Inside Moves

Josephson, Sonnenfeld shop deal; Smith wins Ali role

Josephson, Sonnenfeld shop deal

“Men in Black” director Barry Sonnenfeld and former Columbia Pictures president of production Barry Josephson are shopping a first-look deal together to several studios. Bets are on that Josephson and Sonnenfeld, whose deal with Disney expires Sept. 1, are likely to set up at Josephson’s old stomping ground, Sony Pictures Entertainment, where “Men in Black” was produced, or at Warner Bros., where Sonnenfeld is directing “Wild, Wild West,” starring Will Smith.

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Smith wins casting round for Ali biopic

And speaking of Will Smith, the actor has been offered one of the more coveted roles in town: to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee, in the Muhammad Ali biopic. The project about the boxing legend is from a script by Greg Howard and will be produced at Warner Bros. by Jon Peters. Smith is finalizing a deal with Touchstone Pictures to star in “Enemy of the State” for director Tony Scott and producer Jerry Bruckheimer (who is also producing the big-budget “Armageddon” for the studio). The project will be a reunion for Smith and Bruckheimer, who worked on “Bad Boys” together at Columbia Pictures.

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