August 17, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon & Nicole Kidman Reteam On Deal For Liane Moriarty Novel ‘Truly Madly Guilty’
Reese Witherspoon & Nicole Kidman Reteam On Deal For Liane Moriarty Novel ‘Truly Madly Guilty’
Reese Witherspoon and her Pacific Standard production banner have re-teamed with Nicole Kidman and her Blossom Films to option the film rights to best-selling novelist Liane Moriarty’s Truly Madly Guilty. Witherspoon and Kidman will produce with Pacific Standard’s Bruna Papandrea and Blossom’s Per Saari. The novel has topped the New York Times bestseller lists, and Witherspoon and Kidman’s companies are in postproduction on a limited series based on Moriarty’s Big Little Lies for HBO. The series was adapted by David E. Kelley and directed by Jean-Marc Vallee and stars Witherspoon, Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern, Zoe Kravitz and Alexander Skaarsgard.
Through one fateful event, Truly Madly Guilty explores the most fundamental relationships —marriage, sex, parenthood and friendship — and how too often we don’t appreciate how extraordinary our ordinary lives are until it’s too late. The tale takes place over a weekend, among six adults and three cute kids. The Australian author wrote What Alice Forgot, Three Wishes, The Hypnotist’s Love Story and The Husband’s Secret, as well as a line of children’s books.
Both companies have proved good at identifying and acquiring tastemaker material. Pacific Standard produced Wild, Gone Girl and Hot Pursuit and is percolating Jessica Knoll’s Luckiest Girl Alive at Lionsgate and Ashley’s War at Fox 2000. Blossom produced Rabbit Hole, The Family Fang and Monte Carlo and is adapting The Silent Wife, Reconstructing Amelia, and the off-Broadway vampire hit Cuddles.
The author is repped by Jerry Kalajian of Intellectual Property Group and attorney Matt Sugarman on behalf of Fiona Inglis at Curtis Brown Australia and Faye Bender in the US. CAA reps both production companies, and Hansen, Jacobson reps Pacific Standard and attorney Alan Wertheimer reps Blossom.
Aussie actress and comedienne Rose Byrne spoke to the Aussie Daily Telegraph about her venture into producing, saying that Reese has been a big inspiration to her in doing this:
Byrne reckons there’s been a subtle change in the roles she’s being offered now as compared to five years ago. “Obviously I’m less likely to be playing the ingenue, so you’re offered more parts of the wife or the mother or friend,” she says. “I still read most scripts and go, ‘You know, I’d really rather play the guy part.’”
Indeed, it was this frustration over the work available for women, both in front of and behind the camera, that led Byrne and four Sydney mates – actor Krew Boylan, director Shannon Murphy, writer-director Gracie Otto, and publicist-producer Jessica Carrera – to found collective The Dollhouse Pictures.
“We started to reach out to one another and say, ‘We’re stronger as a team than we are separately, so let’s try to come up with a think tank where we can bandy ideas around,’” she says. “It was really about gearing roles towards women, and developing projects for and by women.”
Byrne concedes the group is inspired by what actors, including Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Drew Barrymore, are doing with their own production companies. “Reese is probably my biggest inspiration,” she says of Witherspoon’s production company, Pacific Standard, which has produced massive hits including Gone Girl and Wild.
The learning curve, however, has been steep. “It’s definitely been challenging,” says Byrne. “Being on the other side of things and discovering how projects are developed, and how difficult it is to find funding – it’s a whole different way of working for me, but I’m learning a lot.”
Amy Schumer Joins Bachelor Party Comedy ‘Who Invited Her?’
Amy Schumer will star in and produce Universal’s bachelor comedy “Who Invited Her?” with Reese Witherspoon producing under her Pacific Standard banner.
Schumer will portray a woman who insists on attending her best guy friend’s bachelor party weekend. Tami Sagher of “Inside Amy Schumer” is re-writing the script. Earlier versions were written by John Phillips and Sascha Rothchild. No director is yet attached.
Besides Schumer and Witherspoon, Kim Caramele (“Inside Amy Schumer”) is producing along with Gary Foster and Russ Krasnoff for Krasnoff Foster Productions and Witherspoon’s producing partner Bruna Papandrea. Erik Baiers will oversee production on behalf of Universal.
Schumer’s “Trainwreck” grossed $110 million domestically for Universal and raked in another $28 million internationally. Her original screenplay was nominated for a Writers Guild award.
Schumer is starring in Fox’s untitled mother-daughter comedy opposite Goldie Hawn, scheduled for a Mother’s Day weekend release on May 12, 2017. She’s wrapped on Jason Dean Hall’s PTSD drama “Thank You for Your Service” for Dreamworks.
Schumer’s sketch comedy series “Inside Amy Schumer” is in its fourth season on Comedy Central.
Pacific Standard has been active in developing projects based on novels with female protagonists, including “Wild” and “Gone Girl,” Jessica Knoll’s “Luckiest Girl Alive” at Lionsgate, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s “Ashley’s War” at Fox 2000, Wall Street comedy “Opening Belle” at Warner Bros. and a Barbie doll origins movie at Bold Films.
Foster and Krasnoff are producers on courtroom thriller “Denial,” starring Rachel Weisz. Bleecker Street has set an awards-season release of Sept. 30 in the U.S.
Schumer, Caramele and Sagher are represented by UTA. News about “Who Invited Her?” was first reported by The Tracking Board.
May 19, 2016 • Category: Draper James, Pacific Standard •
Comments Off on Inside Reese Witherspoon’s Style Empire: The Totes That Make Her Hug Strangers, Being a Boss, and More
Inside Reese Witherspoon’s Style Empire: The Totes That Make Her Hug Strangers, Being a Boss, and More
Not many people get to celebrate two birthdays in one year, but our reigning Best Dressed Woman, Reese Witherspoon not only turned 40 in March, but her fashion and lifestyle brand Draper James celebrated one year in business on May 5. And the star and her team haven’t slowed down since the launch. “We’re just always working, working, working,” Witherspoon tells PeopleStyle in this week’s issue. “If I’m in L.A., I’m on Skype. If I’m in New York, I’m at the offices. When I’m in Nashville, I’m at the store. It’s busy, but it’s so great. You make mistakes, and then you correct yourself.”
Since in getting into fashion, she’s learned how to stay in her lane. “It’s important to not be afraid to say, ‘I don’t know how to do that.’ Sometimes an idea doesn’t work. Sometimes things don’t sell when we thought they were going to. But then, we had no idea that we were going to sell 3,000 “Totes Y’all” bags in a year,” she says. “One of the greatest and most exciting things happened when I was on vacation in Florida, and I saw a woman walk down the street with one those bags. I stopped her and hugged her!”
In addition to Draper James, Witherspoon has a production company, Pacific Standard, which she founded in 2012. And there are some similarities between both businesses. “I’ve been working collaboratively with other artists all my life,” she says. “When you’re on movies, you’re talking to writers and directors trying to shape the story and characters. In Draper James meetings, we try to connect a story to a product. We create things that remind us of our southern upbringings and want everything we put out there to bring you joy and be something you’ll have forever.”
She thinks DJ has excelled in a few areas. “Anything that had a southern saying on it people really responded to,” she says, “Like the coasters and mugs with sayings on them, and the ‘Tell me something good’ cocktail napkins.” She’s also seeing success with dresses. “I feel like we really nailed a certain silhouette,” she says.
Witherspoon has also nailed the idea that each of her brands should empower women; Draper James works with Girls Inc., and Pacific Standard aims to create more narratives and jobs for women in the film industry. “I definitely think that strength coexists with femininity and [being strong] doesn’t mean you can’t be girlie,” she says. “I’m really trying to help push that within my own industry, and it’s fun! I mean, part of the reason I did Legally Blonde was because I loved the idea of this character who loved to dress up and have her nails done, but she also wanted to be taken seriously and was a really hard worker. I think most women feel that way. Just because you’re a woman in a position of power doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate being a woman.”
Reese Witherspoon Didn’t See Herself in Scripts…So She Found New Ones
After snapping up the rights to the books Gone Girl and Wild, and turning both into hit films complete with Oscar nominations, Reese Witherspoon has become, per the Wall Street Journal, an influential literary tastemaker in Hollywood.
“I started looking to books as source material because I saw the movies that were coming down the pipeline, and the characters that women were playing were really lackluster,” Witherspoon told ELLE.com on Friday (April 15th) at the Tiffany Blue Book gala, where she sported a $10 million diamond necklace from the collection. “I love stories; I love complex, dynamic women who aren’t necessarily likable, but they actually have so many different dimensions. And I think that’s how women really are, and I think that’s how they want to see themselves represented on screen.”
Witherspoon, who just turned 40, celebrated with a star-studded party where she sang “Sweet Home Alabama” accompanied by Keith Urban on guitar, and Taylor Swift also performed.
“I’m in a really great place,” she says of the milestone. “I’m thrilled to be doing what I do, which is tell stories in this world, and starting a new business, which is a great challenge for me, but it’s also incredibly exciting,” she said, referring to her production company with partner Bruna Papandrea. “I’m working with great women whom I love and respect; Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, Zoë Kravitz.” That project is Big Little Lies, a series Witherspoon is also producing for HBO, based on Liane Moriarty’s novel of the same name. “I’m having great time! I mean, I have to say, this 40 thing is not so bad!”
Reese Witherspoon’s New Role: Power Broker The actress has emerged as one of Hollywood’s most influential literary tastemakers in the book-to-screen business
Reese Witherspoon was frustrated. It was 2011, and the screenplays coming across her desk had one bland female character after another. Defined as wives or girlfriends, they were nice, respectable and, for an actor interested in character work, boring. She was drawn much more to the protagonists of the novels and memoirs she curled up with at night.
“My husband said, ‘Honey, you read more books than anybody I know. Why don’t you just option some and turn them into movies?’ ” Ms. Witherspoon recalled in a recent interview in Santa Monica, Calif.
In short order, she teamed up with producer Bruna Papandrea, launched an independent production company called Pacific Standard, and went on the hunt for challenging female characters. The pair quickly demonstrated that they could sniff out best sellers. They scooped up their first two books—Cheryl Strayed’s memoir, “Wild,” and Gillian Flynn’s thriller, “Gone Girl”—before they were published. In July 2012, just five months after the company was launched, the books hit No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list at the same time—in the nonfiction and fiction categories, respectively. Together, the films earned three Oscar nominations and grossed more than half a billion dollars.
Since then, Ms. Witherspoon has emerged as one of the most influential literary tastemakers in Hollywood. Her regular book recommendations on Instagram send Amazon rankings soaring. At a time when book adaptations remain a crucial segment of the film industry, Pacific Standard is an increasingly important player in the book-to-screen business. She and her partner have also invited some authors to adapt their own books, in the hopes of bringing new writing voices to film and television.
March 10, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Anna Paquin to Star in Reese Witherspoon-Produced ABC Pilot ‘Broken’
Anna Paquin to Star in Reese Witherspoon-Produced ABC Pilot ‘Broken’
Anna Paquin will topline ABC’s drama pilot from scribe Meaghan Oppenheimer and exec producers Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea, Variety has learned.
The project that had formerly been untitled is now called “Broken.”
“Broken” follows a ruthless Dallas divorce attorney, Gemma (Paquin), as her life begins to unravel when her emotionally damaged, love-addicted sister resurfaces, triggering self-destructive tendencies and exposing long-hidden family secrets. Paquin’s character is described as one of the most sought-after divorce attorneys in Dallas.
Having made a fortune off of the heartbreak of wealthy Texans, she has no desire to look back, but beneath her carefully constructed facade are layers of vulnerability, self-destruction and deeply buried trauma.
Paquin joins a cast that includes T.R. Knight, Blair Underwood and Penelope Ann Miller. Underwood will play James, Gemma’s boss and sometimes lover; Knight will play Mark, who is competing with Gemma for the same position; and Miller will play Elizabeth Hamilton, the wife of a Texas oil billionaire who is seeking revenge after having been left for a woman 20 years younger.
The soapy drama hails from Witherspoon and Papandrea’s Pacific Standard shingle and ABC Studios. Oppenheimer (“We Are Your Friends”) will serve as a co-exec producer on the pilot, which she penned.
“Broken” marks Paquin’s return to television as a series regular, after her starring role as Sookie Stackhouse on HBO’s “True Blood.” She will next star in A&E’s hotly anticipated “Roots” revival miniseries, which debuts this Memorial Day.
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