Inside Move: ‘Straight’ story seeks new home

MGM bails on Freeman-led 'Colors'

Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time.

Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years.

Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up an antigang program in South Los Angeles’ Dorsey High School, the film seemed to have plenty going for it.

It was cheap (around $15 million), had a name star (Morgan Freeman, whose company was producing with veteran Hawk Koch) and — in the wake of “8 Mile,” “Drumline” and “Chicago” — it would seem to be timely (it’s a hip-hop musical/romance featuring lots of young up-and-comers). To top it off, the film seemed to fit MGM’s post-“Barbershop” focus on urban-themed projects.

But MGM has suddenly bailed. The Lion killed the project just seven weeks before shooting was to start — for reasons that remain unclear. Miramax, which MGM reportedly asked to come aboard in a co-production deal similar to their joint “Brothers Grimm” project, also passed.

Puzzled producers are shopping the project elsewhere. But for a musical that seemed to finally be singing the right song, the sudden shift has sounded a discordant note.

More Film

  • British Competition Watchdog Warns Against Fox

    British Competition Watchdog Says Fox Takeover of Sky Not in Public Interest

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • Korea’s Ex-Culture Minister Jailed for Operating

    Korea’s Ex-Culture Minister Jailed for Operating Talent Blacklist

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • Geostorm

    Japan Box Office: ‘Geostorm’ Blows Away Competition In Weekend Win

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • Amanda Fuller's Thriller 'Fashionista' Bought by

    Film News Roundup: Amanda Fuller's Thriller 'Fashionista' Bought by Freestyle

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • Sundance 2018: Where Are the Masterpieces?

    Sundance 2018: Where Are the Masterpieces? Sorry, There Are None (Opinion)

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • EDITORIAL USE ONLY / NO MERCHANDISINGMandatory

    Bradford Dillman, Star of 'Compulsion,' Dies at 87

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

  • Duke Nukem

    John Cena in Talks to Star in 'Duke Nukem' Movie

    Getting a film made isn’t getting any easier, even when a project seems to hit all the right notes at the right time. Witness the fate of “Colors Straight Up,” which had been in various stages of development at MGM the past six years. Based on an Oscar-nommed docu about two men who set up […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content