Welcome to Development Hell, the fiery pit into which we fling recent developments in casting, distribution, and everything else that’s new and mildly interesting in the Boschian phantasmagoria of the entertainment industry.
Although it only Tuesday, the pop culture world is already popping this week, serving up plenty of new news about casting, development, and more. Still, how can we possibly focus on any of that when the question of America’s most handsomest face in is question? We’ve got to check in on George Clooney, folks!
- As it turns out, George Clooney is just fine. (Return to your homes, citizens! Silence the Clooney Condition Alarms!) Per The New York Times, the actor was in a motorcycle crash late last night in Italy, when a car “failed to respect his right of way” and collided with him. Clooney, who’s in the country to work on Hulu’s Catch-22, is reportedly just fine though, with just a few bruises, and presumably some sort of annoyingly charming quip ready for the next time someone asks him about it.
- Filming is set to start this fall on Jane Goldman and George R.R. Martin’s prequel to Game Of Thrones, recently green-lit by HBO. The series will begin filming in Belfast in October, and will reportedly take place thousands of years before the HBO hit. [via Deadline]
- Good news for fans of the chipper conviviality of Reese Witherspoon: Vulture reports that the Legally Blonde star is getting her own chat show, set to air, fittingly enough, on her own DirectTV on-demand channel. Shine On With Reese will see the endlessly cheerful star interview a number of famous women, including Dolly Parton, Ava DuVernay, Pink, America Ferrera, and Kacey Musgraves. The series debuts on July 17.
- The ongoing attempts to sell off The Weinstein Co. hit another roadbump this week, as multiple celebrities—including Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Quentin Tarantino, and more—have raised objects to the deal the embattled company is struggling to get off the ground with Lantern Capital. The latest objections come from those who, like Streep, are still contractually owed millions in profit participation from the company’s films, debts that might fall into unsecured—and, thus, unlikely to ever be paid—territory if the current bargain-priced sale of the company goes through. [via Variety]
- Dear White People creator Justin Simien has just signed a new development deal with Lionsgate, Deadline reports. The studio previously released the film version of Simien’s story, and worked with him on the Netflix TV series version as well.
- Rosario Dawson is taking a break from continually being the most charming thing in the Netflix Marvel shows in order to star in a series of her own; Variety reports that Dawson has signed on to star in a USA pilot, Briarpatch, about a Washington D.C. private investigator who returns to her Texas hometown after her sister is murdered.
- Mudbound’s Dee Rees has lined up a bunch more big names for her next Netflix picture, the Joan Didion adaptation The Last Thing He Wanted. Ben Affleck, Toby Jones, Rosie Perez, Edi Gathegi, and Mel Rodriguez have all joined Willem Dafoe and star Anne Hathaway in the ’80s-set thriller, about a woman who stumbles into a key role in the Iran-Contra arms-smuggling affair. [via Deadline]
- Warner Bros. has proposed the building of a $10 million tramway from its studio lot to the back of the Hollywood sign, thus cutting down traffic in the congested Griffith Park area (and also directing plenty of tourist attention toward itself). The tramway is one of several plans L.A. officials have been mulling as a way to cut down traffic around the iconic sign, and would include a visitors center on the lot (along with the added boon of operating with no additional cost to the city itself). [via Variety]
- A24 has announced the launch of its second comedy TV series, with IndieWire reporting on Moonbase 8, a “bumbling astronauts” tale featuring the admittedly promising comedy line-up of John C. Reilly, Tim Heidecker, and Fred Armisen in its starring roles. The series is being produced by Armisen, alongside his old Portlandia collaborator (and Baskets co-creator) Jon Krisel.