Davis' actioner on the fast track
New Line is taking aim at “Shoot-Em-Up.”Studio has bought Michael Davis’ action script and signed him to a mid-six figure deal to direct the pic. Pact includes an option for two more films. Don Murphy, who brought the project to New Line, is finalizing a deal to produce with partners Susan Montford and Rick Bennatar through their Angry Films shingle. Studio is fast-tracking the pic and hopes to get it into production by September. Casting will begin as soon as the producers’ deals are completed. “Shoot-Em-Up” is a violent action pic in the vein of a John Woo movie about a mysterious man protecting a newborn baby from criminals out to kill it. Set pieces include a shootout during a sex scene and another in the midst of a freefall. “It’s literally all the cool things you can do with a shootout,” explained Davis. Script has been in play at New Line for nearly a year. Davis, who has previously made indie pics including Slamdance winner “Eight Days a Week” and “100 Girls” and has also worked as a storyboard artist, created a 17-minute hand-drawn animation that helped sell the project to studio topper Bob Shaye. Jeff Katz, who championed the project at New Line, is overseeing along with Cale Boyter and Toby Emmerich.