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Turtletaub surfs Big Beach with Saraf

New banner will surface in Deep River prods

After hatching finance and production shingle Deep River four years ago, Marc Turtletaub has established a beachhead for indie product.

Turtletaub has formed Big Beach, a Gotham-based company that will produce and finance at least two films a year. Peter Saraf will run the company.

Turtletaub continues to partner in Deep River with David Friendly. The new venture is an outgrowth of a relationship that developed between Turtletaub and Saraf when they produced “Everything Is Illuminated,” an adaptation of the Jonathan Safran Foer novel that was written and directed by “Manchurian Candidate” star Liev Schreiber.

That film, which recently wrapped in Prague and stars Elijah Wood, Eugene Hutz and Boris Leskin, will be the first film to carry the Big Beach logo when it is distributed by Warner Independent.

Two other Deep River-developed pics, the David Schwimmer-Janeane Garofalo starrer “Duane Hopwood” and the Maggie Gyllenhaal starrer “Sherry Baby,” also will bear the Big Beach banner.

The company recently signed a first-look Paramount deal and is currently in production on a new version of “The Honeymooners” that stars Cedric the Entertainer, Mike Epps and Gabrielle Union.

Deep River has teamed with Robert Redford’s Wildwood to make a Bill Broyles-scripted feature about the breaking of the color barrier in baseball, with Redford aboard to play Brooklyn Dodgers exec Branch Rickey.

Company has also brought in as producer Jeb Brody, who most recently headed Carson Daly Prods.

“I wanted to provide a full-service approach to filmmakers on large and smaller films and realized you need to specialize, because a $5 million film requires a different skill set and sensibility than does a $75 million film,” Turtletaub said.

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