Archive for the ‘Producing’ Category
It seems that Wild, the book that Reese bought the rights to for her production company, is moving forward, with book author Cheryl Strayed tweeting that Nick Hornby is on board to write the script:
Cheryl Strayed optioned the movie rights for her acclaimed memoir “Wild” to Reese Witherspoon’s production company and admits it will be strange to see her story as a film — with the Oscar winner portraying her on the big screen.
Strayed will serve as an associate producer and consultant on the film adaptation, which will be written and directed by Lisa Cholodenko (“The Kids Are All Right”).
The moving memoir documents her gruelling, solo 1,770-kilometre hike of the Pacific Crest Trail from California to Oregon — with no previous experience as a long-distance hiker. Strayed makes the impulsive decision to embark on the journey following her mother’s death and the subsequent fracturing of her family and marriage — all part of a harrowing downward spiral.
“Inevitably, there are going to be scenes that are very close to the book … that they take almost exactly how it is in the book, and it’ll be very strange for me to see somebody who’s playing me. That’s the weird part,” Strayed said in an interview at Random House of Canada’s downtown offices during a promotional tour.
“I’m going to watch a famous actress playing a younger version of myself,” she added, laughing. “It’s just strange all around.”
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In a whopping summer auction that reached seven figures, 20th Century Fox acquired Gone Girl, the Gillian Flynn novel that was just published by Crown and is atop The New York Times Bestseller List for the second week in a row. The book will be produced by Pacific Standard’s Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea, along with Leslie Dixon. Flynn will write the screenplay. Other studios including Universal were in on the action and I think the Fifty Shades Of Grey action has elevated interest in bestsellers geared to female readers.
A woman disappears on the day of her fifth anniversary and all roads point to her husband as the killer. Flynn, who has three novels on the bestseller lists all at once, has two other movie projects in the works. Dark Places has Amy Adams attached to star, with Gilled Paquet-Brenner directing and her first novel, Sharp Objects, was optioned by Alliance with Blumhouse’s Jason Blum producing. Fox’s New York office, headed by Drew Reed, was all over this book. Reed and Chris Goldberg teamed with Peter Kang to bring it in. It was sold by Smiley Group’s Shari Smiley, the former longtime CAA agent who teamed with Stephanie Rostan of Levine/Greenberg Literary Agency. Smiley also sold the screen rights to the Cheryl Strayed book Wild, which currently sits atop the Non Fiction bestseller list. Pacific Standard bought it, with The Kids Are All Right’s Lisa Cholodenko adapting to direct.
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The actress optioned “Wild” late last year as a starring vehicle, months before the memoir was published this spring.
When Oprah Winfrey announced June 1 that Cheryl Strayed’s hiking memoir Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail was the first pick of her revived book club, among those most excited by the announcement were Reese Witherspoon and her producing partner Bruna Papandrea. The pair, who recently joined forced on their new Pacific Standard banner, had optioned the book in November, four months before its March publication date, as a starring vehicle for the actress.
“It was the first thing we picked up together,” Papandrea says of the project, which Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids Are All Right) is on board to direct. As a result of the Winfrey pick, the Knopf book has seen its Amazon sales position spike from No. 175 to No. 16.
“Wild is a magical and evocative book about losing everything – family, money, your mother, your partner – and finding your true spirit alone in the woods,” Witherspoon tells THR. “I urge everyone to go out and read this amazing story of one woman’s journey to find herself.”
Pacific Standard is the combined shingle of Witherspoon’s Type A Films —whose projects included Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde, Four Christmases and This Means War — and Papandrea’s Make Movies, which is behind the upcoming zombie feature Warm Bodies, helmed by Jonathan Levine (50/50).
IndieWire.com reports that The Kids Are Alright director Lisa Cholodenko has signed on to direct Wild, one of the movies Reese acquired and is producing under her new production line Pacific Standard. We previously reported details on Wild here and here, so have a read of them to refresh your memory.
Director Lisa Cholodenko recently sat down with The Playlist moments before her panel with fellow alum Shari Springer Berman and Nicole Holofcener at the Columbia University Film Festival this week, to debate the glass ceiling and how it affects making their films — during the course of which, Cholodenko let slip a couple of her yet-to-be announced projects among her other updates.
Witherspoon is also slated to produce and star in one of Cholodenko’s other new projects, an adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s memoir of her 1,100-mile solo hike in the wake of personal tragedy, “Wild: Lost and Found on the Pacific Crest Trail.”
“The author sent it to Reese, going, ” ‘I can’t imagine who else would do this,'” Cholodenko said. “And then I sniffed around it, without realizing ‘Wild’ had already been given to her [to produce], and then I somehow got involved in it, and now I’m doing that.” Chodolenko will write and direct, while Strayed confirmed over email that she’s acting as a resource and a consultant as the script is developed, and that she will be an associate producer on the film as well.
In the press release about Reese’s new production company Pacific Standard, it mentioned a project she has just purchased, entitled Wild. Below is some more information about the story and potential film:
Wild, Cheryl Strayed’s memoir of her eleven-hundred-mile hike along the Pacific Crest Trail, experienced solo, hits shelves later this month. Hollywood darling Reese Witherspoon, however, isn’t waiting until then to get her hands on the project. The Oscar-winning actress has purchased the film rights to the book and will also reportedly star in the film, taking on the role of author Strayed.
Following the death of her mother and divorce from her husband, Strayed acts on a percolating impulse to pack up her life, invest in a backpack we come to know as “Monster,” lace up her (ill-fitting) hiking boots, and begin a solitary journey of a lifetime: one thousand, one hundred miles of challenging terrain, traversing drastic spikes and dips in altitude, treacherous snow cover, days that rise above one hundred degrees and nights that fall below freezing. Making the journey even more exciting (for us, anyway) is Strayed’s naive financial plan: a twenty-dollar bill packed into her supply boxes, sent to various stops along the way, often at post offices hundreds of miles apart. Making the journey more exciting for both the reader and Strayed — and, now, ultimately the viewer — is the cast of characters she meets along the way and the kindness and quirkiness they exhibit. What results is a catharsis unlike any other. Strayed is no wimp, and as she invites readers along on her trip, she also invites them along on her transformation from heartbroken and heroin-dabbling lost soul to a woman full of strength and confidence, wisdom and compassion.
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Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea have joined forces to launch a new production banner, Pacific Standard. The duo will fold a number of projects into the partnership from their pre-existing shingles Type A Films and Make Movies.
Pacific Standard has several properties prepped to go out to the market. One of which is WILD, the soon-to-be published novel by Cheryl Strayed, a powerful and honest memoir that tells the story of an 1100 mile solo hike that breaks down a young woman reeling from catastrophe—and brings her back to life.
Witherspoon and Papandrea look forward to utilizing the relationships they have forged with filmmakers, actors and writers to make smart, character-driven, commercial films both large and small.
“I’ve always been impressed by Bruna’s taste and her skills as a producer. I’m very excited to be working with her. It’s a pleasure to collaborate with someone so smart, fun and formidable.” Witherspoon comments.
“In Reese I have found a like-minded and incredibly passionate partner who genuinely shares the same goals. “I’ve had a wonderful time producing movies independently but I couldn’t be more excited about the company and brand we will create together,” notes Papandrea.
Witherspoon has been active in a producing capacity since LEGALLY BLONDE II. Her Type A credits include FOUR CHRISTMASES and the independent feature PENELOPE. She acquired Peggy Lee’s life rights and partnered with Marc Platt on a biographical film that Nora Ephron will write for Fox 2000. She also set up the original comedies WHO INVITED HER? in partnership with Gary Foster at Dreamworks, MY HUSBAND’S WIFE with Ryan Seacrest’s company at Universal and the Courtney Hunt independent RULE #1 with Brad Epstein at Emmet/Furla.
Papandrea recently produced the Summit Entertainment financed WARM BODIES, written and directed by Jonathan Levine, starring Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer, Her development slate includes the upcoming novel THE STATISTICAL PROBABILITY OF LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT by Jennifer Smith and Emily Giffin’s best selling book LOVE THE ONE YOU’RE WITH.
(Press release via Deadline.com)