KARSCH, KIMMEL SET PIX

NEW YORK – Producer Andy Karsch and financier Sidney Kimmel have joined forces to produce and finance several projects, beginning with an untitled film (once titled “Curtain Call”) set to roll in New York Feb. 10.

Karsch and Kimmel also have teamed with producer Fred Roos on a second project, “Town and Country,” which will be financed by New Line Cinema and star Warren Beatty. The two producers plan to formulate a slate of low- and mid-budget fare, most of which they will finance themselves.

Karsch is the producer of “Princess Caraboo” and “The Prince of Tides,” and Kimmel has financed such films as “9-1/2 Weeks” and “Blame It on Rio.” Kimmel Entertainment took over Karsch’s Longfellow Pictures, and Karsch will produce the films, with Kimmel as executive producer.

Their first project is the untitled pic formerly known as “Curtain Call.” After flirtations with James Spader and Peter Bogdanovich, the directing job went to veteran helmer Peter Yates. The pic will star Spader, Polly Walker (“Enchanted April”), Michael Caine, Maggie Smith and Buck Henry. The script’s by Todd Alcott, from a story by Karsch.

“It’s about commitment, and Spader is a young publisher who has been involved with a female magazine editor, and they’re at that point where they should be moving in together,” said Karsch. “When the perfect townhouse becomes available, it becomes clear while they’re looking at it that he plans to live in it by himself.” She withdraws, and he risks losing her to another suitor. He becomes friendly with a neighbor, played by Michael Caine, who was a terminal bachelor until he met the woman who made him commit – played by Smith.

Karsch and Kimmel are funding the film and are in talks with foreign and domestic distribs. They’re also doing the Michael Laughlin-scripted “Town and Country” for New Line, with Beatty playing a man who has problems with romantic commitment. Karsch produces with Roos.

Karsch and Kimmel won’t just be doing pics about men who can’t commit; they plan to make numerous movies they’ll fund themselves, so they can worry about distribution commitments later. William Morris’ Michael Peretzian reps Yates and Deb Skelly reps Alcott.

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