Janelle Monáe To Star In Lionsgate Pic From Visionary Activist Filmmakers Gerard Bush + Christopher Renz

Read on: Deadline.

EXCLUSIVE: Janelle Monáe is set to star in an upcoming Lionsgate’s project from visionary activist filmmaking duo Gerard Bush + Christopher Renz.  The details of the feature are being cloaked in secrecy, and it will rep Bush + Renz’s feature film…

Lionsgate Names Jen Hollingsworth Chief Operating Officer of Motion Picture Group

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Jen Hollingsworth has been named chief operating officer of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group effective immediately, Lionsgate Motion Picture Group chairman Joe Drake announced on Wednesday.

Hollingsworth, who previously served as executive vice president of strategic planning and operations, will work closely with Drake in her new role.

“Jen is one of the most exceptional and talented motion picture business strategists working in our industry today,” Drake said in a statement. “She knows this Company inside and out, is skilled, experienced and is the ideal chief operating officer. She has spearheaded many of Lionsgate’s successes within the motion picture group and is the best at understanding the marriage of business opportunities and the creative aspirations of filmmakers.  Our company just got stronger with Jen in this role.”

Also Read: Can Lionsgate’s Movie Division Bounce Back After Getting Thrown ‘Overboard’ in 2018?

As COO, Hollingsworth will head up the motion picture group’s finance department, manage a strategic planning and analysis team and oversee daily operations as the division positions itself for growth. She will also engage in cross-company initiatives designed to maximize and fully monetize Lionsgate’s film assets.

“I am enormously excited about what is happening within the motion picture group, from the outstanding filmmakers we are partnering with to the innovations we are pioneering with the Lionsgate data center,” Hollingsworth said in a statement. “Our data-first strategy approach and the effective impact it has throughout the company is especially dynamic, and I feel honored and privileged to take on this role at this time with this incredibly talented team.”

In her previous role, Hollingsworth was responsible for worldwide deal analysis, operational management and strategic planning for the Lionsgate’s film slate across multiple film labels, including Summit Entertainment, Good Universe and Pantelion Films.

She joined the studio in 2007 as vice president of finance and business development, when Lionsgate acquired Mandate Pictures. She began her entertainment industry career in business development at Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Also Read: Peter Kang, Former Lionsgate Co-President, to Join Columbia Pictures as EVP of Production

In January, Drake sent an email to staff announcing a restructuring in the studio’s business operations that resulted in approximately 25 people losing their jobs. Earlier this month, the studio’s television division let go of 20 staffers, impacting mostly business jobs and a small number of TV roles.

The majority of the changes were a result of Lionsgate consolidating its marketing and distribution under one roof. The marketing division is run by Damon Wolf, who joined from Sony Pictures and started Jan. 1.

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FilMart: Lionsgate’s Jim Packer Says Starz Brand is Ready for Global Rollout

Read on: Variety.

Ahead of his keynote address at Hong Kong’s FilMart this week, Jim Packer, Lionsgate’s president of worldwide TV and digital distribution, shares his plans for Starz international expansion. And he recounts his experience of watching Netflix change up …

Lakeith Stanfield Joins Issa Rae in ‘The Photograph’ From Universal

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“Sorry to Bother You” star Lakeith Stanfield and “Insecure” creator Issa Rae will star side-by-side in “The Photograph,” a new film for Universal Pictures.

The film is based on an original spec by “Everything, Everything” director Stella Meghie. Her directorial debut, “Jean of the Joneses,” premiered at the 2016 South-by-Southwest Film Festival.

“The Photograph” is described as a romantic drama centered on intertwining love stories in the past and present. Will Packer will produce the film along with James Lopez under his company Will Packer Productions.

Also Read: Issa Rae Will Produce Musical Romance ‘Love in America’ at Universal

Packer’s latest film, the Taraji P. Henson-led “What Men Want,” has grossed $59.7 million worldwide. Universal will release his next film, “Little,” on April 12.

Meghie, who will also direct and executive produce “The Photograph,” has worked with Rae in the past, directing the season three “Insecure” episode “Fresh Like.” She is also set to direct Rae in Fox’s “American Princess,” about an American woman who is drawn into a world of wealth and high society when she unexpectedly falls in love during a trip to London.

That film, written by “Insecure” writer Amy Aniobi, is being produced by Paul Feig’s production company Feigco Entertainment.

Rae is also producing a musical romance “Love in America” for Universal. The film, also written by Aniobi, is the first film project for Rae and Deniese Davis under their ColorCreative production banner.

Also Read: Gina Rodriguez Needs ‘One Last Epic Day With My Girls’ in ‘Someone Great’ Trailer (Video)

Universal’s vice president of production Sara Scott and creative executive Mika Pryce will oversee production for the studio. Rae will serve as executive producer.

Stanfield is coming off a busy 2018 in which he starred in the critical hit “Sorry to Bother You” and “The Girl in the Spider’s Web.” He will next star in Netflix’s upcoming romantic comedy “Someone Great,” also being produced by Feig’s production company, and Lionsgate’s upcoming murder mystery “Knives Out” from director Rian Johnson.

Also Read: Daniel Kaluuya and Lakeith Stanfield in Talks to Star in Ryan Coogler’s Real-Life Black Panthers Movie

In February, Warner Bros. announced that Stanfield would rejoin his “Get Out” co-star Daniel Kaluuya in “Jesus Was My Homeboy,” which will follow the rise and untimely death of iconic black activist, revolutionary and Black Panther Party member Fred Hampton through the eyes of the man who betrayed him.

Stanfield is represented by CAA, Stark Management and Ginsburg Daniels LLP. Rae is represented by UTA, 3 Arts Entertainment and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller & Gellman L.L.P. And Meghie is represented by CAA and Del Shaw Moonves.

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Antonio Banderas, Richard E. Grant Board Liongate’s ‘The Hitman’s Bodyguard’ Sequel

Read on: Deadline.

Antonio Banderas has joined The Hitman’s Bodyguard sequel, while Oscar-nominated Can You Ever Forgive Me? star Richard E. Grant has signed on to reprise his role in the Lionsgate/ Millennium Media follow-up to the hit 2017 comedy action-thriller. Produ…

CBS Acquires Lionsgate’s Half Of Pop Cable Network

Read on: Deadline.

CBS has bought out Lionsgate to acquire full ownership of the cable network Pop.
Terms for the transaction were not immediately revealed by either company. In 2013, CBS invested $100 million in half of the network, when it was still known as the TV Gui…

Morgan Freeman Joins Ryan Reynolds & Samuel L. Jackson In ‘The Hitman’s Bodyguard’ Sequel

Read on: Deadline.

Oscar winner Morgan Freeman (Million Dollar Baby) has signed on for The Hitman’s Bodyguard sequel from Lionsgate and Millennium Films. Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson, and Salma Hayek are set to reprise their roles with Patrick Hughes is returning to …

Jerry O’Connell to Host Daytime Talk Show Produced by Funny or Die

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Funny or Die is getting into daytime TV.

Beginning this summer, Jerry O’Connell will host “Jerry O,” the company’s first foray into daytime TV. The entertainment talk/comedy series will get a three-week test run on select Fox-owned local TV stations beginning Aug. 12.

“I love daytime. I love watching it and have fallen in love with guest-hosting it. Whether asking people to ‘Cash Me Outside’ or asking them ‘How You Doin?’, daytime is a big part of my life,” O’Connell said. “I am thrilled to work with my friends at both Debmar-Mercury and Funny Or Die. I have been collaborating with both companies for years and am so excited to bring a little bit of the traditional – and something brand new – to the audience. This is going to be a fun, fun time and everyone is invited. Let’s party.”

Also Read: Funny or Die Mashes Up ‘Ghostbusters’ With Jake Gyllenhaal’s ‘Velvet Buzzsaw’ (Video)

“Jerry O” will feature a mix of celebrity interviews and specially produced comedy segments from Funny Or Die, which is producing the show with Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury.

“We are big believers in trying new concepts and excited to once again be collaborating with our friends at Fox,” said Debmar-Mercury co-presidents Ira Bernstein and Mort Marcus. “We have come to know Jerry as a true talent whose infectious charisma and authenticity have made him a favorite of many daytime talk show fans, and we are so glad to provide him with this opportunity to shine.”

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‘Long Shot’ Becomes SXSW Crowd Pleaser With Unlikely Romance And Surprise Boyz II Men Performance

Read on: Deadline.

“I didn’t want to talk I’m too drunk,” said director Jonathan Levine after the screening of the world premiere of his film Long Shot on Saturday at SXSW. Levine, who was joined on the stage by stars Charlize Theron, Seth Rogen, …

‘Nashville’ to Be Adapted as a Broadway Musical

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Break out your square-dancing shoes, urban cowboys: TV series “Nashville” is being adapted into a Broadway musical with Scott Delman set to produce. The stage show will be Lionsgate’s first-ever Broadway production — the studio plans to do more like adaptations with some of its other intellectual property.

“‘Nashville,’ with its complex, relatable characters and sweeping emotional gestures, has all of the narrative elements that I look for in great theatrical source material. From that rich DNA, we will be building an original story with entirely original music, written by major Nashville and Broadway songwriters,” Delman, the president of Blue Spruce Productions, said on Tuesday. “We are particularly excited to deliver Broadway’s first score of true contemporary country music – a genre that has exploded with mainstream audiences in recent years. Lionsgate has a treasure-trove of sterling IP, and I’m honored to be a part of this new phase of their live entertainment division.”

Tony-winner Delman has served as producer or co-producer on 55 Broadway productions, including the musicals “American Idiot,” “Ragtime,” “Book of Mormon,” “Hello, Dolly!,” “Fun Home” and “Mean Girls.”

Also Read: Nashville Christmas Parade Funder Threatens Legal Action Over Kid Rock’s Ouster as Grand Marshal (Video)

“‘Nashville’ represents a unique opportunity to collaborate with Tony Award-winning producer Scott Delman to bring one of our most beloved properties to the stage in our first-ever Broadway production,” added Jenefer Brown, Lionsgate SVP, Global Live & Location Based Entertainment. “It kicks off an exciting slate of iconic Lionsgate properties that we will be bringing to a variety of platforms, transforming them into events that will expand the viewing experience for their fans and take our already successful live entertainment business to the next level.”

The musical’s full creative team and production dates will be announced at a later time.

“Nashville” aired for six seasons on ABC and CMT.

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