'Lego Movie,' 'It' Producer Dan Lin Renews First-Look Deal With Warner Bros.

Dan Lin - Getty - H 2018
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The former Warners executive, who has had a deal at the Burbank-based studio for a decade, also produced the Robert Downey Jr.-led 'Sherlock Holmes' franchise.

Dan Lin, one of the producers behind the Lego Movie franchise, has renewed his first-look deal with Warner Bros.

Lin, who was also a producer on the hit Stephen King adaptation It, is the principal behind Rideback, the newly rechristened production company that was previously named Lin Pictures.

The producer, a former Warners exec, has had a deal at the Burbank-based studio for a decade. Projects covered by the pact include not just the Lego movies and It, which is in prep for a follow-up that shoots this summer, but also the Robert Downey Jr.-starring Sherlock Holmes franchise. (A third Holmes movie is scheduled to be released on Christmas 2020.)

“Dan’s a great producer and a great partner,” Warner Bros. Pictures Group chairman Toby Emmerich said Wednesday in a statement. “He’s got an intuitive sense of what will work onscreen and the ability to pull together the right talent and resources to build franchise movies. This relationship has already been wildly successful, and I can’t wait to see where it goes next.”

Said Lin: “I’m excited to continue my long and productive relationship with Warner Bros. as my company transitions to a new model and purpose. In the face of unprecedented disruption, I wanted to create a new kind of production company that could act as a community in service of creativity, not just a content supplier.”

Lin’s Rideback relabeling is meant to reflect a new direction for the production banner. The company, newly installed in Los Angeles' Filipinotown, an area with a growing media scene, is focusing not just on its projects but on programs that are designed to bring together writers and filmmakers in a creative space for support and individual and collective work. The name "Rideback" is meant to sum up the intent, as it is an old Western term that denotes helping a fallen rider back on their horse.

The space, named Rideback Ranch, is already the headquarters of Warner Animation Group’s Lego team; Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s Lord Miller; Cedar Park Entertainment, the shingle run by Suicide Squad filmmaker David Ayer and Chris Long; and animation house Animal Logic.

“We want to be a place for writers, directors and other artists to collaborate and benefit from the support of their peers,” said Lin. “We’re opening the door to a broader mix of voices and stories, to help us take risks, push boundaries and explore new ideas.”

Rideback, along with Lord, Miller and Roy Lee, is in production on The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part. Also among its high-profile projects is a new Lethal Weapon movie and the upcoming live-action Aladdin remake for Disney.