With Grammy season ramping up, campaigns for nominations are gearing up as well. Such is the case for seasoned lyricist Mike Greenly whose Dance Club hit, “Perfect Bitch” is up for consideration as Best Dance Recording. First-round voting ends October 12th, 2019, with nominees announced on November 20th, 2019. Final round voting ends January 3rd, 2020. The 62nd Grammy Awards will be held on Sunday, Jan. 26th, 2020 at Los Angeles’ Staples Center and broadcast live on CBS starting at 8pm. In addition, Singer Natalie Jean and lyricist Greenly are excited to announce that their collaboration titled “Love Your Own Power” has received a nomination in the Hollywood in Media Music Awards in the category of Message Song/Social Impact. Just released on September 24, 2019, this female empowerment song turned into a powerful feminist celebration, thanks to the award-winning Haitian-American singer Jean’s performance. Greenly said he’s considered himself a feminist since the ’70s and expresses great pride in the song and in Jean’s rendition. Greenly has successfully been writing lyrics for years, achieving Billboard-charted Dance Club hits with such artists as Tony Moran, Jason Walker, Kimberly Davis and Shara Strand. He has also worked with Paul Guzzone, Michéal Castaldo, Piper Martini, Sophia Papoulis, Amber Collins, Ryan Shaw, Natalie Jean, Zhana Royia, Audrey Martells, Gil Polk, Sam Stevens, Deborah Cooper and Keith Fluitt. Now, thanks to Radikal Records’ release of “Perfect Bitch” by DJ/producer Tony Moran and singer Jason Walker, Greenly has become along with them a contender for a Grammy nomination for Best Dance Recording. The song hit #2 on the Billboard Dance Club chart for Sept. 14, 2019 – topped that week only by Sting, a worthy competitor indeed. Named as the 92nd-most successful dance artist of all time by Billboard in December, 2016, Moran worked with Greenly in creating “Perfect Bitch”. The team has also collaborated on a dozen other songs, some yet to be released. Already they have accomplished two #1 Dance Club hits by Walker: “Say Yes” which hit that pinnacle on Dec. 17, 2016 and “I’m In Love With You” on Aug. 18, 2018. Besides this work, the prolific lyricist’s achievements with Kimberly Davis prompted four additional Billboard hits. These included a #1 for “My Fire”, written with Moran and Martells, featuring CHIC founder/music legend Nile Rodgers. “Life is a Dancefloor” –- written with Moran, Ryan Shaw and Martells and produced by the Shapeshifters, led by English house producer Simon Marlin — is Greenly’s latest creation for Davis. It became a #10 Dance Club hit at the same time (July 20, 2019) that Walker’s “Perfect Bitch” hit #29 and was still rising. As legendary Disco DJ Tony Smith (host of Sirius XM radio’s “Studio 54 Classic Beats & Rhythms” show) noted. “I love working with Mike’s lyrics. They feel authentic, based on real human truth. That’s got to be one of the reasons his words connect so well with artists.” Smith has produced remixes to several dance tracks with Greenly’s work. Now, the lyricist’s hopes are focused on “Perfect Bitch” as a candidate for the Grammy nom as Best Dance Recording. “Jason Walker is a phenomenal talent,” Greenly says. “People can tell that the moment they hear him sing. It was great to have two charted hits at once, and I’m honored by the support I’m receiving for ‘Perfect Bitch’ as a potential Grammy contender. And then to have Natalie Jean’s work getting such attention… It’s all beyond my expectation!”
ABOUT BLACK AND BLUE
Black And Blue is a fast-paced action thriller about a rookie cop (Naomie Harris) rejected by her own community after joining the police force. When she witnesses the murder of a young drug dealer at the hands of corrupt cops, she narrowly escapes after capturing the crime on her body cam. Teaming up with the one person she can trust (Tyrese Gibson), they’re relentlessly hunted by police desperate to destroy the incriminating footage and drug dealers out for revenge.
Disney and Pixar’s “Onward,” which hits theaters March 6, 2020, has unveiled a new trailer, poster and images. Set in a suburban fantasy world, “Onward” introduces two teenage elf brothers, Ian and Barley Lightfoot (voices of Tom Holland and Chris Pratt), who embark on an extraordinary quest to discover if there is still a little magic left out there. Also featuring the voice of Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Ian and Barley’s mom, Laurel Lightfoot, and Octavia Spencer as the voice of the Manticore, Pixar Animation Studios’ all-new original feature film is directed by Dan Scanlon and produced by Kori Rae—the team behind “Monsters University.”
In Disney and Pixar’s “Onward,” brothers Ian and Barley seek an ancient map from the Manticore—once a fearless warrior whose tavern served as a waystation for travelers embarking on epic quests. Part lion, part bat, and part scorpion, the Manticore has adapted to changing times—but her adventurous spirit still lurks within. Featuring the voices of Tom Holland, Chris Pratt and Octavia Spencer as Ian, Barley, and the Manticore, respectively, “Onward” opens in U.S. theaters on March 6, 2020.
In Disney and Pixar’s “Onward,” brothers Ian and Barley use a spell gifted to them on Ian’s 16th birthday to magically conjure their dad—half of him, anyway—right down to his signature purple socks. Featuring the voices of Tom Holland and Chris Pratt as Ian and Barley, “Onward” opens in U.S. theaters on March 6, 2020.
Check out the new trailer and poster for “Spies in Disguise,” Blue Sky Studios’ animated spy comedy adventure starring Will Smith and Tom Holland.
Super spy Lance Sterling (Will Smith) and scientist Walter Beckett (Tom Holland) are almost exact opposites. Lance is smooth, suave and debonair. Walter is…not. But when events take an unexpected turn, this unlikely duo is forced to team up for the ultimate mission that will require an almost impossible disguise – transforming Lance into the brave, fierce, majestic…pigeon. Walter and Lance suddenly have to work as a team, or the whole world is in peril. Blue Sky Studios’ “Spies in Disguise,” an animated spy comedy adventure, stars Will Smith, Tom Holland, Rashida Jones, Ben Mendelsohn, Reba McEntire, Rachel Brosnahan, Karen Gillan, DJ Khaled and Masi Oka and is directed by Troy Quane and Nick Bruno.
BLACK AND BLUE is a fast-paced action thriller about a rookie cop (Academy Award® nominee Naomie Harris) who inadvertently captures the murder of a young drug dealer on her body cam. After realizing that the murder was committed by corrupt cops, she teams up with the one person from her community who is willing to help her (Tyrese Gibson) as she tries to escape both the criminals out for revenge and the police who are desperate to destroy the incriminating footage.
Check out the first teaser for the new season of Hulu Original Castle Rock. Season two stars Lizzy Caplan, Tim Robbins, Paul Sparks, Yusra Warsama, Barkhad Abdi, Elsie Fisher and Matthew Alan. Castle Rock premieres Wednesday, Oct. 23, only on Hulu.
Synopsis: A psychological-horror series set in the Stephen King multiverse, Castle Rock combines the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland. The fictional Maine town of Castle Rock has figured prominently in King’s literary career: Cujo, The Dark Half, IT and Needful Things, as well as novella The Body and numerous short stories (Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption) are set in there. Castle Rock is an original suspense/thriller — a first-of-its-kind reimagining that unites King's themes and worlds, and brings together the author's most iconic and beloved characters. In season two, a feud between warring clans comes to a boil when budding psychopath Annie Wilkes (Lizzy Caplan), Stephen King's nurse from hell, gets waylaid in Castle Rock.
Best friends Mia and Mel (Tiffany Haddish and Rose Byrne) are living their best lives running their own cosmetics company they’ve built from the ground up. Unfortunately, they’re in over their heads financially, and the prospect of a big buyout offer from a notorious titan of the cosmetics industry Claire Luna (Salma Hayek) proves too tempting to pass up, putting Mel and Mia’s lifelong friendship in jeopardy. The beauty business is about to get ugly. LIKE A BOSS also stars Billy Porter, Jennifer Coolidge, Ari Graynor, Natasha Rothwell, Jessica St. Clair, and Karan Soni.
PARAMOUNT PICTURES Presents
An ARTISTS FIRST Production A MIGUEL ARTETA Film
Directed by Miguel Arteta
Screenplay by Sam Pitman & Adam Cole-Kelly
Story by Sam Pitman & Adam Cole-Kelly and Danielle Sanchez-Witzel
Produced by Marc Evans, p.g.a. Peter Principato, p.g.a. Joel Zadak Itay Reiss
Executive Producers Tiffany Haddish Nicolas Stern
Starring Tiffany Haddish, Rose Byrne and Salma Hayek. LIKE A BOSS also stars Billy Porter, Jennifer Coolidge, Ari Graynor, Natasha Rothwell, Jessica St. Clair, and Karan Soni.
Follow LIKE A BOSS on social media for more updates! #LikeABoss
In a record-breaking sale, said to be one of the biggest ever festival acquisitions, HBO has acquired the global rights to Cory Finley’s (Thoroughbreds) critically acclaimed sophomore feature Bad Education, starring Academy Award® Nominee Hugh Jackman (The Greatest Showman, Les Misérables), Academy Award® Winner Allison Janney (I, Tonya), Golden Globe® Nominee Ray Romano (The Big Sick, The Irishman), Geraldine Viswanathan (Blockers) and Alex Wolff (Hereditary).
Produced by Automatik and Sight Unseen. Fred Berger, Eddie Vaisman, Julia Lebedev, Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Oren Moverman, and Mike Makowsky produced. Executive Producers are Leonid Lebedev and Caroline Jaczko.
Bad Education made its World Premiere as a Special Presentation at the Toronto international Film Festival. The film earned rave reviews – noting career-best work by Jackman and Janney - and was listed on Variety’s, IndieWire’s, and Rolling Stone’s best films of fall festivals lists.
In a highly competitive situation, HBO beat out a number of theatrical distributors and is planning a 2020 release. The WarnerMedia-owned company will air the feature globally where it has networks and streaming services and is planning an award push in 2020.
Inspired by true events, Bad Education follows Frank Tassone (Jackman) and Pam Gluckin (Janney) who reign over a popular Long Island school district on the verge of the nation’s top spot, spurring record college admissions and soaring property values. But when an embezzlement scheme surfaces that threatens to destroy all they’ve built, Frank is forced to maintain order and secrecy — by whatever means necessary. Jackman’s performance as the charismatic Tassone has been praised as a career-high by multiple critics.
Bad Education is written by Mike Makowsky (I Think We’re Alone Now), who grew up in Roslyn, Long Island during the scandal and drew from the New York Magazine long read article “The Bad Superintendent” by Robert Kolker.
CAA Media Finance and Endeavor Content represented the filmmakers on the deal.
BY JAMES SHELDON AND DIRECTED BY MICHELE SHAY WITH LISA ARRINDELL, KAMAL BOLDEN, GYS DE VILLIERS AND ALEXANDRA NEIL
A CENTERPIECE OF THE INAUGURAL NEW WINDOWS FESTIVAL
The Billie Holiday Theatre Artistic and Executive Director Dr. Indira Etwaroo announced the theatre’s world premiere of James Sheldon’s Reparations, a centerpiece of the inaugural New Windows Festival, a major highlight of The Billie’s 2019-2020 season.
The world premiere of Reparations marks the sixth production of Sheldon’s plays, which include Shiverman, nominated as Best Play of 2012 by London’s Off-West End Awards. Directed by Tony Award-nominee Michele Shay (August Wilson’s Seven Guitars and Raisin in the Sun on Broadway, The Old Settler at The Billie, 2018 AUDELCO-winning Best Revival of the Year) Reparations stars Lisa Arrindell (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof on Broadway, A Lesson Before Dying, Madea’s Family Reunion), Kamal Bolden (The Resident, Chicago Fire, Rosewood), Alexandra Neil (Madoff, and Rock 'n' Roll and Match on Broadway), and Gys de Villiers (Mandela Long Walk to Freedom, Vehicle 19, It Gets Better).
Previews begin October 25, 2019 with Opening Night on Wednesday, November 6, 2019 and running through November 24, 2019 at The Billie Holiday Theatre, 1368 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY 11216.
Reparations tells the story of a recently widowed white book editor (Alexandra Neil) who invites a younger black writer (Kamal Bolden) to her apartment, only to find that a night of tenderness and passion turns into a tumultuous morning-after when he threatens to reveal a dark secret from her past. As family friends – played by Lisa Arrindell and Gys de Villiers - join them for an Upper East Side lunch, we discover whether the young writer will succeed in claiming his “reparations” for a life of racial injustice and personal betrayal.
“The Billie continues to celebrate the triumph of the human spirit, which remains at the core of the African American experience during this 400 th commemorative year of the beginning of slavery in America. We enter this season with a profound understanding that the African American story is the very foundation of the American story,” stated Indira Etwaroo. “With New Windows and Reparations, the Black experience is the complex perspective through which we view the world and our relationship to it in order to inspire and generate deeply necessary and critical cross-cultural dialogues. These artists - James, Michele, Luba, Hollis, Maria - join us in Bed-Stuy, as we continue to peel back the layers of the status quo in the arts and to tackle issues of race, identity, equity, and equality through the creative process in ways that tear down walls, not build them.
“With Reparations, we have created a provocative examination of race in America and of the lenses through which we see each other, and I am excited to bring James’ story and The Billie’s vision for this piece to life,” stated director Michele Shay. “ I have always gravitated to stories that are unique, brave, honest, and that challenge and push the audience. I was drawn to Reparations because it is disruptive in the best way possible.
You have a white playwright, a black director, and a Black-led institution - dedicated to telling the stories of those across the African diaspora with the hope that Reparations will challenge age-old divisions and embrace our shared humanity.
The artistic team includes Moriah and Isabel Curley-Clay as a set and prop designers, and David Moodey as a lighting designer with Sam Potochick as Production Stage Manager, Yohanna Florentine as Assistant Stage Manager, and Emma Pearl Nigut as Assistant Director. Casting by Anne Davison.
New Windows Festival goes beyond racial differences to explore the intersectionality and complexity of identity and to spotlight voices and perspectives that have not historically been presented at The Billie with bold and daring storytelling that centralizes themes of race, social justice, and equity within the human struggle for understanding and truth.
ABC's 'Stumptown' Cast and Executive Producers Celebrated the Upcoming Premiere at a Red Carpet Event Hosted by ABC and Entertainment Weekly, Monday, Sept. 16
The cast and executive producers of “Stumptown” celebrated the upcoming premiere of the highly anticipated fall series at an exclusive red carpet event tonight, Monday, Sept. 16.
The event was hosted by ABC and Entertainment Weekly at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles.
Following a special screening of the premiere episode, Cobie Smulders, Michael Ealy, Camryn Manheim, Tantoo Cardinal, Cole Sibus and Adrian Martinez, joined by executive producers Jason Richman, David Bernad and Ruben Fleischer, participated in a panel moderated by Entertainment Weekly’s Derek Lawrence.
ABC's “Stumptown” premieres Wednesday, Sept. 25, at 10/9c on ABC.
Credits: © 2019 American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
Based on the graphic novel series, “Stumptown” follows Dex Parios – a strong, assertive and sharp-witted army veteran with a complicated love life, gambling debt and a brother to take care of in Portland, Oregon. Her military intelligence skills make her a great PI, but her unapologetic style puts her in the firing line of hardcore criminals and not quite in alliance with the police.
The series stars Cobie Smulders as Dex Parios, Jake Johnson as Grey McConnell, Tantoo Cardinal as Sue Lynn Blackbird, Cole Sibus as Ansel Parios, Adrian Martinez as Tookie with Camryn Manheim as Lieutenant Cosgrove and Michael Ealy as Detective Miles Hoffman.
Creator: Greg Rucka
Stars: Cobie Smulders, Michael Ealy, Jake Johnson
JD McCrary (voice of Young Simba), Shahadi Wright Joseph (voice of Young Nala) from Disney’s “The Lion King” were on hand at ESSENCE Festival 2019 this weekend at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. They celebrated the movie’s upcoming opening by singing “Can’t Wait to be King” on the ESSENCE Centerstage. Additionally, the Great Street Stephen Full Gospel Choir under the leadership of Pastor Debra Morton and GRAMMY®-nominated, Stellar Award-winning gospel legend Bishop Paul S. Morton performed “The Circle of Life” with Tshidi Manye (Rafiki in Broadway’s “The Lion King”). Tamron Hall helped facilitate the festivities.
ABOUT The ESSENCE Festival®
The ESSENCE Festival® presented by Coca-Cola, the world’s largest cultural, entertainment and empowerment experience, marked its 25th anniversary July 4-7, 2019, in New Orleans, La. The Festival, the only experience of its kind, is also the largest celebration of global Black culture and continues to reach new heights with a focus on economic inclusion, cultural ownership and community development. Now attracting more than 500,000 attendees each weekend, the ESSENCE Festival surpasses every national music, entertainment, and cultural festival based on average daily attendance and is planning its most extensive programming to date.
ABOUT “THE LION KING”
Disney’s “The Lion King, directed by Jon Favreau, journeys to the African savanna where a future king is born. Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub’s arrival. Scar, Mufasa’s brother—and former heir to the throne—has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba’s exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his. The all-star cast includes Donald Glover as Simba, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Billy Eichner as Timon. Utilizing pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring treasured characters to life in a whole new way, Disney’s “The Lion King” roars into theaters on July 19, 2019.
ABOUT SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT
A seriously sexy comedy and rousing celebration of female empowerment, She’s Gotta Have It Season 2 offers a timely and topical portrait of rising talents, with free-spirited artist Nola Darling (DeWanda Wise) at the center. Struggling with newfound success this season, against a backdrop of black art and culture, Nola must decide if she will remain true to her creative ideals or give in to the corporate world. Her journey of self-discovery helps transform the lives of those around her, including friend and sometimes lover Mars Blackmon (Anthony Ramos), who sets out to pursue his true passion of music as well as her inner circle of Opal (Ilfenesh Hadera), Greer Childs (Cleo Anthony), Jamie Overstreet (Lyriq Bent), Clorinda Bradford (Margot Bingham), and Shemekka Epps (Chyna Layne). Their journey expands to new destinations this season beyond their home base of Fort Greene, the vibrant Brooklyn enclave, that continues to evolve and change as gentrification remakes the neighborhood.
Created by Spike Lee who also executive produces the series alongside Tonya Lewis Lee, all nine episodes of Season 2 will be released on Netflix on May 24, 2019.
Check out the final trailer for Disney and Pixar’s “Toy Story 4,” as well as two new images from the trailer featuring Woody, Bo Peep and Bonnie’s new friend Forky. Please share with your readers. “Toy Story 4” opens in U.S. theaters on June 21, 2019.
ABOUT “TOY STORY 4”:
Woody (voice of Tom Hanks) has always been confident about his place in the world, and that his priority is taking care of his kid, whether that’s Andy or Bonnie. So, when Bonnie’s beloved new craft-project-turned-toy, Forky (voice of Tony Hale), declares himself as “trash” and not a toy, Woody takes it upon himself to show Forky why he should embrace being a toy. But when Bonnie takes the whole gang on her family’s road trip excursion, Woody ends up on an unexpected detour that includes a reunion with his long-lost friend Bo Peep (voice of Annie Potts). After years of being on her own, Bo’s adventurous spirit and life on the road belie her delicate porcelain exterior. As Woody and Bo realize they’re worlds apart when it comes to life as a toy, they soon come to find that’s the least of their worries. Directed by Josh Cooley (“Riley’s First Date?”), and produced by Mark Nielsen (associate producer “Inside Out”) and Jonas Rivera (“Inside Out,” “Up”), Disney and Pixar’s “Toy Story 4” ventures to U.S. theaters on June 21, 2019.
U.S. Release Date: June 21, 2019
Voice Cast: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Annie Potts, Tony Hale, Keegan-Michael Key, Madeleine McGraw, Christina Hendricks, Jordan Peele, Keanu Reeves, Ally Maki, Jay Hernandez, Lori Alan, Joan Cusack, Bonnie Hunt, Kristen Schaal, Emily Davis, Wallace Shawn, John Ratzenberger, Blake Clark, June Squibb, Carl Weathers, Lila Sage, Don Rickles, Jeff Garlin, Maliah Bargas-Good, Jack McGraw, Juliana Hansen, Estelle Harris
Director: Josh Cooley
Producers: Mark Nielsen, Jonas Rivera
· “Toy Story,” originally released on Nov. 22, 1995, was the first fully computer animated feature film and the highest grossing movie of the year. It was nominated for three Oscars® and two Golden Globes®.
· “Toy Story 2” is the first film ever to be entirely created, mastered and exhibited digitally. It was also the first animated sequel to gross more than its original, breaking opening weekend box office records in the U.S., UK and Japan, becoming the highest grossing animated release of 1999. It won the Golden Globe for best motion picture – comedy or musical. It won a Grammy® for best song written for a motion picture, television or other visual media (Randy Newman, “When She Loved Me”).
· Released in 2010, “Toy Story 3” won Oscars® for best animated feature film and best achievement in music written for motion pictures, original song (Randy Newman/“We Belong Together”). The film also won a Golden Globe® and BAFTA for best animated film. It was the second Pixar film to be nominated for the best picture Oscar. It’s also Pixar’s second highest-grossing film of all time behind “Incredibles 2.”
· The 2015 short “Riley’s First Date?” was helmed by director Josh Cooley and produced by Mark Nielsen.
CLOSE QUARTERS – In Disney and Pixar’s “Toy Story 4,” Bo Peep takes Woody to a secret hangout within the antique store—the inside of a vintage pinball machine—where a lot of toys go to socialize. Featuring Annie Potts and Tom Hanks as the voices of Bo and Woody, “Toy Story 4” opens in U.S. theaters on June 21, 2019.
NEW FRIEND! – In Disney and Pixar’s “Toy Story 4,” Bonnie makes a new friend in kindergarten orientation—literally. When Forky—Bonnie’s craft-project-turned-toy—declares himself trash and not a toy, Woody takes it upon himself to show Forky why he should embrace being a toy. Featuring the voices of Tony Hale and Tom Hanks as Forky and Woody, “Toy Story 4” opens in U.S. theaters on June 21, 2019.
Renegade Dreamers, a timely new documentary by Karen Kramer, chronicles the artists of today carrying on the tradition of the Beat poets and radical folk singers of New York City’s legendary Greenwich Village who challenged the status quo.
Week-long theatrical release starts May 31 at Cinema Village
Renegade Dreamers, a new feature documentary by acclaimed filmmaker Karen Kramer (The Jolo Serpent Handlers, The Ballad of Greenwich Village), is a window into the New York spoken word poets and folk singers of today who use their art for social change, interwoven with the Beat poets and radical protest singers of the legendary Greenwich Village coffee house scene of the ‘60s that started it all. This timely film will enjoy a week-long theatrical release starting May 31 at Cinema Village, in the heart of the Village’s vibrant creative community.
Throughout New York City the air is filled with the sounds of subversive poetry, radical songwriting and calls for social change. From poetry slams and open mics to subway platforms, basements, cafes, street demonstrations and political rallies, young poets and protest singers are fighting to combat police brutality, corporate greed, racism, conformity and other issues of their times.
Where folk singer Woody Guthrie once sang out for union organizing, contemporary songwriter Gio Andollo from Washington Heights takes his mandolin to shopping centers where he confronts consumers with songs against clothing made in sweatshops. Where poet Allen Ginsberg once wrote poems that cried out for free speech, Bronx-born spoken word artist Saroya Marsh uses her words to fight for Black Lives Matter and social justice.
With appearances by Bob Dylan, Allen Ginsberg, Wavy Gravy, Joan Baez, Woody Guthrie, Maria Muldaur, Tom Paxton, the Weavers—and some of the best young artists you haven’t yet heard of—the film, both entertaining and informative, is loaded with protest, history and music. It couldn’t come at a more timely moment as the people are letting their voices be heard once again, emphasizing what it means to be a renegade and dreamer in America today.
“I’ve always been interested in those who step off the path prescribed for them, those who question authority and challenge the status quo,” said Karen Kramer, director of Renegade Dreamers. “I wanted to make a film that would honor the Beat generation of the past who started it all, as well as provide a window into the artists of today who are carrying on that tradition. They made me realize that in light of what’s going on in the country today—if not the world—it’s more important than ever to question authority.”
About Director Karen Kramer:
Karen Kramer has been a documentary filmmaker since 1978 when her groundbreaking film The Jolo Serpent Handlers, about a small snake handling church in Appalachia, was released to widespread acclaim. Since then she has independently produced a dozen other documentaries about rituals traditions, human rights and communities. These include award-winning films such as To Serve The Gods, Legacy of the Spirits, Haitian Song, Celebration, The Last of the New York Cigar Rollers, Days of Awe, Children of Shadows, The Ballad of Greenwich Village and several others.
Kramer's films have received wide distribution both domestically and internationally. They have been televised on NBC, Fox 5, WNET, The Oprah Show, CNN, WLIW and dozens of venues overseas. In addition to winning awards at festivals worldwide, they have been screened at such prestigious showcases as the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, the Field Museum and hundreds of others. More than 150 universities show her films on a continual basis. She has lectured and toured extensively with her work—from Europe to Africa to South America—and has appeared on dozens of radio programs.
The filmmaker has four times received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as awards from the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York Council for the Humanities, the George Soros Foundation, UNICEF and many others. She lives in Greenwich Village, New York City.
Directed and Produced by Karen Kramer
Cinematography by Dan Drasin, Stephen Gladstone
Edited by David Petersen
Second Editors: Denise Dragiewicz, Kala Mandrake
Principal Archivist: Alexandra Singer
USA - 2019 - 71 mins - Color - DCP
Story follows a Brinks Security Guard who Steals $1.85 million and Makes the Most Expensive Gay Porno of All-Time
In a competitive situation, Valparaiso Pictures has acquired the rights to Ashley and April Spicer’s highly sought-after article in the Daily Beast, “‘Centurians of Rome’: How a Bank Robber Made the Most Expensive Gay Porno of All Time.” Valparaiso’s David Carrico, Adam Paulsen, and Bobby Hoppey will develop the story into a feature film and produce alongside Academy Award Nominee David Permut (Hacksaw Ridge, Face/Off) at Permut Presentations, and Adam Blum under his Free Will banner. The team is looking to set a writer and filmmaker on the project.
The March 2019 story chronicles George Bosque, a Brink’s security guard who stole $1.85 million and disappeared into thin air. During his time on the run, he produced/financed Centurians of Rome, a classic 1981 gay pornographic film set during the Roman Empire made before being apprehended by police. A young aggressive attorney named Robert Mueller, prosecuted the case.
“Ashley and April wrote a compelling article – which carefully peels away to reveal the wildly unique character arc of George Bosque, who notoriously went from security guard, to bank robber to producer after he presented Centurians director John Christopher with a bag of cash. We knew how special this story was even before we finished reading the article,” said Valparaiso’s David Carrico.
“The complexities of George’s character set against the backdrop of the sexual freedoms of the late 1970’s before the onslaught of the AIDS epidemic creates a multi-layered tale of ambition, love, crime and despair. It’s Dog Day Afternoon meets Boogie Nights!” said David Permut. “I’m very much looking forward to collaborating with the team at Valparaiso and Adam Blum on this provocative project.”
Known by many as the PHD’s of porn, Ashley and April Spicer currently act as consultants on HBO’s “The Deuce” and are the founders of The Rialto Report, the authoritative online archive for oral history, audio recordings, and photographs documenting the Golden Age of Adult Film.
Valparaiso Pictures is quickly expanding its development and production portfolio. They are currently in pre-production on Ethan Berger’s coming-of-age thriller The Line, starring Alex Wolff, John Malkovich, Scoot McNairy, Jessica Barden, and Lewis Pullman; as well as developing the upcoming spy action comedy No Glory starring Kumail Nanjiani. The company recently premiered The Sound of Silence starring Peter Sarsgaard and Rashida Jones in competition at Sundance 2019 where it was recently acquired by IFC.
David Permut has always had a passion for true stories. Permut Presentations most recent productions include Hacksaw Ridge (Lionsgate) starring Andrew Garfield, and The Polka King (Netflix) starring Jack Black. The company is currently in production on a documentary that follows the creation of the famous nightclub Chippendales, which will serve as a companion piece for the feature film starring Ben Stiller and Dev Patel which is set to go into production later this year.
The Spicers’ are repped by Free Will and Murray Weiss of Catalyst Literary Management. Valparaiso Pictures is represented by Craig Emanuel of Paul Hastings. Permut Presentations is represented by John Tishbi at Pearlman & Tishbi, LLP. Adam Blum is represented Matt Wallerstein at Hirsch, Wallerstein, Hyum, Matlof, & Fishman.
About Valparaiso Pictures
Based in Beverly Hills, Valparaiso Pictures is a development, production and finance company for film and television, founded by David Carrico. Whether it’s finding untold stories to bring to the screen or enabling burgeoning writers and filmmakers to take creative risks, Valparaiso creates opportunities for distinct voices in drama, comedy and genre. The company is an incubator for edgy, eccentric and diverse content, enabling creatives to find their audience.
ABOUT PERMUT PRESENTATIONS
Permut Presentations was founded by Emmy and Academy Award Nominated Producer, David Permut. In the last 30 years, Permut has produced more than 40 movies and documentaries, crossing genre lines while working with major studios, TV networks and independent financiers. David has premiered films at all of the major film festivals including Cannes, Venice, Toronto, Sundance, SXSW and Tribeca.
The brand-new trailer for Disney’s “The Lion King” is available now, marking 100 days until Simba arrives in theaters on July 19.
Disney’s “The Lion King, directed by Jon Favreau (“The Jungle Book”), journeys to the African savanna where a future king is born. Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub’s arrival. Scar, Mufasa’s brother—and former heir to the throne—has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba’s exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his.
Staying true to the classic story, director Jon Favreau utilizes pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring the iconic characters to the big screen in a whole new way. Featuring the voices of Donald Glover as Simba, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Billy Eichner as Timon, Disney’s “The Lion King” opens in U.S. theaters on July 19, 2019.
Survival Drama Made Its World Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival
Saban Films has acquired U.S. rights to Academy Award® Winner Casey Affleck’s narrative feature debut, Light of My Life. Written, directed by and starring Affleck (Manchester by the Sea, Interstellar), the dystopian survival drama also stars breakout star Anna Pniowsky (“PEN15”) and Golden Globe® Winner Elisabeth Moss (“The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Mad Men”). Light of My Life made its World Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in the Panorama section.
Light of My Life follows a father (Affleck) and child (Pniowsky) who journey through the outskirts of society a decade after a pandemic has wiped out half the world’s population. As a father struggles to protect his child at all costs, their bond, and the character of humanity, is tested.
“This has been a passion-driven project for the filmmakers, who have crafted a beautiful and sophisticated film, grounded with superb performances,” said Saban Films’ Bill Bromiley. “We couldn’t be more honored to be part of such a dedicated team. Our audiences will fall in love with the intensity and sincerity of this character-based survival drama, focusing on a strong father-daughter bond.”
The film, fully financed by Black Bear Pictures, was produced by Black Bear’s Teddy Schwarzman and Affleck on behalf of Sea Change Media. John Powers Middleton also produced. Executive producers are Black Bear’s Michael Heimler and Ben Stillman, and Sea Change’s Whitaker Lader.
“On behalf of everyone involved in the making of Light of My Life, I’d like to thank Saban Films for their passion, commitment and support,” said Schwarzman. “Light of My Life has been a labor of love for the entire cast and crew, and we look forward to working with Saban to bring Light of My Life to audiences across America.”
Bill Bromiley and Jonathan Saba negotiated the deal for Saban Films, with Endeavor Content on behalf of the filmmakers. Sierra / Affinity is handling international rights.
Saban Films most recently announced their partnership with Kevin Smith’s highly-anticipated Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, coming on board from script stage for the sequel to the 2001 comedy Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. The company remains active in the acquisition and distribution space, with upcoming titles including: Richard Bates Jr.’s horror thriller Tone-Deaf, which just made its World Premiere at SXSW and stars Robert Patrick and Amanda Crew; Danny A. Abeckaser’s Mob Town starring David Arquette; The Haunting of Sharon Tate starring Hilary Duff; Derrick Borte’s American Dreamer starring Jim Gaffigan; The Professor, the Wayne Roberts-directed drama starring Johnny Depp; and Sarah Daggar-Nickson’s A Vigilante starring Olivia Wilde.
Saban Films continues to grow its presence in the industry, with successes that have run the gamut from critically acclaimed theatrical films such as The Homesman starring Hilary Swank, to one of the biggest Fathom events in 2016 with Rob Zombie’s horror thriller 31. Recent titles include James Marsh’s King of Thieves starring Michael Caine, Jim Broadbent, Tom Courtenay and Michael Gambon; the anthology Berlin, I Love You with Helen Mirren, Keira Knightley and Jim Sturgess; the Gerard Butler starrer The Vanishing; Alexandre Moors’ The Yellow Birds starring Tye Sheridan, Alden Ehrenreich, Toni Collette, Jason Patric, Jack Huston and Jennifer Aniston; Eshom and Ian Nelms’ lauded feature Small Town Crime starring John Hawkes and Octavia Spencer; and Ivan Kavanagh’s Never Grow Old starring John Cusack and Emile Hirsch.
About Saban Films
Saban Films, an affiliate of Saban Capital Group (“SCG”), is a film acquisition and distribution company which acquires high-quality, feature films to distribute in North America. Focusing on commercial, talent driven films, the company looks at projects in all stages of production for release across multiple platforms, including a day and date theatrical/VOD release strategy. Based in Los Angeles, Saban Films was established by Haim Saban, SCG Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, and is led by Bill Bromiley who serves as President, Shanan Becker, Chief Financial Officer and Ness Saban, Vice President of Business Development.
This April, meet Mr. Link (Galifianakis): 8 feet tall, 630 lbs, and covered in fur, but don’t let his appearance fool you… he is funny, sweet, and adorably literal, making him the world’s most lovable legend at the heart of Missing Link, the globe-trotting family adventure from LAIKA. Tired of living a solitary life in the Pacific Northwest, Mr. Link recruits fearless explorer Sir Lionel Frost (Jackman) to guide him on a journey to find his long-lost relatives in the fabled valley of Shangri-La. Along with adventurer Adelina Fortnight (Saldana), our fearless trio of explorers encounter more than their fair share of peril as they travel to the far reaches of the world to help their new friend. Through it all, the three learn that sometimes you can find a family in the places you least expect.
Director: Chris Butler
Writer: Chris Butler
Producers: Travis Knight p.g.a., Arianne Sutner p.g.a.
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Zoe Saldana, Zach Galifianakis, Timothy Olyphant, David Walliams, Emma Thompson, Matt Lucas, Ching Valdes-Aran, Stephen Fry, Amrita Acharia
IN THEATERS APRIL 12, 2019
We’re in the endgame now.
Watch this brand-new featurette from Marvel Studios’ AVENGERS: ENDGAME!
Marvel Studios’ AVENGERS: ENDGAME releases in U.S. theaters on April 26.
The grave course of events set in motion by Thanos that wiped out half the universe and fractured the Avengers ranks compels the remaining Avengers to take one final stand in Marvel Studios’ grand conclusion to twenty-two films, “Avengers: Endgame.”
Kevin Feige produces “Avengers: Endgame,” and Anthony and Joe Russo are the directors. Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Michael Grillo, Trinh Tran, Jon Favreau, James Gunn and Stan Lee are the executive producers, and Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely wrote the screenplay.
The Christopher Cantwell Directed Film had its World Premiere at the Sun Valley Film Festival
Samuel Goldwyn Films has picked up domestic distribution rights to The Parts You Lose directed by Christopher Cantwell (“Halt and Catch Fire”) and starring Emmy Award® Winner Aaron Paul (“Breaking Bad,” Need for Speed), Scoot McNairy (Argo, “Narcos: Mexico”), Mary Elizabeth Winstead (“Fargo,”10 Cloverfield Lane) and newcomer Danny Murphy. Academy® Award winner Mark Johnson (Rain Man, “Breaking Bad,” “Halt and Catch Fire”) produced under his Gran Via banner alongside Tom Williams, Aaron Paul and The H Collective’s Kenneth Huang. Written by Darren Lemke, The Parts You Lose recently had its world premiere at the Sun Valley Film Festival on March 14th where Paul was presented with the “Pioneer Award.” The film will be released by Samuel Goldwyn Films in late summer.
In the character-driven thriller, Paul plays a fugitive criminal who forms an unlikely bond with a deaf child named Wesley (Murphy) when he takes refuge in an abandoned barn on the boy's family's farm. But with authorities closing in, Wesley must decide where his allegiances lie.
“We’re thrilled to be working with such an exceptional cast whose character relationships within the film are riveting and impactful,” says Meg Longo Senior Director at Samuel Goldwyn. “Christopher Cantwell crafts an impressively fresh thriller that, like its winter atmosphere, paints humanity in shades of grey.”
The H Collective fully financed and oversaw production on the dramatic thriller. The H Collective’s Nic Crawley and Kent Huang, Douglas Jones, Blue Fox Entertainment’s Todd Slater and Paula Van Der Oest executive produced.
Meg Longo negotiated on behalf of Samuel Goldwyn Films with UTA, who represented the filmmakers. Blue Fox Entertainment is handling the international rights.
ABOUT SAMUEL GOLDWYN FILMS
Samuel Goldwyn Films is a major, independently owned and operated motion-picture company that develops, produces and distributes innovative feature films and documentaries.
The company is dedicated to working with both world-renowned and emerging writers/filmmakers and committed to filmed entertainment that offers original voices in uniquely told stories. This is best exemplified by the Academy Award® nominated Super Size Me; Sundance winner Gook written and directed by Justin Chon; the critically acclaimed feature debut by Francis Lee God’s Own Country; SXSW winner Most Beautiful Island; the high-school drama Blame directed, written, and starring Quinn Shephard; LGBTQ musical drama Saturday Church; Allure starring Evan Rachel Wood; Warwick Thornton’s Australian western Sweet Country starring Sam Neill, Bryan Brown, and Hamilton Morris; the Wim Wenders film, starring James McAvoy and Academy Award winner® Alicia Vikander, Submergence; the family film Zoo; Nancy, a psychological thriller starring Andrea Riseborough; Cold Skin from director Xavier Gens; and A Boy A Girl A Dream starring Omari Hardwick and Meagan Good. Upcoming releases include Ondi Timoner’s bio-pic Mapplethorpe starring Matt Smith, Russia’s historic drama Sobibor, Joseph Cross’ directorial debut Summer Night, and the Karen Gillan & David Dastmalchian lead film All Creatures Here Below.
ABOUT THE H COLLECTIVE
Launched in 2017, and with offices in Los Angeles, The H Collective is a global film finance, production, marketing and distribution company that is producing and financing a diversified slate of high-quality films with strong Franchise IP potential. The slate includes Brightburn starring Elizabeth Banks which Sony will release on May 24th and Christopher Cantwell’s thriller The Parts You Lose starring Aaron Paul. The H Collective acquired the rights to Aaron W. Sala’s horror thriller spec The Beast and will produce the fourth installment of the xXx franchise starring Vin Diesel.
For further information, visit: www.thehcollectivefilms.com.