The Fighter screenwriters option Boston Marathon bombing book; Legendary Entertainment signs a multi-year deal with Universal; the MLK biopic Selma has found a new director; Disney has big plans for Star Wars and D23; and Ben Affleck is in talks for David Fincher's Gone Girl.
Eric Johnson and Paul Tamasy, who scripted the Oscar-nominated feature The Fighter, have acquired the rights to Boston Strong, a forthcoming book about the Boston Marathon bombings that took place on April 15th.
Boston Strong is slated to hit bookstore shelves some time next year and is being written by Casey Sherman and Boston Herald reporter Dave Wedge. The book follows all the events surrounding the horrible tragedy including the capture of one of the bombers, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Tamasy and Johnson are also hard at work on a script based off the book The Finest Hours, which tells the true story of an oil tanker rescue in 1952. That project already has Robert Schwentke (Red, R.I.P.D.) attached to direct.
Shortly after calling it quits with Warner Bros., Legendary Entertainment has inked a new distribution deal with Universal Pictures. The deal goes into effect next year and lasts for five years.
However, with DC Comics looking to take on a greater role in future superhero films, Legendary realized it might be time to find a partnership that was more to their liking. Legendary had several suitors, including Sony and Fox, but apparently Universal made the most enticing offer.
Universal is coming off a very solid first half of 2013 with both Fast and Furious 6 and Despicable Me 2 setting records for the studio. Clearly, both companies are on very strong footing, and their partnership will presumably deliver some big budget blockbusters.
Publicist turned director Ava DuVernay has signed on helm Selma, the feature length drama focused on Martin Luther King Jr.'s voting rights campaign.
DuVernay was reportedly brought onto the picture back in April and has been working with screenwriter Paul Webb to iron out the finer details. Producer Christian Colson wants to get cameras rolling on Selma as soon as possible in order to avoid any potential MLK biopic competition.
Although most will not know DuVernay's name, she made quite a splash on the indie circuit. Her second feature, Middle of Nowhere, received several nominations and awards, including the Directing Award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. And coincidentally, or maybe not coincidentally, that film starred David Oyelowo, the actor set to play the late Doctor King in Selma.
While fans will be piling into Comic-Con International to see everything from Captain America to Godzilla, one forthcoming high profile project will not be making an appearance.
That project, of course, is Star Wars: Episode 7, but fear not its Comic-Con no-show is for a good reason: Disney's D23 event is also right around the corner. And it is there that the "Mouse House" is expected to make some big Star Wars related announcements.
Disney pulled a similar trick with The Avengers a few years ago, choosing to world premiere footage in front of the D23 faithful. With Episode 7 only in pre-production, we don't expect any footage to be shown, but there could be some major casting announcements. Perhaps Disney and director J.J. Abrams will reveal the film's lead, or they will (finally) confirm Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher are returning.
Ben Affleck is reportedly in talks for the lead in David Fincher's Gone Girl.
Although Affleck is busy prepping his next film, Live By Night, it might be hard for him to pass up an opportunity to work with Fincher. And if Affleck is cast, it's almost a forgone conclusion that Gone Girl will become the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo director's next feature.
Gone Girl is based on the novel by Gillian Flynn about a husband whose wife disappears on their fifth anniversary, leaving him as the prime suspect. If cast, Affleck will presumably play the husband, while a trio of actresses are being considered for the wife: Oscar winners Natalie Portman and Charlize Theron are reportedly being eyed for the role along with Emily Blunt.
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