Lionsgate to distribute ‘Frankenhood’

Mini-major picks up morgue comedy

Lionsgate will distribute laffer “Frankenhood,” the first film from Morgan Gendel, Jeremy Littman and ex-Wall Streeter Jonas Littman’s Anvil Studios banner.

Pic, starring DeRay Davis, Charlie Murphy and Jasper Redd, completed principal photography over the weekend. Musicvid helmer Blaxwell Smart is directing from a script by Dan Filie.

Also starring are kickboxer Bob “the Beast” Sapp, Drew Sidora, Angell Conwell, Hassan Johnson and Danny Cistone. Anvil is producing the film in association with Content Foundry Partners.

Comedy revolves around two morgue workers eager to win a local streetball tourney. Their chances are zero to none, until they enlist a large corpse who has been brought back to life by a surly mad scientist.

Davis stars in upcoming Warner Bros. comedy “License to Wed,” while Murphy is best known for the “Charlie Murphy’s True Hollywood Stories” segment on “Chappelle’s Show.” Redd, a standup comic, has appeared on Comedy Central’s “Premium Blend.”

Gendel and the Littmans founded Anvil with an eye to applying the cost-saving skills that Jeremy Littman and Gendel learned in television production to feature films. The two scribes first met when writing for the original “Law & Order.”

“On cable and in syndication, where Jeremy and I honed our producing skills, you don’t get the $2 million-plus per episode the network shows have,” Gendel said. “But we learned that with a good story, a good cast and the know-how to work efficiently, you can put a lot on screen for a pricetag that makes sense,” Gendel said.

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