Writer-director Mike Binder has set a sitcom pilot at Fox Studios and has lined up independent financing for “Straight Nate,” a $20 million action comedy that Binder wrote and will direct in April.
Binder has just completed writing “Two Dollar Beer” for 20th Century Fox TV and the Fox net, which could be his first series since HBO sitcom “The Mind of the Married Man.”
The setting is Detroit, where a group of young adults weather the worsening economy but refuse to move away from their hometown.
Binder just turned in the script and will direct the pilot if Fox takes the project that far.
“The auto industry they grew up knowing no longer exists, and they figure out ways to be happy with less,” Binder said. “They know where the $2 beer nights are and the all-you-can-eat buffet.”
Binder’s next film will kick off a producing-financing arrangement called Bingo Films, a partnership among Binder, Gotham-based businessman Erik Gordon and financier Peter Savarino.
Gordon will put up all the financing for “Straight Nate.” The title character is a reformed alcoholic robber of armored cars whose commitment to a rigid set of rules is tested when someone messes with his sister.”This is the template for what I want to do with my career, and that’s to make a movie every year at a time when it’s hard to get them financed,” Binder said. “It allows me to make the movies I want to make, but not such a big risk because the budgets are low. Actors will be paid something upfront, but they really win if the project wins. I think it’s the future of the business for filmmakers like myself.”