Duo moves into studios, unveils pic slate

Disney Channel commits to BME for 'Stevens'

NEW YORK — Since Sean McNamara and David Brookwell became partners two years ago to work on family movies and TV shows, the duo have spent $30 million on various projects, including “Even Stevens,” a half-hour comedy series for the Disney Channel.

Brookwell-McNamara Entertainment has since picked up so many commissions that it has taken over the rental of the former “Baywatch” studios in Marina Del Rey that encompasses 40 offices and a 20,000-square-foot soundstage.

BME is working on several projects:

  • “Wild Grizzly,” an original movie starring Daniel Baldwin and Fred Dryer and directed by McNamara, which premieres on video (distributed by Universal-Monarch) next month. BME’s partner in “Grizzly,” Porchlight Films, has sold it to HBO, where the movie will make its TV debut in December.

  • “The Coat,” another original movie, about a garment that makes wishes come true, which goes into production in December for the Disney Channel. Porchlight is the financial partner.

  • “The Frog Prince,” a Disney Channel pic about a kid who takes a DNA pill that gradually changes him into a frog. Production starts in October, and New York-based distrib Unapix will syndicate it.

  • “Better Watch Out,” a planned theatrical movie about Santa Claus’ evil twin. McNamara will direct it next year in Germany and in Los Angeles. BME is negotiating with a German company to help finance the movie.

Mouse gets ‘Even’

Brookwell says BME has a 20-episode commitment from Disney Channel for “Even Stevens,” which began on the network last week.

BME’s biggest project to date is the movie “Race to Space,” which Sony will release theatrically early next year. It stars James Woods, Alex Linz and Annabeth Gish. Set in 1961, pic concerns a boy who bonds with a chimp that’s rocketed into the stratosphere by NASA to study the effects of space on a living organism. Lions Gate has “Space” for foreign distribution.

Animal Planet ran BME’s original movie “The Trial of Old Drum,” starring Randy Travis and Scott Bakula, on June 9.

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