Co-founder exits LivePlanet
Bailey in Dis deal after prod'n company shutteredCORRECTED 7:18 p.m. PT Jan. 30
Sean Bailey, one of the founders of LivePlanet with Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Chris Moore, has spun out of the company. Bailey has set up his own production outfit, Idealogy Inc., signing a two-year, first-look deal with Walt Disney Studios.
LivePlanet will continue to operate and focus on its existing projects, which include a mixture of documentaries, television shows and new-media initiatives.
Live Planet was formed in 2000 by Affleck, Damon, Bailey and Moore. Moore left the company in early 2005 to pursue directing, and the company's first look film deal with Disney expired at the end of 2007.
With Affleck now enjoying a new career as a director thanks to "Gone Baby Gone," Damon moving from one movie to the next and Bailey wanting to focus on building a production entity, the three decided to part ways.
"It was a natural evolution," Bailey said. "I hope to work with those guys again, but over time, things changed."
Idealogy inherited most of LivePlanet's feature slate and is working on new projects.
The slate includes:
-- "Tron," the remake of Disney's 1982 classic that has Joseph Kosinski attached to direct. Bailey is producing with original "Tron" director and co-writer Steven Lisberger;
-- The war thriller "Liberty" that Bailey wrote, as well as Andrew Marlowe and Jeffrey Nachmanoff;
-- "Nowhere Men," billed as "Ocean's Eleven" meets "Men In Black," written by Pete and Dave Griffiths. Affleck also is producing;
-- "Aftermath," a romantic comedy that picks up after a "Speed"-like scenario in which two people fall for each other during a thrilling encounter. When the roller coaster stops, however, they discover their life is a lot less exciting. Dave Collard wrote the most recent draft;
-- "Sabbatical," an erotic thriller with Jennifer Garner attached to star. John Brownlow wrote the script, and Charles Weinstock and Garner also are producing;
-- "FBI Boomerang," a comedy Bailey is producing with Alan Greenspan (not the former fed chief) that follows an agent on his most difficult assignment: to go back home as an unemployed loser. Geoff Rodkey wrote the script.
Bailey also has "The Hero" set up at Miramax. The World War I thriller, on which Gregg Pruss wrote the latest draft, has Julian Farino attached to direct.
Affleck followed up "Gone," his acclaimed directorial debut that Bailey was a producer on, with a starring turn in Universal's political thriller "State of Play." Damon next is starring in "Imperial Life in the Green City." He also is a producer and narrator on "Running the Sahara," a documentary about three runners hoofing their way across the African continent. The movie remains a LivePlanet production; Larry Tanz, who is stepping down as the company's CEO, will remain a producer on the feature.
LivePlanet had mixed success as a production company but was noted for crossing over into new media with their projects. Their biggest success was "Project Greenlight," which was designed to find and help new filmmakers. It aired on HBO and then Showtime.
Until this month, Bailey was under an overall deal at Disney's TV production unit ABC Studios. The pact became one of almost 30 terminated by the studio in a sweeping action tied to the writers strike.
"It's a mix of sentimentality but also a lot of enthusiasm for me," Bailey said.