Tag: Columbia Pictures

Issa Rae and Columbia Pictures Sign Multi-Picture Production Deal Promoting Diverse Screenwriters

(PHOTO BY PETER YANG)

by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (@lakinhutcherson)

According to deadline.com, creator/writer/actor Issa Rae, via her production company ColorCreative, has signed a multi-picture production deal with Columbia Pictures. ColorCreative will work primarily with and support projects from emerging, diverse screenwriters.

Globally successful, profitable films such as “Black Panther” and “Crazy Rich Asians” have demonstrated the commercial appeal of movies with leads of color and from their perspective, but so far movies like these remain the exception, not the rule. A recent study from USC  stated that only 29.3% of characters in the 100 top grossing movies of 2017 were from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups.

Selected participants, to be announced in spring 2019, will work with Rae and Columbia to develop and write features based on their original ideas.

“Issa is a force of nature, and a magnet for talented people,” said Sanford Panitch, president of Columbia Pictures, in a statement. “We couldn’t be more excited to join her in her mission to pave the way for fresh and authentic voices.”

Bryan Smiley, VP of production at Columbia Pictures, oversaw the deal and will oversee production and development with ColorCreative for the motion picture group. Sara Rastogi, VP of production for ColorCreative, will also help guide the deal for the company along with Deniese Davis, COO of ColorCreative.

“Working with Bryan Smiley and Columbia Pictures to further the mission ColorCreative set out to achieve four years ago in creating access for underrepresented writers, has been a dream come true,” Rae said in a statement. “All of the projects we are working on are fresh and promising and we can’t wait to continue the work. We hope to set a precedent and inspire the industry at large to invest in undiscovered talent, original IP, and fresh stories and perspectives.”

Sony Offers Free Admission to ‘Concussion’ for NFL Players, Families

'Concussion' Free Admission Offered to NFL
Will Smith in “Concussion” (PHOTO COURTESY OF SONY)

Sony Pictures Entertainment is offering NFL players and their families free admission at Cinemark Theaters to Will Smith’s “Concussion,” which opens on Christmas Day.

The studio said it has already reached out to current and former NFL players by holding private screenings in each team’s city in advance of its opening.

“This is a movie for the players, so we wanted to give them a chance to see it before its nationwide release and free admission during its run in theaters,” producers Ridley Scott and Giannina Scott said. “The movie is so inspiring. Will Smith gives one of the best performances of his career as Dr. Bennet Omalu, a man who shined a light on the truth.”

Players will receive complimentary admission for themselves and one guest by presenting their NFLPA membership card at any Cinemark theater. Cinemark has almost 500 theaters with about 4,500 screens in the U.S.

Omalu is a forensic pathologist who fought against the NFL’s efforts to suppress his research on the brain damage suffered by professional football players. The film was directed and written by Peter Landesman, based on Jeanne Marie Laskas’ 2009 GQ article “Game Brain.”

“Concussion” also stars Alec Baldwin, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Albert Brooks. It’s a Columbia Pictures presentation in association with LStar Capital and Village Roadshow Pictures.

article by Dave McNary via Variety.com

Denzel Washington’s “The Equalizer” Scores With $36 Million Debut

The Equalizer

Denzel Washington still has plenty of firepower at the box office as his latest action film “The Equalizer” looks to be heading to an opening weekend in the $35-$37 million range.With $12.6 million on Friday from 3,236 locations, the Sony release is performing significantly better than the studio’s initial estimates of an opening in the high-$20 millions. That’s the best opening ever for director Antoine Fuqua and one of Washington’s top debuts as well.Produced for $55 million by Columbia Pictures, LStar Capital and Village Roadshow Pictures, “The Equalizer” also benefited from a glowing A- Cinemascore.

The weekend’s other wide opener, “The Boxtrolls” from Focus Features and Laika, took $4.93 million on Friday heading for a weekend of $16 million, which is in line with expectations. The stop-motion animated film opened in 3,464 locations.

Fox’s “The Maze Runner” will fight it out with “Boxtrolls” for the no. 2 spot. The young adult sci fi pic took $5 million Friday for a weekend also in the $16 million range, putting its cume after two weeks near $57 million.

Warner Bros. “This is Where I Leave You” took in another $2.2 million Friday for a possible $7 million weekend, heading to a $22 million cume in its second week.

A pair of pics in their third weekend should top last week’s opener “Walk Among the Tombstones” — Screen Gems “No Good Deed” is hanging in there with $1.35 million Friday for a projected $4.5 million weekend, finishing with a $46.5 million cume by Sunday, while Warner Bros. “Dolphin Tale 2″ took $1.26 Friday for a weekend total of about $5 million.

article by Pat Saperstein via variety.com

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