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A version of this story first appeared in the Jan. 22 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
During Dan Fellman’s retirement party at the Four Seasons on Nov. 11, Clint Eastwood announced to the VIP crowd — among them Adam Sandler, Brett Ratner, Sylvester Stallone, Todd Phillips and Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara — that though the studio’s longtime president of domestic distribution was stepping down, he’s “going to release my next picture, whenever that is.”
Eastwood wasn’t kidding.
That film looks to be Eastwood’s Miracle on the Hudson drama Sully, starring Tom Hanks as Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, who landed U.S. Airways flight 1549 on the Hudson River.
Sully is set for release by Warners on Sept. 9; THR sources say Eastwood is insisting that Fellman, 72, be involved in the rollout. And he’s not the only filmmaker, sources add: Christopher Nolan also has requested that Fellman handle his recently announced Dunkirk, a World War II drama starring Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh and Mark Rylance that starts shooting in May with a July 21, 2017, release planned.
It’s unclear how these requests will be handled by worldwide marketing president Sue Kroll, who assumed Fellman’s distribution responsibilities when he exited in December, but it turns out Fellman is starting his own venture, Fellman Consulting Co., taking out space in the MGM building in Century City.
Expect Nolan and Eastwood to be among his first clients. He’s also a consultant for Warners in the short-term.
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