The 87th Academy Awards were handed out last night. Although most of the winners were as expected (at least, according to the odds-setters), there were also a few surprises to be had. For the complete list of winners and nominees in all the categories, head on over to the official Oscars page.
Fox Searchlight Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to Luca Guadagnino’s thriller A Bigger Splash, starring Ralph Fiennes, Tilda Swinton, Dakota Johnson and Matthias Schoenaerts. The story focuses on the lives of a high profile couple (Schoenaerts and Swinton) vacationing on the remote Italian island of Pantelleria, and the jealousy, passion and danger that develop with the arrival an old friend and his daughter (Fiennes and Johnson).
Another reboot is on the way, as the Warner Bros. subsidiary New Line Cinemas has picked up the rights to the Shaft franchise. Although there is no creative team attached to the project yet, producer John Davis (I, Robot, Norbit, and Predators) is on board during the early phases.
Paramount Pictures won a bidding war for the rights to Sascha Penn’s spec feature film Bounty, with Will Smith as the star. The story is set in Boston and centers on a wrongly-convicted murderer (Smith) who busts out of prison to prove his innocence even after the widow of the man he supposedly killed puts a $10 million bounty on him, dead or alive.
Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment have put together the team of screenwriter Kristin Gore, director Jay Roach, and actress Scarlett Johansson for an adaptation of the Jon Ronson's psychological thriller, The Psychopath Test. The project centers on how the medical community tries to diagnose and classify the elusive group known as remorseless, deadly psychopaths.
Author Dennis Tafoya announced an agreement with Wolfgang Petersen and Radiant Productions to develop his novel Poor Boy’s Game as a feature film.
Ron Howard's adaptation of Dan Brown's Inferno has cast Omar Sy (X-Men: Days Of Future Past) as the leader of the European Center For Disease Control's paramilitary SRS unit. The heart of the story centers on a madman trying to release an old school plague upon Italy.
Apparently, Mission Impossible 5 is having some major difficulties, reportedly due to a less-than-acceptable ending that has to be rewritten. As it stands now, the release date of July 31, 2015, is still on the books.
Rowan Atkinson (Bean; Johnny English) will star as iconic French detective Jules Maigret in two stand-alone feature-length dramas for ITV, Maigret Sets A Trap and Maigret’s Dead Man, according to Deadline. Stewart Harcourt (Love & Marriage, Treasure Island, Marple) is writing the scripts for the projects.
Fox has given a formal pilot order for Lucifer, based on the DC Comics character, and from the team of Jerry Bruckheimer Television, Aggressive Mediocrity and Warner Bros. The story focuses on Lucifer, the Lord of Hell, as he resigns his throne and abandons his kingdom for the “shimmering insanity” of L.A., where he helps the LAPD punish criminals.
Oscar-winning actor Richard Dreyfuss is set to star in Madoff, a multi-episode ABC drama centered around the rise and fall of the now-jailed financier Bernie Madoff.
Jaimie Alexander (Thor) will play the female lead in the NBC pilot Blindspot. The story centers on a woman found in the middle of Times Square with amnesia and mysterious tattoos, drawing in the FBI who follow the road map on her body to reveal a larger conspiracy.
Elizabeth Mitchell (Revolution, Lost) and Goran Visnjic (ER) are set to star in the third season of the Europe-set crime drama Crossing Lines, joining Donald Sutherland as series leads. The series revolves around a squad of European law enforcement officers who battle the explosion of international crime that accompanied the opening of borders by the European Union. In the U.S., Season 1 of Crossing Lines aired on NBC; Season 2 was carried by Netflix.
Orange is the New Black is writing out the character of Larry Bloom, played by Jason Biggs. He joins other cast members who have left the storylines and hence the show, including Pablo “Pornstache” Schreiber and Lorraine Toussaint. However, fans will be able to enjoy the talents of new cast additions Blair Brown and Mary Steenburgen.
The Season 3 premiere of BBC America’s flagship series Orphan Black will air simultaneously on all AMC networks – AMC, BBC America, IFC, SundanceTV and WE tv – on Saturday, April 18.
Hulu has acquired the exclusive subscription video on demand rights to all previous seasons of CBS’s crime drama CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. All episodes will be available for streaming on Hulu with a Plus subscription beginning early April.
Terry Shames, author of the Samuel Craddock series stopped by the Authors on the Air program to discuss her books.
Novelist William Boyd investigates the case of Helen MacInnes, author of mid-20th-century espionage fiction, for a BBC radio documentary you can listen to online for the next three weeks. (Hat tip to the Rap Sheet.)
Benedict Cumberbatch is scheduled to take on the role of Hamlet this summer at London’s Barbican Centre, but it's already sold out. So, a deal was struck with National Theatre Live to telecast the show to venues around the world beginning on October 15 (dates will vary and encore screenings will follow; details will be posted at www.ntlive.com). Tickets will go on sale on March 16.
The Off-Broadway return of Patrick Barlow's Tony Award-nominated comedy 39 Steps will reunite the musical's entire original creative team. The show is a comedic spoof of the classic 1935 film, with four actors portraying more than 150 characters while racing to solve the mystery of The 39 Steps. Performances April 1, prior to an official opening April 13, at the Union Square Theatre.
House of Cards star Nathan Darrow is taking the lead role in NYC's Fourth Street Theatre noirish production of Kill Me Like You Mean It. Darrow plays a private investigator who discovers that his cases are appearing on the pages of a popular pulp serial, but the crimes are being penned before they happen in real life. The mystery grows darker still when Farrell reads his own death in the prophetic pages.