×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Facts on Pacts: Variety Eyes First-Look Deals

Hollywood’s six major studios have hardly rolled out the welcome mat in recent years for producers who aren’t delivering tentpoles.

And that’s opened the way for other players to step up.

Variety’s updated Facts on Pacts reveals that the number of on-the-lot deals among the Big Six has fallen to 138 — three less than it was six months ago. That’s higher than the low point in 2009, when the figure for all deals, including those not at the Big Six, bottomed out at 133, and about half that at the high point of 292 for all deals at the turn of the century, the heyday for first-look pacts.

There are also 16 deals with minimajors and production companies outside the six studios, led by four at New Regency, which last month signed Gore Verbinski and his Blind Wink shingle to a three-year producing-directing pact similar to its partnerships with Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment, Darren Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures and David Fincher.

Plan B and Protozoa were both based at Par, which added Jerry Bruckheimer to its roster in December. New Regency, headed by Arnon Milchan, is 20% owned by Fox parent News Corp.

“Getting the deals in place has coincided with a lot of conversations with Arnon Milchan to focus on filmmaker-driven movies that are compelling versions of commercial films,” said New Regency president Brad Weston, who runs the company. “Talent-driven deals make sense in this business — and all of them are generating their own material.”

New Regency co-financed Aronofsky’s “Noah,” set for release March 28 via Par. Fincher is in post with New Regency on thriller “Gone Girl,” due out from Fox on Oct. 3. Weston sealed Fincher’s first-look pact last year. “That deal was born out of friendship and a humorous exchange of about five emails,” he admits.

Deals are as follows (*new deal):

More Film

  • 'Gemini Man' First Trailer Drops With

    Will Smith Faces Off Against Himself in Ang Lee's 'Gemini Man' Trailer

    Will Smith battles a recognizable antagonist in the official trailer for Ang Lee’s “Gemini Man” — himself. The actor plays an elite assassin in the sci-fi drama. Things get tricky when he finds out the man he’s assigned to track down is a younger version of himself who can predict his every move. “He knew [...]

  • Film Constellation Boards Werner Herzog's Japan-Set

    Film Constellation Boards Werner Herzog's Japanese Film 'Family Romance'

    London-based sales house Film Constellation has boarded Oscar-winning director Werner Herzog’s Japanese-language film “Family Romance,” which will have its world premiere in the special screenings section at the Cannes Film Festival. Written and directed by Herzog, the movie was shot last spring and summer in Tokyo and Aomori, Japan, with non-professional actors (Yuichi Ishii, Mahiro [...]

  • Avengers Endgame Box Office: Can It

    'Avengers: Endgame' Expected to Shatter Box Office Records

    “Avengers: Endgame” has its sights set on world domination. Disney and Marvel’s upcoming superhero epic should light the box office on fire when it launches this weekend, with the hopes of setting domestic, international, and global records. In North America alone, “Avengers: Endgame” is expected to earn between $250 million and $268 million in its [...]

  • Katie HolmesAT&T Presents: Untold Stories Luncheon

    Katie Holmes, Kal Penn Help Decide Winner of $1 Million Filmmaker Grant

    Tribeca Film Festival and AT&T gave one young filmmaker a million and one reasons to rejoice at the “Untold Stories” third annual competition. After a nerve-wracking 10-minute long pitch in front of over 850,000 live stream audience members and a panel consisting of celebrities and industry leaders, filmmaker Kate Tsang was awarded $1 million on [...]

  • Reed Hastings seen on day one

    Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' Compensation Jumps 48% to $36.1 Million

    Netflix chief Reed Hastings is being handsomely rewarded for calling the shots at the streaming giant. His compensation package, which is largely in the form of stock options, climbed 48% in 2018 to $36.1 million. That’s up from $24.4 million in the previous year. Hastings’ salary is a relatively modest $700,000, but his stock options [...]

  • Emma Thompson to Star in Extinction

    Emma Thompson to Star in Extinction Rebellion Climate-Change Satire (EXCLUSIVE)

    Emma Thompson will play a climate-change activist in “Extinction,” a timely satirical short film that will include footage of the Extinction Rebellion group’s ongoing wave of action in London. Two-time Oscar winner Thompson has herself been involved in the high-profile London-based protests. She addressed crowds over the weekend from Extinction Rebellion’s signature pink boat, which [...]

  • First Look at Cannes-Bound ‘Diego Maradona’

    First Look at Cannes-Bound ‘Diego Maradona’ Feature Documentary

    Diego Maradona waves to raucous Napoli fans before heading into a media scrum and press conference in the first clip from the feature documentary about the soccer superstar. “Diego Maradona” is the third film from the team behind the award-winning “Senna” and “Amy,” with Asif Kapadia directing and James Gay-Rees and Paul Martin producing. They [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content