Co. aims to create projects in the $30 mil-$100 mil range

Peter Douglas’ Vincent Pictures and Ed Snider’s Snider Communications has formed a new joint-venture production company, Mission Entertainment, in which Snider has invested $20 million to develop and package pics over a five-year period.

Company, founded by Snider, chairman of Philadelphia-based Comcast-Spectacor who brought the Philadelphia Flyers Hockey team to the city, will be run by Mission co-founder and president Douglas. Shingle has also hired former CAA Rob Paris as executive VP.

Company aims to provide a home for writers and directors to develop and package mainstream projects in the $30 million-$100 million range and will look for partners for production financing and distribution. Shingle hopes to produce approximately 2-5 pictures a year.

Douglas has produced such projects as the “Fletch” series for Universal, “Something Wicked This Way Comes” for Disney, the sci-fi cult fave “The Final Countdown” and the Emmy-winning “Inherit the Wind.”

At CAA, Paris repped such talent as Mark Romanek (“One Hour Photo“), John Patrick Shanley (“Moonstruck”) and producer-director Roger Avary (“Pulp Fiction”).

Snider, who is the financial investor in the shingle but will not run the company, merged Spectacor, his arena management company, into Comcast Corp in 1996. That venture encompasses the Philadelphia 76ers and Comcast SportsNet, one of the country’s highest-rated regional sports networks.

“As a producer myself, I know how hard it is to get projects developed,” Douglas said. “Ed and I established Mission to attract talent, develop synergies and get pictures made quickly while avoiding the frustration of the more traditional bureaucratic process … Our objective is to approach financiers with actual movies rather than development opportunities.”

Added Devlin: “I’ve found that working with them has been much easier and more efficient than going through the traditional studio route.”

Projects on the company’s initial slate include:

  • “Mysterious Planet,” a sci-fi pic being produced in partnership with Dean Devlin’s Electric Entertainment and Rob Minkoff’s Sprocketdyne Entertainment. Kirk Wise (“Beauty and the Beast”) is attached to direct Marco Schnabel’s script about a team of space explorers who stumble upon a beautiful but deadly world;

  • “Seven Days in May,” penned by “Crazy/Beautiful” scribes Matt Manfredi and Phil Hay, a modern-day retelling of the John Frankenheimer Cold War classic about a plot to take over the U.S. government;

  • “Number One,” penned by Andrew Chapman (“Sea Wolf”), a comedy about a newly widowed bankrupt housewife who goes into organized crime to make ends meet. Project is a co-venture with Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal’s Tribeca Prods.;

  • “The Agony of Defeat,” a comedy penned by Chris Faber and Danny Baron being developed in association with Dan Halsted and Gary Gilbert’s Camelot Pictures, about a ski jumper made infamous by a spectacular Winter Olympics crash who mounts a highly public comeback;

  • “Outward Bound,” sci-fi pic being penned by Matthew Weiss (“Niagra, Niagra”) about a group of delinquent teenagers placed in a “therapeutic wilderness program” on a distant planet;

  • “The Totem,” to be directed by Robert Schwentke (“Tattoo”). Pic, an adaptation of David Morrell’s novel adapted by Mitch Brian, is a thriller about a series of grizzly murders and bizarre mutilations in a small Western town linked to a dark secret the citizens have been hiding for years; and

  • “The Boy,” a romantic comedy penned by Jennie Snyder and Victoria Webster, about five sisters desperately trying to break up their brother’s engagement. Pic is being produced with Jon Shestack.
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