New Project: Untitled Thriller

24 June 2009

Untitled Thriller

Zac has recently signed up for new project, a thriller; the plot is unfortunately kept under wraps. He will headline the project which is written by Leslie Dixon. Zac will also executive produce. Here are a few more details…

Official press release from Mandate Pictures (23 June 2009):


LOS ANGELES, CA, June 23, 2009– Coming off of the success of 17 Again and having established himself as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after young stars, Zac Efron has signed on to star in an untitled thriller project for Mandate Pictures. The original project is being written by veteran scribe Leslie Dixon (Freaky Friday, The Thomas Crown Affair), who solidified her relationship with Zac after their hit, Hairspray. The plot, which is being held closely under wraps, has been described as a sexy thriller.

Frequent Mandate collaborator Greg Shapiro of Kingsgate Films (The Hurt Locker, the Harold and Kumar franchise), Jason Barrett (17 Again), and Leslie Dixon will produce the film with Zac Efron and Mandate’s Nathan Kahane executive producing. Nicole Brown will oversee the project for Mandate.

“Mandate is excited to bring our partnership model to this wonderfully talented group of artistic entrepreneurs,” said Kahane. “We feel very fortunate to help guide this sexy and fun rollercoaster ride to the screen.”

Rob McEntegart, Mandate’s head of business affairs, and Dan Freedman, SVP of business affairs, negotiated the deals for the company. Zac Efron is repped by CAA, Alchemy Entertainment, and attorney Patti Felker of Felker, Toczek, Gellman, Suddleson. Leslie Dixon is repped by CAA and attorney Michael Gendler of Gendler & Kelly, APC. Greg Shapiro is repped by attorney Darren Trattner of Jackoway, Tyerman, Wertheimer, Austen, Mandelbaum, Morris & Klein. Jason Barrett is repped by attorney Bob Wallerstein of Hirsch, Wallerstein, Hayum, Matlof + Fishman.

About Mandate Pictures

Mandate Pictures is a multifaceted film production and financing company, acquired in 2007 by Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a leading next generation film entertainment studio. Mandate continues to operate as an autonomous brand under President Nathan Kahane. Mandate most recently released Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, directed by Peter Sollett, starring Michael Cera and Kat Dennings, distributed by Columbia Pictures, and Rodrigo Garcia’s Passengers starring Anne Hathaway and Patrick Wilson, distributed by Sony Pictures. Other recent films include Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, the follow-up to the 2004 comedy hit released by New Line; and the worldwide box office and critical sensation Juno, starring Ellen Page, Michael Cera, Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman. Juno, distributed by Fox Searchlight, garnered a host of accolades, including an Academy Award® for Best Original Screenplay and three Academy Award® nominations for Best Motion Picture, Best Actress, and Best Director.

Mandate also operates a successful partnership with Ghost House Pictures, formed with filmmakers Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert as a production label dedicated to the financing, development and production of films in the horror/thriller genre. The company has achieved success with five consecutive #1 releases, starting with the 2004 remake of The Grudge, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar; The Grudge 2; Stephen T. Kay’s Boogeyman, starring Barry Watson; The Messengers, from acclaimed filmmakers Oxide and Danny Pang (The Eye); and David Slade’s 30 Days of Night. The next Ghost House film is Drag Me To Hell, written and directed by Sam Raimi. The film, slated for a May 2009 release by Universal Pictures, stars Alison Lohman, who becomes the unwitting recipient of a supernatural curse.

Mandate’s other filmmaker relationships include production deals with Mr. Mudd, the production company headed up by Academy Award®-nominated partner-producers Lianne Halfon, Russell Smith and award-winning actor, director and producer John Malkovich; Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Steve Zaillian’s Film Rites; Zack Helm and Jim Garavente’s Gang of Two production company; and a first-look deal with Lindsay Doran’s production company Three Strange Angels.

And for completeness sake, here are also the trade articles for the deal:

Variety, 23 June 2009

Zac Efron to star in Mandate thriller

‘HSM’ thesp will also exec produce untitled pic

Zac Efron has signed on to star in an untitled thriller for Mandate Pictures, with Greg Shapiro of Kingsgate Films, Jason Barrett and Leslie Dixon producing.

Dixon’s penning the script; the logline’s staying under wraps. Project reteams the scribe with Efron two years after she wrote and he starred in “Hairspray.”

Efron and Mandate’s Nathan Kahane will exec produce. The thesp has worked previously with Barrett, who exec produced “17 Again.”

Efron ankled Paramount’s remake of “Footloose” in March and is set to reteam with “17 Again” director Burr Steers on an adaptation of novel “The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud” at Universal.

Shapiro’s credits include “The Hurt Locker” and the “Harold and Kumar” franchise.

The Hollywoodreporter, 23 June 2009

Zac Efron to topline thriller for Mandate

Zac Efron has signed to star in an untitled thriller for Mandate Pictures, which is being written by Leslie Dixon.

The plot is being kept under wraps but it is described as “a sexy thriller.” The deal continues the evolution of Efron from the teen heartthrob of the “High School Musical” franchise to a more mature leading man, and also sees him stepping into producing shoes. He will act as executive producer with Mandate’s Nathan Kahane.

Frequent Mandate collaborator Greg Shapiro of Kingsgate Films (“The Hurt Locker”), Jason Barrett, and Dixon will produce.

Nicole Brown will oversee the project for Mandate.

Efron and Dixon, a respected veteran writer whose credits include 1999’s “The Thomas Crown Affair and “Freaky Friday,” first worked together on “Hairspray.”

No director is on board.

Efron, repped by CAA and Alchemy Entertainment, last starred in New Line’s teen comedy “17 Again,” which grossed almost $63 million domestically. Dixon is repped by CAA.

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