Barbara Broccoli busy on non-007 projects, NY Post says

Barbara Broccoli

Eon Productions boss Barbara Broccoli remains busy on non-James Bond projects and friends say “she’s not sure when the next 007 film will shoot,” the New York Post’s Page Six gossip column said.

The gossip column quoted unidentified sources as saying the producer “is not waiting around” for actor for actor Daniel Craig to “get off his arse.”

Page Six didn’t specify Broccoli’s movie projects. The movie Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool is scheduled to be released later this year. Variety reported in February Broccoli is involved with another drama titled Nancy. The MI6 James Bond website said in March that Eon also is working on a historical war movie.

The gossip column also referenced how Broccoli is producing a play based on the life of movie producer and executive Robert Evans.

Appropriate caveat: Page Six and the Post are known for their gossipy, tabloid tone. The Post is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., which owns the U.K. tabloid The Sun.

If Page Six is to be believed, Bond 25 still is in its earliest stages and Craig’s return as Bond hasn’t been nailed down. Page Six said in April that Craig was likely to return as Bond.

The Daily Mail reported in March that scribes Neal Purvis and Robert Wade were hired to work on Bond 25’s story.

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40th anniversay of the definitive Super Bowl film

Black Sunday poster

Black Sunday poster

Today is Super Bowl Sunday in the United States and this year marks the 40th anniversary of the definitive Super Bowl-related film, Black Sunday.

The John Frankenheimer-directed film was based on a Thomas Harris novel. The 1975 book was a hot property and Paramount snagged the film rights. It was Harris’ first novel and didn’t include Hannibal Lecter as a character.

The studio didn’t scrimp on the production. Besides hiring Frankheimer, the creative team, led by producer Robert Evans, included Ernest Lehman as one of three screenwriters and John Williams as composer. This would be Williams’ final score prior to the original Star Wars movie.

For the lead character, Evans & Co. cast Robert Shaw as an Israeli operative, Bruce Dern as a blimp pilot who becomes part of the terrorist plot and Marthe Keller as one of the terrorists.

The plot concerned Isrealis, working with American law enforcement officials clashing with Middle Eastern terrorists, who have targeted the Super Bowl, the championship game for the National Football League.

Harris’ novel used New Orleans’ Tulane Stadium (site of the 1975 Super Bowl) as a location. Frankheimer’s film utilized Miami’s Orange Bowl, site of the 1976 game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Dallas Cowboys.

The film crew worked as the game was 1976 played, with real life CBS announcers Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier making an appearance.

The movie came out in the spring of 1977. It generated a modest $15.8 million box office in the United States, according to Box Office Mojo.

Here’s the trailer of the movie:

Broccoli’s latest project: The Kid Stays in the Picture

Barbara Broccoli

Barbara Broccoli

Barbara Broccoli has another non-Bond project lined up, a stage production of The Kid Stays in the Picture about movie executive and producer Robert Evans.

Broccoli, along with half-brother Michael G. Wilson, Patrick Milling Smith and Brian Carmody, are the producers of the play. Broccoli and Wilson are the co-bosses of Eon Productions, which make James Bond films.

Evans, 86, started as an actor before working behind the camera. One of his early roles was in 1957’s Man of a Thousand Faces, a James Cagney movie about Lon Chaney. Evans played film producer Irving Thalberg. He later became a movie mogul in real life as an executive at Paramount. He shifted to being a producer of movies such as Chinatown and Marathon Man.

Along the way, Evans led a colorful life, including marrying actresses Camilla Sparv and Ali McGraw as well as pleading guilty to cocaine trafficking. The title of the play comes from his 1994 autobiography, which was turned into a 2002 documentary.

The play adaptation will run March 7 to April 8 at the Royal Court Theatre in London’s West End.

For producer Broccoli, this is her second recent project dealing with the life of a Hollywood figure. She’s also a producer of Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, in which Annette Bening plays actress Gloria Grahame. That film is in post-production. Wilson isn’t involved in the movie.

Paramount may revive The Saint, Deadline Says

Title card for the 1960s TV version of The Saint

Title card for the 1960s TV version of The Saint

Paramount try to turn The Saint, the character created by Leslie Charteris, into a film franchise, Deadline: Hollywood reported.

Simon Templar has been adapted many times, both as films and as television series. A 1960s TV version made Roger Moore a star, helping him secure the role of James Bond in the 1970s.

A 1997 film version, also released by Paramount and with Val Kilmer, didn’t result in any sequels. But that’s not stopping the studio, according to Deadline. Here’s an excerpt:

 

Producing deals are being closed now, but it’s likely that Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Robert Evans will produce in hopes of launching another action franchise at the studio.

(snip)
If the deal makes, the studio may have another franchise in development as the character itself seems ripe for a re-do in a modern age of terrorism and corruption in the political ranks.

Lorenzo di Bonaventura is producer of the Transformers movies as well as spy-related films such as Salt and RED.

Robert Evans, who turns 86 later this month, was a Paramount executive involved with The Godfather and was producer of Chinatown. He was also a producer of the 1997 version of The Saint.

To read the full Deadline story, CLICK HERE.