Deadline.com reports that Universal Pictures has acquired the $65 million Ted, an R-rated comedy that will mark the feature directorial debut of Seth MacFarlane.
The film, which was developed by Media Rights Capital, is a comedy about a man and his teddy bear.
The feature will mix live action and CG with MacFarlane also co-starring and providing the voice for the title character. The Hollywood Insider blog says the story centers on a seemingly normal man who, as a child, made a wish that he could talk to his bear, only to have his bear come alive.
The bear grows up alongside the man but one day the man's girlfriend poses an ultimatum: her or the bear. Sources told HI that MacFarlane wants to cast Mila Kunis, who has voiced Meg Griffin on Family Guy since 1999, as the girlfriend.
MacFarlane wrote the script with Family Guy cohorts Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild. He will produce with MRC, Scott Stuber and John Jacobs.
Deadline says the plan is for the film to go into production this year.
While the Miramax auction has brought two sets of brothers to the fore, the MGM saga may now have its own set of siblings to contend with.
The Financial Times reports that Tony and Ridley Scott have emerged as surprise candidates to steer the studio back to solvency after submitting a restructuring plan to the studio’s lenders.
The brothers have expressed interest in running MGM, people familiar with the situation told the FT. The paper said it was unclear whether their proposal would involve combining the brothers' Scott Free with MGM, or if they are seeking a stake in the recapitalized studio.
Thus far, two offers have come in for MGM - one from Time Warner at $1.5 billion and the other from Russian billionaire Len Blavatnik, who has proposed a restructuring deal that would include cash. Earlier this week, it was reported that Ryan Kavanaugh's Relativity Media had offered to finance the studio's films with a $500 million fund.
Creditors, who were seeking offers in the $2 billion range, are said to be leaning instead towards a debt-for-equity swap and an injection of new capital to create a standalone company.
Anna Friel is in negotiations to join the cast of Dark Fields, which already includes Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro and Abbie Cornish.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Friel will play Cooper's ex-wife in the Neil Burger-directed thriller.
Cooper plays a down-and-out writer who gets his hands on a top-secret pharmaceutical drug that makes one smarter. Despite sudden financial and social success, he soon discovers that the drug has lethal and lasting side effects. Before long, mysterious antagonists are pursuing him.
Universal will distribute via Relativity's Rogue Pictures.
Fields is produced by Leslie Dixon and Scott Kroopf as well as Relativity's Ryan Kavanaugh. Relativity's Tucker Tooley will serve as executive producer.
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As exclusively reported by Wiretap on March 10, it has now been confirmed that Ridley Scott's Robin Hood will open the Cannes Film Festival.
Organizers announced the selection on Friday in Paris.
The Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett-starrer will debut out of competition on May 12 in Cannes.
You can check out the trailer for Robin Hood, below:
With the Oscars fading into memory, it's time to look forward to the industry's next big glitzy affair: the Cannes Film Festival, where, Wiretap is hearing, a band of merry men may be making their way up the red carpet on opening night.
According to information we've received, Ridley Scott's Robin Hood is tipped to open the festival. Further, it's also been whispered that French passport holder Oliver Stone will screen his Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps out of competition.
The US release date for Robin Hood is May 14, so, given that the festival opens on May 12, the timing would make sense.
Cannes Film Festival chief Thierry Fremaux, however, told Wiretap, "No decision has been made because we still have films to see for the opening night slot."
Universal Pictures International France marketing director Stephane Rethore had essentially the same thing to say, "nothing is confirmed," he told Wiretap.
Robin Hood stars Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett, Matthew Macfadyen, Mark Strong, Danny Huston and William Hurt among others in a Brian Helgeland action/adventure spin on the classic tale.
As for Wall Street, the US release date is currently (as per IMDB) set for April 23 while the French release date is May 5, a week before the festival opens. Word is over here that the Fox film is thus likely to screen rather than have an official selection premiere at the festival.
Stone's sequel to the 1987 iconic treatise on greed again stars Michael Douglas as Gordon Gekko. The corporate raider, just released from prison, hooks up with a young trader (Shia LaBeouf) for a new round of high-stakes exploits. Also in the cast are Carey Mulligan, Josh Brolin, Frank Langella and Charlie Sheen reprising his role from the original as Bud Fox.
Scott Caan has been selected for the role of Danny "Danno" Williams on CBS' updated version of Hawaii Five-O.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Caan will be a guest star on the Hawaii pilot because of his commitment to HBO's Entourage. He will then segue to Hawaii as a regular if the pilot is picked up to series.
The new Hawaii is from CBS Studios, Star Trek writers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, and CSI: NY executive producer Peter Lenkov.
It centers on an elite branch of the Hawaii State Police headed by Steve McGarrett (Alex O'Loughlin). The Williams character is a New Jersey cop who has recently undergone an acrimonious divorce and has transferred to Hawaii to be near his daughter. Forced to partner with McGarrett, Danno is initially leery of their association.
The character's name was immortalized by McGarrett's catchphrase, "Book 'em, Danno!" which closed most episodes of the original series.
Robert De Niro will join Bradley Cooper in Relativity Media's suspense thriller The Dark Fields.
The project starts shooting in Philadelphia in May and is, notes Variety, the first big-screen deal the actor has made since he switched from WME to CAA in January.
The story centers on a down-and-out NYC writer who comes into possession of a designer drug that gives him newfound intelligence and success. De Niro will play a brilliant financial mogul who begins pursuing Cooper's character, Variety explains.
Neil Burger is directing. Scott Kroopf, Leslie Dixon and Ryan Kavanaugh are producing while Tucker Tooley is exec producing. Dixon wrote the screenplay based on a novel by Alan Glynn.
House star Olivia Wilde is in negotiations to star opposite Daniel Craig in Jon Favreau's Cowboys & Aliens.
The Heat Vision blog reports that Wilde would play a character named Ella who joins up with mysterious gunslinger in an unlikely uprising against an alien invasion.
Craig recently took over the role of gunslinger Zeke Jackson after Robert Downey, Jr. dropped out.
Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci are producing and wrote the script with Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof. Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard and Brian Grazer are also producing along with Scott Mitchell Rosenberg.
The God of Legion secular Hollywood’s latest Biblically-inspired action flick is old-school an angry spiteful Almighty with a penchant for Old Testament theatrics. Fed up with humanity’s decadent warmongering ways He’s decided to pull the plug on the whole crazy experiment and start over from scratch.
Fortunately for us the God of Legion is also a rather lazy fellow. Instead of doing the apocalyptic work himself and wiping us out with a giant flood which worked perfectly well last time He opts to delegate the task to His army of angels — a questionable strategy that starts to fall apart when the archangel charged with leading the planned extermination Michael (Paul Bettany) refuses to comply.
Michael who unlike his boss still harbors affection for our sorry species abandons his post and descends to earth where inside the swollen belly of Charlie (Adrianne Palicki) an unwed mother-to-be working as a waitress in an out-of-the-way diner sits humanity’s lone hope for survival. Why is this particular baby so important? Is it the one destined to lead us to victory over Skynet? Heaven knows — Legion reveals little details its script devoid of actual scripture. What is clear is that God’s celestial hitmen want the kid whacked before it’s born.
But Michael won’t let humanity fall without a fight. Armed with a Waco-sized arsenal of assault weapons he hunkers down with the diner’s patrons a largely superfluous collection of thinly-sketched caricatures from various demographic groups led by Dennis Quaid as the diner’s grizzled owner Tyrese Gibson as a hip-hop hustler and Lucas Black as a simple-minded country boy.
Together they mount a heroic final stand against hordes of angels who’ve taken possession of “weak-willed” humans turning kindly old grandmas and mild-mannered ice cream vendors into snarling ravenous foul-mouthed beasts. They descend upon the ramshackle diner in a series of full-frontal assaults commanded by the archangel Gabriel (Kevin Durand) the George Pickett of End of Days generals.
Beneath its superficial religious facade Legion is really just a run-of-the-mill zombie flick a Biblical I Am Legend. Bettany an actor accustomed to smaller dramatic roles in films like A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code looks perfectly at ease in his first major action role wielding machine guns and bowie knives with equal aplomb. Conversely first-time director Scott Stewart a former visual effects artist does little to prove himself worthy of such a promotion serving up some impressive CGI work but not much else worthy of note.
The Writers Guild announced its screen nominees this morning with Best Original screenplay nods going to Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber for (500) Days of Summer, James Cameron for Avatar, Jon Lucas and Scott Moore for The Hangover, Mark Boal for The Hurt Locker and Joel and Ethan Coen for A Serious Man.
Contenders in the adapted screenplay category are Scott Cooper for Crazy Heart, based on the novel by Thomas Cobb; Nora Ephron for Julie & Julia, based on the books Julie & Julia by Julie Powell and My Life in France by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme; Geoffrey Fletcher for Precious, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman for Star Trek, based upon Star Trek, created by Gene Roddenberry, and Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner for Up in the Air, based on the novel by Walter Kirn.
Documentary screenplay nominations are: Richard Trank for Against the Tide, Michael Moore for Capitalism: A Love Story, Mark Monroe for The Cove, Robert Stone for Earth Days, Chris Rock & Jeff Stilson and Lance Crouther and Chuck Sklar for Good Hair, and Bill Guttentag and Dan Sturman for Soundtrack for a Revolution.
The 2010 Writers Guild Awards will be held on Saturday, February 20, simultaneously at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles and the Hudson Theatre at the Millennium Broadway Hotel in New York City.