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Following a multiple-outlet bidding war, the helmer has signed his first TV overall deal — a four-year pact with the now Disney-owned 20th Century Fox Television. Sources value the deal in the mid-eight-figure range, all in.
Under the pact, Chu will develop and executive produce projects — some of which he will direct — as well as potentially helm existing projects.
“Throughout my film career I have been lucky enough to play in many genres, from dance and music to action, romantic comedy, documentary, drama and beyond,” Chu said Monday in a statement. “So it was crucial for me, as a storyteller, to find a partner in the television space that had the same vast interests and willingness to break the mold with new perspectives and stories that represent the diverse world we live in. Dana Walden and her team at 20th Century Fox TV was the undisputed choice to join forces with. Their daring taste and ability to combine important subject matter with cutting-edge, sophisticated entertainment is second to none. I can’t wait to build new worlds with them and take the audience on a wild ride. Let’s go!”
Chu’s is the tenth overall deal that 20th TV has announced since becoming part of the Disney fold following Fox’s $71.3 asset sale. He joins This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman — who is fresh off a five-year, nine-figure deal — as well as Drew Goddard; Jason Winer; Octavia Spencer; Nora Smith; Jake Kasdan and Melvin Mar; I. Marlene King; Liz Meriwether; and Amy Holden Jones at the studio.
“Jon directed one of the biggest, most entertaining and uplifting hits of the year in Crazy Rich Asians, starring our own Constance Wu (Fresh Off the Boat), and getting him to this studio became nothing short of a mission to Terence [Carter] and our development teams. He has spectacular taste and talent loves him. We’re excited he’s making this studio his creative home,” said Jonnie Davis, president of creative affairs at 20th Fox TV.
Chu’s credits include the Now You See Me franchise, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never and G.I. Joe: Retaliation. He is repped by UTA, Artists First and Stone Genow.
The overall deals space remains red hot, as traditional studios look to compete for top talent with Netflix. The war for top talent continues to escalate as media behemoths like Disney, WarnerMedia and Comcast look to grab a share of the streaming market with platforms of their own. Apple, too, is entering the space as the arms race for proven showrunners and top talent continues to escalate.
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