Categories New Projects Watership Down

Nicholas Joins “Watership Down”

Variety is reporting that Nicholas has joined the voice cast of the upcoming mini series “Watership Down”.

James McAvoy, John Boyega, Nicholas Hoult and Ben Kingsley have joined the voice-cast of Netflix-BBC animated TV miniseries “Watership Down,” based on Richard Adams’ novel.

The four-part show, which will be finished next year, will be available worldwide, outside of the U.K., on Netflix, and on BBC One in the U.K.

Set in the idyllic rural landscape of southern England, the adventure tale follows a band of rabbits on their flight from the intrusion of man and the certain destruction of their home. Led by a stouthearted pair of brothers, they journey forth from their native Sandleford Warren through the harrowing trials posed by predators and adversaries, toward a promised land and a more perfect society.

The series, written by Tom Bidwell (BAFTA-nominated “My Mad Fat Diary”) and directed by Noam Murro (“300: Rise of the Empire”), will star McAvoy (“Filth,” “X-Men”) as Hazel, Hoult (“Mad Max: Fury Road,” “X-Men”) as Fiver, Kingsley (“Shutter Island,” “Iron Man 3”) as General Woundwort, Boyega (“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens”) as Bigwig, Gemma Arterton (“Made in Dagenham”) as Clover, Miles Jupp (“Rev,” “The Thick of It”) as Blackberry, Freddie Fox (“Pride”) as Captain Holly, Olivia Colman (“The Night Manager,” “The Lobster”) as Strawberry, and Anne-Marie Duff (“Suffragette”) as Hyzenthlay.

The drama is co-directed by Pete Dodd (“Fantastic Mr Fox,” “Frankenweenie”), and produced by Hugo Sands. It is created in CG by an animation team led by Dodd and Sands, and the animation studio Brown Bag Films, based in Dublin.

The series is a co-production between BBC One and Netflix, and produced by 42 and Murro’s company Biscuit Films. It is executive produced by Rory Aitken, Josh Varney, Ben Pugh and Eleanor Moran for 42; Murro for Biscuit Films; and Matthew Read for the BBC. It will be distributed internationally by ITV Studios Global Entertainment.

Larry Tanz, VP global television, Netflix, and executive producer, said: “We jumped at the chance to get in early and work alongside the BBC and 42 to bring this classic English tale to our members around the world. This novel presentation of Adam’s work pairs great talent with beautiful animation and will delight existing fans and capture a whole new audience for this timeless story.”

Matthew Read, BBC drama commissioning editor, said: “Before there was ‘Harry Potter’ there was ‘Watership Down,’ Richard Adams’ novel is one of the most successful books of all time and one of the biggest-selling books in history. It is fantastic to have the opportunity to bring a modern-classic to a mainstream BBC One audience with such an incredible roster of actors alongside the talented team overseeing the animation. This fantastic take on the novel will unite the whole family, and bring this classic story to a new generation.”

Categories New Projects The Death and Life of John F. Donovon

Nicholas joins “The Death and Life of John F. Donovon”

Deadline is reporting that Nicholas, alongside Natalie Portman and Thandie Newton, has joined “The Death and Life of John F. Donovon”.

Natalie Portman, Nicholas Hoult and Thandie Newton have boarded the already-starry cast of Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan’s English-language debut The Death And Life Of John F. Donovan. The trio join the previously announced Kit Harington, Jessica Chastain, Susan Sarandon, Kathy Bates, Michael Gambon, Bella Thorne, Chris Zylka and Emily Hampshire. It is a measure of Dolan’s pulling power with talent that the 26-year-old has assembled such an impressive lineup.

The film takes place in the early 2000s and centers on the tribulations of John F Donovan (Harington), an American TV star in his late 20s, and his correspondence with Rupert Turner, a young actor-to-be living with his mother in England. Their lives take dramatic turns when the existence of their pen pal relationship is publicly exposed, eliciting the most ill-founded assumptions and sending Donovan in a vertical downfall. A decade later, the young actor recollects his relationship with his past idol over the course of an interview.

Lyse Lafontaine of Lyla Films (Laurence Anyways), Dolan and Nancy Grant of Sons of Manual (Mommy, Tom At The Farm, I Killed My Mother) are producing with exec producer Joe Iacono.

Categories New Projects The Discovery

Nicholas and Rooney Mara to star in “The Discovery”

Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara and Nicholas Hoult will star in the supernatural love story “The Discovery, ” Endgame Entertainment announced Tuesday.

Charlie McDowell will direct the high-concept project, set in a world where existence of an afterlife has been scientifically proven. The script was co-written by McDowell and Justin Lader, who previously collaborated on Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss’ “The One I Love.”

Hoult plays the son of the man who discovers the afterlife, with Mara starring as his love interest. Shooting is set to begin in January in Rhode Island.

Alex Orlovsky of Verisimilitude will produce alongside James D. Stern of Endgame, who is co-financing with Protagonist Pictures. The movie will be presented to buyers at the American Film Market, with ICM Partners handling domestic rights.

Hoult is represented by UTA. Mara is represented by WME and Management 360. ICM Partners and MGMT Entertainment represent both McDowell and Lader.

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Categories New Projects Rebel in the Rye

Nicholas to star as J.D. Salinger in “Rebel in the Rye”

Nicholas Hoult will star as J.D. Salinger in the biopic “Rebel in the Rye,” with Danny Strong directing from his own screenplay.

The script was adapted from the Kenneth Slawenski biography “J.D. Salinger: A Life.” Black Label Media is financing, with Molly Smith, Trent Luckinbill and Thad Luckinbill producing alongside Bruce Cohen, Jason Shuman and Danny Strong.

Bloom will introduce “Rebel in the Rye” to foreign buyers at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival, while CAA is representing the North American rights.

The movie will explore the life and mind of the secretive author and tell the story of the birth of “The Catcher in the Rye.” The story will explore his rebellious youth, his experiences on the bloody front lines of World War II, enduring great love and terrible loss, a life of rejection to the pages of the New Yorker and his writer’s block — which led to a spiritual awakening.

“’The Catcher in the Rye’ is a classic coming-of-age story which continues to make a significant impression six generations later,” said Alex Walton of Bloom. “The world has long been fascinated with J.D. Salinger, whom the talented Nicholas Hoult will bring to life in this enigmatic role.”

Strong is known best for creating the series “Empire.” His screenplay credits include “The Butler,” the two “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay” films and the HBO films “Recount” and “Game Change.”

Hoult’s credits include “Mad Max: Fury Road” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past.”

He also stars in the upcoming sci-fi romance “Equals” alongside Kristen Stewart, Guy Pearce and Jacki Weaver. The film, directed by Drake Doremus, will world premiere in the international competition section at the Venice Film Festival and will have its North American premiere in the Special Presentations program at the Toronto Film Festival.

The Weinstein Company announced in 2013 that it was working with Shane Salerno on developing a feature film adaptation of Salerno’s documentary about the author with a focus on Salinger’s life between his military service in World War II and the 1951 publication of “Catcher in the Rye.”

Salerno began working on the documentary in 2004. Salinger died in 2010. The documentary grossed $650,000 for TWC in 2013.

Hoult is represented by UTA, 42 and Felker Toczek.

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Categories New Projects

Nicholas on shortlist for “Robin Hood: Origins”

Deadline is reporting that Nicholas is on a shortlist to take on “Robin Hood: Origins”. Read the article below.

Lionsgate is looking to beat its rival Robin Hood projects to the punch by mining up-and-coming talent from across the pond for its Robin Hood: Origins. Rising Brit actor Taron Egerton is on the mini-major’s shortlist to head into Sherwood Forest, along with fellow Brits Nicholas Hoult, Jack Huston and Irish-American actor Jack Reynor. The Maze Runner‘s Dylan O’Brian is also believed to be under consideration. Scheduling is an issue for some of these hot young thesps. For example Egerton, who came to prominence with a career-making turn in Matthew Vaughn’s Kingsman: The Secret Service, could have availability issues if a sequel to Kingsman, which grossed over $400 million worldwide, gets its expected greenlight from Fox.

Deadline understands that Reynor had a successful session with director Otto Bathurst, the only actor who did that, and that perhaps gives him a slight advantage on the likes of Hoult and Huston, though no decisions have been made. All of the above names would bring plenty — and different — strengths to the role.

Peaky Blinders‘ Bathurst is directing Lionsgate’s gritty, revisionist take on the legend. Joby Harold, the scribe who wrote Knights Of The Roundtable: King Arthur with Guy Ritchie directing Charlie Hunnam, has conjured up the origins story that has been likened to The Dark Knight. Here, Robin Hood returns from fighting in The Crusades and finds that Sherwood Forest is rife with corruption and evil. He forms a band of outlaws and they take matters into their own hands. The picture is being produced by Appian Way’s Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson, and Safe House’s Harold and Tory Tunnell and Basil Iwanyk.

There are other Robin Hood projects also set up around town. Disney has the Brandon Barker spec Nottingham & Hood, which is said to be in the vein of Pirates Of The Caribbean and Enchanted. The Picture Company’s Alex Heineman and Andrew Rona are producing. Sony last fall bought a Robin Hood pitch for $1 million from Cory Goodman and Jeremy Lott with Aperture’s Adam Goldworm executive producing. That project, Hood, has been described as Fast And Furious meets Mission: Impossible. Warner Bros has also quietly put one of its own Robin Hood projects into development, scripted by Gangster Squad and Aquaman scribe Will Beall and produced by The Lego Movie‘s Dan Lin and John Zaozirny.

With the quartet of projects vying to get to the start post, Lionsgate is doing everything it can to get out of the gates first. It is aiming to start production in the first quarter of 2016. The last time there were rival Robin Hood projects was in 1991, when the Kevin Costner-starrer Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves went against the Patrick Bergin-Uma Thurman Robin Hood and wiped the floor with it despite being released a month later.

Categories New Projects Underdogs

Nicholas joins “Underdogs”

Ariana Grande, Nicholas Hoult, Matthew Morrison and Katie Holmes are among the cast providing voices for the Weinstein Co.’s English-language version of the Argentine family comedy Underdogs.

Rounding out the the voice cast of Juan Jose Campanella’s film are John Leguizamo, Mexican star Eugenio Derbez, Taran Killiam, Saturday Night Live’s Bobby Moynihan and Rizzoli & Isles’s Chazz Palminteri.

The film’s release date has been pushed to Apr. 10, 2015, from its previous date of Jan. 15, the date to which Weinstein has just moved its family fantasy Paddington, which was previously set for Christmas.

Underdogs centers on a shy but talented foosball player (Morrison) who must defend his town and the girl he loves, Laura (Grande), from the nefarious soccer player Ace (Hoult). He’s aided by the figures on his foosball table, who magically come to life. The screenplay, by Campanella, Gaston Gorali and Eduardo Sacheri, has been reworked for U.S audiences.

“This talented cast takes our script and enhances it, with brilliant improvisation and wonderful chemistry. I’m so proud of these super-talented actors and comedians,” TWC co-chairman Harvey Weinstein commented in a statement.

The film shares its new release date with Fox’s Nicholas Sparks romance The Longest Ride and Paramount’s fantasy The Moon and the Sun. On its previous date are the thriller Blackhat and the Kevin Hart comedy The Wedding Ringer.

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