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Week in Review...



  • 3 Wolves Prods. has purchased the warrior tale NOMADS from actor/screenwriter George Tasudis. The action-adventure epic revolves around Suvar, the leader of a fierce barbarian tribe of robbers, who faces a series of obstacles and challenges that make a hero out of him. Tasudis also will appear in the film.

  • Dave Meyers is in talks to direct the heist pic BREAKING THE BOX for 20th Century Fox. Based on a screenplay by Dan Cutler, the plot revolves around four female flight attendants who moonlight as high-stakes jewel thieves until they are blackmailed into pulling off the biggest heist of their lives.

  • Chris Weitz is in early talks to adapt and direct the first installment of Philip Pullman's kids fantasy book trilogy HIS DARK MATERIALS for New Line Cinema. The story revolves around two children who live in parallel worlds surrounded by a cast of shape-shifting creatures.

  • The South African DV8 digital film production project has announced that its third film will be THE FLYER, written and directed by Revel Fox. The project tells the story of Kier, a mixed race streetchild from Cape Town who robs Anders, a wise old master ex-trapeze flyer. Anders catches him and makes him repay his debt.

  • Screenwriter Paul Hirsch's hip-hop story KOOL HERC BREAKBEAT will be produced by Maxmedia and Palm Pictures. Hirsch's script concerns a quest by music historian and DJ Max Welder to find the Holy Grail of hip-hop in the form of a rare record featuring the first breakbeat and ensure that it finds its way to a museum. The journey covers the popular music genre's evolution from its Jamaican roots to the streets of New York.

  • Paramount picked up Kara Holden's comedy pitch INNER BITCH, a broad female-driven comedy along the lines of LIAR, LIAR.

  • Harley Peyton (BANDITS) is writing an English-language remake of Patrice Leconte's MAN ON THE TRAIN for Landscape Entertainment.

  • 2929 Prods. grabbed Clayton Surratt's script 342. It's a spy thriller that centers on a young FBI agent leading the charge to restore the 18-minute gap on Nixon Tape 342. When he gains control of the tape, he comes under the scrutiny of a veteran "spy catcher" within the FBI.

  • Zak Penn (X2) is in negotiations to write SPY HUNTER for Universal Pictures and director John Woo. The film will star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in the adaptation of Midway's long-running vidgame franchise.

  • Fernley Phillips is set to write a remake of ALTERED STATES, the 1980 Ken Russell-directed, Paddy Chayefsky-scripted psychedelic sci-fi thriller for Warner Bros.

  • Michel Gondry is directing an adaptation of the sci-fi thriller MASTER OF SPACE AND TIME by Rudy Rucker. Jack Black is attached to star in the project for DreamWorks. It's about two mad scientists who figure out how to control reality.

  • Walter Hill has signed on to direct the cop thriller LITTLE SISTER for Millennium Films. Hill will direct from a script he co-wrote with David Giler. The story centers on a female cop who teams up with a Mafia-type thug seeking retribution for his little sister's death.

  • David Mackenzie (YOUNG ADAM) will next direct the biopic NICO for Vagabond Films. The film will center on the life of Nico, a model-singer-actress who was part of the Andy Warhol scene in the 1960s. She appeared in Federico Fellini's 1960 film LA DOLCE VITA and was chosen by Warhol to sing with the Velvet Underground.

  • Hyde Park Entertainment has set up the romantic comedy THE OTHER END OF THE LINE at MGM. Based on an original screenplay by Tracey Jackson, the film centers on a beautiful credit card phone operator who lives in India but pretends to be American to her callers. The girl travels to the United States without telling her family in order to meet a New York man that she's met over the phone. Problems arise when they meet in San Francisco, and she decides not to reveal her true identity.

  • New Line Cinema has picked up HUMBUGGIN', written by Luke Ryan, for Sandbox Entertainment to produce. The urban comedy is set on Christmas Eve, when a greedy, cruel and selfish rap mogul is visited by a trio of ghosts who force him to re-examine his life in the tradition of A CHRISTMAS CAROL.

  • Montecito Picture Co. grabbed Jeff Schaffer and Ted Humphrey's action pitch AZTEC. Set in 1519 at the height of the Aztec civilization, project revolves around a slave named Tez who plays a brutal ball game called Ullamalitzli, in which the loser is sacrificed.

  • Paramount has tapped April Blair to write RHINESTONE ALIBI, based on the true tale of a college-based alibi service that started at the U. of Arizona.

  • Damon Wayans will direct BEHIND THE SMILE, a dark indie drama set in the world of standup comedy, based on his original screenplay. Marlon Wayans will star as a young comic who leaves Cleveland for Hollywood to pursue his dream of stardom and becomes entangled in the city's seductive lifestyle. James Belushi and Shakara Ledard have supporting roles. Shooting begins in July.

    - Elston Gunn

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