Hot Sheet April-June 2020

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Alex Beachum ’13 and Loan Verneau ’13 won big at the 2020 BAFTA Games Awards, racking up Best Game, Original Property, and Game Design for their video game Outer Wilds. Outer Wilds is available to be played on Playstation 4, Xbox One, and Windows.

Laura Bensick ‘14 sold her script Everyday Insanity to Fox. Inspired by Bensick’s own life events, the drama series follows three families who support each other after their loved ones are diagnosed with mental illnesses. Besnick will also executive produce the project.

Jason Michael Berman ’06 will produce the feature The Last Ridge. The project is an adaptation of McKay Jenkins’ non-fiction book which details the true story of a group of skiers and mountaineers that became the 10th Mountain Division and helped change the course of WWII.

Brian Samuel Davis ‘08 wrote the screenplay for Nothing, Arizona which is currently in pre-production. The drama is set to star Wes Studi, and is to be directed by Kelly May.

Scott Derrickson ’95 is set to direct and executive produce the sequel to Labyrinth, the 1986 musical fantasy which starred David Bowie and Jennifer Connelly.

Susan Downey ’95 will executive produce Sweet Tooth, based on the DC Comics Vertigo property, for Netflix. The drama series follows Gus, a boy who is part man and part deer, as he navigates through a post-apocalyptic world and tries to uncover the mystery behind his hybrid origins.

Paul Feig ‘84 is set to direct the Netflix film adaptation of The School Of Good And Evil. Based on Soman Chainani’s bestselling novel series, The School Of Good And Evil follows two best friends as they enroll into schools that train ordinary boys and girls into becoming fairy tale heroes and villains.

Robert Funke ‘13 and Matt Lutsky ‘14 co-created On Becoming A God in Central Florida, which Showtime renewed for a second season.  

Peter Gamble ‘96, ‘00 and Ian Shorr ‘07 wrote the highly sought-after horror script 10-31, which has been acquired by Orion Productions. Featured on the Blooodlist as one of the best unproduced horror films of 2019, 10-31 follows a young woman who takes her niece and nephew out to trick-or-treat, only to find a note inside a candy wrapper that says there’s a killer on the loose.

Grant Heslov ’86 and David Gelb ‘06 executive produce alongside George Clooney the Netflix original documentary series Trial By Media which released on May 11th. The docuseries examines the media impact that six televised crime cases had across the country.

Ron Howard is slated to direct Thirteen Lives for MGM, based on the international rescue effort of the young team of soccer players and their coach who were trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand. Brian Grazer ’74 is also on board to produce this project.

Aaron Kaplan ’90 and Angela Bromstad ’81 will executive produce the AMC thriller drama series The Burying Place. The project is based on Brian Freeman’s novel about detectives in Minnesota who pursue  a suspected serial killer while also trying to solve the disappearance of a baby.

Elizabeth Klaviter ‘00 will be showrunner and executive producer for the newly picked-up CBS drama series Clarice, which serves as a sequel to the 1991 thriller The Silence of the Lambs.

Matthew Klickstein ‘03 wrote the upcoming book The Kids of Widney High, based on the documentary he made about the titular group of young adults with developmental disabilities who write and perform their own unique brand of rock music.

Abby Kohn ’96 and Marc Silverstein ’96 will write and direct an esports feature for Ubisoft about a senior citizen competitive gaming team. This project is inspired by the Wall Street Journal article The Next Generation of Competitive Gamers Is…Over 60?.

Shawn Levy ’94 will produce Dark Days at the Magna Carta for Netflix with Blake Lively attached to produce and star in the post-apocalyptic thriller. Levy will also collaborate with Ryan Reynolds on a time travel drama after having worked together on Free Guy.

Doug Liman will direct Tom Cruise in an action adventure film to be shot in outer space. This project will seek the collaboration of Space X and NASA. Liman and Cruise have previously worked together on Edge of Tomorrow and American Made.

Zahir McGee ‘09 wrote and was a co-executive producer on the hit crime drama series Stumptown, which has just been renewed by ABC for a second season. ABC has also given a pilot order to his ensemble family drama Harlem’s Kitchen.

Jen McGowan ’05 directed the episode “Try Try” for The Twilight Zone reboot on CBS All Access. The series has been renewed for its sophomore season.

Caitlin Parrish ‘12 wrote the screenplay for the film adaptation of the bestselling novel The Ice Beneath Her. The filmmaking trio Radio Silence is on board to direct and produce the project while Star Wars’ Daisy Ridley is in negotiations to star in the psychological thriller.

Channing Godfrey Peoples ’11 was announced the winner of the Louis Black “Lone Star” Award at the virtual SXSW film festival for her feature drama Miss Juneteenth. Peoples’ debut feature has since been acquired by Vertical Entertainment.

Zaiver Sinnett ‘18 has worked on Grey’s Anatomy (ABC) for the past two years as a writer’s assistant and as a part of the production staff. He also had the opportunity to star in two episodes this season as Dr. Zander Perez.

Marc Smerling launched Truth Media, a Brooklyn based production company which seeks to partner with writers, journalists, and audio storytellers to create true crime podcasts and develop them into TV series. Smerling will direct and executive produce Truth Media’s inaugural project A Wilderness of Error, a five-part series based on Errol Morris’ book about the 1970 murder of a family at Fort Bragg. The series is produced by Blumhouse Television for FX Networks.

Tim Story will collaborate again with Kevin Hart on Night Wolf, a feature comedy which follows a man who learns that his future father-in-law is a superhero. Story will direct and produce Night Wolf through his The Story Company.

Matt Stuecken ’01 and writing partner John Campbell are adapting the Elizabeth Bear sci-fi short story Covenant.The pair previously collaborated on 10 Cloverfield Lane as well as Horizon Line, which is currently in post-production.

Max Winkler ’06 will adapt and direct Ben Moon’s memoir Denali: A Man A Dog, A Friendship Of A Lifetime which details the special bond that the author shared with his rescue dog. In addition, Winkler is set to direct Last Summer, a series drama on Freeform. Max is also collaborating with fellow alum Matt Spicer ’06 to adapt Mick Conefrey’s The Adventure Handbook for Universal, as well as scripting the reboot of The Rocketeer for Disney.

New TV Shows on the Air

Dear… (Apple TV+)
R.J. Cutler (Executive Producer)

Hollywood (Netflix)
Hernando Bansuelo ’13 (Writer)

Home Before Dark (Apple TV+)
Dana Fox ’00 (Co-Creator, Writer-Executive Producer)
Dara Resnik ’03 (Co-Creator, Writer-Executive Producer)
Jon Chu ’03 (Director-Executive Producer)
Russel Friend ’95 (Writer)
Garrett Learner ’95 (Writer)
Thembi Banks ’14 (Writer)
Alice Brooks ’01 (Cinematographer)

The Innocence Files (Netflix)
Will Staeger (Executive Producer)

Love Life (HBO Max)
Paul Feig ’84 (Executive Producer)

Mrs. America (FX)
Stacey Sher ’85 (Executive Producer)
Joshua Allen Griffith ’16 (Writer)

Snowpiercer (TNT)
Scott Derrickson ‘95 (Executive Producer)
Chinaka Hodge (Writer)

Tales from the Loop (Amazon)
Matt Reeves ’88 (Executive Producer)
Adam Sorin ’13 (Associate Producer)
Jeff Cronenweth ’85 (Cinematographer)

Trial By Media (Netflix)
David Gelb ‘06 (Executive Producer)
Grant Heslov ’86 (Executive Producer)
David Bolen ‘13 (Director of Photography)
Arielle Zakowski ‘12 (Editor)
Jared Martin ‘13 (Editor)
Nicholas Manting-Brewer ‘18 (Lead Assistant Editor)
Michael Gil ‘19 (Assistant Editor)

New Films in Release

Bad Education (HBO)
Julia Lebedev ’06 (Producer)

The Last Days of American Crime (Netflix)
Jason Michael Berman ’06 (Producer)

Sweetness in the Belly
Zeresenay Berhane Mehari ’02 (Director)