ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY – Margot Robbie’s Tonya Harding biopic is skating closer to awards season glory.
EW has confirmed the Craig Gillespie-directed film, one of the hottest acquisitions out of Toronto earlier this month, will hit select theaters on Dec. 8, with a nationwide rollout planned for subsequent weeks.
The film, about the titular champion ice skater who later embroiled herself in a plot to break the leg of her competitor, Nancy Kerrigan, world-premiered at TIFF earlier this month to enthusiastic reviews from movie critics, with particular praise — and Oscar buzz — brewing for Robbie and Allison Janney, who plays Harding’s mother, LaVonda Golden.
The film went on to become the first runner-up for the festival’s People’s Choice Award, a key best picture precursor that has gone to eight films that have either won or been nominated for the Academy’s top honor across the last 10 years.
Neon, the distributor behind specialty hits like this year’s Ingrid Goes West and Beach Rats, purchased I, Tonya for $5 million following the film’s well-received debut, reportedly beating out an $8 million bid from Netflix and further offers from Annapurna and CBS Films.
Category: Movie News
VARIETY – Neon and 30WEST have nabbed domestic rights to “I, Tonya,” a dark comedy about Olympic skater Tonya Harding. The deal was signed out of the Toronto Film Festival, where the film premiered over the weekend. It is in the $5 million range.
The big draw here is star Margot Robbie, who plays Harding, a gold medal hopeful whose career was derailed after her ex-husband cooked up a scheme to hobble Nancy Kerrigan. There’s some chatter that Robbie could end up in the awards race, but other potential buyers who looked at the picture thought it had only limited commercial appeal. Netflix, CBS Films, and Annapurna had kicked the tires on the picture at various points in a bidding process that never got as hot as the agents and producers thought it would. CBS Films had bid $6 million prior to the screening, but lowered the bid to $2 million after the film showed, according to an insider.
In a positive notice, Variety‘s Owen Gleiberman praised the picture and the performances. “For a while, you may make the mistake of thinking that ‘I, Tonya’ is a joke: a blithe spoof of Tabloid Nation,” he wrote. “It is that, yet it’s also built around something piercingly sharp and sincere: Margot Robbie’s canny, live-wire, deeply sympathetic performance.”
Along with Robbie, Allison Janney stars as Harding’s mother and Sebastian Stan appears as Jeff Gillooly, Harding’s ex-husband. The film is directed by Craig Gillespie (“Lars and the Real Girl”) with a screenplay by Steven Rogers (“Love the Coopers”).
30WEST is a new venture founded by Micah Green, a former CAA agent, and entrepreneur Dan Friedkin. At Toronto, the company partnered with Cinetic to negotiate a deal to sell domestic rights Morgan Spurlock’s sequel to “Super Size Me” to YouTube Red.
Neon is the new indie label from Tom Quinn, the former head of Radius-TWC, and Alamo Drafthouse founder Tim League. The company’s “Borg/McEnroe,” with Shia LaBeouf as a hot-tempered John McEnroe, opened the festival. Its other releases include “Beach Rats,” “Ingrid Goes West,” and “Colossal.”
AI Films financed the project. CAA and UTA represented the “I, Tonya” filmmakers, while Vince Holden of AI Films brokered the deal. Sierra/Affinity is handling international rights and has already pre-sold many territories.
VARIETY – Warner Bros. is developing an untitled tentpole movie starring Jared Leto as the Joker and Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn.
Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, who direct and exec produce NBC’s “This Is Us,” are in final negotiations to direct the villain movie as part of the expanding DC Entertainment universe.
Leto and Robbie will reprise the roles they played in the studio’s 2016 super-villain mash-up “Suicide Squad.” The studio has not unveiled any logline other than a “criminal love story.”
And the Joker-Harley Quinn project is separate from Warner’s recently unveiled standalone Joker origin movie being developed as a potential directing vehicle for Todd Phillips of “The Hangover” — which will not star Leto.
Ficarra and Requa directed Robbie and Will Smith in the 2015 heist movie “Focus.” Their other big-screen credits include “I Love You Phillip Morris,” “Crazy, Stupid, Love” and “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.”
Warner Bros. has been attempting to take advantage of Leto and Robbie — the two most popular stars of “Suicide Squad,” which received underwhelming reviews. The film, directed by David Ayer, was a solid box office hit, grossing $745 million worldwide and the studio subsequently announced that it was working on a “Suicide Squad” sequel.
WB revealed in December that Robbie and Ayer were re-teaming on the female DC villains movie “Gotham City Sirens,” based on a comic series launched by DC in 2009 with the Harley Quinn, Catwoman, and Poison Ivy. The new Joker-Harley Quinn project appears to have superseded “Gotham City Sirens” at this point.
Warner Bros. has been attempting to exploit the DC characters above and beyond its mainstay Batman and Superman characters to compete effectively against the ongoing success of the Disney-Marvel tentpoles. It succeeded this summer with the impressive performance of “Wonder Woman” as the fourth installment in the studio’s DC Extended Universe, which launched with 2013’s “Man of Steel,” followed by last year’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and “Suicide Squad.”
Its next entry will come on Nov. 17 with “Justice League,” which will feature Ben Affleck as Batman, Henry Cavill as Superman, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Ezra Miller as The Flash and Ray Fisher as The Cyborg with Zack Snyder directing. The sixth entry is the “Aquaman” standalone movie, starring Momoa with James Wan directing. That movie, which began shooting in May in Australia, is set for a Dec. 21, 2018, launch.
“Wonder Woman 2” is the only other movie in the DC Extended Universe that’s been given a release date — Dec. 13, 2019.
Robbie’s Tonya Harding biopic “I, Tonya” will premiere next month at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Robbie’s banner Lucky Chap Entertainment is producing the Dust Bowl saga with Automatik, one of the companies behind Jeff Nichols’ ‘Loving.’
Margot Robbie is set to star in Dreamland, a thriller that will be directed by Sundance winner Miles Joris-Peyrafitte.
Robbie will also produce under her Lucky Chap Entertainment banner. Also producing are Lucky Chap’s Tom Ackerley and Josey McNamara, as well as Brian Kavanaugh-Jones and Rian Cahill of Automatik.
Brad Feinstein of Romulus Entertainment is producing and financing Dreamland, which Sierra/Affinity will introduce at this year’s Cannes Film Market. CAA and WME are co-repping domestic sales.
Written by Nicolaas Zwart and on the 2015 Black List, Dreamland is set in the 1930s, amid the devastation of the Dust Bowl. The story follows a 15-year-old boy on his quest to capture a fugitive bank robber and collect the bounty on her head, all with the goal of saving his family farm from foreclosure.
Against all odds, he beats out the FBI and the local police to find her, only to discover that she’s far more than what the authorities claim her to be. Robbie will play the bank robber.
The producers are hoping to bring a balance of nostalgic beauty and gritty realism to the proceedings as well as a balance between a sense of romanticism and a sense of violence.
Automatik, run by Kavanaugh-Jones and Fred Berger, has been involved in the making of Jeff Nichols’ dramas Midnight Special and Loving, as well as La La Land. It is currently in preproduction on Finale, Chris Weitz’s thriller about the hunt for Nazi Adolf Eichmann.
Joris-Peyrafitte made waves when he directed, co-wrote, scored and acted in As You Are, a teen drama set in the 1990s that won the special jury prize at the 2016 Sundance Film.
Robbie, who last year starred in both Suicide Squad and Legend of Tarzan, has two movies, both true life dramas, in the can: Miramax’s I, Tonya and Fox Searchlight’s Goodbye Christopher Robin. Her Lucky Chap banner produced Tonya and is developing several studio projects, among them Bad Monkeys for Universal and Fierce Kingdom for Warner Bros.
Robbie is repped by CAA, Management 360, Aran Michael Management and Jackoway Tyerman. Joris-Peyrafitte is repped by WME, Grandview Management and attorneys Steve Warren and Huy Nguyen. Zwart, who has written on CW’s Riverdale, is repped by WME and Corrine Aquino at Rain Management Group.
Margot is set to portray Queen Elizabeth in Mary Queen of Scots! Check out the article by The Hollywood Reporter below.
Saoirse Ronan also is set for the Josie Rourke-directed feature.
Margot Robbie will play royalty in the upcoming drama, Mary Queen of Scots.
The Suicide Squad star has been cast as Queen Elizabeth opposite Saoirse Ronan’s Mary Stuart in the Working Title and Focus Features project.
Mary Queen of Scots will take on the historical family rivalry between Elizabeth and Mary, when the latter attempted to overthrow her cousin’s seat on the English thrown.
Josie Rourke will direct from a script by Michael Hirst and Penelope Skinner. Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Liza Chasin are set to produce.
Robbie has become one of Hollywood’s most in-demand actresses, as well as producer under her LuckChap Entertainment banner. Her upcoming projects include the assassin movie Terminal, A.A. Milne biopic Goodbye Christopher Robin and Tonya Harding movie, I, Tonya.
She is repped by CAA, Australia’s Aran Michael, Management 360 and Jackoway Tyerman.