EmptyLAMPOON IS THE 'AWESOMEST'
National Lampoon is moving forward with its next in-house production, "National Lampoon's The Legend of Awesomest Maximus," a spoof of such sword-and-sandal flicks as "Gladiator," "300" and "Troy." Will Sasso leads a cast that includes Kristanna Loken, Ian Ziering and Sophie Monk. The script was written by Jason Burinescu, and "Revenge of the Nerds" helmer Jeff Kanew will direct. Dan Farah and Burinescu are also producing.
MAPLE LIKES ZOMBIES
Maple Pictures has picked up Canadian distribution rights to Bruce McDonald's zombie film "Pontypool" ahead of its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. The psychological thriller, about a deadly virus infecting a small Ontario town, stars Stephen McHattie ("300").
MICHAELS IN AT HALCYON
The Halcyon Co., producer of the "Terminator" franchise, has appointed Joel Michaels as its new president of production. Michaels, who now serves as executive producer on Halcyon's Fox series "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles," will come on board to oversee the completion of its feature "Terminator: Salvation."
TURTURRO IN RESIDENCE
John Turturro will serve as the 2008-09 artist in residence at the New School for Drama in New York. He will teach several master classes and address the school in a town hall meeting moderated by the school's director, Robert LuPone.