In the first deal by newly minted MGM Motion Picture Group chairman Michael De Luca, MGM has acquired North American rights to distribute Dog. Deadline readers might recall this is the film that showed as much bite as bark when it was introduced last fall at AFM. Pic stars Channing Tatum, who will co-direct the film with his longtime creative partner, Reid Carolin. Latter wrote the script based upon a story he hatched with Brett Rodriguez. Pic will shoot in May for U.S. release on Valentine’s Day weekend 2021 via MGM’s joint distribution and marketing entity United Artists Releasing.
Gregory Jacobs will produce along with Peter Kiernan and Rodriguez for Free Association. Executive Producers are Ken Meyer and Betsy Danbury.
The plot is much the same as when Tatum and Carolin pitched their vision of the film as FilmNation sold out international territories at AFM. Tatum will play Army Ranger Briggs who, alongside his companion Lulu — a Belgian Malinois — haul ass down the Pacific Coast in time to catch their best friend’s – and handler’s – funeral. One of them has a week to live, the other lives like every day is his last. Together, they’ll drive each other insane, break a small handful of laws, narrowly evade death at the hands of some overly aggressive pot farmers, confront the possibility that pet psychics are real, teach each other how to love again, and give each other a chance for new life.
Tatum & Carolin run Free Association with Peter Kiernan, and their work as producers includes 22 Jump Street, Magic Mike and most recently Sony’s Fatherhood with Kevin Hart. They’re also producers on Magic Mike Live, the stage show spinoff that has gone from Las Vegas to London, Berlin, and Australia.
CAA Media Finance Group brokered the domestic license to MGM.