Archive for the ‘Role Rumors’ Category
March 10, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard
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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.
This project has been in the works for years … hopefully we’ll get something more solid on it/filming details soon…
Christoph Waltz joins Matt Damon, Reese Witherspoon in Alexander Payne’s Downsizing
Two-time Oscar winner Chistoph Waltz (Inglorious Basterds, Django Unchained) and actress Hong Chau have been cast in Alexander Payne’s new movie, Downsizing, Paramount announced Thursday. They flesh out a cast already populated by Matt Damon and Reese Witherspoon.
The Nebraska director co-wrote the script along with Sideways collaborator Jim Taylor. Set in the near future, the film follows a man who realizes he’d be better off if he shrunk himself.
Waltz appeared as the villain in last fall’s Bond movie, Spectre, and also stars in the upcoming Legend of Tarzan.
Chau made her big-screen debut in Inherent Vice from Paul Thomas Anderson. She’s currently in production for the new HBO show Big Little Lies, which also stars Witherspoon.
January 30, 2016 • Category: Pacific Standard
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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 Witherspoon Sells Divorce Drama to ABC
‘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.
November 27, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard
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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.
November 1, 2015 • Category: "Wild"
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Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon & Laura Dern To Produce Drama Project For HBO Based On Book By ‘Wild’ Author Cheryl Strayed
Reese Witherspoon & Laura Dern To Produce Drama Project For HBO Based On Book By ‘Wild’ Author Cheryl Strayed
Wild stars Reese Witherspoon and Laura Dern have reteamed for another screen adaptation of a book by Wild author Cheryl Strayed, this time for TV. HBO has put in development Tiny Beautiful Things, a drama series based on Strayed’s bestselling 2012 book of the same name, a collection of essays compiled from Strayed’s Dear Sugar advice column. Strayed and her husband, filmmaker Brian Lindstrom, will write the TV adaptation, set to explore love, loss, lust and life through the eyes of a Portland family who live by the mantra that the truth will never kill you.
Witherspoon, Dern, Strayed and Lindstrom will executive produce with Witherspoon’s producing partner at Pacific Standard, Bruna Papandrea, as well as Jayme Lecheryl. Wild was a passion project for Witherspoon and Papandrea who optioned Strayed’s memoir months before it was published. In the 2014 Fox Searchlight film, directed by Jean-Marc Vallée, Witherspoon portrayed Strayed and Dern played her mother. The movie was well received, with both Witherspoon and Dern earning Oscar nominations earlier this year.
HBO already is hosting a Wild mini-reunion with the limited series Big Little Lies, in which Witherspoon is starring alongside Nicole Kidman, with Witherspoon and Papandrea executive producing and Vallée in negotiations to direct.
October 16, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard
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Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon, Mila Kunis Series in Development at ABC
Reese Witherspoon, Mila Kunis Series in Development at ABC
Reese Witherspoon and Mila Kunis are getting behind the camera for two potential ABC series. The network is developing dramas with both women attached as exec producers, Variety has learned.
Kunis will serve as an EP on the television adaptation of “Black Stiletto,” based on the novels of the same name, while Witherspoon will work on an untitled romantic mystery from “Cheers” alum Rob Long.
“Black Stiletto,” inspired by Raymond Benson’s book series, follows a young woman’s evolution into a modern day hero when a family secret from the past is revealed and puts the only family she’s ever known in imminent danger.
Kunis will exec produce by way of her Orchard Farm Productions banner with her partners Cami Curtis, Susan Curtis, and Lisa Sterbakov, plus Tony Eldridge and Nancy Moonves. Kunis inked a first-look deal with ABC Studios, which will produce “Black Stiletto,” in late 2014 when she launched her production company. Scribe Javier Grillo Marxuach (“Lost,” “The 100”) sold the script to ABC.
For Kunis, “Black Stiletto” marks her television producing debut. The “Black Swan” and “That ’70s Show” alum was a producer on the 2014 flick “The Angriest Man in Brooklyn.”
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October 16, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard
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Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon Developing Thriller ‘The Dry’ as a Movie
Reese Witherspoon Developing Thriller ‘The Dry’ as a Movie
Reese Witherspoon is developing Jane Harper’s Australian crime thriller “The Dry” as a movie.
Witherspoon has acquired the films rights to Harper’s debut novel, set amidst an epic drought in which a farmer turns his gun on his family and then himself in a rural community — prompting the return of an investigator who was the farmer’s childhood friend and left town after being rejected by the community.
Harper is a business writer for the Herald Sun newspaper in Melbourne. Her book won the $15,000 Victorian Premier Literary Award for An Unpublished Manuscript earlier this year.
Witherspoon will team with partner Bruna Papandrea at their Pacific Standard banner. The duo formed Pacific Standard in 2012 in order to remedy the absence of movies with female protagonists.
Since then, they have actively acquired film rights to novels and produced “Wild” and “Gone Girl.” Pacific Standard is currently developing Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s “Ashley’s War” at Fox 2000, “Big Little Lies,” “The Engagements,” “Pennyroyal’s Princess Boot Camp,” “The Outliers,” Wendy Walker’s “All Is Not Forgotten,” Ruth Ware’s “In a Dark, Dark Wood” and Garth Callaghan’s “Napkin Notes.”
Witherspoon is handled by CAA, LBI Entertainment and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush and Kaller. Harper is repped by Intellectual Property Group’s Jerry Kalajian and Clare Forster at Curtis Brown Australia and Writers House’s Daniel Lazar.
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