August 2011 Archive


Phase 4 Acquires Black Comedy 'Rid Of Me'

Phase 4 Films has acquired U.S. and Canadian distribution rights to Rid of Me, the James Westby-directed black comedy that will be released in the fall. Phase 4 will team with Submarine for the theatrical run of a film first seen at the Tribeca Film Festival last spring. The comedy stars Katie O'Grady as an awkward young woman trying too hard to perfect her marriage, among a new group of friends. Submarine's Josh Braun repped the… Read


Film Academy Funds Telluride Program

The Telluride Film Festival kicks off its 38th edition Friday, marking the unofficial official launch of awards season, and for the fourth consecutive year it is getting help from the the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to do it: The Academy has granted $50,000 to underwrite the fest's Guest Director program, which this year features musician Caetano Veloso. AMPAS has pitched in to support the past three Guest Directors Michael Ondaatje, Alexander Payne and… Read


RATINGS RAT RACE: NBC Tops Night With 'America's Got Talent', Univision No. 2

NBC's America's Got Talent (3.0/8 in adults 18-49, 10.9 million viewers from 9-11 PM) was down 9% in 18-49 from last Tuesday but still topped the night in all key measures and led NBC to a nightly win. (Its lead-in, It's Worth What? was up a tenth to a 1.2/4). Once again, a rerun of Wipeout (1.9/6) at 8 PM outperformed the ABC originals that followed it: new reality series Take the Money and Run (1.5/4) and drama Combat Hospital (0.9/3), both down a tenth from last week… Read


'Game Of Thrones' Harry Lloyd Lands Lead In 'Closer To The Moon'

EXCLUSIVE: British thesp Harry Lloyd has landed the lead role in Closer to the Moon, joining Vera Farmiga and Mark Strong in the period drama. The film's set in 1959 Bucharest, where a Jewish group of former anti-Nazi revolutionaries refocus their skills against the communists and are arrested for robbing a bank under the guise of staging a film shoot. A year later, the culprits are sentenced to death but first are forced to reenact the caper in a propaganda film. Lloyd… Read


Newly Free Rapper T.I. Gets VH1 Series

When NFL teams win the Super Bowl, they go to Disneyland; when celebrities go to jail, they get a reality show. VH1 just announced it has greenlighted a new 10-episode reality series starring rapper T.I., who is readjusting to life as a free man and recording a new album after being incarcerated for nearly a year in a federal prison in Arkansas — his second stint in three years. The yet-untitled series will premiere Dec. 5. Grammy-winning T.I., who has a wife and kids… Read


Olivia Munn Joins 'Magic Mike'

EXCLUSIVE: Steven Soderbergh's hunkfest Magic Mike is finally getting something that has so far been missing: actresses. Olivia Munn is negotiating to play the role of Amber, the love interest to Channing Tatum, who plays Magic Mike. She'll join Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey, Matt Bomer and True Blood's Joe Mangianello. All of them play male strippers in the coming-of-age story that revolves around the relationship between a veteran dancer (Tatum) and his… Read


Bravo To Keep Sept. 5 Premiere Date For 'Real Housewives Of BH' Despite Suicide

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills will premiere Sept. 5 as originally scheduled despite the recent suicide of co-star Russell Armstrong. “Given that these episodes were filmed months ago, the producers of the show taped a brief interview this week with several of the cast members to introduce the premiere,” Bravo president Frances Berwick said in a statement. “Re-editing of the episodes is still underway.” She said that Bravo has partnered with the Entertainment… Read


TV Script Deals: Jon Feldman Sells Drama To ABC, Samuel L. Jackson Sells To CBS

In the latest round of script sales, ABC has nabbed a high-concept light drama from No Ordinary Family co-creator/executive producer Jon Feldman. Described as Moonlighting meets Early Edition, the project centers on a charming ex-con (think George Clooney in Ocean's Eleven) who realizes that he's receiving video links to the news reports of the beautiful, ambitious TV crime reporter who once upon a time put him away. The only catch: He's getting her news stories… Read


Global Showbiz Briefs: UK, Australia, France

Report: ITV Crafting Full Takeover Of Debt-Ridden Endemol Commercial broadcaster ITV is reportedly seeking full control of Dutch giant Endemol if it buys the production company behind Big Brother. ITV is constructing a deal to acquire Endemol by taking on its $2B debt without paying anything for the equity held by Mediaset, Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, and Cyrte Investments. Under the plan, the three shareholders would see some cash, as they are all debt holders.  ITV… Read


Cinemax Passes On 'The Sector'; Series Eyes Potential Move To Science Channel

EXCLUSIVE: Sci-fi action-crime series The Sector, from Ridley and Tony Scott's Scott Free Prods and Germany's Tandem Communications, is no longer set up at Cinemax. There is talk about Discovery's Science (formerly Science Channel) possibly picking up the action-crime series in the vein of Blade Runner and District 9 that centers on a commander of a paramilitary unit who pursues a dangerous new race of genetically-enhanced humans. I hear the search is underway for a… Read


HBO Picks Up Boxing Drama 'Da Brick' To Pilot; Doug Ellin, Spike Lee, Mike Tyson And John Ridley Executive Produce

EXCLUSIVE: It looks like Da Brick is a go at HBO. I hear the pay cable network has handed out a pilot order to the drama project about a young boxer from Entourage creator Doug Ellin, filmmaker Spike Lee, former boxing champion Mike Tyson and writer John Ridley. Ridley wrote the script for the pilot, which will be directed by Lee. Set in current-day Newark, NJ, nicknamed "brick city," Da Brick is described as a contemporary exploration of what it means to be a young… Read


Quartet Boards British 'Titanic' Series

Kevin Zegers, Chris Noth, Derek Jacobi and Neve Campbell are in various stages of negotiations to join the $28 million, 12-part British miniseries Titanic: Blood & Steel, which has begun filming in Belfast. Unlike Simon Vaughn's internationally produced four-hour miniseries Titanic, which was picked up by ABC and ITV1, Titanic: Blood & Steel, also an international co-production, doesn't have U.S. or UK distribution yet. It chronicles the building of the Titanic, beginning… Read


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