February 2, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard •
Comments Off on ABC’s Reese Witherspoon-produced pilot about ‘ruthless Dallas divorce attorney’ will film in Dallas
ABC’s Reese Witherspoon-produced pilot about ‘ruthless Dallas divorce attorney’ will film here
A Dallas-set Reese Witherspoon-produced show for ABC about a “ruthless divorce attorney” will actually film in Dallas — at least, its pilot will.
That’s the word this morning from Dallas Film Commissioner Janis Burklund, who sends word that the series briefly titled Please Don’t Go has a new (and temporary) name: The Untitled Meaghan Oppenheimer Project. In case you’re wondering, and you likely are, Meaghan Oppenheimer is an actor-turned-screenwriter partially responsible for last year’s not-a-hit We Are Your Friends; she also co-wrote an episode of Fear the Walking Dead.
Burklund said Tuesday morning that the pilot will film in Dallas in the spring. But, she said, “there are no hard dates.” And a cast has not been announced. Witherspoon’s not starring in the series.
Here’s the plot, per the official announcement just dispatched by Dallas City Hall: “The story line follows the personal and professional life of a ruthless divorce attorney in Dallas, which begins to unravel when her emotionally damaged, love-addicted sister resurfaces triggering self-destructive tendencies and exposing long-hidden family secrets. The new show is expected to show off the vibrant, urban city that Dallas is.”
January 30, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on ABC Orders Drama Pilots from Kevin Williamson, Reese Witherspoon, ‘Agent Carter’ Bosses
ABC Orders Drama Pilots from Kevin Williamson, Reese Witherspoon, ‘Agent Carter’ Bosses
ABC has given pilot orders to four dramas from executive producers including Kevin Williamson, “Agent Carter” showrunners Michele Fazekas & Tara Butters, and Pacific Standard’s Reese Witherspoon & Bruna Papandrea, Variety has learned.
Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea are executive producing an untitled drama written by Meaghan Oppenheimer, in which a ruthless Dallas divorce attorney’s life begins to unravel when her emotionally damaged, love-addicted sister resurfaces, triggering self-destructive tendencies and exposing long-hidden family secrets. The project also hails from ABC Studios.
ABC’s previously ordered drama pilots include modeling drama “Model Woman“; legal drama “Conviction” from the Mark Gordon Co.; Romeo & Juliet sequel series “Still Star-Crossed” from Shondaland; “The Jury,” produced by Carol Mendelsohn; “Presence” from John Ridley; and the “Agents of SHIELD” spinoff “Marvel’s Most Wanted.”
On the comedy side, ABC has picked up two family-centric pilots from producers of “Black-ish” and “The Middle”; soccer-themed “Dream Team” from “Will & Grace” alums Bill Wrubel and Kari Lizer; a pilot from “The Goldbergs” creator Adam F. Goldberg about an imaginary friend; “Downward Dog,” starring Allison Tolman; cancer-themed comedy “Pearl;” and “Speechless,” which revolves around a family with a special-needs child.
Reese graces the cover of the upcoming February issue of US Harper’s Bazaar magazine! She looks stunning in a new photoshoot, and talks about her current career path and Draper James in the interview. I love the colours and styling of the photoshoot, it’s so pretty. Read the interview below, find the pictures in our Gallery, and watch the behind the scenes video further down this post.
The magazine hits US news-stands on January 19th.
From screen sweetheart to power producer to lifestyle entrepreneur, Reese Witherspoon brings Southern charm to every role.
Reese Witherspoon is sitting in a random office in a glorious location: Nashville’s grand Cheekwood Museum of Art. She’s been twirling all day in concoctions for this cover story—on horses, holding piglets and parasols, and battling oddly aggressive ladybugs. But the great charm of Witherspoon, of course, is that she can look like she’s having the most fun in the world.
And right now, it would seem that she is. After 25 years in films—a long reign as America’s sweetheart, an Oscar for Walk the Line, and a lull before her second nomination, for 2014’s Wild—and with her 40th birthday on the horizon, Witherspoon is not just a star but a force. With her tenacity and sonar-like acumen, she is deftly changing cinema.
“It’s almost like my brain is hardwired to collect information and do things,” Witherspoon says. “I used to do very little with it, and now I’m being more productive, which feels good.” Turns out, she handily notes, that if you spend 25 years making movies, “that’s the way that you learn how to make movies.” In the past four years Witherspoon optioned two books, Gone Girl and Wild, shepherding them through production (and in Wild, shepherding herself up the Pacific Crest Trail) and seeing both receive Oscar nominations.
While Witherspoon could have surfed on a wave of rom-coms until the end of her days, it was a combination of frustration and curiosity that forged her new path. “There was a point, around 2011, there were like five actresses that I admire very much and they all called me and said, ‘There’s this role of this girlfriend in this movie,’ which was kind of just a terrible movie. And we’re all kind of clamoring for this terrible part? We are so much better than this.” So Witherspoon went about changing things.
“I certainly can’t star in all these movies,” she says. “I want to get a female perspective on film that would make my daughter [Ava] understand what it means to be a woman in a different way.”
Witherspoon—who along with Ava, 16, and son Deacon, 12 (with ex-husband Ryan Phillippe), has a three-year-old son, Tennessee James, with her husband, talent agent Jim Toth—credits Toth for her renewed cinematic mojo. “He said, ‘You should produce movies. You read more books than anybody I know. You should just buy some of them and turn them into films.’ ”
‘Fear the Walking Dead’ writer Meaghan Oppenheimer will pen the script for ‘Please Don’t Go.’
ABC is looking to Reese Witherspoon for a divorce drama.
The network has picked up a script for Please Don’t Go, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Created by Meaghan Oppenheimer (Fear the Walking Dead), the project follows the personal and professional life of a ruthless divorce attorney in Dallas. Raised in the trailer parks of Texas, she has left behind a life of struggle amid squalor, working her way into a corner office and mansion in Dallas’ most prestigious neighborhood. But beneath her facade of togetherness, she’s plagued by self-destructive tendencies and long-hidden family secrets that begin to unravel her life.
Oppenheimer will exec produce the ABC Studios entry alongside Witherspoon and her studio-based Pacific Standard topper Bruna Papandrea.
Please Don’t Go marks the latest sale this development season for Pacific Standard. The company also is readying a romantic mystery drama from Rob Long for ABC and is among the producers attached to HBO’s Big Little Lies, in which Witherspoon will star.
Oppenheimer (The Remains) is repped by CAA, Management 360 and Morris Yorn. Witherspoon is with CAA, LBI Entertainment and Hansen Jacobson.
Divorce comedies have been one of the bigger trends to emerge this development season as broadcasters look for the family dynamic that isn’t currently on the air. ABC is teaming with romance novelist Nicholas Sparks and super-producer Shonda Rhimes for two different divorce comedies. HBO, meanwhile, has Sarah Jessica Parker comedy series Divorce coming in 2016.
December 17, 2015 • Category: "Big Little Lies", Pacific Standard •
Comments Off on Jean-Marc Vallee to Direct All Episodes of Nicole Kidman-Reese Witherspoon HBO Limited Series
Jean-Marc Vallee to Direct All Episodes of Nicole Kidman-Reese Witherspoon HBO Limited Series
The ‘Wild’ director and his producing partner will also exec produce ‘Big Little Lies.’
HBO’s Big Little Lies adaptation continues to draw A-list talent.
Jean-Marc Vallee (Wild, Dallas Buyers Club) has signed onto direct all seven episodes of the Nicole Kidman- and Reese Witherspoon-headlined limited series, the pay cabler announced Thursday.
Additionally, the Oscar-nominated helmer and his producing partner Nathan Ross have come onboard the series, which hails from TV veteran David E. Kelley, as executive producers. The project marks a reunion for Vallee, Witherspoon and Big Little Lies co-star Laura Dern, who all worked together on Wild. The film earned Oscar nominations for both actresses. Before Wild, Vallee earned an Oscar nomination for film editing for Dallas Buyers Club.
In addition to Dern, Shailene Woodley, Adam Scott and Zoe Kravitz have joined the limited series in recent weeks.
Witherspoon also will executive produce Little Big Lies, like Wild, through her Pacific Standard banner. Her producing partner, Bruna Papandrea, also will executive produce along with Kelley and Kidman, who will produce through her Blossom Films shingle with production partner Per Saari.
“I am thrilled to be making my TV debut with HBO tackling this material,” said Vallee. “After reading David’s amazing scripts, I spontaneously jumped at the opportunity to reteam with Reese and Bruna, as well as collaborating with Nicole and Per.”
Vallee was previously attached to direct the pilot episode of the series. However, his increased involvement is the latest in a growing trend. HBO found similar success when Cary Fukunaga signed on to helm the entire first season of True Detective, for which he won an Emmy. HBO’s sister channel Cinemax boasts Oscar-winning director Steven Sodenbergh, who has directed every episode of period drama The Knick, which he also exec produces.
Australian novelist Liane Moriarty will serve as a producer on Big Little Lies, which debuted atop the New York Times’ best-seller list. She previously penned best-sellers What Alice Forgot, Three Wishes, The Hypnotist’s Love Story and The Husband’s Secret.
Vallee, whose credits also include Demolition, is repped by David Weber.
Laura Dern Boards HBO’s Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman Drama
Jean-Marc Vallee will direct multiple episodes of the David E. Kelley limited series co-starring Shailene Woodley and Adam Scott.
HBO’s Big Little Lies continues to add to its impressive cast.
Enlightened alum Laura Dern is returning to the premium cable network with a co-starring role in limited series Big Little Lies, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. The casting also marks a Wild reunion for Dern with star/EP Reese Witherspoon.
From David E. Kelley, the comedic drama centers on three mothers (Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman and Shailene Woodley) of kindergartners whose apparently perfect lives unravel to the point of murder. Dern will take on the role of Renata Klein, a powerful career woman and anti-bullying crusader who is at the center of schoolyard politics on and off the playground. Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) also co-stars as Witherspoon’s husband.
Based on Liane Moriarty’s book of the same name, the drama hails from David E. Kelley (Boston Legal, Ally McBeal) who is writing the limited series. HBO landed the project in May following a bidding war with Netflix.
Kidman and her Blossom Films banner, as well as Witherspoon and her Pacific Standard shingle, optioned the rights to the twisty thriller/soap and No. 1 New York Times best-seller, which was published in July, as a potential feature film before refocusing the drama for television. Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas Buyers Club) will direct multiple episodes of the series.
November 27, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon Producing “Barbie” Origin Story With Bold Films
Reese Witherspoon Producing “Barbie” Origin Story With Bold Films
Sources have confirmed that Reese Witherspoon and her producing partner Bruna Papandrea are in development with the origin story of the iconic Barbie doll, its company and its creator. Pacific Standard has picked up the rights to Robin Gerber’s BARBIE AND RUTH:The Story of the World’s Most Famous Doll and the Woman Who Created Her and have set up the project at Bold Films. Witherspoon and Papadrea are producing, with Jeanne Snow overseeing for Pacific Standard.
The book, first published in 2010, is the remarkable true story of the world’s most famous toy and the woman who created her, Ruth Handler. The story is described as “a fascinating account of how one visionary woman and her product changed an industry and sparked a lasting debate about women’s roles.”
Handler was inspired to create the now-famous Barbie doll after seeing her daughter, Barbara, playing with paper dolls. Wanting to create a doll that could better support the clothes her daughter was trying to dress the dolls in, Handler found a novelty toy abroad and modified it to work as a toy for children, which her husband’s company Mattel then manufactured. The original Barbie premiered at the American International Toy Fair in 1959.
While Barbie became a household name by the 1970s, selling millions of units over the past five decades, sales of the doll have fallen in recent years amid increased competition and controversies related to the body image issues associated with the doll.
The option on Barbie and Ruth continues Pacific Standard’s recent buying streak. In recent months, Witherspoon and Papandrea have picked up the rights to multiple literary properties, including Luckiest Girl Alive, Napkin Notes and In A Dark, Dark Wood. They’re in active development with adaptations of Maureen Sherry’s Opening Belle and the Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s Ashley’s War.
The acquisition of the Barbie origin story comes on the heels of Sony’s announcement that they are putting together a feature set ‘in the world of Barbie’, where Barbie “uses the skills she has gained in her personal life and professional experience to help others.” Amy Pascal is producing, with Diablo Cody currently rewriting the script from Jenny Bicks. Interestingly enough, Witherspoon had been rumored to be on the shortlist of A-listers that Sony was eyeing to play Barbie, but that seems unlikely now given she has her own Barbie project in the works–albeit a very different one.
Producers are currently seeking a writer to adapt Gerber’s material for the screen.
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