Berenson, Jim Wedaa Cast: Lauren Cohan, Jim Norton, Diana Hardcastle, Ben Robson, Rupert Evans, James Russell Writer(s): Stacey Menear SSN Insight: STX Entertainment recently came onboard to distribute, will release the film on January 22, 2016.


Extraction 3/15/2015 Logline: A widowed former CIA operative and his son, a young agent following in his father's footsteps, are developing a super-weapon, and when the father is kidnapped the son leads a rogue rescue effort that uncovers deep secrets. Production Company(s): Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films, Aperture Entertainment Director: Steven C. Miller Producer(s): Randall Emmett, George Furla, Adam Goldworm Cast: Bruce Willis, Kellan Lutz, Gina Carano, Dan Bilzerian, Lydia Hull Writer(s): Umair Aleem SSN Insight: Shooting took place in Alabama. Lionsgate/Grindstone through its multi-picture distribution deal will release the film domestically with Highland Film Group set to sell international rights in Berlin. This film marks the seventh film Willis has made with Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films.

Love & Friendship 3/13/2015 Logline: Set in the 1790s, a widow waits out rumors about her dalliances while she seeks a husband for herself, and a husband for her reluctant daughter. Production Company(s): Netherlands Film Fund, Irish Film Board, Westerly Films, Blinder Films, Chic Films, Revolver Films (Netherlands) Director: Whit Stillman Producer(s): Katie Holly, Whit Stillman, Lauranne Bourrachot Cast: Chloe Sevigny, Kate Beckinsale, Xavier Samuel, Stephen Fry Writer(s): Whit Stillman Details: Based on the novel/novella "Lady Susan" written by Jane Austen, written sometime between 1794 and 1805, and first published in 1871. SSN Insight: Sienna Miller was previously attached to play the role of Lady Susan. Protagonist launched international sales at the Berlin Film Festival.

Now You See Me 2 3/13/2015 Logline: In this sequel, the magician troupe known as the Four Horseman, a year after the events of the first "Now You See Me," become involved in a dangerous heist and must contend with a powerful new enemy. Studio: Lionsgate Production Company(s): K/O Paper Products Director: Jon M. Chu Producer(s): Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Bobby Cohen Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, Mark Ruffalo, Morgan Freeman Details: Sequel to "Now You See Me" (2013) directed by Louis Leterrier and starring Jesse Eisenberg, Morgan Freeman, Mark Ruffalo and Woody Harrelson. SSN Insight: Louis Leterrier was previously attached to direct. Along with Daniel Radcliffe, The producers have also added one of Asia’s most popular musicans Jay Chou, repped by JVR Music to the cast.

The Martian 3/12/2015 Logline: When an astronaut is stranded on Mars, he struggles to survive and get back to Earth. Studio: 20th Century Fox Production Company(s): Ridley Scott Films , Genre Films Director: Ridley Scott Producer(s): Simon Kinberg, Aditya Sood, Ridley Scott Cast: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Jeff Daniels, Kristen Wiig, Michael Pena Writer(s): Drew Goddard Details: Based on the novel "The Martian," written by Andy Weir and self-published by Amazon on September 27, 2012. SSN Insight: Drew Goddard was previously in negotiations to direct. Wadi Rum, a protected desert area in southern Jordan, was scheduled to stand in for Mars during filming. Director Ridley Scott previously shot scenes from "Exodus: Gods And Kings" (2014) in Wadi Rum, and the region also provided the setting for many scenes in "Lawrence of Arabia".

The Secret in Their Eyes (Remake) 3/15/2015 Logline: A man who has been slowly solving a years-old brutal murder committed against the daughter of a loved one ventures across the country to take up the mystery anew, and in the process he discovers shocking details as he gets closer to tracking down the killer. Production Company(s): Gran Via Productions, IM Global, STX Entertainment Director: Billy Ray Executive Producer(s): Stuart Ford, Matt Jackson Producer(s): Mark Johnson, Juan Jose Campanella Cast: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Julia Roberts, Nicole Kidman Writer(s): Billy Ray Details: English-language remake of "El secreto de sus ojos" (Argentina/2009) written and directed by Juan Campanella from a novel by Eduardo Sacheri. SSN Insight: Previously in development at Warner Bros. Gwyneth Paltrow was previously attached to star.

Seven Most Wanted TV Pilots, Paramount Grabs ‘Captive’, Studio 8 Grabs Another Property, Release Date For ‘Beauty’, On the Set For 3/16/15


7 Most Wanted Pilot Scripts v2


The Seven Most Wanted TV Drama Pilot Scripts

One of the best ways to learn how to write TV pilot scripts, is by reading pilot scripts. Script consultant and SSN contributor Stephanie Palmer gathered seven pilot scripts from some of the most talked-about drama pilots of the last three years. (SSN)

On the Set For 3/16/15: Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone Start Shooting ‘Michelle Darnell’, Ridley Scott and Simon Kinberg Wrap “The Martian’

It’s a busy week for new projects, as Rob Zombie begins shooting a new horror flick, the next Alvin and the Chipmunks film gets rolling, and James Franco’s next directorial effort, as well as several others. Meanwhile, the Now You See Me sequel wraps, as well as the remake of The Secret In Their Eyes. (SSN)


Paramount Picks Up Rights To the David Oyelowo-Starring ‘Captive’

The thriller from BN Films was inspired by on the true 2005, Atlanta-set story of a man named Brian Nichols, who escaped from a courthouse jail and killed the judge assigned to his case, as well as the court reporter, sherriff's deputy and an FBI officer. He then led federal and local police on a statewide manhunt, during which he took a single mother with a drug addiction, hostage in her own apartment. Oyelowo will play Nichols and Kate Mara is the title captive. (SAA)

Jeff Robinov’s Studio 8 Makes Yet Another Pick Up For Its Burgeoning Slate

Company has just acquired the feature rights to the high concept thriller The Brain Hack from writer/director Joe White. The story is about two students who create a way to induce hallucinogenic visions of God and then are stalked by a mysterious cult bent on destroying them. Studio 8 will next hire a screenwriter to work with White who is also expected to direct the feature version. (DH)

We Now Have a Release Date For the Live Action ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Remake

Bill Condon’s film, which stars Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans and Josh Gad, has now added Emma Thompson and Kevin Kline, and will open in theaters March 17th, 2017. The film will go into production later this year. (COL)

Speaking Of Shared Universes, Jason Blum Is Planning To Make One For the Sinister and Insidious Franchises

While at South By Southwest this weekend, Blum was asked about the connections between the movies and he confirmed that there are Easter Eggs hidden in both series. The next installments of the series are coming out this year, with Insidious Chapter 3 coming out on June 5th and Sinister 2 arriving August 21st. (CB)

That Star Wars Standalone Movie ‘Rogue One’ Will Have an Oscar-Winner Scoring It, but It Won’t Be John Williams

Alexandre Desplat will be handling the job, which will reunite him with his Godzilla director Gareth Edwards. Felicity Jones is the first confirmed actor for the spinoff, which will open on December 16, 2016. Production starts this summer. (TP)

With Another Big New Gig, It Seems the World Is Jordan Vogt-Roberts’ Oyster

Young director of The Kings Of Summer and the upcoming Kong: Skull Island with J.K. Simmons and Michael Keaton, has jumped on board the new adaptation of the Stars My Destination, the classic sci-fi novel by Alfred Bester. Mary Parent is producing for Paramount. (EMP)

Endemol Shine Announces a New Executive Structure, Names New COO While They’re At It

The reorganization is a result of a joint venture that brings together Endemol, Shine and CORE Media, and was announced today by Charlie Corwin and Cris Abrego, the co-chairmen and co-CEOs of the company. Now the largest independent production and distribution group in the world, Endemol Shine Group oversees more than 1,000 hours of programming across broadcast, cable, syndication and digital platforms in North American alone. (THR)

Just Because It’s March Doesn’t Mean It’s Too Late For a Year-End Spec Scorecard From the Scoggins Report

As usual, the attached 6th annual edition of the year-end Scorecard includes the usual grids, full details of all 90 of 2014's spec sales, plus the Top 5 lists of Buyers and Sellers (companies as well as individuals, for the latter). Click on the link to check it out for yourself. (SR)

Marc Evans Scores Top Paramount Job, Apple’s Online TV Service To Launch In Fall, Chernin Gets a New VP Of Film, Mackie’s Jesse Owens Biopic Moving Forward


Marc Evans Portrait

It’s Promotion Day At Paramount! Marc Evans Named To Replace Adam Goodman as President of the Motion Picture Group

After reportedly talking to Sony's Michael De Luca and Doug Belgrad, Brad Grey has opted to promote four-year production president Evans, a studio veteran of 12 years, who will bring stability rather than turmoil. Evans joined Paramount in 2003, ahead of Goodman's arrival, so he's not associated with his regime, and he has built support from such Paramount producers as Lorenzo di Bonaventura, J.J. Abrams and David Ellison. (TOH)

Apple Is Aiming For a Fall Launch To Its Online TV Service

Company is in talks with multiple TV programmers — but not NBCUniversal — about launching an over-the-top TV service later this fall that would charge $30-$40 for about 25 channels including broadcast TV. Details are scarce regarding the service in question, but it is reportedly able to stream linear channels live to a variety of Apple products including Apple TV, iPhone and iPad. (VAR)

Chernin Entertainment Has Itself a Brand New VP Of the Film Division

Tonia Davis, who most recently served as executive director, production at Disney, is joining the production shingle. She'll leverage her experience on large-scale feature film production to develop projects at Chernin, reporting to president of film Jenno Topping. (THR)

Anthony Mackie’s Jesse Owens Biopic Is Another Step Closer To Reality

Relativity Studios is on the final lap to acquire the script that has Mackie aboard to star as the heroic American sprinter who dominated the 1936 Berlin Olympics much to the chagrin of Adolf Hitler. If the deal makes the studio will also finance the project. The tentative plan is to start production in October to get the film out by the 2016 Summer Olympics, which would mark the 80th anniversary of Owens’ dramatic Games when he won four gold medals. (DH)

The Beautiful, Oscar-Nominated Animated Short Film ‘The Dam Keeper’ Is Getting a Feature Adaptation

Directed by Pixar alums Robert Kondo and Daisuke “Dice” Tsutsumi, it told the poignant story of a bullied child. Now, the duo will get a chance to develop a full-length feature, as well as two graphic novels. The short centers on an orphaned pig whose job is to keep the local windmill running, lest a dark, sinister cloud overtake the city. His life seems to take a positive turn when a fox at school reaches out to him, but a misunderstanding sends him on a downward spiral that threatens the entire town. (SF)

Thanks To Alchemy, the Ron Perlman-Led ‘Moonwalkers’ Will Get an American Release

Antoine Bardo-Jacquet’s action comedy, also starring Rupert Grint, will get a roll-out and release planned for later this year. Film revolves around the conspiracy theory that the Apollo 11 landing was a total fraud, a hoax dreamt up by Stanley Kubrick and the American government. Perlman plays a CIA agent trying to track down Kubrick in 1960s London, who must ultimately pair up with a down and out rock-band manager (Grint) to create the conspiracy. (COL)

Just a Heads Up For ‘Twin Peaks’ Fans: David Lynch Is Having Contract Issues, and the Thing Is Still Up In the Air

Lynch spoke at a panel for his new exhibit "Between Two Worlds" at the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia last weekend. According to Welcome to Twin Peaks, when the filmmaker was asked whether or not the reboot was still happening he responded, “I don’t know. There are complications.”  (HP)

Here’s a New One: the Pilot ‘Love Is a Four Letter Word’ Just Promoted an Actress To the Lead After a Table Read

Cynthia McWilliams has been upgraded to female lead in NBC's drama pilot. Meta Golding was originally set to play the lead, but McWilliams will now take over, after a table read, with Golding exiting. Actress joins Rockmond Dunbar in the NBC drama pilot which chronicles the collision of race, sexuality and gender roles when 3 diverse couples put modern marriage to the test. (SAA)

Trailer Buzz: ‘What Lies Inside’

The first look at the upcoming social film from Oscar-winner Robert Stromberg, starring Colin Hanks, J.K. Simmons and Catherine O’Hara. Film from Intel/Dell premieres exclusively on Hulu on March 25th. (CO)

Online Film School: Six Documentaries Recommended By Wendell Pierce

Star of The Wire, Treme and the second season of Ray Donovan, along with many others (like Selma), shares his essential docs and discusses why they’re each important. (FSR)

TV Development for 3/17/15: Jennifer Lopez to Teach ‘California’ History Lesson at NBC, Will Ferrell Teams with MLB for HBO Doc


at arrivals for Hakkasan Las Vegas Night Club Grand Opening, MGM Grand Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, NV April 27, 2013. Photo By: James Atoa/Everett Collection

All That Jazz Network: TLC Studio: Discovery Communications Production Company(s): This Is Just a Test Executive Producer(s): Aengus James, Colin Miller Logline: Follows the life of transgender teen and activist Jazz Jennings and her family. SSN Insight: TLC has ordered 11 episodes for a series order and has schedule to premiere the show this summer. Other transgender series include Discovery Life’s New Girls on the Block, ABC Family’s My Transparent Life, Ryan Seacrest Prods.’ MTL, HBO’s doc Three Suits, and VH1’s reality series Transamerica. Those series will give competition to the already airing Transparent on Amazon and Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word on MTV.

Believer Network: CNN Production Company(s): Whalerock Industries Executive Producer(s): Reza Aslan Logline: In each episode, Reza Aslan will dive into a faith-based groups to experience life as a "true believer." Aslan participates in endurance worship, rituals, and rites of passage, to learn about "worlds that have been molded by faith and tradition. SSN Insight: Ordered to series on March 10. Whalerock Industries, formerly BermanBraun, was founded eight years ago and is a media and technology company. Whalerock’s digital properties include: Wonderwall, Mandatory, Mom.me and Moviefone (in partnership with Aol) which reaches approximately 70 million consumers per month.

California Network: NBC Entertainment Studio: Sony Pictures Television Production Company(s): Nuyorican Productions Executive Producer(s): Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, Jennifer Lopez, Gregory Nava, Barbara Jitner Martinez, Benny Medina Writer(s): Gregory Nava, Barbara Jitner Martinez Logline: The story tracks a fictional Latino family and their journey over 200 years in California from Spanish, to Mexican, to American rule. The narrative interweaves historical characters and events, and follows a family across eight generations from the days of the Californio ranchos and missions right up to the present. Details: Based on an idea by Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas. SSN Insight: Planned as a limited series. Nuyorican’s Lopez and Goldsmith-Thomas also produce The Fosters for ABC Family and the upcoming Shades of Blue starring Lopez on NBC. Nava first cast Lopez in his 1995 film My Family which aided her being cast in Selena. The pair collaborated again on Nava’s 2006 film Bordertown.

Can’t Touch This Network: BBC Studio: BBC Production Company(s): Stellify Media Executive Producer(s): Kieran Doherty, Matthew Worthy Logline: Game show where contestants get to keep any prize they get their hands on. The catch: they have to navigate a larger than life assault course while also battling it out with rival contestants. SSN Insight: The 10-part series is set to air in 2016. Ireland-based Stellify produces and develops original programming for UK and international broadcasters and was launched in spring 2014 with funding from Sony Pictures TV. Sony has invested heavily into the following UK production companies: Silver River Productions, Gogglebox Entertainment, Victory Television, Left Bank Pictures and the newly announced joint venture with Karl Warner, Electric Ray.

Falling Water Network: USA Network Studio: Universal Cable Productions Production Company(s): Valhalla Entertainment Executive Producer(s): Henry Bromell, Blake Masters, Gale Anne Hurd, Juan Carlos Fresnadillo Writer(s): Henry Bromell, Blake Masters Logline: Three unrelated people slowly realize that they are dreaming separate parts of a single common dream. Each is on a quest for something that can only be found in their subconscious: a missing girlfriend, a son, a way to communicate with a catatonic mother. However, the more they begin to use the dream world as a tool to advance their hidden agendas, they realize that their visions are trying to tell them something and that their very real lives are at stake. SSN Insight: USA gave an initial pilot commitment on March 12. The project is the first pilot order for USA in 2015. From 2014, Queen of the South is in consideration and Colony and Mr. Robot were ordered to series. Hurd previously executive produced the 2013 drama pilot Horizon for USA.

Impact Network: A&E Studio: A+E Networks Production Company(s): Company Pictures, All3Media America Executive Producer(s): Kimberly Peirce, Jason George, Eli Holzman, Stephen Lambert, John Yorke Writer(s): Jason George Logline: The story begins immediately following the downing of a major commercial flight near the nation’s capital. When the country’s best airline investigator learns that her son may have been on the flight, everyone she once trusted will become a suspect. Details: Based on the British TV Movie, "Impact," starring Hugh Bonneville, which aired on ITV in January, 2002. SSN Insight: After some competition, A&E bought Impact and given a script order on March 10. Pierce’s feature credits include Stop-Loss and Carrie

Untitled Jerrod Carmichael Project Network: NBC Entertainment Studio: Universal Television Production Company(s): A24 Executive Producer(s):Jerrod Carmichael, Nicholas Stoller, Ravi Nandan Writer(s): Jerrod Carmichael, Nicholas Stoller Logline: An irreverent multi-camera comedy inspired by his stand-up and his relationships with his girlfriend and family. Details: Inspired by Jerrod Carmichael's standup. SSN Insight: A pilot presentation was shot in December 2013, but was retooled with a new premise and new writer/executive producer Nick Stoller who directed Carmichael in the feature Neighbors. NBC ordered a fresh pilot on November 3 and gave a six episode series order on March 10.

Six Degrees of Everything Network: TruTV Production Company(s): Fine Brothers Entertainment, Inc., Marc Summers Productions Executive Producer(s): Marc Summers, Benny Fine, Rafi Fine Logline: Comedy hosted by Benny and Rafi Fine who will spend each week proving that anything in the world can be connected in six degrees. SSN Insight: TruTV has ordered 10 half-hour episodes, including the pilot. In addition to this project, TruTV has re-upped Hack My Life, How to be a Grownup, Top Funnies and ordered eight more episodes of Barmageddon.

S.T.R.O.N.G. Network: NBC Entertainment Studio: Sony Pictures Television Production Company(s): 25/7 Productions Executive Producer(s): Sylvester Stallone, Dave Broome, Kevin Templeton Logline: S.T.R.O.N.G. (Start To Realize Our Natural Greatness), follows six men and six women looking to reach their full potential by getting fit, not losing weight. The series will eliminate one contestant every week. Each of the 12 contestants will be paired with their own trainer and also six men and six women creating mixed-gender teams of two. SSN Insight: NBC ordered a 10 episodes series on March 12. Broome is the creator/executive producer of The Biggest Loser creator/executive producer. This project originated from Broome’s two-year overall deal he inked with Sony TV last year. Stallone previously teamed up with Mark Burnett for the NBC boxing competition series The Contender. 

United Shades of America Network: CNN Production Company(s): Objective Productions Executive Producer(s): W. Kamau Bell, Jimmy Fox, Eli Holzman, Stephen Lambert, Andrew O'Connor Logline: W. Kamau Bell explores the "far corners of our country" and its "subcultures," He will ask questions, get himself into awkward situations, and make people laugh. SSN Insight: CNN Ordered to series on March 10. Objective Productions, founded by Andrew O’Connor and Michael Vine in 1991, has offices in London, Glasgow and Los Angeles is owned by All3Media America (jointly owned by Discovery Communications and Liberty Global).

Untitled Brian Knappenberger Series Network: Pivot Studio: Participant Media Production Company(s): Luminant Media Executive Producer(s): Brian Knappenberger, Jeff Skoll, Christy Spitzer Logline: A documentary series that reimagines investigative journalism for the digital age and spotlights the untold stories of people who defend human rights and call out institutional failures. SSN Insight: Scheduled to premiere in Q4 2015. Each episode will follow a single story, using a personal point of entry to examine a larger issue. Knappenberger won a WGA award this year for his work on The Internet’s Own Boy.

Untitled Molyneux Comedy Pilot aka The Brainy Bunch Network: ABC Entertainment Group Studio: 20th Century Fox Television Production Company(s): Imagine Television Executive Producer(s): Wendy Molyneux, Lizzie Molyneux, Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo Writer(s): Wendy Molyneux, Lizzie Molyneux Logline: Follows an extraordinarily gifted family who find themselves unprepared for their new lives in Orange County, California, a place where beauty is valued more than brains. Details: Inspired by the book, "The Brainy Bunch: The Harding Family’s Method To College Ready By Age Twelve," written by Kip Harding and Mona Lisa Harding and published by Gallery Books on May 6, 2014. SSN Insight: ABC gave an initial commitment plus penalty on September 11 and ordered the pilot on Janurary 30. James Roday, formerly known as a lead in Psych, was cast as the male lead opposite Melanie Griffith. As part of the Roday’s contract he has a blind script commitment from 20th TV to write and/or direct a future pilot.

Untitled Will Ferrell Baseball Special Network: HBO Production Company(s): Gary Sanchez Productions Executive Producer(s): Will Ferrell, Mike Farah, Joe Farrell, Stuart Miller Logline: To honor the 50th anniversary of Bert Campaneris’ historic feat of playing every position on the baseball field for ten different teams in ten days, HBO will cover Will Ferrell visiting five spring training ballparks. SSN Insight: The project was created to help fight cancer. Ferrell will partner with Funny Or Die and Major League Baseball. Ferrell’s visit will be covered on social media as well #FerrellTakesTheField. Game-used memorabilia from the project will be auctioned at MLB.com with proceeds being donated to Cancer for College and Stand Up To Cancer (MLB is a founding donor).

Why? With Hannibal Buress Network: Comedy Central Production Company(s): 3 Arts Entertainment Executive Producer(s): Hannibal Buress, Jeff Stilson, Dave Becky Logline: Comedian Buress provides his perspective on each week’s zeitgeist-driven topic, answering the burning questions on his mind through stand-up, filmed segments, man-on-the-street interviews and in-studio guests. SSN Insight: Comedy Central ordered 8 episodes on March 10. Per Deadline, the project originiated from a development deal between Buress and Comedy Central which included “a pilot commitment, a one-hour stand-up special, a nationwide Comedy Central Live stand-up tour; and a role on Broad City.”

Ferrell and Black To Play ‘Tag’, STX Close To a Big Deal, Sklar Brothers Work With PBS Digital, TV Development For 3/17/15


Robert Simonds


TV Development For 3/17/15: Jennifer Lopez To Teach ‘California’ History At NBC, Will Ferrell Teams With MLB For HBO Doc

Plenty of action this week, with new projects announced from Jeff Skoll, Sylvester Stallone, the Fine Brothers and Jerrod Carmichael, to name just a few. Click the link to get the full skinny. (SSN)


If a Comedy About a Long-Running Game Of Tag Starring Will Ferrell and Jack Black Interests You, Today Is Your Lucky Day

Waiting’s Rob McKittrick will write the script for New Line, based on a Wall Street Journal article. The piece detailed a group of friends that have been keeping the same game of Tag going for over two decades, and the stakes are so high that tales of home invasion, injury, and beefing up office security have become a part of the game's storied history. Ferrell and Black, obviously, would play the feuding players. (CB)

Robert Simonds’ STX Entertainment Close To Signing a Deal With China’s Huayi Brothers Media

The fledgling studio is circling a three year-18 film deal with the Chinese company. STX has a number of projects already on its slate, including the Matthew McConaughey vehicle The Free State of Jones, written, directed and produced by Gary Ross; an untitled thriller from micro-budget maestro Jason Blum; and a remake of The Secret in Their Eyes, with Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts starring and Billy Ray directing from his own script. (VAR)

The Sklar Brothers Are Teaming With Kids At Play To Make a New Series For PBS Digital

You’re Doing It Wrong will provide a smart, comedic take on everyday activities — such as peeling hard-boiled eggs, using sunscreen, and changing the TV channel — that most people consistently do wrong. Hosted by Randy and Jason Sklar, the series will provide facts and figures, break down the science behind these everyday actions, and offer tips on how to correct the errant behaviors. (TVI)

Focus Votes For ‘Suffragette’, Picks Up North American Rights To Indie Drama

Studio is readying the film, starring Meryl Streep, Carey Mulligan and Helena Bonham Carter, inspired by the early 20th century campaign by the suffragettes for the right of women to vote, for a fall domestic release later this year. The subject matter is both timely and potentially awards-season friendly. The film had a lot of positive buzz around it following buyers’ screenings in the U.S. and London this past week. (DH)

Showtime Has Come To Reassure Us That the ‘Twin Peaks’ Return Is Still On

When the show was announced in October, it was with creators David Lynch and Mark Frost both on board, but yesterday came word that Lynch has yet to sign his contract and is unsure about whether or not the series will go forward. Today, Showtime released this comment: "Nothing is going on that's any more than any preproduction process with David Lynch... Everything is moving forward and everybody is crazy thrilled and excited.” So there you go. (IO9)

George R.R. Martin Tells His Fans That He’s Canceling Appearances To Work On His Next Book

While no release date has been announced for his highly anticipated Winds Of Winter, he put in his blog that he needed to buckle down on the sixth book in his A Song Of Ice and Fire series. Martin began the blog post by apologizing to fans who had planned to see him at November's World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga, New York, and also that he will skip Comic-Con in San Diego. (TLF)

That Upcoming ‘Sherlock’ Christmas Special Is Going To Go Back In Time

The show’s co-creator, Steven Moffat has now confirmed the special will take place in Victorian London, validating fan assumptions about the episode. Last month the show’s stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman were spotted filming Sherlock in 19th century clothes. The 90-minute episode literally takes place more than 100 years ago. (EW)

So, Now There Is Apparently Going To Be a ‘Mallrats’ Sequel From Kevin Smith

Writer-director Smith is already working on Clerks 3, and said during a radio interview that a tease about a potential Mallrats sequel led to so much reaction, he decided to follow up with it. There’s no word on when it might go forward, but almost certainly after the third Clerks installment. (GR)

SXSW Report: Festival Is a Mishmash, Just Like the Media and Marketing Industry

Unlike certain previous SXSW Interactive festivals where attendees and press coalesced around a single topic, this year's event was all over the place. With so much to do and so many people to meet, a tyranny of choice reigned supreme. It was the perfect microcosm of the media and marketing industry. Ad Age mentions four trends. Click the link to read on. (AA)

‘Shameless’& Two Other Hour-Longs Qualify as Comedies, Lionsgate Makes Big China Deal, Third Benghazi Movie Arises, Female-Driven Wall Street Flick Moves Forward



Never Mind Those New Emmy Rules, ‘Shameless’ and Two Other Hour-Longs Qualify as Comedies

Jane the Virgin and Glee will also be eligible to compete as comedies in 2015 despite their episodes clocking in at 45-60 minutes. Though the rules clearly stated all half-hour series would be considered "comedies" and all shows over 30 minutes would be seen as dramas, the petitioning process seems to have worked for these three series, resulting in their inclusion as comedies in 2015. (IW)

The Trend Continues, as Lionsgate Makes a Deal With China’s Hunan TV

On the heels of an announcement about STX Entertainment being on the verge of a Chinese deal, and Studio 8’s similar agreement, Lionsgate officially entered into a multiyear deal with the Chinese Broadcast Intermediary for co-financing, distribution, development and production. Funding for the deal was provided by East West Bank and Bank of China. Hunan would come in to provide financing on Lionsgate’s $1.5B slate over a three-year period. (DH)

Three Might Be a Crowd, but That’s Not Stopping Alcon From Developing a Third Benghazi Movie

Company has put into development Zero Footprint, a new drama about the 2012 attack on the American diplomatic compound in Libya. Alcon picked up a spec script by Scott Charnick, Charley Parlapanides, and Vlas Parlapanides. Told from the perspective of an anonymous (but real) ex-Special Forces operative, it’ll chronicle the events leading up to the attack. (SF)

Broad Street Gets the First Female-Driven Wall Street Film In Gear, Hires Meera Menon To Direct It

Equity follows an investment banker who is threatened by a financial scandal and must untangle a web of corruption. Broad Street was founded last year by Orange Is the New Black actress Alysia Reiner and Backwards actress Sarah Megan Thomas to produce films with strong female roles before and behind the camera. (VAR)

Sam Cooke Is the Latest Great Singer To Get the Biopic Treatment

The soulful singer-songwriter behind such hits as "Wonderful World" and "Twistin' the Night Away," is getting the big-screen treatment that hopes to shine new light on the man's death. Music and film producer Romeo Antonio has made a deal with Cooke's family to develop the movie project, with a script being written by Mary Krell-Oishi. Cooke's family members L.C. Cooke and Eugene Jamison will function as consultants on the project. (THR)

A&E Likes the Idea Of Making a ‘Let the Right One In’ Series

Network behind Bates Motel has optioned the rights to Tomas Alfredson‘s exceptional 2008 Swedish film (based on John Ajvide Lindqvist‘s book). A&E won out over Showtime in a bidding war for the story, and will have Teen Wolf showrunner Jeff Davis at the helm of their adaptation, with the assistance of  Brandon Boyce, who has also been an actor on Teen Wolf. (COL)

The Remake Train Rolls On, as Sony Wants To Revisit ‘Blue Thunder’

Chris Kyle, who is currently working on Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok, has been hired to pen the script, working with producer Dana Brunetti and alongside Jason Blumenthal, whose Escape Artists company was also developing something along the same lines. Unlike a super high tech helicopter, this time the film will tap into the drone zeitgeist and follow the world’s most advanced unmanned weapon. (EMP)

Trailer Buzz, Part 1: ‘Pixels’

The first look at the sci-fi action comedy starring Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Josh Gad, Michelle Monaghan and Peter Dinklage, and hits theaters July 24th. (YT)

Trailer Buzz, Part 2: ‘Insidious 3’

Latest trailer from the third part of the horror series, starring Patrick Wilson and Dermot Mulroney. The film hits theaters on June 5th. (SR)

Screenwriters: ‘Doctor Zhivago’

The 284-page (!) Oscar-winning shooting script by Robert Bolt, based on the novel by Boris Pasternak, dated September, 1964. A Broadway musical adaptation of the film begins previews later this month. (DS)

Rep Moves 3/18/15: Vince Vaughn Moves to WME, Paul Dano & Evan Peters Sign With Relevant


vince vaughn

WME: Vince Vaughn has signed with WME. The actor was a long-time client of CAA. The move comes as Vaughn is set to star in the second season of HBO’s acclaimed series True Detective.

The Green Room: Sons of Anarchy’s David Labrava and actress/singer Ali Faulkner have signed with management company The Green Room. Labrava played Happy on the FX drama (and helped write the episode “Hands”). Faulkner co-starred in the Christian music-themed The Song, and her previous credits include the horror comedy Bad Kids Go to Hell.

CAA: YouTube comedians Kian Lawley and Jc Caylen have signed with CAA. The agency will develop opportunities for the digital duo in other areas, including TV, film and commercial endorsements. This winter Lawley and Caylen launched the KianAndJc channel on YouTube with short films and comedy sketches. Since then, the KianAndJc channel has drawn more than 900,000 subscribers and 19 million views. The duo has a combined fan base of nearly 4.5 million on Instagram and Twitter.

UTA: 99 Homes’ actor Noah Lomax has signed with UTA. The child actor plays Andrew Garfield’s son in the received drama, and he also played the child of Josh Duhamel (in Nicholas Sparks’ Safe Haven) and Gerard Butler (in Playing for Keeps). His TV appearances include Bones, The Middle and The Walking Dead.

APA: American Crime’s Elvis Nolasco has signed with APA. The actor plays heartbroken drug addict Carter Nix on the ABC drama. Nolasco recently appeared in Spike Lee’s Da Sweet Blood of Jesus and will appear in the indie drug gang drama 179th Street, starring Danny Trejo, Michael Pitt and Michael Kenneth Williams. Nolasco is managed by Rob Lewis.

Paradigm: Paradigm has signed Columbian actress Carolina Guerra. She stars in David S. Goyer’s Da Vinci’s Demons and was a former 2005 Miss Bogota and model. Guerra is well-known to U.S. Hispanic TV viewers for co-hosting Univision’s 2009 music talent show Long Live the Dream. She’s also had roles in hit telenovelas, such as Telemundo’s Hilos de Amor.

Henderson Represents: Actors Garrett Hines and Jaylen Moore have signed with talent agency Henderson Represents. Hines has a role in the upcoming biopic Trumbo and will appear in the WE tv thriller South of Hell. Moore appeared on two episodes of Homeland and will play a cop in the Reese Witherspoon-Sofia Vergara comedy Hot Pursuit.

WME/3 Arts: WME and 3 Arts have signed writer/director Joe White off his short film The Brain Hack. The film is about two students who create a shortcut to induce hallucinogenic visions of God, and as a result find themselves hunted by a deadly religious sect. Studio 8 recently acquired the feature rights to the short.

Relevant: Paul Dano and Evan Peters have signed with publicity firm Relevant. Dano can be seen as the younger version of Brian Wilson in Love & Mercy, the biopic of the Beach Boys frontman. He’s filming the BBC and Weinstein Co. miniseries War and Peace, opposite Cinderella star Lily James. American Horror Story’s Peters followed up the FX anthology’s fourth installment with the feature The Lazarus Effect. He’s shooting a supporting role in Elvis & Nixon before reprising his Quicksilver mutant role for Fox’s X-Men franchise. Relevant also has signed Outlander’s Sam Heughan, Transporter star Ed Skrein, and teen actor Josh Wiggins, star of Kat Candler’s acclaimed 2014 Sundance drama Hellion. Nicole Miller Agency: The Returned’s Agnes Bruckner has signed with PR firm Nicole Miller Agency. The actress plays deputy Nikki Banks on A&E’s remake of the French supernatural drama, and she has a three-episode arc on ABC’s Once Upon a Time. She played Anna Nicole Smith in Lifetime’s 2013 biopic of the late model.

The Accidental Turitz On Revisiting Old Film Properties, Amazon Renews ‘Bosch’, HBO Buys BN’s ‘Nightingale’, Rep Moves For 3/18/15




The Accidental Turitz: Revisiting Old Properties — It’s a Growth Industry!

Senior Editor Neil Turitz returns with his eponymous column, and in the process takes a look at Disney’s recent announcement of a live-action Dumbo remake with Tim Burton at the helm. While he’s at it, he has some thoughts about other such properties in development and has a word or two to say about them. Prepare to be educated, edified and entertained.  (SSN)

Rep Moves For 3/18/15: Vince Vaughn Moves To WME, Paul Dano and Evan Peters Sign With Relevant

It’s another active week for the various agencies, as just about everyone gets in on the act and signs new talent. The big name, of course, is Vaughn, but there are lots of other names listed, so click on the link to see for yourself. (SSN)


Amazon Likes What It Sees, Renews ‘Bosch’ For a Second Season

The Titus Welliver-led series, based on Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch crime novels, debuted a month ago and is the top title on Prime Instant Video, according to Amazon. Season Two will find Bosch‘s title character investigating the murder of a Hollywood producer who laundered money for the mob and pursuing serial killer Chilton Hardy, an investigation that will put Bosch’s ex-wife and teenage daughter at risk. (TVL)

It’s a Big Week For BN Films, as HBO Buys Its ‘Nightingale’ With David Oyelowo

A few days after selling its film Captive to Paramount, the production company closes a deal with HBO for another film starring the Selma star. Flick features Oyelowo as the sole character, a war veteran whose life begins to unravel as he lives in isolation. Elliott Lester directed from from a screenplay by Frederick Mensch. Film was exec produced by Plan B’s Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner, as well as Lester, Oyelowo, Josh Weinstock and BN’s Katrina Wolfe. (VAR)

It’s Promotion Day At A&E Networks, as Two Networks Get New Heads Of Programming

Rob Sharenow has named company veteran Elaine Frontain Bryant as the new head of programming at the cable family's flagship network. In Frontain Bryant's move from History, Dirk Hoogstra has upped Paul Cabana at the network (and sister H2) to head of programming. (THR)

Universal Also Looks In House For a Replacement, Ups Jeff LaPlante To Head Of Physical Production

In the wake of Andrew Fenady’s departure — following 16 years in the position — LaPlante will take over the role after being an EVP in the department since 2011. Fenady said in a memo to staff just sent that he will “explore other professional opportunities” after his tenure in what is always one of the more grueling gigs on a studio lot. (DH)

Former BBC and Channel 4 Execs Team Up To Form New Shingle Emphasizing Diversity

Pat Younge, who used to be the BBC’s CCO, and Lucy Pilkington and Narinder Minhas, who were execs at Channel 4, have teamed up to launch London-based independent production company Sugar Films, which with an emphasis on developing diverse, provocative, and challenging content. Younge will act as managing director, while Pilkington and Minhas will be creative directors. (SAA)

That ‘Scarface’ Reboot Has Found Itself a Brand New Writer

Jonathan Herman, who wrote this summer’s N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton, has been brought on board to rewrite the script for Chilean director Pablo Larraín, who is still on board the project. Paul Attanasio and David Ayer previously worked on the script, which now takes place in Los Angeles and centers on a Mexican immigrant and his rise through the underworld. (COL)

Joan Didion’s Essay ‘Goodbye To All That’ Optioned For the Big Screen

Literary legend’s 1967 essay was an autobiographical work about her move to NYC in her early twenties, and has been acquired by producers Megan Carlson and Brian Sullivan as the inaugural project for the newly formed Carlson Sullivan Pictures. The producing duo are reportedly looking at women writers and directors for the adaptation. (WAH)

For Just the Third Time Ever, a Steven Spielberg Movie Will Not Feature a John Williams Score

Director’s upcoming Bridge of Spies with Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance will showcase Thomas Newman’s score, after Williams was forced to leave the project due to a health issue that is “now corrected.” Newman is also currently scoring the new James Bond flick, Spectre. Previously, Williams has scored all of Spielberg's films save The Color Purple and his chapter of The Twilight Zone(EMP)

Sony Hires Polley To Write New ‘Little Women’, ‘Jane’ Star Joining ‘Deepwater Horizon’, Paramount Options Another YA Title, Joplin Biopic Producers Suing Each Other


Sarah Polley and Amy Pascal Are Getting Behind Yet Another Adaptation Of ‘Little Women’

Polley, who wrote and directed Away From Her, Take This Waltz and Stories We Tell, has been hired by producer Pascal to take over scripting duties and possibly direct the project for Sony. Olivia Milch originally had been working on the new adaptation. Robin Swicord and Denise Di Novi are also producing. (EMP)

From Fresh, Golden Globe-Winning TV Star To Movie Star: Gina Rodriguez Heads to ‘Deepwater Horizon’

The Jane the Virgin star will take one of the leading roles in the film, which will revolve around the 2010 explosion in the Gulf Of Mexico of the titular BP rig. This ultimately led to the death of 11 men and injured 17 others as they worked on the platform and the biggest oil spill in the history of the United States. Mark Wahlberg is already on board to star, with Peter Berg directing. (CB)

The YA Hits Keep Coming, as Paramount Books Another Adaptation Of a Hit Tome

First-time author Jasmine Warga’s young-adult novel My Heaet and Other Black Holes. The book was published February 15th by HarperCollins’ Balzer + Bray imprint and centers on a pair of teenagers who meet through an online site matching up suicide partners (these groups actually exist) to help ensure each partner will not back out of their own suicide. In a twist on Romeo and Juliet, they become more and more intimate through the 26-day countdown to their date until one question hangs between them: Will they live or will they die? (DH)

Janis Joplin Biopic Producers Suing To Stop Development, Claim Option Violation

The film, which has Amy Adams set to star as the late singer and which has been in development for years, now has legal issues. LKL Productions and Swiss production company Silver Reel have sued writer-producer Ron Terry, his affiliated companies Morace and Get It While You Can, and a lending firm that invested in the film, claiming they’ve breached their option agreement for the script about the hard-living rock ‘n’ roll queen. (HESQ)

With the Addition Of Edgar Ramirez, the Cast Of Upcoming Drama ‘Gold’ Just Got Even More Handsome

Matthew McConaughey stars in the film from Black Bear Pictures, set to start shooting in June in New York, New Mexico and Thailand. Ramirez will play a geologist whom McConaughey’s prospector teams with to find gold in the uncharted Indonesian jungle. Stephen Gaghan is directing from a script by Patrick Massett and John Zinman. (VAR)

Thought To Be On the Bubble, ‘Sleepy Hollow’ Gets a Third Season and a New Showrunner

Fox closed a deal yesterday to give the history-twisting drama a third, 18-episode season, and hired The Glades’ Clifton Campbell to take over as showrunner. Campbell replaces Mark Goffman, who stepped down earlier this month in the wake of Sleepy‘s rocky second season, which saw ratings slide 40 percent versus Season One. (TVL)

Orion Decides To Take a Nice Visit To ‘Fort Tilden’

Indie distributor focused on multi-platform releases via specialized theatrical runs and premium video on demand services, has acquired U.S. distribution rights to SXSW Narrative Feature Grand Jury Prize Winner. Written and directed by Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers and starring Bridey Elliott and Clare McNulty, film is about two slacker Brooklynites experiencing mishap after mishap on a journey to the beach. (IW)

‘The Huntsman’ Is Bringing Some Female Dwarves Into the Fold

Alexandra Roach and Sheridan Smith join returning male dwarf Nick Frost and newcomer Rob Brydon — all of whom will be digitally shortened on screen — in the sequel to Snow White and The Huntsman. Other newcomers to the cast include Emily Blunt and Jessica Chastain. The film hits theaters April 22nd, 2016.  (FSR)

Watch: ‘The Director’s Chair’

Robert Rodriguez’s talk show, in which he discusses craft with his fellow directors, features a 90-minute conversation with his longtime friend (and occasional collaborator) Quentin Tarantino. (TP)

Screenwriters: Developing Strong Dialogue In Your Screenplay

Writer/producer Glenn M. Benest used to think you couldn’t teach screenwriters how to write better dialogue, but realized he was wrong. Developing your talent for great repartee is not necessarily a god-given talent but can be nurtured and improved like anything else. (SM)

Film Development for 3/19/15: Amy Pascal to Produce ‘Little Women’, ‘Beauty & the Beast’ Cast Updates & More


Amy Pascal

Little Women Logline: The four March sisters grow up in the years following the Civil War. Studio/ Distributor: Columbia Pictures Production Company: Di Novi Pictures, Amy Pascal Company Producers: Denise Di Novi, Robin Swicord, Amy Pascal Writer: Sarah Polley SSN Insight: The addition of Pascal and Polley round out an already female driven story and give Polley a good chance at directing down the line. Deepwater Horizon Logline: Based on the true events that occurred on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, the story chronicles the courage of those who worked on the Deepwater Horizon and the extreme moments of bravery and survival in the face of what would become one of the biggest man-made disasters in world history. Studio/ Distributor: Lionsgate Production Company: Participant Media, Di Bonaventura Pictures, Closest to the Hole Productions, Leverage Management Producers: Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, Mark Vahradian, Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson, David Womark Writer: J. C. Chandor Director: Peter Berg Cast: Gina Rodriguez, Mark Wahlberg SSN Insight: Rodriguez would star as the film’s lead, the communications officer for the oil company. Wahlberg stars as an electrician on the rig. Beauty and the Beast (Reboot) Logline: Re-imagining of the fairy tale “Beauty and the Beast”. Studio/ Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures Production Company: Mandeville Films Producers: David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman Writer: Stephen Chobosky Director: Bill Condon Cast: Emma Thompson, Kevin Kline, Josh Gad, Luke Evans, Emma Watson, Dan Stevens SSN Insight: Hot on the heels of the success of it’s live action adaptation of Cinderella, Disney is anxious to get this film out and has rounded out its cast and announced a release date of March 17, 2017. Stars My Destination Logline: The sole survivor of a wrecked spaceship drifts through space. When a passing vessel ignores his distress signal, he becomes obsessed with revenge and ultimately uncovers a secret destined to change the course of history. Studio: Paramount Pictures Production Company: Disruption Entertainment Producers: Mary Parent Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts Notes: Based on the novel "The Stars My Destination" written by Alfred Bester published by Berkley Books 1956. SSN Insight: Betty Thomas was previously attached to direct.and the project was set up at 20th Century Fox,, Constantin Film, and Impact Pictures. Project was also previously set up at Universal with Lorenzo di Bonaventura attached to produce via Di Bonaventura Pictures. The Seven Five Logline: The true story of Michael Dowd is told. Dowd led a ring of criminalized cops in the corrupt 1980s NYPD until he was arrested in 1992. Studio/ Distributor: Columbia Pictures Production Company: Le Grisbi Productions, Annapurna Pictures, All3Media America Producers: John Lesher, Megan Ellison, Eli Holzman Writer: Scott Frank Director: Yann Demange Notes: Based on the documentary The Seven Five (USA/2014) directed by Tiller Russell. SSN Insight: Putting Frank together with in demand director Demange means the studio has high hopes for the project and hopes to make the movie. Agatha Logline: Mystery author Agatha Christie mysteriously goes missing for almost two weeks on a secret adventure. Studio/ Distributor: Paramount Pictures Production Companies: Disruption Entertainment Producers: Mary Parent, Cale Boyter, Chris Bender, Jake Weiner, JC Spink Writer: Annie Neal SSN Insight: Project was originally a spec script by writer Allison Schroeder, but directors are now circling the project and the studio was looking for a rewrite. Scarface (Reboot) Logline: Update of the classic crime tale, charting the rise and fall of a mafia kingpin in Los Angeles. Studio/ Distributor: Universal Pictures Production Companies: Global Produce, Bluegrass Films Producers: Mark Shmuger, Martin Bregman, Scott Stuber, Dylan Clark Writer: Jonathan Herman Director: Pablo Larrain SSN Insight: Hot screenwriters Paul Attanasio and David Ayer have also penned previous drafts of the project. Tag Logline: Former classmates, now in middle age, routinely participate in an elaborate game of tag. Studio/ Distributor: New Line Cinema Production Companies: Broken Road Productions Producers: Todd Garner Writer: Rob McKittrick Cast: Jack Black, Will Ferrell Notes: Based on the article "Tag Brothers" written by Russell Adams and published in The Wall Street Journal January 29, 2013. SSN Insight: New Line won a bidding war with DreamWorks originally to pick up the picture.
Zero Footprint Logline: Story recounts the chain of events that led to that fateful day when U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, U.S. Foreign Services’ Sean Smith and CIA operatives Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods were mercilessly killed by Islamic terrorists in Benghazi. Studio/ Distributor: Alcon Entertainment Producers: Andrew Kosove, Broderick Johnson and Cynthia Sikes Yorkin Writers: Scott Charnick, Charley Parlapanides and Vlas Parlapanides SSN Insight: Two other Benghazi films are also in development. Michael Bay is adapting 13 Hours: The Inside Account Of What Really Happened On Benghazi for Paramount based on the Mitchell Zuckoff nonfiction book. Relativity and producer Dana Brunetti (Fifty Shades Of Grey) acquired life rights to the two former Navy SEALs/CIA operatives — Doherty and Woods — who lost their lives that day as they tried to save others. Fox Hunt Logline: U.S. and Chinese investigators team up to investigate a car smuggling ring in the South China sea, and the operation causes unexpected and violent results. Studio/ Distributor: Fox International Production Company: Bona Film Group Writer: Antony Hoffman, Brian Brightly Director: Antony Hoffman SSN Insight: Hoffman is one of the hottest directors in the commercial world and has much experience shooting in China. This would be his feature film directorial debut. Variant Logline: Storyline under wraps. Studio/ Distributor: Warner Bros. Production Companies: Weimaraner Republic Pictures Producers: Lynn Harris, Matti Leshem Writer: Tony Jaswinski SSN Insight: Lynn Harris, who was a former Warner Bros. exec, is producing the project with her new production label. Project sold in a bidding war. Blue Thunder (Remake) Logline: The United States uses their most advanced drones to battle terrorists. Studio/ Distributor: Columbia Pictures Production Companies: Trigger Street Pictures, Escape Artists Producers: Dana Brunetti, Jason Blumenthal Writer: Craig Kyle Director: Bryan Singer Notes: Remake of "Blue Thunder" (USA/1983), directed by John Badham and starring Roy Scheider and Daniel Stern. SSN Insight: In the new take, the helicopter from the first film will be replaced by the world’s most advanced drone. Jesse Owens Biopic Logline: This biopic tells the story of Jesse Owens, the African American sprinter who won four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, disproving Hitler’s theory of Aryan supremacy. Distributor: Relativity Media Production Companies: Inspire Entertainment Producers: Anthony Mackie, Jamie Linden, Jason Spire, George Olsen Writer: George Olsen Cast: Anthony Mackie SSN Insight: Mackie developed the project and first shopped it in May of 2014. But, as his star rises in films such as the next Captain America, John Hillcoat’s Triple 9 and Warner Bros’ Our Brand Is Crisis, the biopic gained heat and Relativity wants to start shooting in October. Blackbird Logline: A girl who wakes up on the tracks of the LA subway with no memory, a tattoo, $1,000, a phone number and instructions not to call the police, knowing only that people are trying to kill her. Studio/ Distributor: Lionsgate Production Company: Alloy Entertainment Producers: Elysa Dutton, Leslie Morgenstein Writer: Daniel Mackey Notes: Based on the YA novel, “Blackbird” published by HarperTeen last September. SSN Insight: Lionsgate continues its YA hot streak after Twilight and The Hunger Games with this new acquisition. The Brain Hack Logline: When two student create a way to induce hallucinogenic visions of God, they find themselves stalked by a cult that wants to destroy them. Studio/ Distributor: Studio 8 Production Companies: 3 Arts Entertainment Producers: Jeff Robinov, Erwin Stoff, Will Rowbotham, Richard Abate Director: Joe White Notes: Based on the short film "The Brain Hack" (USA/2014) written and directed by Joe White. SSN Insight: White is a hot commercials director and designer. This would be his feature directorial debut.

JGL Boards ‘Fraggle Rock’, FX Signs Sher To Two-Year Deal, Warner Shifts Release Dates, Film Development For 3/19/15


at arrivals for DON JOHN Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto, ON September 10, 2013. Photo By: Gregorio Binuya/Everett Collection


Film Development For 3/19/15: Amy Pascal To Produce ‘Little Women’, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Cast Updates, and More

Once again, there has been plenty of action over the last week, both with the announcing of new projects and the new attachments to previously established ones. Click on the link to get the full skinny as to who has gone where, and will be working with whom. (SSN)


Joseph Gordon-Levitt Is Heading Down To ‘Fraggle Rock’

The actor will star in and produce the live-action film for New Regency, The Henson Co. and Lisa Henson. The bigscreen adaptation of the musical puppet series created by the late Jim Henson has been in the works for nearly a decade, but the attachment of Gordon-Levitt constitutes a major boost. (VAR)

FX Signs ‘Hateful Eight’ Producer Stacey Sher To a Two-Year, First-Look Deal

Under the pact, Sher and Shiny Penny will develop projects for FX Networks. Sher is coming off her first TV pact — a two-year first-look deal at AMC for Double Feature Films, her company with Michael Shamberg. At AMC, Sher is executive producing the upcoming straight-to-series drama Badlands. (DH)

Warner Plays Musical Release Dates, Moves Up ‘Nice Guys’ To Make Room For ‘Central Intelligence’

Shane Black’s period noir starring Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling as a private eye (Gosling) and a hired leg-breaker (Crowe) who must work together to solve the case of a missing girl and the seemingly unrelated death of a porn star, is now coming out May 20th, 2016, while the Kevin Hart-Dwayne Johnson buddy comedy will now hit theaters a month later, on June 17th. (THR)

Miramax Wants Ehren Kruger To Adapt ‘The Brothers Grimm’ Into a TV Show

Writer of the last three Transformers films is on board for the studio, with the plan being for the series to follow the swashbuckling adventures of brothers Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm, who discover startling mythology and supernatural stakes behind the folklore sweeping 19th century Europe. Original film’s director, Terry Gilliam, is not involved. (COL)

After Years Away From the Action Genre, John Woo Is Now Ready For a ‘Manhunt’

Based on Japanese author Juko Nishimura’s novel, novel was originally adapted into a film in 1976, and became the first foreign film released in China following the Cultural Revolution. It tracks a prosecutor who is framed for robbery and rape and must head out on a mission to clear his name while taking down those who are trying to ruin it. Woo might have cameras rolling later this year. (EMP)

To Cast the Female Lead For Its ‘Preacher’ Comic Book Adaptation, AMC Turns To Another Comic Book Series

Ruth Negga, late of the ABC series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., has been cast as former hitwoman Tulip O'Hare. This is the first cast announcement for the series, which is being developed for television by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon, who created the original comic series for DC's Vertigo imprint, are on-board as co-executive producers. (NSA)

Attention, Prospective Comic Creators: Oni Press Is Opening Up Submissions This Spring

At a time when most major publishers don’t accept unsolicited submissions, Oni Press is bucking convention. The Portland, Oregon-based publisher announced this morning that it will begin accepting electronic submissions and pitches in May, not only from artists but from writers and colorists as well. More details are promised that month. (CBR)

Trailer Buzz, Part 1: ‘Poltergeist’

Twentieth Century Fox has released the first look at the upcoming reboot of the classic horror film, starring Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt, Jared Harris and Jane Adams and directed by Gil Kenan. The film hits theaters on May 22nd. (BC)

Trailer Buzz: Part 2: ‘Paper Towns’

The first look at the latest cinematic adaptation of a John Green book (after last year’s smash tearjerker The Fault in Our Stars), starring Nat Wolff and Cara Delvigne, and directed by Jake Schreier. The movie is scheduled for release on July 24th. (CB)

Mo’Ne Davis Biopic In the Works, ‘The Bad Batch’ Casts Three Stars, Sony TV and Fox Greenlight New David Shore Series, Agatha Christie — Action Star


Mo'ne Davis

The Disney Channel Has Put a Mo’Ne Davis Biopic Into Development

Titled Throw Like Mo, the TV film will tell the inspiring story of the 13-year-old sports prodigy who made history in August 2014 as the first female to pitch a shutout in the Little League World Series. Sheldon Candis and Justin Wilson will pen the script and Debra Martin Chase is executive producing. (SAA)

Director Ana Lily Amirpour Just Added Ace Ventura, Neo and Aquaman To Her New Movie

Billed as a “cannibal love story,” The Bad Batch is the followup to Amirpour’s 2014 cult hit, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, and now Jim Carrey, Keanu Reeves and Jason Momoa have joined a cast that already includes Diego Luna and Suki Waterhouse. Megan Ellison is producing. (TP)

Sony TV Really Loves Being in the David Shore Business

With Battle Creek doing well on CBS, the production company and Fox are going right to series with his supernatural crime drama Houdini and Doyle, inspired by the unlikely real-life friendship between Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and illusionist Harry Houdini. (UR)

Paramount Wants To Make Agatha Christie an Action Hero

Studio is going full speed ahead with Agatha, which will have Agatha Christie as its protagonist. Agatha is currently being re-written by Annie Neal, after being originally written by Allison Schroeder, all the way back in March 2013. Story will revolve around the 11 days in 1926 when the author went missing, while the spec script has been described as Sherlock Holmes meets Romancing The Stone, placing firmly in the action-adventure genre. (CB)

Meanwhile, Sony Is Putting a Whole New Spin On ‘Romeo and Juliet’

The studio is in final negotiations to pick up Verona, the fair city which is the setting of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, a spec by Neil Widener and Gavin James that retells that tale. Joe Roth is attached to produce. The deal was made in a competitive situation by Hannah Minghella, who will oversee for the studio with Matt Milam. (HV)

It’s Promotion Day At Fox 2000, and the Big Winner Is Erin Siminoff

Executive who most recently worked on the studio hit The Fault In Our Stars has been bumped up to EVP Production, according to Fox 2000 president Elizabeth Gabler. In addition, Nick D’Angelo was promoted to VP Production.  (DH)

Another Mark Millar Comic Book Adaptation Is Coming To the Big Screen, and Chris Morgan Is Again Involved

The writer of Wanted will produce Chrononauts, a book whose first issue just came out this week and which was written by Millar and drawn by Sean Murphy. Other movies based on Millar comics include Kick-Ass and Kingsman: The Secret Service, as well as the Samuel L. Jackson version of Nick Fury in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. No word yet on who will write the Chrononauts script. (COL)

Sofia Coppola’s TV Christmas Special Just Added a Huge Amount Of Talent

George Clooney, Amy Poehler, Miley Cyrus and Maya Rudolph have joined Bill Murray in the special, which does not yet have a release date or a distributor. All actors involved are reported to be playing themselves. Also making a cameo is Sunset Tower maître d’hôtel Dmitri Dmitrov, who will play the role of Murray’s valet. (VAR)

Trailer Buzz: ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’

The latest TV spot for the upcoming sequel, with a lot more banter and jokes this time around. The film, which stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo, Elizabeth Olsen, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Samuel L. Jackson and James Spader and written and directed by Joss Whedon, hits theaters May 1st. (HP)

Screenwriters: ‘Little Miss Sunshine’

The 109-page, unspecified draft of the Oscar-winning screenplay by Michael Arndt. Script is dated October 9th, 2003. (DS)

Exec Shuffle for 3/20/15: Marc Evans Named President of Paramount, New VP at Chernin Ent. & More


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Company Launches

British TV execs Pat Younge, Narinder Minhas, and Lucy Pilkington have launched the media company Sugar Films. The new venture will “create programming for young, mainstream and diverse audiences.” Sugar includes a production company, Sugar Films, and a digital arm, Sugar Films Lab.

The parent company of Hallmark Channel is upping its interest in original content with Crown Media Productions. The new arm will allow the Hallmark and Hallmark Movies and Mysteries channels to own more of their programming and to control it across multiple platforms internationally. Crown Media Prods. aims to finance the production of up to six telepics in 2015, with the goal of doubling that number by 2016.The production arm will be overseen by Michelle Vicary, exec VP of programming for both cablers, which are units of Crown Media Family Networks.


Fox 2000 has upromoted Erin Siminoff, who worked on the hit The Fault In Our Stars, to EVP Production. Nick D'Angelo was promoted to VP Production.

Marc Evans has replaced Adam Goodman as President of Paramount Pictures Motion Picture Group. The position was left open only for a short while before the 12-year vet took on the role.

Tonia Davis has joined Chernin Entertainment as VP of film. She will report to Chernin film President Jenno Topping. Davis was formerly exec director of production at Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures overseeing the Disney Staff Writing Program,

Universal Pictures’ president of Physical Production Andrew Fenady is leaving the studio after more than 16 years. He will be replaced by Jeff LaPlante, who has been EVP Physical Production since 2011.


A+E Networks’ Robert Sharenow has named a new A&E head of programming. Elaine Frontain Bryant, most recently SVP development and programming for History, has been named EVP and Head of Programming for A&E Network. Lauren Dolgen, an 18-year vet at MTV, has been named Head of Reality Programming and EVP of Series Development. Dolgen was most recently Head of West Coast Reality and EVP of Series Development.

Management, PR, Music, Agencies, Digital, Misc.

MSG chief executive Tad Smith has resigned to become CEO of auction giant Sotheby’s. Smith had been CEO of MSG, the company housing Madison Square Garden and other venues owned by the Dolan family, since March 2014. Smith will succeed William F. Ruprecht at Sotheby’s and serve on Sotheby’s board of directors.

A&E Network executive Neil A. Cohen is exiting to join UTA as an agent in the Alternative TV department. He will be based in the New York offices and represent talent in the cable, network and over-the-top TV fields.

Endemol Beyond USA has named Adrian Sexton as its chief operating officer. Sexton is a digital marketing veteran who previously held top digital media positions at Participant Media and Lionsgate,

‘Divergent’ Producers On Finding New Director, ‘OITNB’ Will Compete as a Drama At Emmys, Paramount Pulls ‘Moon’, Exec Shuffle For 3/20/15




Producing Partners Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher On Finding the Right Director For ‘Divergent Series: Insurgent’

With the action film Insurgent hitting theaters today, this second installment of the Divergent book series gets a brand new director, more star power and more action. Not returning is director Neil Burger, who established the Divergent world. Instead, German action helmer Robert Schwentke takes over the franchise and is already signed on for Allegiant: Part 1. (SSN)

Exec Shuffle For 3/20/15: Marc Evans Named President Of Paramount, New VP At Chernin Entertainment, and More

The usual batch of company launches, hirings and comings and goings this week, although less than the norm. The big news, obviously, comes from Paramount, but there’s plenty of other action to check out, as well. Click the link for the full skinny. (SSN)


So Much For That: Academy Denies ‘OITNB’ Petition, Forces the Show To Compete as a Drama

After allowing Jane the Virgin, Glee and Shameless to compete as comedies after they successfully petitioned earlier this week, the TV Academy has denied Netflix's request for the same consideration for Orange is the New Black at this year's Emmys. New rules handed down for this year's ceremony prohibit series longer than 30 minutes to compete as a comedy without clearance from a nine-member committee. (IW)

Paramount Has a Change of Heart, Pulls ‘The Moon and the Sun’ Off Its Schedule

Originally slated for April 10th, the studio has not indicated what plans it has for the film, a joint production with Cosmos Filmed Entertainment, Bliss Media and Lightstream Pictures. Based on the Nebula Award-wining novel by Vonda McIntyre, movie concerns plans by King Louis XIV (Pierce Brosnan) to destroy a captured mermaid in an attempt to become immortal. When the creature is discovered, conflict arises between the king and his illegitimate daughter. (DH)

Allen Hughes, Snoop Dogg and the Writer Of ‘Boondocks’ Are Teaming For an HBO Drama …

Currently untitled, the project will be set in early 1980s Los Angeles, and will follow a family whose seemingly perfect life is turned upside down when politics meets community, and the 2 collide. Show will be written by Rodney Barnes, while Hughes will direct it and Snoop will act as EP. (SAA)

While the Network Also Gives Six Episodes To Steve McQueen’s ‘Codes Of Conduct’ Limited Series

The 12 Years a Slave director had begun developing the project back in the fall of 2013, and now the director will helm all six episodes of the show, which is described as “an exploration of a young African-American man’s experience entering New York high society, with a past that may not be what it seems.” McQueen co-wrote with Matthew Michael Carnahan, and newcomer Devon Terrell will star alongside Paul Dano, Helena Bonham Carter, and Rebecca Hall. (COL)

Showtime Gets In On the Action, as Well, Greenlights a New Show For Andrew Dice Clay

Dice will be a scripted series that will revolve around Clay’s life in Las Vegas as he tries to reclaim his former stature as a standup comedian while juggling obligations to his family, his ex-wife and former fiancée. Series hails from writer Scot Armstrong and Fox 21 TV Studios. Clay, Armstrong, Sean Furst, Bryan Furst, Richard Shepard and Bruce Rubenstein are exec producers. Showtime has given the show six episodes to start. (VAR)

AMC’s ‘Preacher’ Show Still Doesn’t Have a Preacher, but Now It Has an Arseface

Ian Colletti is taking on the legendary role with, one would assume, an extensive facial prosthetic. He's the son of sheriff Hugo Root, who attempted and failed a copycat suicide with his father's shotgun after the death of Kurt Cobain. In the TV series he's called Eugene, but that is not something the comics ever revealed. (EMP)

Showrunner Advice: How To Get an Agent and a Job Writing For Television

Every working writer has their unique story about how they broke into the film and television industry. There is no one way to get your foot in the door and stay there. No matter how much the landscape changes, it all comes down to the written word. Cole Haddon is no different. (SS)

Trailer Buzz: ‘Good Kill’

The latest look at the upcoming thriller by director Andrew Niccol, starring Ethan Hawke, January Jones, Bruce Greenwood and Zoe Kravitz. The film opens on May 15th. (TP)

‘Insurgent’ Wins the Box Office, SXSW Announces Winners, New Mexico Legislature Extends Film Tax Credits, ‘Downton Abbey’ Ending With Season Six


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‘Insurgent’ Wins the Weekend With a Robust $54 Million, but ‘Cinderella’ Stays Strong

The second installment of the Divergent series did about as expected, while Kenneth Branagh’s live action fairy tale hurtles past the $100 million mark with an impressive $34.49 million of its own. Run All Night finished a distant third place with $5.12 million, while The Gunman opens weak, with just $5.01 million. (BO)

South By Southwest Has Announced the Winners Of This Year’s Festival

Krishna and Peace Officer each win both Jury and Audience Awards. Also among the winners were the Sally Field-starrer Hello, My Name is Doris, which won in the headliners category, and Todd Rohal's comedy Uncle Kent 2, in the visions section. (IW)

New Mexico Legislature Votes To Extend Film Tax Credits

Two new bills to increase the state’s film tax incentives have sailed through the state Legislature. The measures now go to Governor Susana Martinez, who is expected to sign them into law. One of the bills extends the state’s existing 30% tax incentives for TV series to stand-alone pilot episodes. It also makes it easier for feature film productions that shoot at outdoor movie ranches to qualify for the full 30% labor credit. (DH)

It Was Only a Matter Of Time: Next Season Will Be the Last For ‘Downton Abbey’

The show’s sixth and final season is shooting now, and with most of the cast members' contracts expire at the end of the upcoming season — currently filming — and, as one source notes, "You can keep the show going without Matthew and Sybill, but you can’t continue it without the entire Crawley family." (VUL)

Sony Adds ‘Beautiful’ To the List of Broadway Musicals Making Their Way To the Big Screen

The Tony-winning musical bio of the legendary Carole King’s life and career, which stars Jesse Mueller as King, will be translated to film with the help of Tom Hanks’ Playtone production shingle. Hanks, his partner Gary Goetzman and the show’s producer, Paul Blake, and will use King’s songs in the adaptation, as well. (VAR)

Because These Things Happen In Twos, Another Camelot Movie Is Now Moving Forward

As Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur: Knights Of the Round Table starts shooting, word comes that Basil Iwanyk’s Thunder Road Pictures is developing Man At Arms, which is being described as an Arthurian story filtered through Unforgiven, with Lancelot as the main character. Jonathan Liebesman, who directed last year’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, is attached to direct. (SF)

NBPC 360 Incubator Program Selects 8 Producing Teams to Compete for Up to $150,000 in Development Funds

Out of a field of 163 applicants, the National Black Programming Consortium, a Harlem-based media arts nonprofit, has selected the winners for its new incubator program, NBPC 360. The new funding initiative is designed to identify innovative storytellers and to generate quality serial, digital and multiplatform content for television and the Web. (SAA)

It Might Be Time To Start Believing: Fox Is Close To Greenlighting That New ‘X-Files’ Run

In January Fox TV Group chairman Gary Newman announced that series creator Chris Carter was in talks with the network for a new run of the show and that stars Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny were onboard with the plan. Now it appears as though these talks have materialized into a limited run of the series (less than 10 episodes). (COL)

Trailer Buzz: ‘Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation’

The first TV trailer for the latest installment of Tom Cruise’s franchise sees Ethan Hunt and his team battling “an anti-IMF.” The film also stars Simon Pegg, Jeremy Renner, Alec Baldwin and Ving Rhames and is directed by Christopher McQuarrie. It hits theaters July 31st. (TP)

Screenwriters: Legally Speaking, It Depends

If you are not careful, different concepts of what happens at what time can lead to misunderstandings or even complete breakdowns and failures. When looking on how best to deal with the complexity of time in this industry, the answer is, it depends. (SM)

On the Set for 3/23/15: Ryan Reynolds Starts Shooting ‘Deadpool’, Chloe Grace Moretz Begins ‘November Criminals’ & More


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Beyond Deceit 3/20/2015 Logline: When an ambitious young lawyer takes on a big case against the ruthless executive of a pharmaceutical company, he is drawn into a murder case and considered the prime suspect. Director: Shintaro Shimosawa Producer(s): Jonathan Sanger Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Al Pacino, Dan Stevens, Malin Akerman, Byung-hun Lee Writer(s): Shintaro Shimosawa, Adam Mason, Simon Boyes SSN Insight: Project marks the directorial debut of screenwriter Shimosawa whose credits include TV thrillers The Ringer, The Following and Intelligence. Dan Stevens was previously in the role now held by Duhamel. Stevens dropped out due to a conflict with Disney's live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast.

Deadpool 3/23/2015 Logline: Follows the adventures of Deadpool, a Marvel anti-hero and mercenary who is disfigured, mentally unstable, and is known for his love of chimichangas and cracking wise. Studio: 20th Century Fox Production Company(s): Donners' Company, Marvel Entertainment, Genre Films Director: Tim Miller Producer(s): Kevin Feige, Lauren Shuler Donner, Simon Kinberg Cast: Ryan Reynolds, TJ Miller, Ed Skrein, Gina Carano, Morena Baccarin Writer(s): Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick Details: Based on the comic book character who first appeared in New Mutants #98 in February 1991. Deadpool is considered one of the most popular characters in the "X-Men" comic book series and was created by Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza. SSN Insight: Project is a spinoff of the film "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" (2009), in which Ryan Reynolds appeared as Deadpool. Project was previously in development at Artisan.

In Dubious Battle 3/18/2015 Logline: Based on the John Steinbeck novel, the story takes place in 1930s California, and focuses on an activist who organizes a group of fruit workers in a labor strike. Production Company(s): Rabbit Bandini Productions, That's Hollywood, AMBI Distribution Director: James Franco Producer(s): Andrea Iervolino, Monika Bacardi, Scott Reed, Vince Jolivette, Ron Singer Cast: Nat Wolff, James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vincent D'Onofrio, Robert Duvall Writer(s): Matt Rager, Tom Steinbeck SSN Insight: Previously in development with Zupnik Enterprises Inc. Alec Baldwin and Brad Pitt were previously mentioned to star. Based on the novel "In Dubious Battle" written by John Steinbeck and published by in New York by Covici-Friede in 1936.

November Criminals 3/23/2015 Logline: A teenager explores the Washington D.C. underbelly in order to solve the mystery of the death of a fellow student. Production Company(s): Lotus Entertainment, Black Bicycle Entertainment Director: Sacha Gervasi Executive Producer(s): Ara Keshishian, Steven Knight Producer(s): Beth O'Neil, Bill Johnson, Jim Seibel, Erika Olde Cast: Chloe Grace Moretz, Catherine Keener, Ansel Elgort Writer(s): Sacha Gervasi, Steven Knight Details: Based on the novel "November Criminals" written by Sam Munson and published by Doubleday on April 20, 2010. SSN Insight: Steven Knight was previously attached to direct. Lisa Cholodenko previously attached to direct.

Rings 3/23/2015 Logline: A group of high school students have to find someone to watch an evil videotape or else they'll all die. Studio: Paramount Pictures Production Company(s): Benderspink, Vertigo Entertainment, Parkes+MacDonald Image Nation, Macari/Edelstein Entertainment Director: F Javier Gutierrez Executive Producer(s): Roy Lee, Doug Davison, Mike Macari, Neil A Machlis, Chris Bender Producer(s): Walter F Parkes, Laurie MacDonald Cast: Matilda Lutz Writer(s): Akiva Goldsman, David Loucka, Jacob Estes Details: Second sequel to "The Ring" (2002) directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Naomi Watts, and remake of short film "Rings" (2005) directed by Jonathan Liebesman. SSN Insight: Project was previously in development at Dreamworks.

Shifting Gears 3/16/2015 Logline: A group of hard-working underdogs must drive in, and win, a big dirt car race to defeat their dastardly nemesis and save their beloved auto shop. Production Company(s): Tonic Films Director: Jason Winn Producer(s): R Keith Harris, Matt Zboyovski, Lauren Moews Vilchik Cast: M.C. Gainey, R Keith Harris Writer(s): R Keith Harris SSN Insight: Vilchik was nominated for the 2004 Independent Spirit Awards Producer’s Award for “Outstanding Achievement for a Body of Work” and credits include Cabin Fever.

The BFG 3/23/2015 Logline: After orphaned Sofy is kidnapped by a BFG (Big Friendly Giant), the two find in each other the families they never had as they work together to stop some bad giants from eating the world’s children. Studio: DreamWorks Studios Production Company(s): Kennedy/Marshall Company, Amblin Entertainment, Walden Media Director: Steven Spielberg Executive Producer(s): Michael Siegel, John Madden, Kathleen Kennedy Producer(s): Frank Marshall, Steven Spielberg, Samuel L. Mercer Cast: Mark Rylance, Ruby Barnhill Writer(s): Melissa Mathison, Robin Swicord, Nicholas Kazan, Terry Jones, Gwyn Lurie Details: Project based on the children's book "The BFG" written by Roald Dahl and illustrated by Quentin Blake and published in 1982. Roald Dahl's story was previously adapted as an animated feature (UK/1991), directed by Brian Cosgrove. SSN Insight: Project was previously set up at Paramount. After a long casting search, Spielberg’s adaptation of the beloved Roald Dahl novel has found its “Sophie” in newcomer Ruby Barnhill.


Ali & Nino 3/23/2015 Logline: No Logline Available. Studio: No Studio Available. Production Company(s): Archery Pictures Director: Asif Kapadia Executive Producer(s): Leyla Aliyeva Producer(s): Kris Thykier, Diana Phillips Cast: Adam Bakri, Maria Valverde, Mandy Patinkin, Connie Nielsen, Riccardo Scamarcio Writer(s): Christopher Hampton Details: Based on the book "Ali & Nino" written by an author using the pseudonym Kurban Said and first published in German in 1937. The book was reissued in English by Overlook/Penguin in July 1996. SSN Insight: Alicia Vikander was previously attached to star. Kapadia previously directed Senna (2010), the highest grossing U.K. documentary of all time, for which he won a BAFTA award.

When the Bough Breaks 3/20/2015 Logline: When a professional couple who are unable to conceive hire a young, blue-collar woman as a surrogate, she develops a psychotic fixation on the husband that turns violent and deadly just before the baby is born. Studio: Screen Gems Production Company(s): Unique Features Director: Jon Cassar Executive Producer(s): Glenn Gainor, Morris Chestnut Producer(s): Robert Shaye, Michael Lynne Cast: Morris Chestnut, Regina Hall, Jaz Sinclair, Theo Rossi, Michael K. Williams Writer(s): Jack Olsen, Karl Gajdusek SSN Insight: Cassar, best known for his work as director and executive producer on the TV series, 24, takes on his first studio feature with this psychological thriller.

SXSW Wrap-Up, Hulu Greenlights New Show From Jason Katims, Lawrence Leaving X-Men Series, On the Set For 3/23/15




SXSW 2015 Wrap-Up: The Awards Winners and the Movies That Shined

The annual SXSW Film Festival wrapped up this past weekend, and the streets and theaters of Austin, Texas are getting back to their regular, laid-back ways. It was another successful fest with movies that shined because of the risks the determined filmmakers took and the work they put in to get there. (SSN)

On the Set For 3/23/15: Ryan Reynolds Starts Shooting ‘Deadpool’, Chloe Grace Moritz Begins ‘November Criminal’ and More

A number of new projects get up and running, including the next film from Steven Spielberg, the next installment in the Ring franchise, and James Franco’s next directorial effort, while a pair of projects wrap things up, including one from director Jon Cassar. (SSN)


Hulu Is Getting Into the Jason Katims Business, Gives His New Show a 10-Episode Order

The online streaming service has picked up The Way, a drama from Katims and Parenthood writer-producer Jessica Goldberg. New show examines a family at the center of a controversial faith-based movement struggling with relationships, marriage and power. Each hourlong episode will take an in-depth look at what it means to choose between the life we live and the life we want. (TLF)

From the “It Was Inevitable” File: ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ Will Be the Last X-Men Flick For Jennifer Lawrence

In an interview, the Oscar-winning actress reveled that she will complete her work on the series with this next film, saying, “It is my last one, actually.” She first appeared in X-Men: First Class as Mystique, then appeared in the sequel, last year’s X-Men: Days Of Future Past. The latest in the series, directed by Bryan Singer, hits theaters on May 27th, 2016. (COL)

Georgia’s Big Production Studios Get Together To Form a New Consortium

Last week, the Georgia Studio & Infrastructure Alliance (GSIA) announced the members of a new film and television studio and infrastructure association for Georgia: Tyler Perry Studios, Eagle Rock Studios Atlanta, EUE/Screen Gems Studios Atlanta, Mailing Avenue Stageworks, and Triple Horse Studios. (SAA)

History Channel To Develop Ongoing Scripted Series About the Knights Of Templar

Jeremy Renner and Don Handfield’s The Combine is producing Knightfall along with the network, A+E Studios and Midnight Radio. Show chronicles the actual events leading up to and following the persecution, downfall and burning at the stake of the Knights Templar on Friday the 13th, 1307. More than 700 years later, Friday the 13th is known as a cursed day because of this event. (DH)

Ruairi Robinson‘s Proof Of Concept Trailer for ‘The Leviathan’ Is Now Becoming a Feature, After All

Simon Kinberg will produce and Neill Blomkamp will executive produce the project, which is inspired in part by Moby Dick, with shades of Dune. Story follows the idea that, by the early 22nd century, mankind had colonized many worlds. Faster than light travel was made possible by harvesting exotic matter from the eggs of the largest species mankind has ever seen. Those that take part in the hunt are mostly involuntary labor. (SF)

Another Chuck Palahniuk Novel Is Heading For the Big Screen, So Prepare For a ‘Lullaby’

The writer will work with filmmakers Andy Mingo and Josh Leake to adapt the book, which was first published in 2002. Story follows Carl Streator, a newspaper reporter who discovers that children – and some adults – are dying after hearing an African chant that has made its way into a book of poems. Streator memorizes the poem, and begins using it to kill people, while also realizing its terrible power, starting a road trip to destroy all the copies of the book.  (EMP)

This ‘Mallrats’ Sequel Business Is Gaining Steam, as Kevin Smith Announces Casting News

He’s still working on the script and is a year away from starting production on Mallrats 2, but Kevin Smith has begun teasing out some details for the recently announced sequel. Jason Mewes, Michael Rooker, Shannen Doherty and comics icon Stan Lee all appear to be onboard, while Smith next pursues names like Ben Affleck, Jason Lee, Jeremy London and Claire Forlani, among others. (FSR)

Spoiler Alert! HBO’s ‘Game Of Thrones’ Will Eventually Reveal the Ending To the ‘Game Of Thrones’ Books

Show’s creators D.B. Weiss and David Benioff confirmed that spoilers are most definitely coming soon. "We’ll eventually, basically, meet up at pretty much the same place where George is going," Benioff said. Martin, who recently announced he’s Skipping fan conventions to finish Book 6, The Winds of Winter, said in 2013 that the the odds of the show catching up to the books "are very long." (HP)

Russo Bros. To Helm ‘Avengers: Infinity War — Parts 1&2′, Paramount Dissolves Insurge, Yet Another Worldview Lawsuit, Bad Robot’s New Top Man



It’s Official, the Russo Brothers Will Be Directing the Two-Part ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

The duo who directed Captain America: The Winter Soldier and are preparing to shoot Captain America: Civil War are on board to take over for Joss Whedon, who helmed The Avengers and the upcoming sequel, Avengers: Age of Ultron. The two-part movie will be released in 2018 and 2019, and will apparently be written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, who wrote those same two Captain America movies. (CB)

Paramount Is Calling It a Day For Its Insurge Division

Studio is dismantling its microbudget film branch, reducing it from a separate division although it intends to keep the name for use as a label on future genre pictures. Amy Powell, who was hired as president of Insurge Pictures when it launched in 2010, will focus on her TV and digital responsibilities as president of Paramount TV and Digital Entertainment. (THR)

‘Birdman’ Financier Worldview Entertainment Is Hit With Yet Another Big Lawsuit

Sarah Johnson, daughter of billionaire Charles B. Johnson, is one of its major backers and is now suing the company, alleging fraud and mismanagement of a $25 million investment. It’s the fourth suit involving Worldview that has been filed since last summer, when founder Christopher Woodrow was ousted. The company has largely ceased operating. (VAR)

Bad Robot Is Getting a Lot Closer To Having a New Top Man

Former BBC drama controller Ben Stephenson is finalizing his long-rumored move to Hollywood to run J.J. Abrams’ production company. Kathy Lingg, who had been overseeing TV development for Bad Robot, is expected to segue to a producing pod deal with the company. Abrams’ long-time partner and collaborator at Bad Robot, Bryan Burk, is staying put though he may focus on feature projects going forward. (DH)

Good News, ‘Crow’ Fans! Jack Huston Is Your New Eric Draven!

Corin Hardy is directing the reboot of the film franchise, the first film of which starred the late Brandon Lee, who was killed in an accident during shooting. Story is based on the 1980s comic book that tells the tale of a musician murdered by criminals who is brought back from the land of the dead by a mysterious, mystical crow to get revenge against those who wronged him and his fiancée. (EMP)

Meanwhile, ‘The Legend Of Zelda’ Fans Awaiting That TV Show Adaptation Have Some Bad News Today

Nintendo chief Satoru Iwata has thrown doubt on talk of the Zelda TV show, saying it was all based on wrong info, saying in an interview, “As of now, I have nothing new to share with you in regard to the use of our IPs for any TV shows or films, but I can at least confirm that the article in question is not based on correct information.” This implies the Netflix show might not be a go, after all. (SF)

Liam Neeson May Have Put a Clock On His Action Career, but He’s Now Got Another Flick In the Pipeline

The 62-year-old actor, who recently said he’d stop making action films when he turns 65 in June of 2017, has signed on for Narco Sub, with Game Of Thrones director Brian Kirk on to direct. Story follows Neeson’s disgraced American Naval officer when a notorious Ecuadorian drug lord forces him to navigate a submarine full of cocaine past the U.S. Coast Guard. Ricky Scott and Simon Kinberg are producing. (COL)

Disney Makes a Couple Of Big Deals, Banning Smoking In One, Agreeing Not To Market ‘Rogue One’ For a While In the Other

During a shareholder meeting last week, CEO Bob Iger revealed that the company's on screen smoking ban was now being extended to every shingle under their umbrella — Lucasfilm, Marvel, and Pixar. Meanwhile, the announced title of the new Tom Cruise movie, Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation has led Disney and Paramount to make a deal, wherein the Star Wars standalone movie Rogue One will not be marketed until 2016.  (TP)

Connie Britton Is Returning To Ryan Murphy’s World, Will Join Cast Of ‘American Crime Story’

The Nashville star, who was in the first season of Murphy’s American Horror Story, will play Faye Resnick in the Emmy-winning creator’s take on the O.J. Simpson trial. The 10-episode miniseries, based on Jeffrey Toobin's book, The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson, will follow the real-life 1995 murder trial of Simpson. Britton joins Cuba Gooding Jr., Sarah Paulson and David Schwimmer. (HP)

Online Film School: The 15 Things You Can Learn From Watching the Blu-ray Commentary For ‘The Breakfast Club’

On the 30th anniversary of the film’s release comes this Blu-ray release, with stars of the film Judd Nelson and Anthony Michael Hall discussing the film with DVD feature producer Jason Hillhouse. (FSR)

TV Development for 3/24/15: Team Downey Developing HBO Project, Jeremy Renner Producing Knightfall for History & More


Jeremy Renner

Baghdad Country Club Network: Cinemax Studio: Warner Horizon Television Production Company(s): Team Downey Executive Producer(s): Dave Andron, Robert Downey Jr., Susan Downey, Amanda Essick Burrell, Joshuah Bearman Writer(s): Dave Andron Logline: A special forces soldier-turned-mercenary opens the only watering hole in Baghdad’s Green Zone at the height of the post-invasion Iraqi insurgency. Details: Based on the article, "Baghdad Country Club," written by Joshua Bearman and published by The Atavist in December, 2011. SSN Insight: The article was previously optioned by Cinemax sibling HBO. Chris Tucker Live Network: Netflix Production Company(s): Chris Tucker Entertainment Executive Producer(s): Chris Tucker Writer(s): Chris Tucker Logline: Stand-up comedy special featuring comedian Chris Tucker. SSN Insight: This marks Tucker’s first stand-up comedy special, filmed at the Historic Fox Theatre in Tucker’s hometown of Atlanta, GA, and will premiere July 10. Netflix’s other comedy stand-up specials include ones from Aziz Ansari, Craig Ferguson, Nick Offerman, Chelse Peretti and Chelsea Handler. Codes Of Conduct Network: HBO Studio: Warner Television Production Company(s): RSTV, See-Saw Films Executive Producer(s): Steve McQueen, Matthew Michael Carnahan, Russell Simmons, Iain Canning, Emile Sherman Writer(s): Steve McQueen, Matthew Michael Carnahan Logline: An exploration of a young African American man’s experience breaking into the social circles of Manhattan’s elite, testing the boundaries of access and social mobility. Beverly’s ability will grant him access to a life larger in every way than the one to which he was born. His chameleon-like approach to life will test his nerve as he takes his future into his own hands. SSN Insight: Ordered to pilot on March 10. HBO has now ordered 6 episodes as of March 20. McQueen will direct all six episodes. HBO’s 2015 drama series slate includes a new series from JJ Abrams, Westworld, an Untitled Rock ‘n’ Roll project from Martin Scorsese, and the Dwayne Johnson and Mark Wahlberg produced Ballers.

Dice Network: Showtime Studio: Fox 21 TV Studios Production Company(s): Ole Executive Producer(s): Scot Armstrong, Sean Furst, Bryan Furst, Andrew Dice Clay, Richard Shepard Writer(s): Scot Armstrong Logline: Follows the abrasive stand-up as he works in Vegas to resurrect his career while supporting his family. And his girlfriend. And his ex-fiance. And his ex-wife. And his mother-in-law. And his son’s band. Details: Loosely based on the life of comedian Andrew Dice Clay. SSN Insight: Showtime has given a six episode straight-to-series order as of March 20 after a competitive situation for the single-camera scripted comedy. Showtime also has picked up the comedy special, Andrew Dice Clay Presents the Blue Show, to premiere April 25.

The Evermoor Chronicles Network: Disney Channel Studio: Disney Europe Middle East & Africa (EMEA) Production Company(s): Lime Pictures Executive Producer(s): Tim Compton, Rebecca Hodgson Writer(s): Bede Blake Logline: An American teen is uprooted from her city home in the U.S. and brought to a beautiful but isolated village on the edge of some very creepy moors in middle England. As her famous novelist mom and step-dad are busy unpacking at Evermoor Manor, she, her brother, and her British step-siblings try to adjust to life in their new home. It’s not long before danger, mystery and intrigue unfurl. Details: Follow-up to the four part miniseries Evermoor starring Tara Crossley that attracted 1.6 million viewers. SSN Insight: Disney has ordered 20 episodes. Production is set to begin in the summer on location in Liverpool and Washington for a late 2015 premiere on Disney Channel in the UK and worldwide.

Famous in Love Network: ABC Family Studio: Warner Horizon Television Production Company(s): Long Lake Productions Executive Producer(s): Marlene King, Dan Farah Writer(s): Rebecca Serle, Marlene King Logline: A college student plucked from obscurity to star in a major Hollywood movie franchise struggles with her new-found fame. Based on the novel. Details: Based on the novel, "Famous in Love," written by Rebecca Serle and published by Poppy on October 21, 2014. SSN Insight: King is also the executive producer/co-showrunner of ABC Family’s flagship drama Pretty Little Liars. In films, King is writing and executive producing The Merciless for Lionsgate, based on Danielle Vega’s popular horror novel.

Knightfall Network: The History Channel Studio: A+E Studios Production Company(s): The Combine, Midnight Radio Executive Producer(s): Jeremy Renner, Don Handfield, Richard Rayner, Jeff Pinkner, Andre Nemec, Josh Appelbaum, Scott Rosenberg Logline: Chronicles the actual events leading up to and following the persecution, downfall and burning at the stake of the Knights Templar on Friday the 13th, 1307. More than 700 years later, Friday the 13th is known as a cursed day because of this event. SSN Insight: This is the first series in development for The Combine, Jeremy Renner’s shingle. They previously producer Kill the Messenger starrign Renner and are in preproduction on the film, The Founder to star Michael Keaton.

Untitled Snoop Dogg Project Network: HBO Executive Producer(s): Snoop Dogg, Allen Hughes, Rodney Barnes, Ted Chung Writer(s): Rodney Barnes Logline: Set in the early 1980s in Los Angeles and centers on a family whose seemingly idyllic life is turned upside down by the collision of their community and American politics. SSN Insight: Dogg and Barnes previously worked together on the animated comedy The Boondocks. Dogg voiced a recurring character while Barnes executive produced. Houdini & Doyle Network: Fox Broadcasting Company , ITV Networks Studio: Sony Pictures Television Production Company(s): Shaftesbury Films, Big Talk Productions, Shore Z Productions Executive Producer(s): David Hoselton, David Titcher, David Shore, Erin Gunn Writer(s): David Hoselton, David Titcher Logline: Two of the great characters of the twentieth century - Harry Houdini, master magician, escape artist and paranormal debunker - and Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of the greatest detective of all time, and paranormal aficionado - grudgingly join forces to investigate crimes with a supernatural slant. Although they're both rich, famous, and brilliant, they're the original odd couple with Houdini believing in nothing, Doyle in everything. Inspired by true events. SSN Insight: Fox has given a ten episode straight to series order. Shore has an overall deal with Sony. TV and the series will be distributed worldwide.

Nightingale Network: HBO Studio: HBO Films Production Company(s): Plan B Entertainment, BN Films, Yoruba Saxon Productions, Sea Smoke Entertainment Executive Producer(s): Josh Weinstock, Katrina Wolfe, Elliott Lester, Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner Logline: A drama that probes the darkest corners of a disturbed mind centering around Peter Snowden, a man obsessively in love with an old army friend. As he prepares to reunite with the object of his affection, Peter begins to spiral downwards — with fatal results. SSN Insight: Project was revealed at the Santa Barbara Film Festival by David Oyelowo, who will star. BN Films has the Emir Kusturic directed Love and War and La Mujer Infinita, written and directed by Argentinian filmmaker Lucia Puenzo on their upcoming film slate. The Brothers Grimm Studio: Miramax Films Production Company(s): Bobker/Kruger Films Executive Producer(s): Ehren Kruger, Daniel Bobker, Daniel Pipski, Zanne Devine Writer(s): Ehren Kruger Logline: The series follows the swashbuckling adventures of brothers Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm, who discover startling mythology and supernatural stakes behind the folklore sweeping 19th century Europe. Details: The series builds off the origin story of the film, "The Brothers Grimm," (2005), directed by Terry Gilliam and starring Matt Damon and Heath Ledger. SSN Insight: Kruger’s credits include The Ring and Transformers 2, 3, 4. The original Brothers Grimm film grossed $105 million worldwide in 2005. A network has not been confirmed yet.

The Way Network: Hulu Studio: Universal Television Production Company(s): True Jack Productions Executive Producer(s): Jessica Goldberg, Jason Katims, Michelle Lee Logline: The series examines a family at the center of a controversial faith-based movement struggling with relationships, marriage and power. SSN Insight: Hulu has given a straight to series order of 10 episodes as of March 23. Each hour long episode takes an detailed look at what it means to choose between the life we live and the life we want. It marks Katims’ first show not sold to a broadcast network. His credits include Friday Night Lights, Parenthood and current NBC show, About A Boy.

Throw Like Mo Network: Disney Channel Executive Producer(s): Debra Martin Chase Writer(s): Sheldon Candis, Justin Wilson Logline: The story of Mo'ne Davis, the 13-year-old sports prodigy who made history in August 2014 as the first female to pitch a shutout in the Little League World Series. Details: Based on the true story of Mo'ne Davis. SSN Insight: Davis’ memoir Remember My Name was released earlier this year. Davis has also starred in a short Spike Lee-directed film for Chevrolet and had her jersey inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Tuned Network: NBC Entertainment Studio: Universal Television Production Company(s): UnbeliEVAble Entertainment Executive Producer(s): Zachary Levi, Deborah Kaplan, Harry Elfont, Eva Longoria, Ben Spector Writer(s): Deborah Kaplan, Harry Elfont Logline: A half-hour musical comedy about an ambitious New Yorker's life is upended by sudden musical hallucinations. While these vivid hallucinations threaten to completely derail his enviable life, he’ll eventually realize that they might lead him on a more fulfilling journey. SSN Insight: Levi signed a first-look deal with Universal TV and will star in NBC’s upcoming event series Heroes Reborn. Under the deal, Levi will continue to develop Tuned and potentially star in the series. Eva Longoria’s banner UnbeliEVAble banner also has a deal at Uni TV.