Screen Talk: Good call

 

Actress Abigail Spencer, best known for Mad Men, has set Hollywood atwitter by writing a script named Wrong Number.

She's dialled up a film script good enough to likely get made rather than just admired – and not only that, Spencer's writing has attracted a producer in the shape of fellow front-of-camera star James Franco. The early plans see Spencer starring alongside a cast already boasting Andrew Leeds, Matt Gould, Griffin Matthews, Camille Chen and Eric Roberts. Number is billed by backers as a comedic romance about two people who "meet" on a wrong-number phone call at a pivotal moment in their lives. The story centres on a wife dealing with the loss of her father and the stranger she pursues. They strike up an unlikely friendship, which turns romantic, revealing the often-mixed signals in intimate friendships among men and women. AnnaRose King will direct the movie, which is set to shoot in April in New York.

 

Smith's new Phase

Kevin Smith, a man who has had the usual hard time getting backing from financiers, studios and independent backers recently, has struck a distribution deal. The film-maker, who held a mock auction for rights to his film Red State at last year's Sundance Film Festival, has sealed a deal with Toronto-based Phase 4. The deal calls for Phase 4 to exhibit and distribute up to 12 films per year in the US and Canada under the "Kevin Smith and SModcast Presents" label. Phase 4 will release four of the films in cinemas annually, all of which will be promoted via a live tour with Smith doing the talking. Smith bought the rights to Red State for $20 following its premiere at the Eccles Theatre and said he would distribute it via his SModcast Pictures.

 

Ready to Crow

Enemies don't always have to stay enemies for long in Hollywood. No sooner had the Weinstein Co and Relativity Media settled their legal differences over remake rights to The Crow than the production powerhouses were announcing details of the freshly flying plans. F Javier Gutiérrez will direct the film while Jesse Wigutow is to write the script. The original was distributed by the Weinsteins at Miramax in 1994 and grossed $50.6m in the US. It will long remain the stuff of after-dinner conversations over what happened between the two, who were swapping writs when early plans to remake the film together hit the rocks. Especially as the settlement is a private out-of-court settlement. All are friends again in the fight to corral audiences for a remake of the cult gothic-horror classic.

 

New deal

Jack Selby has become the latest ex-PayPal executive and internet entrepreneur to kick-start his film-making ambitions in Hollywood. Selby has created Incognito Pictures, a production company geared to making movies under $10m, and secured a distribution deal with the Weinstein Co. He follows PayPal's former COO David O Sacks into the shark-infested waters of movie production, with a $50m cash pool and ambitions to make movies in all genres, not just horror. It's a wait and see on whether or not Selby's plans will be buffering too long to produce anything.

 

Boone times

Josh Boone's directorial debut, Writers, is hoping to seal the acting services of Greg Kinnear and Jennifer Connelly. The duo is in negotiations with the film's backers to star in the film that Boone also wrote. Billed as a drama, the script focuses on the complicated relationships between a successful novelist, his ex-wife, and their college-age daughter and teenage son. The project has heavyweight backing from US company Informant Media, the production banner behind Hysteria, the Victorian-era comedy about the invention of the vibrator, which stars Maggie Gyllenhaal and Hugh Dancy.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Arts and Entertainment
William Pooley from Suffolk is flying out to Free Town, Sierra Leone, to continue working in health centres to fight Ebola after surviving the disease himself

music
Arts and Entertainment
The Newsroom creator Aaron Sorkin

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Berry (centre), the star of Channel 4 sitcom 'Toast of London'

TVA disappointingly dull denouement
Arts and Entertainment
Tales from the cryptanalyst: Benedict Cumberbatch in 'The Imitation Game'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pixie Lott has been voted off Strictly Come Dancing 2014

Strictly
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

    The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

    Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
    La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

    Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

    The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
    10 best high-end laptops

    10 best high-end laptops

    From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
    Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
    Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

    Homeless Veterans campaign

    Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
    Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

    Meet Racton Man

    Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
    Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

    Garden Bridge

    St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

    An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
    Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

    Joint Enterprise

    The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
    Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

    Freud and Eros

    Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum