Renewal comes as thesp commits to sequel
This article was updated at 7:25 p.m.Sandra Bullock and her Fortis Films producing shingle have been staked to a two-year extension by Warner Bros. The renewal comes just as Bullock has committed to star in and produce a Marc Lawrence-scripted sequel to Castle Rock’s “Miss Congeniality.” Warners and co-financier Village Roadshow Pictures have set a March start date for the sequel. Given Bullock’s burgeoning role as a film and TV producer, the first-look deal was blessed both by WB Pictures production president Jeff Robinov and WB Television prexy Peter Roth. As she was with “Miss Congeniality” and “Two Weeks Notice,” Bullock will be the sole producer on the “Congeniality” reprise, and she is interviewing directors after locking in the script. Fortis, which is headed by her sister, Gesine Bullock-Prado, also played producing roles on the Bullock starrers “Hope Floats,” “Practical Magic” and “Murder by Numbers.” Shingle also produces the ABC sitcom “George Lopez.” Bullock-Prado is prexy-CEO, and Lillian Dean is development veep. Before she reprises her role as Special Agent Gracie Hart, Bullock will star with Ralph Fiennes in the Neil LaBute-directed “Vapor,” a film that begins production next month in New York and Canada. Based on the Amanda Filipacchi novel about a struggling actress who saves the life of a scientist whose formula helps make her a star, “Vapor” is being produced by London-based Renaissance Films. Warner Bros. is being eyed as a potential participant. Gail Mutrux is a producer. Bullock is bullish on a Fortis slate that includes a TV spinoff of “Practical Magic” and a pic slate that includes an Attica Locke-scripted adaptation of the Amanda Eyre Ward novel “Sleep Toward Heaven” and “Sprinkler Queen,” a comedy that has been scripted by Liz Brixius and which Fortis will produce with Red Stroke Entertainment.