Babylon: Paramount Sets Damien Chazelle’s New Film For 2022

From “According to Deadline, Paramount Pictures has decided to change the release date for director Damien Chazelle’s upcoming period drama film Babylon. Originally scheduled for Christmas 2021, the Brad Pitt-led film has now been pushed back to December 25, 2022 for a limited release which will then be followed by wide theatrical release on January 6, 2023.

Babylon is described as an original drama set in period Hollywood, a “bold auteur piece with a significant budget.” Lionsgate was previously in the lead to land the movie at auction until Paramount came through with the winning bid.

The film will be led by Oscar winner Brad Pitt with his Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood co-star Margot Robbie in talks to replace Emma Stone for the female lead. Li Jun Li (Wu Assassins, Evil) has also been cast as Anna May Wong.

Chazelle, whose credits include 10 Cloverfield Lane, Whiplash, First Man, and The Last Exorcism Part II, wrote the script and will direct. Olivia Hamilton, Matt Plouffe, and Marc Platt will serve as producers.”

MGM and Brad Pitt’s Plan B Team Up for Films With ‘Minari,’ ‘Bad Education’ Directors

From Variety: Metro Goldwyn Mayer has signed a two-year second-look film production deal with Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner’a Plan B Entertainment.

As part of this new pact, Plan B has set several projects with MGM, including a love story from “Minari” writer and director Lee Isaac Chung. The pic centers on a young man lost in New York City’s corporate drudgery, who finds love with a beautiful young woman from Hong Kong, only to break up with her out of fear of settling down. He sets out on a madcap quest to find himself, which leads him to realize he had already discovered true love in her. When he returns to rekindle their romance, he learns it’s too late, so he travels to Hong Kong to get her back.

MGM will also team with “Bad Education” director Cory Finley on an adaptation of National Book Award winner M.T. Anderson’s novel “Landscape With Invisible Hand.” The movie is described as a dark, surreal comedy set in an alien future. It’s Finley’s follow-up to “Bad Education” starring Hugh Jackman, and “Thoroughbreds” with Anya Taylor-Joy. Annapurna Pictures will produce with Plan B.

Plan B teamed with Chung on “Minari,” based on his story about growing up on a small farm in rural Arkansas. “Minari” won the grand jury and audience awards at Sundance 2020. “Minari” opened on Dec. 11 in select theaters in New York and Los Angeles, and will expand beginning on Feb. 12, 2021.

Plan B has produced “12 Years a Slave,” “The Tree of Life,” “World War Z,” “Selma,””The Big Short,” “If Beale Street Could Talk,” “Vice” and Miranda July’s “Kajillionaire.”

“We are incredibly thrilled to have Brad, Dede, and Jeremy join the MGM family,” MGM Motion Picture Group Chairman Michael De Luca and MGM Motion Picture Group President Pamela Abdy said in a statement on Friday. “Their decades long commitment advocating for a filmmaker’s vision knows no equal. All of us at MGM are excited to join with them in bringing these incredible filmmaker’s visions to life and to be a home for theirs and so many singular voices who are making movies today and, in the years, to come.”

Plan B said, “We very much look forward to working with Mike, Pam and the MGM team as we head into the next decade with our company. We are equally thrilled to be working again with Lee Isaac, and to collaborate with Cory, and to join with MGM in sharing their uniquely original films with audiences the world over.”

Chung is represented CAA. Finley is represented by CAA and Mosaic.

Margot Robbie in Talks to Replace Emma Stone in Damien Chazelle’s ‘Babylon’

From The Hollywood Reporter: Emma Stone is exiting Damien Chazelle’s Golden Age Hollywood epic Babylon, with Margot Robbie in talks to replace the Oscar winner.

If a deal makes, Robbie would be reteamed with her Once Upon a Time in Hollywood co-star Brad Pitt, who is attached to the Paramount project.

Set in the late 1920s, the movie is said to take place during the movie industry’s transition from silent films to talkies. The rise and fall of fictional and historical characters figure into the proceedings.

Robbie would portray Clara Bow, the early sex symbol and box office star who was Hollywood’s first “It” girl. Pitt would play a fictional character, a silent film star who fails to make the transition to the new technology that, sources say, is based on real-life figure John Gilbert.

The period drama, which landed at the studio prior to the COVID-19 shutdown, was shopped with a Chazelle-penned script that clocked in at a massive 180 pages and a budget in the $80 million to $100 million range.

Marc Platt, who produced Chazelle’s La La Land, will produce Babylon, with Olivia Hamilton, Matthew Plouffe and Tobey Maguire.

Robbie, repped by CAA, will next be seen in the Suicide Squad sequel, reprising her role as Harley Quinn.

Michael Shannon Joining Brad Pitt in Sony’s ‘Bullet Train’

From The Hollywood Reporter: It’s all aboard for Michael Shannon. The actor is joining the Brad Pitt assassin movie Bullet Train, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. The Sony Pictures film has an ensemble cast that includes Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry, Joey King, Zazie Beetz and Andrew Koji.

Filmmaker David Leitch, who last helmed the Fast & Furious spinoff Hobbs & Shaw, is in the director’s chair for the contained action thriller, which is an adaptation of Kotaro Isaka’s popular Japanese book Maria Beetle. The film centers on a group of assassins with conflicting motives on a train in Tokyo.

Fear Street scribe Zak Olkewicz penned the script. Kelly McCormick is producing Bullet Train through 87North and Antoine Fuqua is producing through his Fuqua Films. Brittany Morrissey is overseeing for Sony Pictures.

Shannon, a two-time Oscar nominee for Nocturnal Animals and Revolutionary Road, is in production on the Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers. He will next be on screen in the coming-of-age drama Swing and the Michael Maren comedy Shriver.

Shannon is represented by CAA, Range Media Partners, and Morris, Yorn, Barnes, Levine, Krintzman, Runbenstein, Kohner & Gellman.

Zazie Beetz Joins Brad Pitt Action Movie ‘Bullet Train’

From Variety: “Deadpool 2” star Zazie Beetz will join Brad Pitt in the cast of Sony’s action movie “Bullet Train.”

Joey King, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry and Andrew Koji are also boarding the pic. “Hobbs & Shaw” helmer David Leitch is directing with Kelly McCormick producing through 87North and Antoine Fuqua through Fuqua Films. Zak Olkewicz wrote the script, based on the Japanese novel “Maria Beetle” by best-selling author Kotaro Isaka. The book centers on a group of hitmen and assassins with conflicting motives on a train in Tokyo.

Pitt boarded the project in early July. He had been weighing his options since winning his first acting Oscar for Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” for playing stuntman Cliff Booth. Pitt is also attached to co-star with Emma Stone in Damien Chazelle’s movie “Babylon,” which moved back the start of production to 2021, creating an opening in his schedule for “Bullet Train.” Brittany Morrissey is the executive overseeing the project for Sony Pictures.

Beetz is currently filming Jeymes Samuel’s “The Harder They Fall.” Her most recent film, “Nine Days,” premiered at Sundance. Her other movie credits include “The Joker,” opposite Joaquin Phoenix; Noah Hawley’s “Lucy in the Sky” for Searchlight with Natalie Portman; “Wounds” opposite Armie Hammer; and Steven Soderbergh’s “High Flying Bird” with Andre Holland. Beetz was nominated for an Emmy Award for her role in Donald Glover’s “Atlanta.” She played the character Domino opposite Ryan Reynolds in “Deadpool 2.”

She is repped by CAA, Management 360, and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson Joins Brad Pitt on ‘Bullet Train’ at Sony

From Variety: Aaron Taylor-Johnson is set to join the ensemble cast of David Leitch’s action movie “Bullet Train,” starring Brad Pitt.

The Sony Pictures project is based on Kotaro Isaka’s Japanese book “Maria Beetle” and centers on a group of hitmen and assassins with conflicting motives on a train in Tokyo. Zak Olkewitz wrote the script.

Kelly McCormick is producing through 87North with Antoine Fuqua. Kat Samick is executive producing along with Ryosuke Saegusa and Yuma Terada of CTB Inc., who represent Isaka and the IP. Brittany Morrissey is the executive overseeing the project for Sony Pictures.

Pitt came on to the project in early July. He had been weighing his options since winning his first acting Oscar for Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” for playing stuntman Cliff Booth. Pitt is also attached to co-star with Emma Stone on the Damien Chazelle movie “Babylon,” which moved back the start of production to 2021, creating an opening on his schedule for “Bullet Train.”

Taylor-Johnson most recently appeared in Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” opposite John David Washington and Robert Pattinson. He will next appear in the action-spy feature, “The King’s Man,” a prequel to the “Kingsman” film series. His other credits include “A Million Little Pieces,” David McKenzie’s “Outlaw King,” Tom Ford’s “Nocturnal Animals,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” “Godzilla,” and Dave Lizewski’s “Kick-Ass.” The British actor began performing at age six and played a young Charlie Chaplin in the 2003 movie “Shanghai Knights.”

He is repped by WME, Brillstein Entertainment Partners and legal Sloane, Offer, Weber and Dern. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

Brad Pitt Previews His New Limited Release Rosé Champagne: It ‘Isn’t a “Celebrity” Wine for Me’

From People: “There’s a reason to celebrate at Miraval this week!

The French chateau, whose owners Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have produced award-winning rosés since 2012, has finally unveiled its next release — and PEOPLE has all the exclusive details and photos.

First announced in January, the limited release rosé Champagne, called Fleur de Miraval, will debut in U.S. markets on Oct. 15.

“For me,” Pitt explains to PEOPLE, “Champagne conjures up feelings of celebration, quality, prestige, and luxury. But rosé Champagne is still relatively unknown. Backed by our success with Miraval in Provence, I wanted us to try to create the defining brand of rosé Champagne, focusing all our efforts on just this one color.”

Created by the unique and preferred ‘saignée’ method, Fleur de Miraval (which by French law must be made within the heavily delimited northeastern Champagne department or it cannot be called ‘Champagne’) is the result of a five-year-long project, long shrouded in secrecy.

“The result is spectacular and I’m very proud of it,” adds Pitt, who was in Miraval this past weekend in part to finalize details on the Champagne’s limited first edition release which consists of 20,000 bottlings. He also participated in the 1200 acre estate’s yearly harvest as he has in previous years.

Creating Fleur de Miraval required a marriage of growing regions and techniques, and represents an entirely new Champagne house created by three families: Jolie and Pitt, their rosé partners the Famille Perrin, and the Champagne regions’ Peters family.

Arriving in a dramatic pink rosé coffret packaging holding a classically slender black Champagne bottle, lacquered black to prevent damage by sunlight. It’s extremely simple label indicates its originating village name, Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, a Cotes de Blanc site where the Peters family has owned vineyards for six generations.

The family’s own highly-respected Rodolphe Peters Champagne is sold in over 70 countries.

Aged for three years on the lees of the Peters caves, Fleur was created employing the saignée technique, a unique rosé-making process offering optimal quality. Once particular to Provence, France, saignée is the preferred method of creating rosé as it builds better, bolder wine by “bleeding” away a portion of pressed grape juice from contact with the mash.

Longer pressed grapes remaining in contact with seeds and skins, create darker juice, best suited for red wine. The saignée method, drawing off the juice before it deepens is ‘old school’, more painstaking and one with extreme devotees in the Loire, Rhone and Napa regions.

Fans of vintage and premium rosé Champagnes will discover that Fleur’s 75 percent chardonnay, 25 percent young pinot noir blend possesses a subtle petal pink color, notes of fresh raspberry and currants and a slight associated salinity.

Entering a developing field of ‘premium’ Champagnes is not an inexpensive proposition and bottles of Fleur de Miraval are expected to reach the market at 330 Euros (approximately $390) per bottle. The price is comparable to the cost of other ‘celebrity’ Champagnes such as JAY-Z’s Ace of Spades or 50 Cents’ Chemin du Roi partnership.

Pitt is well prepared for the comparison. He has called Chateau Miraval his second home since 2008, he has invested in its production capability. In the eight years since the first award-winning Miraval rosé, he has done much to raise rosé’s profile worldwide while assiduously investing in Miraval’s production, regularly expanding its line with new vintages.

“Miraval isn’t a ‘celebrity’ wine for me,” Pitt says. “Above all, it’s a wonderful, exceptional estate that I fell in love with, and that I continue to invest in to make it one of the finest estates in Provence. For the wine, I partnered with the Perrin family. They have been winemakers for five generations. Together, we’re in it for the long term. It’s not just a passing trend.”

Pitt and Jolie found the property in 2008 (they finalized the purchase in 2012) and while their 2016 separation fueled speculation they would put their 1200-acre French estate up for sale, sources have consistently told PEOPLE they remain committed to the property, viewing it as “an investment for their children.”

Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston Reunite in ‘Fast Times at Ridgemont High’ Fundraiser

From Variety: “The 1982 world of “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” came to life Thursday night in a fundraising table read that included Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, Jimmy Kimmel, John Legend, Ray Liotta, Julia Roberts, Shia LaBeouf, Morgan Freeman and Henry Golding.

The hour-long streaming event took place on the Facebook page for Penn’s nonprofit CORE (Community Organized Relief Effort) and LiveXLive as well as criminal justice reform group Reform Alliance. Dane Cook hosted and Freeman narrated the unrehearsed read, which came off with no noticeable fumbles in a dozen key scenes from the coming-of-age dramedy.

Much of the attention paid to the starry event — originally scheduled for a month ago but delayed by “technical difficulties” — focused on Pitt and Aniston performing together, 15 years after their divorce. Pitt voiced Brad Hamilton, played by Judge Reinhold in the film, and Aniston played Phoebe Cates’ Linda Barrett character. The duo re-enacted the movie’s deeply embarrassing swimsuit sequence with Freeman ad-libbing “Lord, have mercy” at one point.

Roberts voiced Stacy Hamilton, the perky younger sister of Brad Hamilton. LaBeouf handled Penn’s iconic Jeff Spicoli character and Liotta played several scenes as Spicoli’s antagonist Mr. Hand, including the memorable scene in which Spicoli has a pizza delivered to him in class with Penn voicing the pizza delivery man. Legend voiced football star Charles Jefferson and his little brother. Golding handled the role as science teacher Mr. Vargas. McConaughey took on Mike Damone while Cook played Mark “Rat” Ratner.

Pre-show banter featured Roberts provoking laughing from castmates by asking Legend’s spouse, Chrissy Teigen, about her orange outfit — “Is that what you wear when you’re walking around the house?” — followed by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s introduction, in which he called the movie the most important of his youth.

The event concluded with a brief appearance by director Amy Heckerling and screenwriter Cameron Crowe, who adapted the script from his book about going undercover at a San Diego high school. Heckerling recounted that Penn did not have to audition for the role because he made such a strong impression and that Penn forced everyone to call him “Spicoli” on the set and refused to answer to his actual name.

“He got the job on the sheer force of his Sean-ness,” she added.

Organizers announced Friday that the event had attracted 4 million viewers and raised more than $135,000 for CORE and Reform Alliance.

Watch the table read here.”

‘Snake Eyes’s Andrew Koji Joins Brad Pitt in Sony’s ‘Bullet Train’

From Deadline: “Andrew Koji is set to join Brad Pitt in the action-thriller “Bullet Train” for Sony Pictures. Joey King is also on board.

Hobbs & Shaw director David Leitch will direct and also supervise the script, which will be written by Zak Olkewicz. The film has been moving at light speed since Leitch attached himself last month with Pitt coming on shortly after, marking his first film commitment since winning his first Oscar for acting in Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood. The film is looking at a fall start in Los Angeles.

The film is based on the Japanese novel “Maria Beetle” by best-selling author Kotaro Isaka. Ryosuke Saegusa and Yuma Terada of CTB Inc., who represent Isaka and the IP, are executive producers on the project.

Harvill Secker has separately announced that it will publish the novel “Bullet Train” in English next year. Leitch and Kelly McCormick will produce “Bullet Train” through their company 87North, along with Antoine Fuqua. Kat Samick is exec producing and Brittany Morrissey is the executive overseeing the project for Sony Pictures.

Plot details are vague though Koji is expected to play one of the four assassins in the film along with Pitt and King.

The Japanese/British actor will next star in the Paramount feature Snake Eyes as ‘Storm Shadow’ opposite Henry Golding. Koji also stars in Jonathan Tropper’s new Cinemax series, Warrior, which is inspired by the writings of Bruce Lee and just wrapped its second season.

He is repped by WME, Principal Entertainment, Eammon Bedford Agency (UK) and Myman, Greenspan, Fox, Rosenberg, Mobasser, Younger & Light.”

Joey King in Talks to Board Brad Pitt’s ‘Bullet Train’

From Variety: ““The Kissing Booth” star Joey King is in negotiations to join the cast of Brad Pitt’s action-adventure “Bullet Train.”

The Sony Pictures project, based on Kotaro Isaka’s Japanese novel “Maria Beetle,” will be directed by David Leitch from a script by Zak Olkewicz. Leitch and Kelly McCormick will produce “Bullet Train” through 87North, along with Antoine Fuqua. Kat Samick is executive producing with Ryosuke Saegusa and Yuma Terada of CTB Inc., who represent Isak.

A date hasn’t been set yet for the production. Sony has been keeping plot details and character descriptions under wraps.

King broke out in 2018 in Netflix’s teen romantic comedy franchise “The Kissing Booth” as Elle Evans, opposite Jacob Elordi and Joel Courtney. “The Kissing Booth 2” debuted on July 24 on Netflix and the streaming service recently announced a third movie that will launch in 2021.

“The Kissing Booth 3” was secretly shot at the same time as the sequel, so filming is already complete. The entire cast — including King, Courtney, Elordi, Taylor Zakhar Perez and Molly Ringwald — will return for the third installment.

King’s feature credits include “Crazy, Stupid, Love,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” “The Conjuring,” “White House Down,” “Independence Day: Resurgence,” “Wish Upon” and “Slender Man.” She received a Primetime Emmy nomination for her starring role in the true-crime drama series “The Act.”

King is repped by UTA, Coast to Coast Talent Group and Industry Entertainment. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.