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Michelle Raimo Kouyate Exits President Of Production Post At Sony Pictures Animation

Sony Pictures Animation

Michelle Raimo Kouyate is stepping down as President of Production of Sony Pictures Animation. During her four-year tenure, she was responsible for overseeing the development and production of all films on the SPA slate, including, The Smurfs franchise, Hotel Transylvania and Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2. Studio officials wouldn't say why she's leaving, but she'll remain on the Sony Pictures lot with a production deal for animated and live-action films. She was an… Read

Awards

‘Into The Woods’ Spills Onto The Stage At Artios Awards – Video

Artios Awards

The Artios Awards winners were unveiled last night in simultaneous ceremonies in New York and LA. It marked the first time the Casting Society of Amerca’s annual ceremony was moved to January to the heart of awards season. At the NYC shindig, Meryl Streep, Christine Baranski and Tracey Ullman surprised the crowd with a serenade for their Into The Woods director Rob Marshall, who was presented with the New York City Apple Award. Check out the video above and the list of… Read

TV

Thriller ‘Endgame’ From John Rogers, ‘Blacklist’ Producers Gets NBC Pilot Order

NBC

As NBC is pinning its hopes for a Thursday ratings turnaround on The Blacklist, which is getting ready to move to the competitive night, the network is betting on another conspiracy thriller from the producers of its flagship drama, Sony Pictures and Davis Entertainment. But did NBC make a last-minute change on the project’s lead character? The network has given a pilot order to drama Endgame, written by Leverage co-creator John Rogers, creator of TNT’s breakout new drama… Read

exclusiveFilm

‘I Am Michael’ Helmer Justin Kelly Signs With CAA – Sundance

I Am Michael

EXCLUSIVE: While we wait for the distribution deals to get rolling, the agencies are filling the gap signing all the new helming talent here. The latest: CAA has signed Justin Kelly, whose feature directorial debut I Am Michael premieres Thursday. This is based on gay activist Michael Glatze’s 2007 article “Confessions Of A Former Gay Rights Leader.” James Franco plays a man who rejects his homosexuality and becomes a Christian pastor. Zachary Quinto and Emma Roberts also… Read

Business

Denise Richards & Francia Raisa Sign With Abrams Artists Agency

Denise Richard Francia Raisa 2-shot

Denise Richards and Francia Raisa have new reps as Abrams Artists Agency has inked them both. Richards most recently starred on the ABC Family series Twisted, and her recent TV credits also include Lifetime telepic Fatal Acquittal, Anger Management, 30 Rock, Blue Mountain State and Kickin’ It. She also has appeared in such features as Scary Movie 3, The World Is Not Enough and Wild Things. She continues to be managed by LINK. Raisa was a regular on ABC Family’s The Secret… Read

exclusiveFilm

J.B. Smoove Signs With UTA

jbsmoove

UTA has signed actor-writer-comedian J.B. Smoove. He was previously at WME. Smoove is known for his roles in Curb Your Enthusiasm, Clear History, The Dictator, Hall Pass and We Bought A Zoo. He most recently appeared in Chris Rock’s Top Five, co-starred on CBS’ The Millers and hosted the latest revival of NBC’s Last Comic Standing. Smoove continues to be managed by Rick… Read

Business

Would A Hollywood Deal With Alibaba Be Cause For Alarm Or Elation?

Jack Ma Alibaba

It’s hard to imagine a Hollywood studio being controlled by a company from a communist country that’s hostile to free speech. But that’s very much on the minds of execs and dealmakers, many of whom say it’s just a matter of time before it happens. Those who believe it could be soon look directly at Chinese e-retail giant Alibaba  — with some speculating that Sony Pictures, Paramount, MGM and Lionsgate could be targets. “I like Hollywood innovation,” especially in digital… Read

breakingFilm

Julia Roberts To Produce, Star In Batkid Movie

Julia Roberts Batkid

BREAKING: Not even Oscar-winner Julia Roberts can resist Batkid fever. The actress and producer just closed a deal to adapt Batkid Begins, the Slamdance premiere documentary about the 5-year-old leukemia patient who got his wish to be a superhero granted when thousands of volunteers, and even President Obama, helped turn San Francisco into Gotham City for a day. On November 15, 2013, youngster Miles Scott became the hero Gotham needed and deserved as 25,000 supporters… Read

Business

Filming On Railroad Tracks: Dispelling The Myths

Trains On Tracks

Filming on railroad tracks can be dangerous; it's taken two lives in the past year alone. And despite all the news reports about the death of Sarah Jones on the Midnight Rider set and the recent death of Greg Plitt while filming a commercial in Burbank, many myths remain about shooting on railroad tracks. According to Art Miller, an instructor for the IATSE Rail Safety Awareness training program and one of the industry's leading experts on railroad safety, there are six… Read

Video

‘Mortdecai’ Review: Pete Hammond Says Comedy Has Depp But Lacks Depth – Video

Mortdecai

As I say in my video review above of Lionsgate’s period comedy Mortdecai, which opens in wide release today, the actors aren’t to blame for this send-up of UK author Kyril Bonfiglioli’s 1970s books about a misadventurous British art dealer and general rapscallion. Johnny Depp fans will appreciate his comic chops playing his latest quirky leading man, and Gwyneth Paltrow as his wife, Paul Bettany and Ewan McGregor are also good. But the whole thing feels like it could have… Read

Business

Viacom’s Philippe Dauman Made $44.3M In 2014, +19.3%

Philippe Dauman

The board credited the CEO with helping to “provide strategic leadership and management” that helped Viacom generate fiscal 2014 results that it describes as “solid,” in a proxy just filed at the SEC. Philippe Dauman’s package consisted of $3.9 million in salary, $12.4 million in stock awards, $7.5 million in option awards, $20 million in non equity incentives, $44,866 change in pension value, and $500,313 in other compensation. The last category included $457,564 for… Read

exclusiveFilm

Shawn Hatosy Signs With MGMT Entertainment

Shawn Hatosy

EXCLUSIVE: Shawn Hatosy, who’s set to do a guest arc on Amazon’s February debut series Bosch, has signed with MGMT Entertainment (née The Schiff Company) for management. The Faculty and Outside Providence thesp earned a Critics’ Choice nomination for his turn on the NBC/TNT police drama Southland and most recently co-starred as a deliciously complex dirty cop on CBS’ short-lived legal drama Reckless. Onstage he earned raves last summer for his turn in Neil LaBute’s Reasons… Read