×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Wahlberg to star in Shyamalan film

'Happening' set to happen June 2008

Mark Wahlberg has been set to star in 20th Century Fox thriller “The Happening,” which M. Night Shyamalan will direct in August in Philadelphia.

Fox has carved out plans to release the film with a day-and-date worldwide bow on Friday, June 13, 2008.

“Friday the 13th has very distinctive, global connotations, which make it the ideal launching pad for this frightening thriller,” 20th domestic distribution president Bruce Snyder said in a statement.

Wahlberg will play a man who takes his family on the run when a cataclysmic natural crisis threatens to end the world.

Shyamalan set a spec deal for the spooky apocalyptic pic at the studio earlier this month (Daily Variety, March 7).

When he made the deal, Shyamalan brought back his “Unbreakable” and “Sixth Sense” producer Barry Mendel to produce with Sam Mercer. He also brought with him a co-financier in India-based UTV, which committed 50% of the film’s $57 million budget, with Fox distributing worldwide except in India.

When Shyamalan made his deal with Fox, he’d already been making inroads to get Wahlberg aboard the film.

“Mark has a unique blend of charisma, humanity, authenticity and skillfulness as an actor,” Shyamalan said, “all of which coalesced at this moment in his career, making him the perfect person to take on the role of Eliot Moore, the science teacher at the center of this event.”

The actor, who just opened in “Shooter,” is also getting in the ring with Matt Damon and director Darren Aronofsky on Paramount film “The Fighter.”

Pic is the third that UTV has recently co-financed at the studio, after the Mira Nair-directed “The Namesake,” and the Chris Rock starrer “I Think I Love My Wife,” both distributed by Fox Searchlight.

More Film

  • Miramax Developing 'I Won't Be Home

    Film News Roundup: Miramax Developing 'I Won't Be Home for Christmas'

    In today’s film news roundup, “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” is in the works, the NFL has made a documentary about female team owners and D Street Pictures has signed Kenny Gage and Devon Downs to direct the dance feature “Move.” HOLIDAY PROJECT Miramax has acquired film rights to Lauren Iungerich’s holiday-themed screenplay “I [...]

  • Michael B. Jordan arrives at the

    Michael B. Jordan to Star in Warner Bros.' 'Methuselah' Movie

    Michael B. Jordan will produce and star in a “Methuselah” movie for Warner Bros., based on the Biblical story of a man who lived to be 969 years old. Jordan will produce through his Outlier Society production company along with Heyday’s David Heyman and Jeffrey Clifford. Warner Bros. has been developing the project for many [...]

  • Davids Chief Piera Detassis on Revamping

    Davids Chief Piera Detassis on Revamping Italy's Top Film Awards

    Piera Detassis recently became the first woman to head the David di Donatello Awards, Italy’s equivalent of the Oscars. Since then she’s been busy overhauling the inner workings of the prizes that will be awarded on Wednesday. Detassis, also the editor of Italian film publication Ciak, spoke exclusively to Variety about the challenges she’s faced [...]

  • Matteo Garrone's 'Dogman' Leads Davids Awards

    Matteo Garrone's 'Dogman' Leads Davids Awards Race

    With 15 nominations Matteo Garrone’s “Dogman” leads the pack of contenders for Italy’s David di Donatello Awards in a watershed year for the country’s top film nods that sees highbrow auteur titles reaping most of the David love just as local box-office grosses hit an all-time low. Garrone’s gritty revenge drama is followed closely with [...]

  • steven spielberg Apple TV Plus

    Steven Spielberg's Apple Appearance Riles Up Social Media: 'Big Old Mixed Message'

    Many Hollywood heavyweights flocked to Apple’s Cupertino, Calif. headquarters to help reveal the tech giant’s revamped steaming service Apple TV+ on Monday — but one such legend was so polarizing he became a national trending topic on Twitter for simply showing his face. Steven Spielberg was the first to appear in a dramatic short film [...]

  • Michael Lynne

    Former New Line Co-Chairman Michael Lynne Dies at 77

    Michael Lynne, the former co-chairman of New Line Cinema who played a key role in shepherding “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, has died at his New York home. He was 77. Lynne’s death was confirmed Monday by longtime business partner Robert Shaye, who told Variety that Lynne’s family had informed him of Lynne’s passing [...]

  • Marisa Liston

    Sony Veteran Marisa Liston to Lead Lionsgate Movie Publicity

    Lionsgate has named Sony Pictures veteran executive Marisa Liston to lead all feature film and motion picture group publicity and communications strategy. Liston, who departed Sony in late 2018 after 17 years, has been assigned the newly created title of head of global earned media and communications. She will oversee domestic and international feature film [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content