Welcome to Script Sales. Here's where you'll be able to hear about new projects just bought, pitched or greenlit. Now you can know what's going on years before the movies hit the theaters....
- Columbia Pictures paid writer Mark Steilen high six figures against $1.5 million for his original comedy script Time Share. Two fathers lock horns when they discover their families are booked into the same time-share residence during what should have been their dream vacation. John J. Strauss, Eric Tannenbaum, Nicholas Cage & Norm Golightly’s Saturn Films and Will Smith & James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment will produce. Cage and Smith will also star. Steilen, who was second unit director on Stuck on You, sold the idea as a pitch. With Cage and Smith attached it's sure to get the hype and money back.
- DreamWorks has announced a remake of the 1971 British TV series The Persuaders. No writer has yet been announded but Ben Stiller has signed on to star. Red Hour Productions’ Ben Stiller & Stuard Cornfeld and Hyde Park's Ashok Amritraj & Jon Jashni will produce. Granada America's Stephen Davis and Paul Jackson will executive produce. I like Stiller but I'll pass on this remake.
- Deb Kaplan and Harry Elfont bought their own script (can they really do that?) entitled Red-Tails in Love, adapted from Marie Winn’s novel. Romances occur between a group of bird watchers in Central Park when they become captivated by Pale Male and its mate when they set up a nest at the co-op, an exceptional occurrence. The group chronicles the activities of the birds and gets involved when residents of the co-op serve an eviction notice. Christian McLaughlin will produce. Kaplan and Elfont will also co-direct the romantic-drama. Kaplan and Elfont wrote and directed two of my favorite teen movies, Can't Hardly Wait and Josie and the Pussycats. Nobody (but myself) went to see their latest Surviving Christmas, due to Affleck's involvement (and I still contest that opening a Christmas movie in October is a bad idea). I look forward to anything from these two.
- Chiller Films greenlighted a remake of the 1978 film Piranha. Chuck Russell wrote the rewrite, using elements from the spec script Killer Fish by Josh Stolberg and Peter Goldfinger as well as the original’s script by John Sayles, which was based on a story by Richard Robertson. The story follows a prehistoric strain of the feisty fish, unleashed by a subterranean tremor in Arizona's Lake Havasu just as the college crowd shows up to party in the lake. Chuck wrote Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors and directed The Scorpion King. This isn't one I'm looking forward to.