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The Hollywood Reporter has released its first daily issue for the American Film Market, which kicked off in Santa Monica on Wednesday. The issue features a look at the diverse, female-driven films heating up the market, an exclusive look at a new project that teams newly minted Oscar winner Gary Oldman and Jessica Alba, and a discussion with Jessica Chastain and director Tate Taylor about their action-thriller Eve.
“Distributors Want Diversity”
Since its launch in 1981, the American Film Market has been dominated by the kind of movies that defined the era: action films with bulging pecs and crashing cars; buddy comedies featuring mismatched cops or wacky animals; horror movies with tubs of gratuitous gore — movies made for, and almost entirely made by, men. And a certain macho, hetero, white Western version of men at that. But shifts in the indie film business, and the culture at large, has pushed AFM in a more female, and decidedly diverse, direction. As the AFM kicks off today, about a year after the #MeToo movement shook up the indie patriarchy (and led to the collapse of The Weinstein Co.), projects featuring female and non-white leads are among the hottest titles on offer.
A Support Group for Killers and Hitmen
Killers Anonymous, teaming newly minted Oscar winner Gary Oldman and Jessica Alba, has been picked up by Fabrication Films for worldwide sales, with Grindstone Entertainment Group taking North American rights ahead of AFM. Tommy Flanagan and Rhyon Nicole Brown also star in the drama, in which a support group of killers and hitmen is thrown into a tailspin after a prominent senator is murdered by, they suspect, one of their own. The project, directed by Martin Owen (Let’s Be Evil), was shot in London from a script by Owen, Elizabeth Morris and Seth Johnson. THR takes a closer look at the new project.
All About Eve
Seven years after they first partnered on the box-office smash The Help, Jessica Chastain and director Tate Taylor have reunited, upping the ante somewhat for Eve. The character-driven action thriller — being shopped by Voltage Pictures at AFM and boasting an all-star cast that also includes Colin Farrell, Geena Davis, John Malkovich and Common — sees Chastain in a darker and more murderous role than usual, playing a recovering addict and black ops assassin forced to fight for her survival when a job goes wrong. Eve is the debut picture from Chastain’s Freckle Films banner, the first production in a busy slate that includes the high-concept spy thriller 355, starring Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, Lupita Nyong’o and Fan Bingbing. During a lunch break on the set of Eve in Boston, Chastain and Taylor talked to THR about turning the action-thriller genre on its head, deploying the “criminally underused” Davis and why it can be liberating to be thrust into a project at the 11th hour.
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