Scott Stuber, the producer behind movies ranging from Patriots Day to Ted to Battleship, is in talks to run Netflix feature film production, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.
Stuber has not closed a deal, and he also is said to have met recently with Viacom CEO Bob Bakish regarding a possible role running Paramount.
However, sources believe he is more likely to choose Netflix as the streaming giant is offering him control of the film division, while prospective candidates for the Paramount job (including producer Michael De Luca and former Fox chief Jim Gianopulos) are nervous about some form of greenlight committee that would include Viacom's Bakish and CFO Wade Davis.
Stuber's rep declined to comment, as did Netflix.
Netflix has been on the hunt for an executive to run a film arm for months as it seeks to ramp up production. Pauline Fischer previously held the role at Netflix but left in November.
The streaming giant has disrupted the television business with such high-profile original series as House of Cards, the Marvel shows and the buzz-generating Stranger Things and is betting big on comedy specials.
Netflix's movie division is in the nascent stage. It has acquired movies in the past – 2015’s Beasts of No Nation was an early high-profile buy – and made a splashy deal with Adam Sandler for original films, but it is poised to release movies this year that it hopes will go head-to-head against studio blockbusters. (Filmmakers who make deals there still have to forego a traditional theatrical release.)
In December, Netflix will unveil Bright, a $90 million fantasy starring Will Smith, Joel Edgerton and Noomi Rapace and directed by Suicide Squad helmer David Ayer. It also has Death Note, a horror thriller starring Lakeith Stanfield and Nat Wolff, directed by rising director Adam Wingard. Today it debuted the first look at War Machine, starring Brad Pitt.
Stuber was bred in the studio world. In the early 2000s, he was co-head of production of Universal Pictures with Mary Parent, who is now a top executive at Legendary Entertainment. In 2008, the duo signed a first-look deal with the studio before Stuber eventually struck out on his own with his Bluegrass Films label.
Apart from years of overseeing development and production at a studio, Stuber also has experience producing movies of various sizes and genres.
Among his credits are a slew of comedies ranging from Couples Retreat to Seth McFarlane’s Ted to last year’s Dwayne Johnson-Ice Cube hit Central Intelligence; thrillers such as The Kingdom and Safe House; and some big-budget bombs, such as Battleship.