Cinipix Partners With Centerboro Productions for Sci-Fi Action Pic 'Newcomers'


Production, acquisition and distribution company Cinipix is joining forces with Patricia Beninati and Michael Anderson’s Centerboro Productions to produce the sci-fi action film Newcomers and will send XCOR Aerospace’s commercial spacecraft The Lynx into space to shoot exclusive footage for the film.

The Lynx will be piloted by former NASA Astronaut Col. Richard A. Searfoss on an expedition that producers say marks the first Hollywood project to commission footage from a privately owned space company.

Plot details are being kept under wraps, but Newcomers will center on a former NASA astronaut who saves Earth from an alien invasion with help from the commercial space industry.

Beninati and Anderson adapted the screenplay from an original story and script by Beninati. Cinipix CEO Todd Slater (Ray, Raze) will produce alongside executive producer Mat Hayden. They join producers James MacLean (Archetype Entertainment) and Jacob Silver, who originally developed the movie package with Beninati and Anderson.

“We knew we could approach this film in a new, nontraditional way and explore options that didn’t exist just a few years ago," Slater said. "Partnering with a privately owned commercial space company for an interstellar sci-fi film is now very logical and doable, so we wanted to move fast and create something special. We certainly know it will add a fantastic and thrilling realism to our scenes.”

Added XCOR Aerospace COO Andrew Nelson: “We are delighted to have our Lynx spacecraft showcased in the film. We think that Newcomers will be a fantastic piece of entertainment for science-fiction fans.”

Producers are now talking to directors with an eye toward starting principal photography in the first quarter of 2014.

Wall Street financiers Howard Silverman and Neil Grossman recently formed Toast & Jam Holdings to invest in Cinipix as well as animation house Cosmic Toast Studios and rental company Cinirents.

Current Cinipix projects include the thriller/action film Raze, starring Rachel Nichols and Zoe Bell, which will be released by IFC Midnight in the United States; and the action film The Devil’s Ink.

Email: Tatiana.Siegel@THR.com, Twitter: @TatianaSiegel27

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