LOS ANGELES, February 28, 2012 – Producer Brad Simpson has joined growing production company Color Force as a partner, it was announced today by company principal Nina Jacobson. Simpson, who produced the hugely successful DIARY OF A WIMPY KID films with Jacobson, will focus on expanding Color Force’s production slate. His appointment will be effective March 1.
Since its inception in January 2007, Color Force has proven to be a hotbed for bringing beloved literary adaptations to the big screen. The company has placed a premium on the primacy of great storytelling. They have become known for working closely with authors and filmmakers throughout the adaptation process. In just 5 years, Jacobson and her team have been able to secure valuable partnerships with several favorite pop culture writers, including Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games trilogy), David Nicholls (One Day) and Jeff Kinney (The Wimpy Kid series).
With the addition of Simpson, Color Force will be able to expand its development pipeline and talent relationships, while nurturing more properties that remain true to the core values of the company. Along with hiring Simpson, Jacobson has promoted longtime development executive Bryan Unkeless to the post of senior vice president of production. Unkeless is currently co-producer on the highly anticipated film adaptation THE HUNGER GAMES, which Jacobson is producing and is due for release March 23. They are in early pre-production on the follow up film CATCHING FIRE.
“This really is a seminal moment for us at Color Force,” said Jacobson. “Bringing on board such an accomplished producer will allow the company to grow while still giving each project the level of focus and attention it deserves. Brad’s exceptional taste has earned him the respect of the caliber of writers and directors we want working at Color Force. His relationships and experience will enable us to expand our production slate while Bryan continues to do the stellar job he has done of seeking out projects for us to develop.”
Simpson and Jacobson are currently producing DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: DOG DAYS, due for release in August from Fox 2000. Simpson is also serving as executive producer for Paramount’s WORLD WAR Z, starring Brad Pitt, planned for December release.
“I love the movies Color Force is making and I am thrilled to be joining Nina and Bryan there,” said Simpson. “Anyone who has worked with Nina knows that her taste, honesty, and clarity about material is enviable. I can’t wait to jump in.”
In addition to WORLD WAR Z, Brad Simpson most recently served as executive producer of Marc Forster’s MACHINE GUN PREACHER and produced the hit films DIARY OF A WIMPY KID and DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: RODRICK RULES along with Jacobson. From 2004-2007, he was President of Appian Way, Leonardo DiCaprio’s Warner Brothers-based production company. Simpson began his career at the legendary New York independent production company Killer Films where he served as an executive and a producer from 1996-2004. At Killer Films, he co-produced the multiple Academy Award-nominated film FAR FROM HEAVEN, served as associate producer on BOYS DON’T CRY, produced PARTY MONSTER, served as co-producer on HOME AT THE END OF THE WORLD and associate producer on CAMP. He was also involved with such classic independent films as VELVET GOLDMINE, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY ITCH, HAPPINESS and ONE HOUR PHOTO. Originally from Little Rock, AR, Simpson graduated Magna Cum Laude from Brown University.
Currently serving as Color Force’s Vice President, Production and Development, it was Bryan Unkeless who originally discovered and then introduced Jacobson to Suzanne Collins’ THE HUNGER GAMES, the best-selling book series that has since grown to become a major cultural phenomenon. The highly anticipated film, currently in post-production with Gary Ross directing, will be released by Lionsgate on March 23, 2012 and Unkeless serves as co-producer. He also served as the development executive for the first two films in the DIARY OF A WIMPY KID franchise, which have so far earned over $140 million (and counting), and the 2011 film adaptation of the best-selling novel ONE DAY by David Nicholls. Prior to joining Color Force, Unkeless previously worked for Parkes-MacDonald Productions and DreamWorks. He is a graduate of Duke University.