Barry Kemp, the TV scribe and producer responsible for “Newhart” and “Coach,” is moving like a blitzing linebacker into the feature world with three new projects to write and/or produce for Universal Pictures, DreamWorks and United Artists.
Following the moderate success of “Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion” for Touchstone Pictures last year, Kemp’s Bungalow 78 Prods. has set up “Seeing Red” at U, “Carefree Spa” at UA and “Catch Me If You Can” at DreamWorks.
Bungalow 78 also has “Patch” headed into production Feb. 17 for U. Pic stars Robin Williams with a Steve Oedekerk script under Tom Shadyac’s direction. Kemp, Mike Farrell, Marvin Minoff and Marsha Williams are producing.
Bungalow 78 has an overall TV deal with Paramount with offices on the lot. But Kemp said he is in no rush to make a first-look deal with a studio for features.
“At this point, we feel we’ve been more successful without it,” Kemp said.
Kemp will write and direct “Seeing Red” for Universal.
Based on a true story, pic is about an American marketing whiz dispatched to convert the Russian Red Army hockey team into a capitalist enterprise.
Kemp will also produce along with Howard Baldwin/Rob Cohen Prods.
At United Artists, Bungalow 78 will once more team up with “Romy and Michele” scribe Robin Schiff on “Carefree Spa.”
Schiff will work with co-writers Winnie Holtzman, Wendy Goldman and Julia Sweeney on the comedy about a group of women who spend a week at a health spa in Arizona.
Jeff Nathanson (“Twister,” “Speed 2: Cruise Control”) will script “Catch Me If You Can” for DreamWorks. Pic is based on the life of famous impostor Frank Abagnale. Kemp, Michael Shane and Larry Berman are producing.
Bungalow 78 also has the romantic comedy “Selling the Lite of Heaven” in development.
Kemp personally has minority interests in the Phoenix Suns basketball team and wholly owns the Long Beach Ice Dogs pro hockey squad.
On the TV side, Kemp created or produced 12 separate series, totaling more than 460 half-hours of programming, also including “Fresno” with Charles Grodin and Carol Burnett and “The Popcorn Agent.”
Bungalow 78 is run by Kemp along with senior VP of production Devorah Moos-Hankin and director of development Bess Walkes.
Moos-Hankin came to Bungalow 78 in 1993 after a stint as a VP of production for Imagine Entertainment. There, she was involved with “Kindergarten Cop,” “Opportunity Knocks,” “For Love or Money” and “My Girl.”
Walkes also came to Kemp’s company in 1993 from Imagine, where she was a creative exec.