Jason Bateman’s Aggregate shingle has extended another two years under his first-look deal at Universal Pictures to run through 2017. Bateman first signed the deal in 2012 and through it produced and directed Bad Words, produced the hit Identity Thief and the upcoming and The Family Fang starring Bateman, Nicole Kidman and Christopher Walken. He has hired as an executive Aaron Schmidt, who was previously a VP at Kevin McCormick’s Warner Bros-based Langley Park.
Smithsonian Enterprises, the media and business division of the Smithsonian Institution, has signed a deal with Bungalow | Storied Media Group to rep the institution and its affiliated brands in the feature film development, finance and distribution community. Digging into the artifacts that the Smithsonian holds, they will develop properties from the Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers around the world, as well as from Smithsonian Magazine, Air & Space Magazine and Smithsonian.com.
Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea’s three-year-old production company Pacific Standard has signed a two year, overall deal with ABC Studios exclusive in broadcast. Under the deal overseen by EVP Patrick Moran, Witherspoon and Papandrea plan to hire a TV executive to work alongside creative executive Jeanne Snow. This comes along with news of Pacific Standard’s TV limited series Big Little Lies that received a straight-to-series order at HBO.
Jon Harmon Feldman is in talks to ink an overall deal with ABC Studios and executive produce and be the sole showrunner on the new fall series Blood & Oil. He’d be taking over for helmer Cynthia Cidre who would remain on as an EP. The change comes after the first episode was shot on location in Utah. Feldman was previously the showrunner on Big Shots, Dirty Sexy Money and created No Ordinary Family, all broadcast on ABC.
Sheldon Turner and Jennifer Klein’s Vendetta Productions has renewed their first-look deal with Sony Pictures Television. Their original deal began two years prior. Under the new deal they will produce a drama series adaptation of Walter Kirn’s autobiographical book Blood Will Out: The True Story Of A Murder, A Mystery, And A Masquerade. Kirn and Turner are set to co-write the script which will then be shopped to cable networks through Sony TV’s recently re-launched TriStar Television label.