All Posts in Uncategorized

August 8, 2018 - No Comments!

Jamie Bell Bare-Knuckle Fighting Drama ‘Donnybrook’ To Open TIFF Platform

From Screen Daily

By Jeremy Kay

The bare-knuckle fighting drama Donnybrook starring Jamie Bell and Frank Grillo will open 2018 Toronto International Film Festival’s (TIFF) Platform, while Jessica Forever from debutants Caroline Poggi and Jonathan Vinel will close the section.

The 12 films in the festival’s fourth annual juried programme include new work from Karyn Kusama, Alex Ross Perry, Ho Wi Ding, Alejandra Márquez Abella and Carol Morley.

The line-up includes four features directed or co-directed by women, while seven feature strong female lead roles. The roster includes what TIFF director and CEO Piers Handling described as “transformative” portrayals of detectives by Nicole Kidman in Destroyer and Patricia Clarkson in Out Of Blue.

Hailing from the Americas, Europe and China, every selection in Platform except Kusama’s Destroyer and Emir Baigazin’s The River will receive their world premiere in Toronto.

“It’s a programme that’s designed to put the focus on adventurous talent,” said Handling, adding that the roster of mostly third and fourth-time filmmakers “deserve further prominence”.

“More and more sales agents have been asking us about [Platform] and want to be there,” he continued. “The curation of the programme is very strong. We feel very confident about… telling filmmakers there’s a programe that will celebrate [vision] at a time when it’s getting harder and harder for films like this to find financing.”

Platform’s three-person jury will present the winner with a CAD $25,000 award [USD $19,200] funded by Air France. Highlights from previous years include Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight, Armando Iannucci’s The Death Of Stalin, Pablo Larraín’s Jackie and Lady Macbeth. TIFF runs from September 6-16.

The Platform 2018 line-up:

Angelo (Austria-Luxembourg), dir. Markus Schleinzer
World premiere

Cities Of Last Things (Taiwan-China-US-France), dir. Ho Wi Ding
World premiere

Destroyer (US), dir. Karyn Kusama
International premiere

Donnybrook (US), dir. Tim Sutton
World premiere
Platform Opening Film

The Good Girls (Las Niñas Bien, Mexico), dir. Alejandra Márquez Abella
World premiere

Her Smell (US), dir. Alex Ross Perry
World premiere

The Innocent (Switzerland-Germany), dir. Simon Jaquemet
World premiere

Jessica Forever (France), dirs. Caroline Poggi, Jonathan Vinel
World premiere
Platform Closing Film

Mademoiselle de Joncquières (France), dir. Emmanuel Mouret
World premiere

Out Of Blue (UK), dir. Carol Morley
World premiere

The River (Kazakhstan-Poland-Norway), dir. Emir Baigazin
North American premiere

Rojo (Argentina-Brazil-France-Netherlands-Germany), dir. Benjamín Naishtat
World premiere.

April 24, 2018 - No Comments!

Claes Bang To Star In ‘The Burnt Orange Heresy’ For HanWay Films

From Screen Daily

By Tom Grater

Claes Bang, the breakout star of Ruben Östlund’s Palme d’Or-winning The Square, will play the lead in neo-noir thriller The Burnt Orange Heresy.

Bang joins Elizabeth Debicki and Christopher Walken in the project, which is being directed by Giuseppe Capotondi (The Double Hour).

HanWay Films is handling international rights and will introduce the film to buyers in Cannes. UTA Independent Film Group is managing the US sale.

Set in Italy in 1970, The Burnt Orange Heresy follows an American art critic (Bang) who hooks up with a provocative woman who is touring Europe (Debicki). The new lovers travel to the Lake Como estate of an art collecting lawyer (a role still being cast) where the critic is offered a seductive deal – in exchange for a career-transforming introduction to Jerome Debney (Walken), the J.D. Salinger of the art world, he must steal a new masterpiece from the artist’s studio for the lawyer’s personal collection.

Scott B. Smith has written the screenplay, adapted from a novel by Charles Willeford. Producers are David Zander of MJZ (Spring Breakers), William Horberg (The Kite Runner) through his company Wonderful Films, and David Lancaster (Whiplash) through Rumble Films. Aeysha Walsh from MJZ and Stephanie Wilcox from Rumble Films are serving as executive producers.

The film is in pre-production ahead of a shoot this summer in Italy.

HanWay Films MD Gabrielle Stewart commented: “It is a luxury to get the perfect casting for a film, and even more thrilling to see a sexy pairing come together, like Elizabeth Debicki and Claes Bang. They are two of the most desirable international rising stars and pitch perfect leads for Capotondi’s Italian set thriller.”

Bang is represented by UTA, by Sharkey & Co in the UK and Ute Bergian in Germany. The actor’s upcoming roles include The Girl In The Spider’s Web alongside Claire Foy.

Also on HanWay’s Cannes slate is Lone Scherfig’s New York Project (previously known as Secrets From The Russian Tea Room), Reinaldo Marcus Green’s Sundance award winner Monsters And Men, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s Farming starring Damson Idris, Kate Beckinsale and Gugu Mbatha-Raw; and Kim Nguyen’s high-speed drama The Hummingbird Project starring Jesse Eisenberg, Alexander Skarsgård, and Salma Hayek.

January 26, 2018 - No Comments!

‘Semper Fi’: Jai Courtney, Finn Wittrock, More Join Nat Wolff For Crime Thriller – Berlin

From Deadline

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock (9308459ar)
Jai Courtney poses for photographers upon arrival at the 7th annual AACTA International Awards at the Avalon, in Los Angeles
7th Annual AACTA International Awards - 05 Jan 2018

By Nancy Tartaglione

EXCLUSIVE: Suicide Squad‘s Jai Courtney has been set to star with Nat Wolff in Henry-Alex Rubin’s crime thriller Semper Fi. From Sparkhouse Media and Rumble Films, the project has further added Finn Wittrock, Beau Knapp, Arturo Castro and Leighton Meester. Principal photography starts February 1 in Louisiana. Cornerstone Films is handling international sales with UTA and CAA co-repping domestic.

RelatedSteven Soderbergh’s 'Unsane' Added to Berlin Film Festival Competition
Murderball director Rubin is helming from a script he wrote with Sean Mullin. The story sees Courtney as Cal, a by-the-book police officer who makes ends meet as a Marine Corps reservist along with his rowdy and inseparable group of childhood friends. When Cal’s younger, reckless half-brother Oyster (Wolff) accidentally kills a guy in a bar fight and tries to flee, Cal forces him to face the music.

After an unfair sentence, Oyster fights for survival in a dangerous Pennsylvania prison system while Cal and his friends are deployed to fight the lethal insurgency in Iraq. Overseas, Cal’s world is shaken, and after he barely makes it home alive, he resolves to break Oyster out of prison — no matter the cost.

American Horror Story’s Wittrock, Sand Castle’s Knapp and Narcos’ Castro are the gang that rally to his side in a bare-knuckled prison break to right the injustice.

Semper Fi is produced by Sparkhouse’s Karina Miller (To the Bone) and Oscar nominee David Lancaster (Whiplash) of Rumble Films. Sparkhouse Media is financing. Cornerstone’s Mark Gooder and Alison Thompson will be talking up the project at the EFM in Berlin next month. The project was first announced in Cannes last year with Sam Claflin attached; he later exited due to a scheduling conflict.

Additional talent lined up for Semper Fi includes cinematographer David Devlin (Monster, Madonna: Rebel Heart Tour), production designer Chris Stull (Machete) and costume designer Christina Flannery (Left Behind).

Courtney is repped by UTA, Mark Morrissey & Associates and Silver Lining Entertainment; Wittrock is with CAA and Weissenbach Management; Castro is repped by WME and Avalon Entertainment; Meester is at UTA; Knapp with CAA and Luber Roklin; and Wolff looked after by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and Definition Entertainment.

October 31, 2017 - No Comments!

Sierra / Affinity Acquires International Rights To ‘Donnybrook’

From Screen Daily

By Jeremy Kay

Sierra/Affinity has acquired international sales rights to Rumble Films and Backup Media’s drama Donnybrook to star Frank Grillo and Jamie Bell.

Nick Meyer plans a full sales launch in 2018 on the noir adaptation, styled as a backwoods version of Fight Club meets No Country For Old Men about a down-at-heel family man who enters a bare-knuckle brawl with a $100,000 purse. Margaret Qualley and James Badge Dale also star.

Rumble Films chief David Lancaster reunites with Meyer after they worked together on Drive, Nightcrawler and Whiplash while Lancaster was at Bold Films.

Principal photography is currently underway in Cincinnati on the project, which is fully financed by Paris-based Backup Media. UTA Independent Film Group represents US rights.

Writer-director Tim Sutton (Dark Night, Memphis) adapted the screenplay from Frank Bill’s 2013 novel of the same name. Lancaster produces with Stephanie Wilcox of Rumble Films, and Backup Media.

“We are delighted to be working with David again,” Sierra/Affinity CEO Meyer said. “Donnybrook is right in his producing wheelhouse of delivering high quality elevated genre films and we can’t wait to bring Tim’s vision of this muscular and gritty world to a global audience.”

October 17, 2017 - No Comments!

Frank Grillo, Jamie Bell To Star In Indie ‘Donnybrook’

From Variety


By Justin Kroll

Frank Grillo, Jamie Bell, Margaret Qualley, and James Badge Dale are set to star in the indie pic “Donnybrook.”

Tim Sutton is writing and directing.

Production starts on Oct. 23 in Cincinnati. Backup Media is fully financing the film. UTA Independent Film Group is representing North American rights.

Adapted from Frank Bill’s 2013 noir novel of the same name, the film follows a man hard up for cash and determined to support his family competes in the Donnybrook, a legendary, bare-knuckle brawl where a $100,000 prize goes to the last man standing.

The film is produced by David Lancaster along with Stephanie Wilcox of Rumble Films, together with Backup Media. This is the third feature in the last two years that the two companies have made together after Fabrice du Welz’s “Message From the King” and Evan Katz’s “Small Crimes.”

October 17, 2017 - No Comments!

Frank Grillo, Jamie Bell, Margaret Qualley To Star in ‘Donnybrook’

From Screen Daily

By Jeremy Kay

David Lancaster’s Rumble Films and Paris-based Backup Media have signed Frank Grillo, Margaret Qualley, James Badge Dale and Jamie Bell to star in Donnybrook.

Production is scheduled to begin on October 23 in Cincinnati. Backup Media is fully financing the film and reunites with Rumble after Message From The King and Small Crimes. UTA Independent Film Group represents North American rights.

Donnybrook is based on Frank Bill’s 2013 noir novel of the same name about a down-at-heel family man who enters a legendary bare-knuckle contest where the last man standing wins $100,000.

Sutton wrote and directed Sundance and Venice 2016 selection Dark Night as well as 2013’s Memphis.

Lancaster is producing with Stephanie Wilcox of Rumble Films alongside with Backup Media, whose new films this year include Submergence and Promised Land.

CAA and Management 360 represent Grillo. Qualley is handled by UTA and Management 360. CAA and MJ Management represent Dale. Bell is represented by UTA and Artists Independent Management.

May 20, 2017 - No Comments!

Nat Wolff Joins Sam Claflin In Henry-Alex Rubin’s Crime-Thriller ‘Semper Fi’

From Variety

By Leo Barraclough

Nat Wolff (“Fault in our Stars,” “Death Note”) has been cast in Academy Award-nominated director Henry-Alex Rubin’s (“Murderball”) crime-thriller “Semper Fi.”

The script was written by Rubin and Sean Mullin and will be produced by Academy Award-nominated David Lancaster (“Whiplash,” “Nightcrawler”) of Rumble Films and Karina Miller (“To the Bone”) from Sparkhouse Media. Cornerstone Films is shopping the project to buyers in Cannes and CAA co-represents the U.S. rights.

Sam Claflin (“The Hunger Games”) leads the cast as Hopper, and Wolff joins as his younger brother Oyster.

Hopper is “a straitlaced cop who fills his downtime as a sergeant in the Marine Corps reservists alongside a close-knit team of life-long friends,” according to a statement. “A rowdy but inseparable bunch of guys, they look out for each other no matter what, including keeping an eye out for Hopper’s younger, reckless brother Oyster.”

When Oyster accidentally kills a man in a bar-room brawl and tries to flee town Hopper stops him and forces him to face the music.

“Wracked with guilt at leaving his brother locked up in jail, Hopper and his buddies are deployed to Iraq,” the statement continued. “Battle-weary, he returns home to discover Oyster’s final court appeal has been rejected. No longer willing to live with his guilt, Hopper resolves to save his brother by breaking him out of prison, no matter what the cost. But he can’t do it alone. [His buddies] Jaeger, Daddy and Snowball rally to his side to set right an injustice that can no longer be ignored.”

Rubin commented: “I’ve been watching Nat’s performances over the past few years and he reminds me of young DiCaprio — he’s highly likeable yet always mischievous and unpredictable.”

Miller also noted: “Oyster is a deliciously complex character — he’s part dreamer, part rebel, part man and part boy. His emotional arc is so engaging and extreme that I can’t help but get excited by the thought of watching an actor with Nat’s talent bring this character to life.”

Wolff is represented by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and Definition Entertainment.

May 11, 2017 - No Comments!

Backup Media To Fully Finance Tim Sutton’s ‘Donnybrook’ (EXCLUSIVE)

From Variety

By Elsa Keslassy

Paris-based Backup Media has come on board to fully finance Tim Sutton’s “Donnybrook,” the adaptation of Frank Bill’s 2013 noir novel, which David Lancaster’s Rumble Films is producing.

On top of financing the film, Backup Media is currently negotiating distribution deals for Germany, Switzerland, Benelux and Austria. Manuel Chiche’s banner The Jokers is co-producing the pic and will release it in France.

Sutton’s fourth feature after “Pavilion,” “Memphis” and “Dark Night,” “Donnybrook” turns on a cash-strapped family man who competes in the Donnybrook, “a legendary, bare-knuckle brawl where a $100,000 prize goes to the last man standing.” The producers describe the film as a mix of “No Country for Old Men” and “Fight Club.”

“Between Frank Bill’s primal scream of a book and the controlled menace of Tim Sutton’s ‘Dark Night,’ well…[it] feels like we might be raising some hell,” said Lancaster, whose credits include “Whiplash” and “Nightcrawler.”

Backup Media, which is led by David Atlan-Jackson, Jean-Baptiste Babin and Joel Thibout, said: “Tim Sutton’s subtle vision, along with the original novel and script, makes for a perfect match to continue our collaboration with Rumble Films.”

Rumble Films and Backup Media previously teamed up on Fabrice du Welz’s “Message from the King” and Evan Katz’s “Small Crimes.”

“Donnybrook” will start shooting in August in Southern Ohio.

UTA Independent Film Group is repping North America.

May 4, 2017 - No Comments!

Jaime Lannister Makes His Kids Work, Just Like You

From Vice

By Chloé Cooper Jones

We caught up with actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau to talk about his new film 'Small Crimes,' 'Game of Thrones,' and his daughter's two jobs.

The new Netflix film Small Crimes is not a redemption story. That much should be clear from the moment we're introduced to the film's protagonist, Joe Denton, played compellingly by Game of Thrones star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. Streaming now, the film opens with Joe, an ex-cop serving a six-year prison sentence, making his last confession to his priest before being released. Joe tells the priest (and the viewer) everything we might want to hear: He's remorseful for his past, is committed to maintaining his sobriety, and eager to see his daughters who mean the world to him. As the words leave his mouth, the viewer both believes that Joe means what he says but also doubts that he'll make good on his promises. That suspicion is vindicated when Joe heads to a bar after he is freed and orders a shot of whiskey. He uses his AA sobriety chip as a coaster.

This quality in Joe—that he both wants to do the right thing but is at turns too selfish, manipulative, or incompetent to follow through—drives the action of the film, which leads Joe into increasingly complicated confrontations with a crooked cop, a dying mob boss with a sadistic son, and a district attorney with a vendetta.

Directed by Evan Katz (Cheap Thrills) and co-written with writer-actor-director Macon Blair (who also appears in the film as Scotty, the sole person who enthusiastically welcomes Joe home), Small Crimes bets heavily on Coster-Waldau's ability to make us care about Joe, despite his numerous shortcomings. The pressure on the Danish actor's performance is made more challenging by the removal of any backstory or flashbacks that might build sympathy or understand for Joe through explaining why he's done wrong. There is also, perhaps, the added pressure of the Game of Thrones "curse" that stars like Kit Harington have said makes it difficult to play roles outside the world of Westeros. But Coster-Waldau, through a deep understanding of the character and an adeptness with the dark humor of the script, manages a performance that might make you forget he's ever been a certain charismatic Kingslayer.

I recently met up with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau at the Nomad Hotel in New York and spoke with him about his own selfishness, why he makes his daughter work two jobs, and Jaime Lannister's internal battle to be his own man.

VICE: Small Crimes is funny in an unsettling way. How would you describe the humor in this film?

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau: I remember reading the script and thinking it was funny, but I thought that I should find out if the script was meant to be funny or was this just me? I spoke to Evan [Katz] and later on to Macon [Blair], and I got how they intended it to be read. It's a dark comedy and a drama, and that made sense to me. When I look at my own life and think about some of the most horrific moments in my own life, painful situations, I see also really funny things.

What does Joe Denton really want?

He doesn't know. He's been living for so long in a fight-or-flight mode, in a panic of not getting caught. He thinks: I just have to turn this one corner. I just have to get out of this bad situation, and then I'll be OK. Even though he's spent six years in prison, he's been bullshitting throughout those six years. He's always manipulating. He has an image of himself that he'd like the world to see. He'd like to be a considerate, recovering alcoholic. Someone who has seen the darkness and understands the darkness and has been fighting the darkness and is ready to move ahead and enter life as a good, law-abiding citizen. That's the great thing about the way Macon wrote the script. You start the movie, and he says the things he wants to hear: "It's all about my daughters. I just want to be a good father now." We think this is a story about a guy who has done a lot of bad things, and there will be some shit happening, but at the end he will finally be taught a life lesson we can all relate to and goodness will prevail. But what he wants is for people to love him, regardless of anything he does. He cares in the moment. It's like you might think: Today's the day I'm going to give a beggar some money. And then you open your wallet and see that, Oh, shit, I only have a 20. Never mind.

So is Joe an exaggerated version of who we all are?

I think we're a lot more selfish than we want to admit. We all see the world through our eyes and filter it accordingly, and Joe Denton is no different. My favorite line in the film comes when Joe's dad confronts him about what he's going to do with some money he has and Joe says, "I'm going to give it to my daughters… most of it." Nothing is unconditional.

You recently wrote a piece in the New York Times about your own selfishness, where you describe the moment you transitioned from the self-centeredness of youth into a more aware, mature person capable of putting your mother's feelings before your own. What made you want to write that piece?

I don't know. It was a very important moment in my life. The idea was that the headline would be "The First Time I…" and then could be whatever you wanted after that. When you're a parent yourself, you think more about how your parents raised you. I have teenagers now. You know how they say, "Teenagers go crazy," but it just occurred to me that it is as much parents as teenagers who go crazy. There's a pressure on me to be aware of what's going on because of alcohol, drugs, sex, all these things—which is in a way crazy, because I shouldn't interfere in her life. You can't.

"If [my daughter] wants money to go out with her friends, she'll have to work for it. And she's run into those moments when she wants to go out, but the money is gone, and that's annoying, but an important lesson."

That piece also touches on your desire to protect your children from self-obsession and excessive materialism. That's hard for any parent, but you have to do it while in the midst the global phenomenon of Game of Thrones.

Yeah, it is bizarre. I was in China and Kenya, and it was the same level of excitement as anywhere else in the world. I live back home in Denmark, and that does make a difference. I'm sure it would be different if I lived in LA. My kids have seen some of [my work], but they still think the idea of me pretending to be someone else is weird. And if they see me make out with someone, that's gross and really uncomfortable. And I get that. I'm their dad—I'm not supposed to be kissing another woman.

Growing up, my mom didn't have a lot. And now I have financial freedom. I could spoil the shit out of those kids. But obviously I don't do that because it would be so stupid. It's really important that they learn to manage that part of their life, and they are, of course. Being financially independent—I just mean being able to manage your finances—is really important, and it took me a long time as a grown up to learn that, and I want my kids to learn that. My oldest has two jobs, and she earns her own money. She works in a bakery and helps in a cafe. She's 16. If she wants money to go out with her friends, she'll have to work for it. And she's run into those moments when she wants to go out, but the money is gone, and that's annoying, but an important lesson.

As both Jamie Lannister and Joe Denton, you have the challenge as an actor of portraying characters the audience needs to feel connected to, despite the bad things they do.

I know what you mean, but Jaime Lannister is the opposite of Joe Denton. Jaime has values, he will follow through, and if you're his family or his sister, you can trust him unconditionally. He'll kill kids for you. His whole life is about his sister. These characters are both complicated. I don't know any people who aren't complicated. We all carry the potential for good and bad. I find it interesting to show people with flaws. With Jaime, everything is extreme—he's a knight, and we're in this other world—but there are a lot of people who see their whole purpose for living through the needs of their partner. People who will say: "I'll do whatever you want." You lose yourself in that, and then you have to fight to reclaim yourself, and that's what Jamie is battling with. Joe Denton is the opposite. Everything is all about him, and if you want to be a part of his life, you'll have to fit into his because you know he's not going to make an effort.

There's a tendency from the public to want to connect the character to the actor forever. Can you be unseen as Jaime Lannister?

I'm aware of this, of course. The first job I ever did was a movie in Denmark called Nightwatch, and I was very lucky, and it became a big, big hit in Denmark and because it was the first thing I'd been in. For a long time after, if I was in a play or something, they'd write, "Oh, the night watchman Nikolaj Coster-Waldau." And it upset me for a long time until I realized that's just how it is, and there's nothing you can do about it.

Small Crimes is now streaming on Netflix.

May 3, 2017 - No Comments!

Sam Claflin To Star In Crime-Thriller ‘Semper Fi’

From Variety

By Dave McNary

Sam Claflin has come on board to star in the crime-thriller “Semper Fi.”

Production is planned for Vancouver this summer with Henry-Alex Rubin directing from his own script co-written by Sean Mullin.

Cornerstone Films has acquired international rights and will commence sales at the Cannes Film Festival. Cornerstone will co-represent the U.S. rights with CAA, which packaged and arranged financing for the movie.

Producers are David Lancaster (“Whiplash”) of Rumble Films and Karina Miller (“To the Bone”) from Sparkhouse Media, which is also financing.

Claflin will play a straight-laced cop who fills his downtime as a sergeant in the Marine Corps Reserve alongside a close-knit team of lifelong friends. When his younger, reckless brother accidentally kills a man in a bar-room brawl and tries to flee town, Claflin’s character stops him and forces him to face the music.

After being deployed to Iraq, he returns home to discover that his brother’s final court appeal has been rejected and resolves to save his brother by breaking him out of prison, no matter what the cost.

Lancaster said, “From the moment I read this script, I couldn’t shake the passionate feeling I have always had for the iconic film ‘Deer Hunter.’ Henry has shown a unique ability to draw realistic characters combined with a strong sense of place. Brotherhood, loyalty, family … with a thrilling escape. I’m in!”

Claflin will be seen next in “The Nightingale” and “My Cousin Rachel.” Rubin’s credits include “Disconnect” and “Murderball,” which was nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary.

Claflin and Rubin are represented by CAA; Claflin is also represented by Independent Talent Group. Mullin is represented by UTA.