Three Little Words
Pale Blue Dot
Luckiest Girl Alive
Big Little Lies (TV)
Happily Ever After
Get Her Off The Pitch
Pennyroyal’s Princess Boot Camp
Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus
One Hit Wonder
Who Invited Her?
Untitled Peggy Lee Biopic
The Pioneer Woman The Intern Passengers Big Eyes Sex Tape
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Reese Witherspoon At Center Of ‘All Is Not Forgotten’ Novel Deal By Warner Bros
Warner Bros late last night closed a significant preemptive acquisition of the GG Walker novel All Is Not Forgotten. Warner Bros president of Creative Development and Worldwide Production Greg Silverman was at the center of this one himself, with Reese Witherspoon and her Pacific Standard producing partner Bruna Papandrea producing. Deal happened right after the book sold to St. Martin’s Press following a five house bidding battle, with plans to publish spring, 2017. The author used a pseudonym but she is Wendy Walker, the author of Four Wives and Social Lives, which also were published by St. Martin’s Press. The movie deal was in the mid six figure against $1 million range.
Warner Bros will be getting more aggressive on the book front, and it seems to make a good deal of sense given the outsized success American Sniper meant to the studio. The studio also wants more with Witherspoon and Papandrea, who’ve proven themselves book savvy producers who last year produced both Gone Girl and Wild. They’ve been a catalyst for other movie deals including Fox 2000’s acquisition of Ashley’s War, the Tzemach Lemmon book about an elite group of women who fought alongside Green Berets and Army Rangers in Afghanistan.
Right now, Witherspoon is producing, but Warner Bros will court her to play a key role. Book is an adult thriller about a teenage girl in picturesque suburban Connecticut who is brutally attacked and raped, and the secrets that emerge during the course of the investigation. Witherspoon will be courted to play the girl’s mother, who decides with her husband to give their daughter a pill to erase her short term memory so she won’t relive the trauma of the rape.
This is Warner Bros’ third project with Witherspoon. They are developing the Maureen Sherry novel Opening Belle and the recently published Second Life by SJ Watson. CAA reps Witherspoon and Watson, who is represented for publishing by Wendy Sherman Associates.
July 1, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Abi Morgan To Adapt ‘Ashley’s War’ For Fox 2000 And Reese Witherspoon
Abi Morgan To Adapt ‘Ashley’s War’ For Fox 2000 And Reese Witherspoon
Fox 2000 has set Abi Morgan to adapt the Gayle Tzemach Lemmon book Ashley’s War: The Untold Story Of A Team of Women Soldiers On The Special Ops Battlefield. The studio, led by Elizabeth Gabler, won an auction in March at a time when several military-themed books were selling after the outsized grosses of American Sniper. Pacific Standard’s Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea are producing with Natalie Krinsky, and the expectation is that Witherspoon will play a major role. Book tells the story of the creation by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command of a pilot program that allowed elite women soldiers on the battlefield with Green Berets and Army Rangers in Afghanistan in 2010. The unit, CST-2, brought together a hand-picked group of women from the Army, and that included 1st Lt. Ashley White, who would become the first CST member killed in action.
Morgan is best known for scripting the Steve McQueen-directed Shame, and the Meryl Streep-as-Maggie Thatcher drama The Iron Lady. She followed with the Sarah Gavron-directed Suffragette, which stars Streep, Helena Bonham Carter, Carey Mulligan and Brendan Gleeson, with Focus releasing the film on October 23. She co-wrote the Suzanne Bier-directed Rules Of Inheritance, is adapting Shakespeare’s Taming Of The Shrew and is working on the feature version of Little House On The Prairie for producer Scott Rudin and Sony.
Morgan is repped by CAA and Independent Talent Group.
June 26, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon Developing ‘Napkin Notes’ Memoir for the Screen
Reese Witherspoon Developing ‘Napkin Notes’ Memoir for the Screen
Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea’s Pacific Standard banner is developing a film adaptation for New Line of Garth Callaghan’s memoir “Napkin Notes: Make Lunch Meaningful, Life Will Follow.”
Witherspoon and Papandrea will produce “Napkin Notes,” which New Line optioned last September. Mike Binder, whose credits include “Black or White,” “Reign Over Me” and “The Upside of Anger,” has come on to adapt the script. Toby Emmerich, Andrea Johnston and Richard Brener are overseeing for New Line.
Callaghan’s book, published by HarperCollins, details how he began writing short inspirational notes on napkins to put in his daughter Emma’s lunchbox daily to connect with his daughter. The practice took on far more significance after Callaghan was diagnosed first with kidney cancer and subsequently received four other cancer diagnoses.
“Napkin Notes” is Pacific Standard’s ninth development project. Witherspoon and Papandea formed Pacific Standard in 2012 in order to remedy the absence of movies with female protagonists. They have since produced “Wild,” “Gone Girl” and “Hot Pursuit.”
The banner has been developing Jessica Knoll’s “Luckiest Girl Alive” at Lionsgate, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s “Ashley’s War” at Fox 2000, S.J. Watson’s thriller novel “Second Life” at Warner Bros. and Maureen Sherry Klinsky’s upcoming novel “Opening Belle” with an eye to Witherspoon starring in the Wall Street comedy. Pacfiic Standard is also developing an adaptation of the novel “Big Little Lies,” “The Engagements,” “Pennyroyal’s Princess Boot Camp” and “The Outliers.”
Witherspoon is repped by CAA and Rick Yorn at LBI Entertainment. CAA, which packaged the deal, represents Pacific Standard and Callaghan.
News about “Napkin Notes” was first reported by the Tracking Board.
June 10, 2015 • Category: Pacific Standard, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon Bullish On Wall Street Comedy ‘Opening Belle’
Reese Witherspoon Bullish On Wall Street Comedy ‘Opening Belle’
Reese Witherspoon is developing a big-screen take on the upcoming novel Opening Belle, which also could be her next starring vehicle. She and her Pacific Standard partner Bruna Papandrea are set to produce the story about a mother of three trying to balance home life with her Wall Street career during the year before the financial meltdown. Maureen Sherry Kinsky’s book, due out this year from Simon & Schuster, is based loosely on her experiences as a managing director at Bear Stearns.
Witherspoon is coming off a Best Actress Oscar nomination for 2014’s Wild — and a critical and commercial stumble with last month’s Hot Pursuit, in which she starred with Sofia Vergara. Pacific Standard also produced that film, along with Wild and last year’s David Fincher-Ben Affleck thriller Gone Girl. The company also is producing Big Little Lies, an HBO limited series in which Witherspoon stars with fellow Oscar winner Nicole Kidman. The actress-producer is repped by CAA, LBI Entertainment, and Hansen Jacobson.
The Opening Belle story was reported first by the Tracking Board.
Here’s an interesting interview with Reese’s Pacific Standard partner Bruna Papandrea; Bruna talks about the work she and Reese and are doing, including some of their upcoming projects. Below are the parts that specifically mention Reese/Pacific Standard, click the link at the bottom to read the full article.
Why Australian producer Bruna Papandrea is one of the most powerful women in Hollywood
BRUNA Papandrea is waiting patiently for me in the bar of a slick Sydney hotel.
Hotel guests and staff walk straight past her without batting an eyelid – they’re more interested in the C-list celebrity loitering in the lobby.
But the star-spotters have it all wrong – it’s Papandrea they should be excited about catching a glimpse of.
She might not be a household name, but the 43-year-old Aussie is one of the most powerful women in Hollywood.
Along with business partner Reese Witherspoon, Papandrea owns production company Pacific Standard, and is behind two of the biggest movies of the past eight months: Gone Girl and Wild.
Pacific Standard’s special remit is to create more roles for women in film on both sides of the camera.
“I have a lot of friends who are actresses,” explains Papandrea of their decision to start the company and focus on creating roles for women.
“I’ve read scripts for them for many years and have always been heartbroken at the type of role they were being offered – just girlfriends or wives.
“They weren’t complex women, not like [the male roles], who are at the centre of movies.”
When Witherspoon sat next to Papandrea at a dinner party and mentioned she was no longer being offered any interesting parts, Papandrea was shocked.
“It was astounding to me. If these roles weren’t being developed for big movie stars, then who were they being offered to? Who was developing them? I thought [in order to make interesting films about women] we also need more female directors, writers, technicians and cinematographers.”
Reese Witherspoon Calls ‘Cruel Intentions’ Reunion ‘So Much Fun’
Reese Witherspoon joined “Extra” at this weekend’s Produced By Conference in Los Angeles, where she talked about how much fun she had reuniting with her “Cruel Intentions” co-stars Sarah Michelle Gellar and Selma Blair.
They were all at Rockwell Table & Stage’s “The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Cruel Intentions” in Los Angeles last week. Reese said, “Sarah, Selma and I, we knew all the lines.”
A photo posted by Reese Witherspoon (@reesewitherspoon) on
The trio documented their girls’ night on social media, with Sarah and Selma even reenacting their famous onscreen kiss in a pic that went viral. Reese revealed she didn’t realize what Sarah and Selma were doing. “I didn’t even know they were doing it. They’re cute, they’re such nice girls, and we had so much fun sort of reliving the old days.”
Reese has starred in countless movies since the 1999 release of “Cruel Intentions,” and recently took on the role of producer with such films as “Gone Girl” and “Wild.”
Up next for the Oscar winner is working with producing partner Bruna Papandrea on the live-action film “Tink,” based on the beloved Disney character, Tinkerbell.
“We’re excited,” Reese said about the film that she will also star in as the title character. “It’s our biggest family film we’ve thought up.”
June 1, 2015 • Category: Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon to Star in Disney’s Live-Action Tinker Bell Film
Reese Witherspoon to Star in Disney’s Live-Action Tinker Bell Film
Reese Witherspoon is attached to star in Disney’s “Tink,” a live-action film based on the “Peter Pan” character Tinker Bell.
Witherspoon will also produce the pic with her producing partner Bruna Papandrea through their Pacific Standard banner. Victoria Strouse is penning the script.
Plot details are unknown other than that the film is set in the world of the classic novel with Tinker Bell in full focus. The project is still in development, and there is no timeline for it to go into production.
It’s yet another project based on a classic Disney animated pic that is being given the live-action treatment. Disney has already seen live-action versions of “Alice in Wonderland,” Sleeping Beauty story “Maleficent” and “Cinderella” become box office hits, and the studio sees this as a formula that works as well for a comicbook pic.
The studios has “Beauty and the Beast” in production and is also developing live-action versions of “Dumbo” and “Winnie the Pooh.”
Witherspoon was most recently seen in New Line’s “Hot Pursuit” and recently joined drama “Pale Blue Dot” at Fox Searchlight.
She is repped by CAA and LBI Entertainment. The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news.
May 12, 2015 • Category: Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon to Star in Astronaut Drama ‘Pale Blue Dot’
Reese Witherspoon to Star in Astronaut Drama ‘Pale Blue Dot’
Reese Witherspoon is looking to leave the disappointment of Hot Pursuit in the dust, and is attached to star in Pale Blue Dot, an astronaut drama just picked up by Fox Searchlight.
The actress, who was nominated for an Oscar for her drama Wild, will also produce with her partner Bruna Papandrea.
Written by Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi, the script centers on a married astronaut who returns to Earth after a mission and begins an affair with a fellow astronaut. She heads into a downward spiral as she loses her connection to her family, a condition that can afflict those who spend a long time in space and see how microscopic the world is, and when her lover begins another affair with an astronaut trainee, the bottom drops out.
The tone has been described as having shades of Foxcatcher and The Right Stuff, the 1983 drama about the original Mercury 7 astronauts.
It is said to be inspired by a true-life astronaut love triangle in which a female mission specialist tried to kidnap a rival in 2007. The story made national headlines and inspired an episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
The project has been brewing since the winter, when Bennett Miller was circling as a director, although he never committed.
Brown and DiGuiseppi wrote Uncle Shelby, a biopic script focusing on author Shel Silverstein. The script made the 2014 Black List, the annual ranking of best unproduced screenplays.
Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea’s Pacific Standard banner is developing a film adaptation of S.J. Watson’s thriller novel “Second Life.”
The duo teamed with Warner Bros. to produce action-comedy “Hot Pursuit,” which stars Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara and opens Friday.
“Second Life” centers on a woman who creates an online persona to find the truth behind her sister’s violent murder — and starts to lose herself in the lies she creates. Jesse Ehrman and Julia Spiro will oversee for the studio.
An adaptation of Watson’s mystery novel “Before I Go to Sleep” was released last year with Nicole Kidman, Mark Strong, Colin Firth and Anne-Marie Duff starring.
Withspoon and Papandea formed Pacific Standard in 2012 in order to fill the vacuum for movies with female protagonists. They produced “Wild,” “Gone Girl” and “Hot Pursuit” and are developing an adaptation of the novel “Big Little Lies,” “The Engagements,” “Pennyroyal’s Princess Boot Camp” and “The Outliers.”
News about “Second Life” was first reported by the Tracking Board.
April 13, 2015 • Category: Producing, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Lionsgate Buys ‘Luckiest Girl Alive'; Witherspoon & Papandrea To Produce
Lionsgate Buys ‘Luckiest Girl Alive'; Reese Witherspoon & Bruna Papandrea To Produce
Lionsgate has snapped up the rights to Jessica Knoll’s first novel Luckiest Girl Alive, which Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea will produce under their Pacific Standard Films banner. The Simon & Schuster tome will be published May 12.
Luckiest Girl Alive centers on Ani FaNelli, a 28-year-old New Yorker who appears to have it all: a sought-after position at a women’s magazine, a killer wardrobe and a dream wedding with her handsome fiancé on the horizon. But behind Ani’s veneer of perfection lies a dark trauma from her past, which resurfaces to unravel her meticulously crafted life.
Knoll has been a senior editor at Cosmopolitan and articles editor at Self. Simon & Schuster’s Sarah Knight, who acquired and edited Luckiest Girl Alive, also acquired Gillian Flynn’s global best-seller Gone Girl and edited her best-seller Dark Places while at Random House. Papandrea served as EP and Witherspoon produced Gone Girl, which was a huge fall hit for 20th Century Fox and became director David Fincher’s highest-grossing film with $167.8M at the domestic box office and $368M worldwide. Pacific Standard Films also was behind the feature adaptation of the best-selling memoir Wild, which earned $52.4M at the global B.O. to date and earned Witherspoon a Best Actress Oscar nomination for the role of fearless hiker Cheryl Strayed and a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nom for Laura Dern, who played Cheryl’s mother.
“This is one of those rare books that come along every so often that you simply cannot put down,” Lionsgate Motion Picture Group President Erik Feig said in a statement about Luckiest Girl Alive.
Luckiest Girl Alive is the kind of book that grabs you and doesn’t let go,” added Witherspoon. “The hero of the book is a wily, intelligent, complex narrator. This character and the thrilling narrative that she drives are exactly the kind of story our company, Pacific Standard Films, wants to produce.”
VP Production Jeyun Choi Munford and Creative Exec Nirokhi Raychaudhuri is overseeing the project on behalf of Lionsgate. The deal was negotiated by CAA on behalf of Knoll, the novel and the producers. Paradigm reps Knoll.
Last month, Fox 2000 and Pacific Standard won the book rights auction to Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s book Ashley’s War: The Untold Story Of A Team of Women Soldiers On The Special Ops Battlefield. It follows the creation of a 2010 pilot program by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command that allowed elite female soldiers on the battlefield with Green Berets and Army Rangers in Afghanistan. The unit, CST-2, included 1st Lieutenant Ashley White, who would become the first CST member killed in action.
March 11, 2015 • Category: Producing, Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Fox 2000 Wins ‘Ashley’s War’ Auction For Reese Witherspoon And Bruna Papandrea
Update: Fox 2000 has indeed officially closed its deal for the Gayle Tzemach Lemmon book Ashley’s War. The deal was made by UTA, on behalf of lit agent Elyse Cheney. Another opportunity for Reese Witherspoon to craft a film with a heroine that rarely crosses your desk if you sit back and wait for these roles to be dropped in your lap. The role of White would likely be played by a younger actress–she died at 24–but Witherspoon barely flinched when David Fincher didn’t see her for the lead in Gone Girl. They have plenty of time to figure this stuff out.
Original story: Fox 2000 and Pacific Standard’s Reese Witherspoon, Bruna Papandrea and Natalie Krinsky ended last night very close to winning a book rights auction to Ashley’s War: The Untold Story Of A Team of Women Soldiers On The Special Ops Battlefield, a Gayle Tzemach Lemmon book that Harper will publish late next month. It’s the story of the creation by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command of a pilot program that allowed elite women soldiers on the battlefield with Green Berets and Army Rangers in Afghanistan in 2010. The unit, CST-2, brought together a hand-picked group of women from the Army, and that included 1st Lieutenant Ashley White, who would become the first CST member killed in action.
In the wake of American Sniper‘s outsized grosses, this becomes the second female-driven war story in two weeks to make a splashy sale: Warner Bros last week bought the memoir by Pulitzer Prize-winning war photographer Lynsey Addario for Steven Spielberg to direct and Jennifer Lawrence to star, in heavy bidding. Ashley’s War didn’t quite reach that feverish level, but I’m told that Sony and Universal were also in the bidding here. Fox 2000 president Elizabeth Gabler guided this one and UTA brokered the deal. Gabler and her exec Marisa Paiva will oversee the project for the studio.
January 7, 2015 • Category: Role Rumors •
Comments Off on Reese Witherspoon ‘Downsizing’ With Matt Damon, Alexander Payne
Way back in 2009 there were rumours that Reese would be reuniting with her Election director Alexander Payne on a new project entitled Downsizing (original stories here and here). These reports have popped up again, with Matt Damon now attached to co-star:
Reese Witherspoon ‘Downsizing’ With Matt Damon, Alexander Payne
Wild star Reese Witherspoon will star with Matt Damon in Downsizing, the next film from Alexander Payne. The pic was scripted by Payne with Jim Taylor, with whom Payne shared the Adapted Screenplay Oscar for Sideways. They partner in Ad Hominem Enterprises, and their scripting collaborations also include About Schmidt. The film is a social satire in which a guy realizes he would have a better life if he were to shrink himself. Witherspoon’s star making role as she transitioned from child actress to adulthood came in the Payne-directed satire Election.
The timing is the tricky thing here for Witherspoon, who’s squarely in the Oscar mix for her performance as star and producer of Wild. Damon first will do another installment of the Bourne franchise for Universal, and then Downsizing will happen. Witherspoon is repped by CAA and LBI.