Permut Presentations and Sentinel Pictures have set a February start date for “I Am Chippendales” as the first project in their newly formed strategic alliance.
“True Blood” creator Alan Ball was attached to direct last month with the shoot taking place in Los Angeles. The true crime saga, based on Rodney Sheldon’s book, surrounds the founding and expansion of the Chippendales nightclub by Paul Snider and Somen Banerjee — who eventually pleaded guilty to attempted arson, racketeering and murder for hire and was found dead in his jail cell in 1994.
Permut and Sentinel are currently casting the leads on “Chippendales.”
“Truth is stranger than fiction, and this dark tale is unlike any we have ever come across,” said Sentinel principal Adam Brawer.
“There is a real opportunity for us in the independently financed space for mid-budget films,” Permut said.
The companies have opened Santa Monica offices together. Permut and Sentinel are teaming on several projects including action-thriller “Blood Drive” by Christian Parks about an everyday guy with the rarest of blood types who’s forced to deliver his own kidney to an infamous criminal whose life depends on it.
The companies are also developing “Everybody Wants Head” by Chris Lilli and Peter Hoare, a comedy about a sex addict and germaphobe.
The companies first collaborated on “Match,” starring Patrick Stewart, Carla Gugino and Matthew Lillard, currently in post production. Sentinel cofinanced and Permut is a producer while Sentinel principals Brawer and David Beitchman exec produced along with Permut Presentations’ Chris Mangano.
Permut is currently putting together biopic “Kinison,” starring Josh Gad, to be directed by Larry Charles. He’s also developing “A Matter of Size” at Paramount with Jon Turteltaub directing, and “Hacksaw Ridge,” the story of the first conscientious objector to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, set up at Walden Media.
Sentinel Pictures is putting together the international espionage thriller “In the Company of Lies” with Brett Ratner’s RatPac Entertainment with Voltage Pictures financing.