News Shorts: December 4th 2015

Hail Caesar!
“Hail, Caesar!,” the Coen brother’s latest feature, will open the 66th edition of the Berlin International Film Festival next year on February 11th – six days after its U.S. premiere. The story follows a single day in the life of a studio fixer (Josh Brolin) who gets a call that star Baird Whitlock (George Clooney) disappeared from the shooting of the studio’s latest sand-and-sandles epic. [Source: THR]

Quentin Tarantino
Quentin Tarantino has revealed he’s planning a special screening event featuring 1970s Australian westerns “The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith” and “Mad Dog Morgan” during his visit to Australia next month to promote “The Hateful Eight” release. [Source: SMH]

Just Cause 3
Avalanche Studios has posted an update on the Steam page for the just released video game “Just Cause 3”, the update apologising for the various bugs that have impacted primarily the game’s frame-rate and server log-in issues. A patch is reportedly coming soon for the title with the Xbox One version reportedly having the most issues, PC’s in the middle and the PS4 version the least number of problems.

Hooking Up
McG, Oren Uziel and Sebastian Dungan has come on board to produce the comedy feature “Hooking Up” through his Wonderland Sound and Vision label.

Nick Weiss (“Drunk Wedding”) is directing from a script by Jacqueline Fitzgerald about two twenty-somethings who are determined to hook up with each other, but find their efforts repeatedly foiled. [Source: Variety]

The Paladin
Jason Keller (“Machine Gun Preacher”) and playwright Eric Pfeffinger have teamed to co-write the screenplay for a film adaptation of Brian Garfield’s 1980 historical novel “The Paladin” for The Firm. Keller, David Dobkin and Jeff Kleeman (“The Man From U.N.C.L.E.”) are producing.

The true story tale follows events in which Winston Churchill orchestrated a shift in the war through a top-secret program where he turned a 15-year-old boy into one of England’s deadliest assassins. [Source: Deadline]

Resident Evil 2
Capcom’s UK Senior Marketing Director Stuart Turner has confirmed that the upcoming remake of the classic PlayStation game title “Resident Evil 2” is a full remake: “Seems to be a few people picking up a mistranslation in our own investor report. RE2 will be a full from the ground up remake NOT a remaster.”

Confusion emerged following an investor report suggesting the game would be a simple remaster, something very difficult as the game is so old at this point even new graphics and audio wouldn’t be able to make it work well with modern systems. [Source: CB]

The Alchemist
The Weinstein Company has put its long-gestating adaptation of Paolo Coelho’s bestseller “The Alchemist” into a 12-month turnaround. The studio has spent nearly a decade attempting to adapt the New Age novel for the big screen with the rights now reverting to actor Laurence Fishburne.

Coelho’s book has sold more than 65 million copies in 56 languages and holds the Guinness world record for most translated work by a living author. The story centers on a young Spaniard who embarks on a quest to find a hidden treasure within the Egyptian pyramids. [Source: Deadline]

Animation studio Zag has joined 1492 Pictures, Ocean Park Entertainment and Madhouse Entertainment to finance and produce the live-action/animated hybrid Christmas movie “12/24”. Matt Lieberman penned the script from an original idea by David Guggenheim.

The story follows two brothers who embark on a mission to prove that Santa Claus is real, setting an elaborate trap on Christmas Eve. Santa ends up incapacitated by their trap, leaving it up to the brothers to save Christmas. [Source: Variety]

Tupac Shakur Biopic
Commercials director Benny Boom is set to helm the Tupac Shakur biopic at Morgan Creek. The project is slated to begin shooting very soon as the music rights will revert to Shakur’s mother, Afeni Shakur, at the end of the year if the film isn’t in production by then.

Earlier versions of the script chronicled Shakur’s rise to superstardom as a hip hop artist and actor, his imprisonment on charges of sexual assault, the East Coast-West Coast rap war, and his death in 1996 from gunshot wounds. [Source: Variety]

Nice Guy Phil
Jason Priestley is set to direct “Nice Guy Phil,” a biopic about late comedian Phil Hartman with veteran actor Daran Norris in the role. Tyler Levine is producing and shooting aims to begin next summer. Jonas Chernick penned the screenplay for the project which has been in development for several years. [Source: Variety]

“Son Of Saul” director Laszlo Nemes is set to helm “Sunset,” a drama set in Budapest in the lead-up to World War I. The coming-of-age story will follow a young woman at a time before civilisation starts going into the darkness and Hungary saw its population and society transformed. [Source: Screen]

Spring Offensive
Fox has acquired Matthew McInerney-Lacombe’s female-driven political thriller spec script “Spring Offensive” with plans for it to be the next feature of “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” and “Cloverfield” helmer Matt Reeves once he finishes the third ‘Apes’ film. Adam Kassan will produce. [Source: Variety]