It was slightly calmer this week than last, although the news out of Vancouver that productions had to be shut down due to COVID test delays was more than a little bit alarming, especially considering my own report that COVID numbers were starting to spike in the British Columbia city. Fortunately, production resumed on Charmed, A Million Things and Disney’s The Might Ducks after those delays earlier in the week, so it looks like they’ve already gotten a handle on the situation with the labs being overrun with tests needing to be analyzed.
Brighter news comes out of New York where production seems to be resuming at full steam, according to a Deadline piece on that hot production market, which states there could be as many as 40 productions going by year’s end. Two of the primary local studios, Steiner Studios and Silvercup Studios, have been booking multiple shows in preproduction to begin filming again soon, and the Deadline story has quotes from the CEOs of both studios, as well as Anne del Castillo, Commissioner of the New York City Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment. Amazon Prime Video‘s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Showtime‘s City on the Hill are both prepping at Steiner Studios to begin filming soon, while Starz‘s Power Book II: Ghost will be doing pick-ups to finish off where it left off in March. Silvercup is hosting the production for HBO‘s Emmy-winning Succession, scheduled to start filming in the fall.
Other shows underway (in production or pre-production) include The Flight Attendant, Blue Bloods, Bull and Gossip Girl. Live with Kelly and Ryan is shooting live in-studio as are late-night talk shows Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
On top of the above, Showtime’s Billions was renewed for a sixth season this past week, as well.
After delaying many of its upcoming movie releases last week, Marvel Studios still seems to be going ahead with starting production on Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, directed by Sam Raimi, in the UK starting later this month or in early November.
Speaking of UK productions, the long-in-development Tetris movie — yes, based on that addictive video game with falling blocks — which is being produced by Matthew Vaughn‘s MARV and will star actor Taron Egerton, the lead of previous MARV productions, Rocketman and the Kingsman movies, that is said to start filming in the UK on December 1.
A couple new projects announced this week include a prequel to Disney’s The Lion King, which will be directed by Barry Jenkins, whose movie Moonlight won the Oscar for Best Picture a few years back.
Filmmaker Steven Soderbergh certainly isn’t resting on his laurels as he began production this week on his crime-thriller No Sudden Move for HBO Max with an impressive cast that includes Don Cheadle, Benicio Del Toro, David Harbour (Hellboy), Amy Seimetz, Jon Hamm, Ray Liotta, Kieran Culkin, Brendan Fraser, Noah Jupe (Honey Boy), Bill Duke, Frankie Shaw and Julia Fox from Uncut Gems. That’s a pretty impressive line-up for the Ed Solomon-scripted heist film set in 1955 Detroit about a group of criminals trying to steal a document but whose plan goes wrong as they traverse the “race-torn, rapidly changing city.”
Matthew Vaughn’s former collaborator, Guy Ritchie, is teaming with Miramax TV, writing and directing a new TV series based on his recent film, The Gentlemen, which grossed $115 million worldwide before the pandemic hit. No word whether Ritchie will be able to bring back any of the surviving cast from the movie and whether the series would take place before or after the events from the movie. It will join Paul WS Anderson’s series based on the horror-thriller Mimic at Miramax TV.
You can find more productions listings like the above in Below the Line‘s production listings.
Following up on Below the Line‘s coverage of the Variety/THR merger, Deadline is reporting that 25% of the non-editorial staff from The Hollywood Reporter, Vibe and Billboard will be let go by PMRC, so about 50 people out of 250. The staff of those publications learned about it from an internal Email sent out yesterday by MRC co-CEOs Modi Wiczyk and Asif Satchus.
Some of the week’s more interesting cast included Zac Efron joining the new adaptation of Stephen King‘s Firestarter for Blumhouse and Universal Pictures, playing the father of the titular little girl with pyrokinetic powers, previously played by Drew Barrymore in the 1984 version.
Also, Marvel Studios announced its weekly casting of note with young filmmaker Iman Vellani taking on the titular mantle of Ms. Marvel for the new Disney+ superhero series.
Sadly, it was just revealed this week that Partridge Family and The Michael Douglas Show producer Larry Rosen died at the age of 84 back on September 14 due to complications from pancreatic cancer. The Newark, New Jersey-born icon of television received his first Emmy nomination for The Michael Douglas Show, which was filming in Cleveland and Philadelphia before he moved to California. The Partridge Family ran from 1971 to 1973, launching many careers with a catchy theme song that is probably now stuck in your head.
Lastly, that Borat sequel mentioned earlier this week not only has an even LONGER title now — Borat: Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bride to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan — but it also will stream exclusively on Amazon Prime Video on October 23, which is just three weeks away. Sure, enough, there’s a new 3-minute trailer, which you can enjoy below: