The movie from former Paramount production chief Adam Goodman and former Disney exec Andrew Sugerman’s Invisible Narratives, with Catchlight Films and Michael Bay also producing, is the first feature film to shoot in Los Angeles since the COVID-19 lockdown.
Whitford and Ortega have joined previously announced cast Demi Moore, Craig Robinson, Paul Walter Hauser, and Peter Stormare.
Songbird is directed by Adam Mason (Into The Dark), who wrote the script with Simon Boyes (Misconduct).
On the commencement of the union-approved production, Goodman said, “Finding a safe and practical way back into production has not been easy, however, our partnership with the guilds and unions has been a true testament to our great Hollywood community. Throughout the process they were awesome partners at finding a way to get their members working again, but always making safety and welfare the first priority. As artists, we need to keep telling stories, and times like these must be documented.”
Songbird is wholly self-financed by Invisible Narratives. Following the project’s unveiling at the virtual Cannes Market, German distributor Leonine Distribution GMBH acquired the project for the territory. Talks with domestic and international distributors continue for Songbird. ICM Partners and Endeavor Content are handling worldwide sales for the film.
Invisible Narratives partnered with Bay and Catchlight Studios and its founders Jeanette Volturno (former head of production at Blumhouse), Jason Clark (former Seth Macfarlane producer), Marcei Brown, Jessica Malanaphy and Rick A. Osako. Eben Davidson is also producing.
Whitford is attached to star in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s upcoming Tick, Tick…Boom. The 3x Emmy winner and West Wing vet recently starred in 20th Century Studios’ The Call of the Wild, and stars on the NBC series Perfect Harmony. He is repped by ICM and Greenlight Management.
Ortega is the voice of Princess Isabel on Disney Channel’s Elena of Avalor, stars on the Netflix series You, and can be seen on the Quibi series The Princess Bride. Upcoming for Ortega is Netflix’s The Babysitter 2 and the Jennifer Garner Netflix movie Yes Day.
Ortega is repped by CAA, Gilbertson Entertainment, and Jackoway Tyerman Wertheimer Austen Mandelbaum Morris & Klein.
Last week, SAG-AFTRA issued a ‘Do-Not-Work- order for Songbird because the production didn’t “complete the signatory process”, but quickly rescinded that order.