7 Days of Deals

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Ka-Ching! Who’s signing on the dotted line this week.

DEALS OF THE WEEK: What This Year’s Academy Award Winners Are Doing Next

♦ Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and Gareth Unwin
Best picture, The King’s Speech
IN THE CAN: Canning and Sherman’s Sydney-based See-Saw Films has Oranges and Sunshine, a period drama about the British government’s deportation of orphans to Australia, set for release in April in the U.K. Unwin, who runs London-based Bedlam Productions, served as a line producer on The Flying Machine, a U.K. animated family film.
UP NEXT: See-Saw is producing Shame, a drama from director/co-writer Steve McQueen starring Carey Mulligan and Michael Fassbender, which is filming in New York.
ON THE RADAR: Canning and Sherman are developing American English, a romantic comedy from writer-director Ian Iqbal Rashid. Unwin is putting together The Lady Who Went Too Far, which could reteam him with King’s Speech scribe David Seidler.

Tom Hooper
Best director, The King’s Speech
IN THE CAN: Nothing (he has been traveling the world in support of King’s Speech).
UP NEXT: Hooper hasn’t committed himself to another project.
ON THE RADAR: He is considering a pile of projects, including an adaptation of the Deborah Moggach novel Tulip Fever, about a 17th century artist’s affair with a subject, and a new version of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables.

Natalie Portman
Best actress, Black Swan
IN THE CAN: She co-stars in Universal’s April 8 comedy Your Highness. Then there’s indie drama Hesher, which she produced, out April 15 via Wrekin Hill; and Thor, the Marvel/Paramount superhero actioner, on May 6.
UP NEXT: No set plans; her baby is due in late spring.
ON THE RADAR: Likely projects are Important Artifacts, a romantic comedy with Brad Pitt for Paramount (which she’s also producing), and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which she is producing for Lionsgate.

Colin Firth
Best actor, The King’s Speech
IN THE CAN: Firth plays a spook-hunting mole in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, a thriller adapted from the 1974 John le Carre novel that Universal will release.
UP NEXT: He’ll shoot the crime comedy remake Gambit with Cameron Diaz in London in May; Joel and Ethan Coen scripted, and Michael Hoffman will direct.
ON THE RADAR: Firth is attached to star in Stoker, a drama for director Chan-wook Park at Fox Searchlight.

Melissa Leo
Best supporting actress, The Fighter
IN THE CAN: Red State rolls out in October, and Leo co-stars in HBO’s mini Mildred Pierce, bowing March 27. Two indie films, Seven Days in Utopia and Francine, await release.
UP NEXT: Filming Season 2 of HBO’s Treme. Then she shoots the indie comedy Predisposed. She’ll also star on Broadway in a revival of Picnic.
ON THE RADAR: Sources say she’s eager to do The Dead Circus, a noirish crime drama from writer-director Adam Davenport, produced by John Palermo.

Christian Bale
Best supporting actor, The Fighter
IN THE CAN: Nothing
UP NEXT: He’s shooting The 13 Women of Nanjing, a period drama from director Zhang Yimou. In May, he’ll don the Batsuit in The Dark Knight Rises for director Chris Nolan.

David Seidler
Best original screenplay, The King’s Speech
IN THE CAN: Nothing
UP NEXT: He’s writing The Lady Who Went Too Far, a period drama for King’s Speech producer Gareth Unwin.

Aaron Sorkin
Best adapted screenplay, The Social Network
IN THE CAN: He worked on Moneyball, Columbia’s baseball drama directed by Bennett Miller and starring Brad Pitt, set for release Sept. 23.
UP NEXT: He’s casting an HBO pilot he wrote that is set behind the scenes at a cable news show.
ON THE RADAR: Writing, producing and directing The Politician, about the events that led to former Sen. John Edwards’ grand jury probe about the misuse of campaign funds to cover up an affair, inspired by Andrew Young’s book.

-- Jay A. Fernandez


I Am Number Four director D.J. Caruso (CAA, Media Talent Group, Bloom Hergott) has closed a deal to direct Preacher, Columbia’s adaptation of the popular DC/Vertigo comic book series. Neal Moritz and his Original Films are producing with Jason Netter. John August wrote the screenplay. Created by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon, Preacher ran from 1995-2000 and told the story of a possessed clergyman.

Nicholas Hoult (UTA, the U.K.’s Independent) will star in Summit’s Warm Bodies as a tormented zombie with a human girlfriend, for director Jonathan Levin.

Actor-writer Ben Schwartz (WME, Tom Sawyer Entertainment, Ginsburg Daniels) has been hired to script the reboot of Soapdish for Paramount. The 1991 soap opera farce was produced by Aaron Spelling and Alan Greisman; the latter is back producing along with Rob Reiner.

Malin Akerman (WME, Sanders Armstrong Caserta, Jackoway Tyerman) is in negotiations to play the female lead opposite Nicolas Cage in Medallion, a Nu Image/Millennium Films action thriller directed by Simon West. David Guggenheim wrote the script. Matthew Joynes and Jesse Kennedy of Aurelius are producing, as are McG and James Holt.

Writer F. Scott Frazier (WME, H2F) has sold a spec script, Line of Sight, to Warner Bros. for Silver Pictures to produce.

Universal has picked up an untitled comedy pitch from Saturday Night Live writer Paula Pell (WME), with Tina Fey attached to produce.

Jon M. Chu, director of Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, is close to a deal to helm Paramount’s action sequel G.I. Joe 2. Chu (WME, Principato Young, Stone Meyer) beat out F. Gary Gray for the gig.

Clash of the Titans director Louis Leterrier (WME, Management 360, Hirsch Wallerstein) has signed to direct and produce the sci-fi tentpole G for Universal. He also recently inked to helm Summit’s thriller Now You See Me.

Ewan McGregor (UTA, the U.K.’s United Agents, Sloane Offer) is in negotiations to join Jack the Giant Killer, Bryan Singer’s action tentpole for New Line. The cast already includes Nicholas Hoult and Stanley Tucci.

Treat Williams has joined the cast of 2929 Entertainment’s Blackbird, a crime drama with Eric Bana and Olivia Wilde. Williams (APA, Schiff Co.) also has been cast in Against the Wall, a Lifetime pilot.

Steve Carell is attached to star in Dogs of Babel, a drama for Mandate Pictures. Carell (WME, Media Four, Ziffren Brittenham) will also produce the adaptation of the novel by Carolyn Parkhurst, along with David Heyman of Heyday Films and Corey May and Dooma Wendschuh of Sekretagent Prods.

Charles McDougall (the U.K.’s United Agents) is in talks to direct New Line’s magician comedy Burt Wonderstone, which has Steve Carell attached to star. The project, originally set up in 2006, revolves around rival Las Vegas magicians.

Warner Bros. has hired writers Kieran and Michele Mulroney (CAA, Management 360, Hansen Jacobson) to develop a new take on The Hunchback of Notre Dame for Josh Brolin to star in and produce and Tim Burton to possibly helm.

Disney is negotiating to pick up Something Cliqued, a teen comedy spec script by Karen Bloch Morse (Gersh, Underground Films and Management). Andrew Panay is producing via his Disney-based Panay Films, along with Trevor Engelson and Nick Osborne of Underground Films.


Don Johnson (Gersh, Untitled) has closed a rich deal to topline Warner Bros.’ pilot A Mann’s World at NBC. Johnson will play a Beverly Hills hairdresser and salon owner in the Shampoo-esque drama from Michael Patrick King.

Jenna Elfman (CAA, Brillstein) will star in ABC’s single-cam comedy pilot Bad Mom from ABC Studios, Kapital Entertainment and Irish actress-writer Sharon Horgan.

Rachelle Lefevre (Gersh, Pearl Hannan) will co-star in NBC’s post-Civil War drama The Crossing, from UMS and producers Josh Brand and Peter Horton.

Tony Goldwyn (CAA, Untitled) will play the U.S. president in Shonda Rhimes’ ABC Studios pilot Damage Control, starring Kerry Washington as a high-powered PR guru.

Cloverfield star T.J. Miller (WME, 3 Arts) and Emily Rutherford (Paradigm, Brillstein) will co-star in CBS pilot The Assistants, about four helpers for a celebrity couple. The multicamera comedy is from executive producer Tucker Cawley, the Tannenbaum Co. and CBS Studios.

Bonnie Somerville (UTA, McKeon-Myones Management) will star in the ABC Studios comedy pilot Other People’s Kids, about a slacker who falls for a divorced mom.

Leslie Bibb (ICM, John Carrabino, Stankevich-Gochman), Annie Potts (Innovative, Frontline) and Jennifer Aspen (Innovative, Luber Roklin) have been cast in the ABC Studios pilot Good Christian Bitches as three of the “bitches.” The dramedy from Darren Star is based on Kim Gatlin’s book.


WME will represent the life rights of the 33 Chilean miners rescued in October after being trapped underground for 69 days. The agency is tasked with shopping rights, including TV, film, books, commercials and lectures. … Michael B. Jordan, co-star of NBC’s Friday Night Lights and Parenthood, has signed with ICM. … Brent Butt, who created and starred in the Canadian sitcom Corner Gas, and his Sparrow Media have signed with APA. … Emmy-winning Entertainment Tonight co-host Mark Steines has signed with Paradigm. … Heather Anne Campbell, a Saturday Night Live writer who also performed on Mad TV, has signed with UTA. ... Amy Seimetz, star of Sundance hit The Off Hours, has signed with WME. ... Singer-songwriter Skylar Grey, who co-wrote Eminem’s “Love the Way You Lie,” has inked with WME for representation in all areas.

Correction Martin Scorsese’s name was misspelled in a photo caption in last week’s issue.