Does Alibaba Plan To Take Control Of Lionsgate?
Lionsgate shares rose 5.3% to $33.00 today after The New York Post reported that the Chinese e-retail giant is eager to buy Mark Rachesky's 37.4% stake in the independent studio. Although Lionsgate isn't commenting, there's enough in the wind to make the scenario plausible. Alibaba is flush with cash after its record-setting $25B IPO last month — and founder Jack Ma will be in Hollywood next week to talk with different studios. He already knows Lionsgate: Alibaba… Read
Warner Bros To Remake ‘Who Am I’; Pic Is German Box Office Sensation
EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has closed a deal to remake Who Am I, the latest film by German-based helmer Baran “Bo” Odar, who made his directorial debut on The Silence. Who Am I, which premiered in Toronto, is a visual thriller that stars Tom Schilling as a young man who gets pulled into the world of an Anonymous-like hacking group. Pic starts with him telling his story to Europol investigator after he and his cohorts perpetrated a crime spree that pissed off the Russian mob… Read
Lily James & Sam Claflin Clock In For Lone Scherfig’s ‘Their Finest Hour And A Half’
EXCLUSIVE: Lily James (Disney's Cinderella) and Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games) are circling to star in Lone Scherfig's Their Finest Hour And A Half. James, currently filming Burr Steer's Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, is one of Britain's hottest young actresses and is also attached to the plum role of Natasha in The Weinstein Company's War And Peace miniseries.
Their Finest Hour And A Half, based on Lissa Evans' 2009 novel that was nominated for Britain's… Read
‘Madam Secretary’ Coming To U.K. On Sky Living; NBCUniversal International Television Production Pacts With TV3 Group Ireland: Global Briefs
CBS Studios International and Sky have inked a deal for the exclusive U.K. broadcast rights to the new drama series Madam Secretary, which will premiere in the coming months on Sky Living. Téa Leoni stars as Elizabeth McCord, the shrewd, determined, newly appointed U.S. Secretary of State who drives international diplomacy, battles office politics and circumvents protocol as she negotiates global and domestic issues, both at the White House and at home. Bebe Neuwirth… Read
‘Interstellar’ & ‘Penguins': Late-2014 China Slots Pit Christopher Nolan Vs. DWA
I recently wrote about China packing a slew of Hollywood movies into October ahead of a push toward local films that will crowd December and ensure that market share for China exceeds that of its frenemy. But there are a couple of movies from the majors that will still look to hop the wall in November — and they'll do it in a direct face-off. DreamWorks Animation's Penguins Of Madagascar recently was slated for a November 14 release, and I've now learned that Christopher… Read
Potential ‘Rupert’ Actors Shunning Plum Role Fearing Murdoch, Play Producer Says
A West End stage production of David Williamson's revue-style play Rupert is evidently having a hard time finding someone to fill the role of the eponymous Rupert Murdoch. Playwright Williamson told the BBC on Wednesday, "We've found that some actors are actually scared of playing Rupert on stage.” That's a bit of a surprise considering actors' general affinity for meaty parts, and especially given that Murdoch's own paper, The Australian, gave the play largely positive… Read
Keira Knightley Sets Broadway Debut As Thérèse Raquin At Roundabout Theatre Company
Score a huge one for Todd Haimes, longtime artistic director of the nonprofit Roundabout empire. The company, which operates three Broadway venues, will launch its 50th anniversary season next October with Keira Knightley as Emile Zola's adulterous heroine, in Thérèse Raquin, perennial catnip for playwrights and screenwriters. Haimes commissioned the latest adaptation, by Helen Edmundson. It was first presented in summer 2014 at the UK's Bath Theatre Royal (Knightley was… Read
Ethan Hawke To Play Chet Baker In Trumpeter Biopic ‘Born To Be Blue’ – AFM
Shooting has begun in Ontario on Chet Baker biopic Born To Be Blue with Ethan Hawke as the legendary jazz trumpeter. Written and directed by Canadian filmmaker Robert Budreau, the drama is inspired by Baker's rise, fall and eventual resurgence. The story will chart his comeback in the late 1970s and the tumultuous love affair that changed the way he played music and helped him on the road to redemption after his self-destructive ways had seemingly destroyed his career… Read
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Top Gear’ Hosts Attacked In Argentina Over License Plate; Samantha Glynne Named VP Branded Entertainment At FremantleMedia; More
Controversy doesn't just seem to follow Jeremy Clarkson and the Top Gear gang, lately it's been in hot pursuit. Three times in the past year the host and the show have come under fire for alleged inappropriate remarks or provocations. In May, Clarkson was accused of making a racial slur during an unaired episode whose footage leaked online. Prior to that, the BBC apologized for other comments Clarkson made in a Top Gear special filmed in Burma that did air. In 2011, the… Read
Plagues Be Damned: Ridley Scott’s Moses Movie ‘Exodus’ Seeks Egyptian Release
EXCLUSIVE: Where Noah failed, Moses is trying to get past Egyptian censors. Ridley Scott's Exodus: Gods And Kings might be facing a tough fight with Egypt's highest religious authority Al-Azhar to get approved ahead of the film's planned December release in the Arab world's most populous country, but help could be at hand from an unlikely ally.
Minister of Culture Gaber Asfour is leading the charge to ensure that the film is released in Egyptian cinemas despite objections… Read
Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp Closes $450M Credit Facility, Triples Financing Ability
EuropaCorp, the French mini-major co-founded by Luc Besson in 2000, signed a five-year, $450M credit facility during the Cannes Film Festival in May to finance a slate of English-language films. At the time, the studio said it also had a $100M accordion that would be used to finance its existing credit facility of $132.8M. Today, the studio says it has closed on a $400M credit line, plus a $50M second credit facility and a $150M accordion. The existing credit facilities… Read
Joshua Oppenheimer’s ‘The Look Of Silence’ Documentary: Hot Trailer
Joshua Oppenheimer's The Look Of Silence is the follow-up to 2013's Oscar-nominated The Act Of Killing. It won the Grand Jury Prize in Venice this year and was jointly acquired by Drafthouse Films and Participant Media on the eve of that fest. At the time, I posted a clip from the film and above is the first trailer.
Act Of Killing, which had a Best Documentary Oscar nomination and won the BAFTA in the same category, saw Indonesian death squad leaders re-enact… Read