Screen Gems has been lying low since the noisy failure of Madonna’s “Swept Away,” the company’s last release, in October 2002.
Since then, Sony’s low-budget production and marketing division has focused on more promising projects such as the upcoming “Underworld,” a classy werewolves vs. vampires movie starring Kate Beckinsale, and Jane Campion’s dark crime drama “In the Cut,” starring Meg Ryan.
Festival acquisitions are few and far between, as they’re really out of the arthouse business. Their focus is on original productions and pre-buys, all at a price.
Looking ahead, Screen Gems is prepared to pick up the pace in 2004. Upcoming titles for the division are Jamie Foxx starrer “The Break Up Handbook”; bad-girls-gone-good comedy “D.E.B.S.”; urban musical “You Got Served”; drama “A Love Song for Bobby Long,” starring John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson; and two action-sci-fi pics starring Milla Jovovich: “Resident Evil: Apocalypse” and “Ultraviolet.”
Exec ranks: Clint Culpepper, prexy; Valerie Van Galder, executive VP; Benedict Carver, senior VP, acquisitions; Stacy Kolker Cramer, senior VP, production; Gilbert Dumontet, Sr. VP, production and business affairs
Recent pickups: Last theatrical acquisition title was “Girlfight” at Sundance in 2000.
Year at B.O.: Top grosser: “Resident Evil” ($39.7 million); lowest grosser: “Love and a Bullet” ($19,000)
Kudo watch: Jane Campion would seem to be potential Oscar bait with “In the Cut,” her first film since “Holy Smoke” in 1999.