Archive for the ‘Producing’ Category
How Reese Witherspoon Plans to Promote Female Directors and Writers Next Year
Reese Witherspoon is planning to take her mission to help women up a notch in 2018.
While at a holiday-themed event at the Tiffany & Co. Fifth Avenue flagship store — she’s a spokesperson for the jewelry company — the 41-year-old actress and mother of three said that women helping other woman is her top priority come the New Year.
“My production company Hello Sunshine is all based on telling stories about women by women,” she told PEOPLE. “So we want to create more opportunity and hire more female directors and more female writers.”
This year, the star famously produced and starred in the female-led HBO show Big Little Lies, which earned her several accolades already. Next up, in 2018, she’s starring alongside other powerful women such as Oprah Winfrey and Mindy Kaling in A Wrinkle in Time, due out Mar. 9. “There’s a beautiful young woman at the center of the story, and it’s an epic story about good versus evil,” she explained.
She also announced plans to produce Luckiest Girl Alive, a movie version of Jessica Knoll’s book (and a favorite of book clubs across the nation).
In the meantime, she’s excited for a few moments to relax during the holidays, and is looking forward to “food, always food! I like gingerbread houses, cookies, chocolates … things like that.”
She’s also shopping for some special gifts, and considers herself quite the gift-giver. “I take a lot of time to think about what people really want and really like,” said Witherspoon. “For a go-to hostess gift, I like monogrammed napkins or a beautiful box of chocolates.”
For daughter Ava, she wants to get her something “really beautiful and simple, like a piece from Tiffany & Co. It’s like an heirloom. My mom gave me earrings from there when I was young, and I still have them.”
One thing she won’t be doing this holiday season? Making any New Year’s resolutions.
“I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions,” she said. “I think you sort of have to keep striving to be the best version of yourself at all moments. Sometimes you fail and sometimes you succeed. And I think it’s important to always try and do your best.”
December 9, 2017 • Category: "A Wrinkle in Time"
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Comments Off on The Hollywood Reporter’s 2017 Women in Entertainment Power 100
The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Women In Hollywood feature was released this week, which included their Power 100 list – Reese was of course featured within it! Read their brief interview with her below and find a scan from the magazine in our Gallery. The special collectors issue is on sale now and has Jennifer Lawrence on the cover.
The Hollywood Reporter’s 2017 Women in Entertainment Power 100
Meet the dynamos who rocked Hollywood by creating groundbreaking TV and ‘Wonder’-ful films, scoring piles of awards and historic paydays and making room for more women to rise as the industry’s dark side was brought to light (thanks in part to three pioneers on this list) in a watershed that has already changed entertainment — and the world. Take that, Harvey!
HOW THR PICKS THE POWER 100 This year’s list spotlights 16 standout industry leaders who dominated the 2017 entertainment and media landscape and groups the rest by their role in the Hollywood ecosystem — from the film forces (working mostly on the big screen) to the reps (agents, et al). Honorees are listed alphabetically within each category.
CATEGORY Power Squad
Witherspoon scored big in 2017 with HBO’s acclaimed Big Little Lies (she starred and produced), for which she and fellow producer Nicole Kidman won an Emmy for outstanding limited series. “It showed me that audiences want to see a more accurate depiction of the female experience,” says Witherspoon, who launched her women-focused media brand Hello Sunshine in November 2016. She continues to buy book properties (including deals for A White Lie, with Zendaya attached, and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, in which Witherspoon would also star) and will hit the big screen in March in Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time. And in a deal that has Friends fans fawning, she recently sold a new series to Apple in which she’ll star opposite Jennifer Aniston.
Best thing to come out of the Weinstein scandal “Female solidarity.”
How I’ve helped women coming up in Hollywood “Call them, email them, work with them, and support them on social media.”
Hollywood woman I’d switch jobs with for a day Dana Walden
The three guests at my dream dinner party would be “Oprah, Mindy Kaling, Ava DuVernay and my mom.”
I wish men in Hollywood knew “What it feels like to be the only one in the room.”
Last show I binged Catastrophe, Westworld
TV or film character I most identify with “The squirrel in Ice Age constantly chasing an acorn.”
How I’d spend an extra day “Sleep!”
November 14, 2017 • Category: Hello Sunshine
Comments Off on Zendaya To Star In ‘A White Lie,’ Pitch Package From Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine
Zendaya To Star In ‘A White Lie,’ Pitch Package From Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine
The hot pitch package on the street is A White Lie, an adaptation of the Karin Tanabe novel The Gilded Years. The book is a psychological thriller built around the true story of Anita Hemmings, a light-skinned African-American woman. The daughter of a janitor, she passed as white so she could attend Vassar at the turn of the 20th century. Spider-Man: Homecoming star co-star Zendaya will play Hemmings. Monica Beletsky is writing the script, and Hello Sunshine’s Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter are producing along with Zendaya.
The singer-turned-actress next will be seen co-starring in the Michael Gracie-directed The Greatest Showman, co-starring alongside Hugh Jackman. She will also reprise in the Spider-Man sequel opposite Tom Holland.
Zendaya is repped by CAA and Monster Talent; Withespoon is with CAA and LBI.
Looks like a season 2 of Big Little Lies is happening! Reports are stating that filming on the second season will start next year, but that original director Jean-Marc Vallee will not return (he has previously been clear that he would not return):
Big Little Lies Eyes Spring 2018 Production Start for Season 2
It’s amazing how a crate full of Emmys can hasten the development process. Case in point: A second season of Big Little Lies is poised to become a reality (much) sooner than later.
Sources confirm to TVLine exclusively that HBO is eyeing a Spring 2018 production start for the female-driven phenom, which snagged eight Emmy statues in September, including for Outstanding Limited Series and Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series for Nicole Kidman. As recently as two weeks ago, Big Little Lies EP/writer David E. Kelley strongly intimated to TVLine that a second season was nearing the scheduling stage.
“We’re kicking around ideas and trying to lasso the talent [and] get the band back together,” he shared. “It’s just a lot of logistical things. But I’m optimistic because everyone wants to do it. We feel we still have storytelling to do. No decision has been made yet, but we’re hopeful. Where we left it, I felt like it did open the opportunity for a lot more storytelling.”
An HBO rep declined to confirm anything about a potential second season.
Even before Big Little Lies triumphed at the Emmys, HBO asked Liane Moriarty — whose novel the miniseries was based on — to “take a crack at” coming with with a story for a potential second season. Kidman and fellow leading lady/EP Reese Witherspoon both expressed interest in keeping the franchise going, and director Jean-Marc Vallée — who initially balked at doing a sequel — now wants in. “It’d be great to reunite the team and to do it,” Vallée said backstage at the Emmys. “Are we going to be able to do it, altogether? I wish. We’ll see.”
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‘Big Little Lies’: Reese Witherspoon Clears Way for Season 2, Exits ‘Pale Blue Dot’
Reese Witherspoon has dropped out of Noah Hawley’s Fox Searchlight film “Pale Blue Dot,” clearing the way for a second installment of HBO’s “Big Little Lies.”
A spokesperson for HBO did not confirm any information regarding “Big Little Lies” season 2.
Witherspoon had been attached to star in and produce “Pale Blue Dot” since 2015. Hawley, creator of FX’s “Fargo” and “Legion” came aboard last year to direct the film. based on the original spec script by Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi. The story follows a successful female astronaut who, after coming back home from a mission in space, starts to unravel when confronted by her seemingly-perfect American dream life. The story explores the theory that astronauts who spend long periods of time staring at the Earth from space begin to lose their sense of reality when they return home.
But Hawley’s busy schedule meant that production had to begin early next year. As “Big Little Lies” season two comes into focus, the task of managing multiple in-demand stars’ schedules made the same period the most likely window for work to begin on a second season.
TVLine reported Thursday that HBO is eyeing spring 2018 for production on a second “Big Little Lies” season.
“Big Little Lies” won eight Primetime Emmy Awards in September, tying Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” for the second most awards behind “Saturday Night Live.” Based on the novel by Liane Moriarty, “Big Little Lies starred Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley. It tells the intersecting stories of multiple women living in the coastal California community of Monterey.
HBO has repeatedly declined to confirm whether a second season of “Big Little Lies” is in the works. Speaking backstage at the Emmys in September, Moriarty was asked about a possible season 2. ““I’m thinking about it,” she said. “It’s a beautiful possibility.”
Reese spoke to Entertainment Tonight at the recent Wall Street Journal Innovators Awards, and talked about the award she was receiving that night, and Ava Duvernay and A Wrinkle In Time:
November 1, 2017 • Category: "A Wrinkle in Time"
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Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon named Wall Street Journal’s ‘Entertainment Innovator of the Year’
Another accolade for Reese was announced today – she is the Wall Street Journal’s ‘Entertainment Innovator of the Year’! Reese features on the front cover of their November issue, with a gorgeous new photoshoot and a fantastic, inspiring new interview. The interview focuses on Reese’s recent foray into producing, and features quotes on Reese from her husband Jim, and Nicole Kidman. Find the interview below – it’s a great read – and see photos in our Gallery. The magazine hits news-stands on November 4th so be sure to pick up a copy. Congratulations on this new honour, Reese
How Reese Witherspoon is Changing Hollywood for Women
With projects ranging from her HBO series ‘Big Little Lies’ to her production franchise to her growing lifestyle brand, Witherspoon has become a force in female storytelling
THIS PAST MAY, Reese Witherspoon experienced the closest thing she’ll get to a college homecoming when she returned to Stanford University, where she studied English literature for a few semesters in the mid-1990s but never graduated. Students invited her to be the featured guest at the Stanford Graduate School of Business’s View From the Top speaker series and asked her about her multifaceted career as an Academy Award–winning actress, producer and entrepreneur. Afterward, she popped over to the dorms with her 18-year-old daughter, Ava, to surprise whomever lived in her old room. “I knocked on the door, and a girl was in there,” Witherspoon recalls. “She opens it and screams, ‘Oh, my God! My mom is going to freak out; she just loves you!’ ”
The trip down memory lane prompts Witherspoon, 41, to ponder what might have happened if she hadn’t left the university for Hollywood after freshman year. (She took a leave of absence in 1996 to star in Pleasantville and Election.) After a critically acclaimed debut at age 14 in 1991’s The Man in the Moon, why would an aspiring actress enroll at Stanford and move to Northern California in the first place? “I was never going to be an actor who lives in their car because their dream was so big. [If acting didn’t work] I would have gone from Stanford to medical school and become a surgeon. Right now, I’d probably be the premier surgeon and pediatric cardiologist at Vanderbilt University,” she says, pausing. “What? I’m just being honest. I’m ambitious, and I’m over hiding that.”
“Of all the nasty words I’ve heard that are used to describe women, the one that has the ugliest connotations is ambition,” says Laura Dern, Witherspoon’s friend and co-star in the 2014 film Wild and this year’s seven-part HBO series Big Little Lies. “I don’t know why that’s declared conniving for women, because I’m constantly inspired by Reese’s ambition. You have a dream? She makes it happen.”
In the past decade, Witherspoon, mother of three, top-earning actress, powerful producer and, most recently, fashion designer, has become a new face of feminist filmmaking. Last year, the New Orleans–born, Nashville-raised entrepreneur founded Hello Sunshine, dedicated to realizing stories about women. She had created her own production companies in the past, including Type A Films, founded in 2003 and later dissolved, and then Pacific Standard in 2012. But Hello Sunshine (which absorbed Pacific Standard) is poised to become a Hollywood juggernaut, spanning feature films, TV series and digital content. The Oscar-nominated movies Wild and Gone Girl , as well as Big Little Lies, which won eight Emmy Awards (including one for outstanding limited series), were all projects produced by Witherspoon from books she discovered and optioned. She’s the 21st-century version of silent film star Mary Pickford, known as the first America’s Sweetheart, who co-founded United Artists in 1919, at the age of 27, so she could distribute her own films, or Lucille Ball, the I Love Lucy star who became the first female head of a major studio when she bought out ex-husband Desi Arnaz from their Desilu Productions in 1962. However, whereas those pioneering women were looking for a seat at the table, Witherspoon is seeking a larger piece of the pie.
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In a new interview with USA Today, Nicole Kidman seems to confirm that there will be a season 2 of Big Little Lies:
Although it hasn’t been officially announced, she teases that a second season of Big Little Lies is “moving forward at a rapid rate,” and hopes it will start production early next year.
We’ll keep you updated with any further news as it comes out!