Film News Roundup: Alexandra Shipp in Talks for ‘Shaft’ Sequel

In today’s film news roundup, Alexandra Shipp is in talks to join the “Shaft” sequel, the Palm Springs Film Festival honors Gary Oldman and Norm Newberry gets an Art Directors Guild award.

CASTING

Alexandra Shipp is in negotiations to star in New Line’s “Shaft” sequel opposite Samuel L. Jackson and Jessie T. Usher as father and son.

Tim Story is directing from a script by Kenya Barris and Alex Barnow. Jackson is reprising the role he played in the 2000 “Shaft” reboot of the original 1971 blaxploitation film, starring Richard Roundtree.

Usher portrays an FBI agent and a cyber expert, and the partnership with his father is an uneasy collision of old school meets new school. Producers are John Davis and Barris. New Line will have North American rights and Netflix will have international rights.

Production is due to commence in December. Shipp’s credits include “Straight Outta Compton” and “X-Men: Apocalypse” and she stars in the upcoming “X-Men: Dark Phoenix.” She is repped by WME, LINK and law firm Stone Genow. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

AWARDS

The 29th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival will present Gary Oldman with the Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actor, for his performance in “Darkest Hour.”

The award will be presented at the festival’s awards gala on Jan. 2 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. “Darkest Hour” is opening on Nov. 22 from Focus Features.

“Gary Oldman brings to screen one of the most powerful performances of this year as Winston Churchill in ‘Darkest Hour’ said festival chairman Harold Matzner. “Portraying Britain’s steadfast leader during the tumultuous era of World War II, he has already earned rave reviews from critics and is sure to garner awards attention this season,”

Past actor recipients of the Desert Palm Achievement Award include Casey Affleck, Jeff Bridges, Bradley Cooper, Daniel Day-Lewis, Colin Firth, Matthew McConaughey, Sean Penn, Brad Pitt and Eddie Redmayne. Affleck, Bridges, Day-Lewis, McConaughey, Penn and Redmayne went on to win the Academy Award for Best Actor.

*****

Norm Newberry, production designer on “War of the Worlds,” “The Polar Express” and “Beowulf,” will receive the Art Directors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award.

The honor will be presented at the 22nd Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards on Jan. 27 at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood and Highland.

He worked as an art director on “History of the World: Part I” and “Avatar.” He was an expert in design and traditional visual effects and then re-invented himself as a “motion capture” art director.

Previous recipients include production designers René Lagler (2017), Patrizia von Brandenstein (2016) and Jim Bissell (2015).

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