×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

John Ridley to Direct His L.A. Riots Movie for Broad Green, Imagine

John Ridley is directing an untitled film about the 1992 Los Angeles riots from his own script, with Broad Green Pictures partnering with Imagine Entertainment to produce and distribute.

Production will begin in the spring. Ridley, who won the Academy Award for writing the adapted screenplay for “12 Years a Slave” and created “American Crime,” has been working on the script for a decade.

Imagine co-chairman Brian Grazer will produce the pic.

The riots were sparked by the acquittal of four LAPD officers tried for the near-fatal beating of black motorist Rodney King and fueled by racial tension. The events left more than 50 dead and 2,300 injured, along with an estimated $1 billion in property damage.

The film will tell the story through the eyes of several key figures involved in the uprising and the events that led to it.

Broad Green Pictures founders CEO Gabriel Hammond and Chief Creative Officer Daniel Hammond said in statement that they started the company two years ago to become involved in such projects.

“This is a seminal event in our country’s history, the reverberations of which are still far too relevant today,” the Hammonds said in a statement. “We were blown away by John’s amazing screenplay and we know that under his direction and the aegis of Imagine the film will be truly in incredible company.”

“We have barely seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of John Ridley’s talent,” said Grazer. “I am confident that he will capture the magnitude of the events that unfolded and the issues that led up to them. He will show the world why the riots cannot and should not be forgotten.”

Victor Moyers and Asher Goldstein will oversee the project for Broad Green Pictures, while Anna Culp and Alexandre Dauman will supervise for Imagine Entertainment.

In a 2013 interview, Ridley told Variety that he had been working on rewrites of the L.A. Riots script and was hopeful that “12 Years a Slave” and his Jimi Hendrix biopic “All Is by My Side” could generate enough success to push “Riots” toward production.

“It was a Black List script that I wrote on spec and sold in 2007 before the world changed financially,” Ridley said. “I feel like we’ve got to make this happen now. People often think that it was limited to Rodney King and Reginald Denny, but there are so many other interconnected stories.”

Two decades after the fact, Ridley remained amazed that Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley and LAPD chief Darryl Gates had not talked for a year prior to the April 1992 riots.

“It was a systemic meltdown,” Ridley noted. “The city and how it functions is the primary character of the film.”

The deal was brokered by Brillstein Entertainment and Don and Matthew Walerstein on behalf of Ridley, and by CAA and Logan Claire at Ziffren Brittenham on behalf of Imagine Entertainment. Christopher Tricarico handled for Broad Green Pictures.

More Film

  • ‘Bumblebee’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad

    ‘Bumblebee’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Paramount Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Bumblebee.” Ads placed for the sci-fi/action film had an estimated media value of $6.31 million through Sunday for 941 national [...]

  • Ryan Reynolds Stunt

    Film News Roundup: Ryan Reynolds' Michael Bay Film '6 Underground' Wraps Production

    In today’s film news roundup, shooting has wrapped on Ryan Reynolds’ “6 Underground,” BAFTA LA names new board members, and the WGA East honors longtime exec Randall Jasta.  PRODUCTION Michael Bay’s Ryan Reynolds-starrer “6 Underground” has wrapped production. Netflix and Skydance Media completed principal photography in Abu Dhabi on the action-adventure, which reportedly carries a $125 [...]

  • Bruce Springsteen on Broadway

    Film Review: 'Springsteen on Broadway'

    Hope you like the 69-year-old version of Bruce Springsteen’s face, because it’s virtually all you’re going to see for the two hours and 40 minutes of the filmed “Springsteen on Broadway” — other than the bare brick wall of the theater casting a dim glow in the background beyond those gray sideburns, and two songs’ [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'A Star Is Born,' 'Vice' Lead 2018 Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Nominees

    The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) announced their nominees for the 8th annual AACTA International Awards on Tuesday. “A Star Is Born” and “Vice” lead the pack, with five and four nominations respectively. The two leading films compete with “BlacKkKlansman,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” and “Roma” for best film, while Nicole Kidman becomes the [...]

  • China's Government Orders Talent Home to

    After Golden Horse Awards Embarrassment, China Orders Talent Home for Huabiao Ceremony

    China’s government quietly ordered top Chinese talent back to the mainland from abroad this past weekend to attend a Beijing ceremony for its highest film industry honors, the loosely bi-annual Huabiao Awards. The move came just weeks after it directed mainland film executives and talent to snub after-parties and return home as quickly as possible [...]

  • Fotosintesis Readies Mexico-U.S. Immigration Animated Feature

    Fotosintesis Readies Immigration Animated Feature ‘Beast’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    BUENOS AIRES — Mexico City-based Fotosintesis Media, a joint initiative of Mexico’s Mantarraya Group and writer-director Miguel Angel Uriegas, is moving into pre-production this January on “Beast,” the third Mexican animated feature from the cause-driven entertainment label. News of the move comes as Uriegas presents at Ventana Sur’s Animation! forum 15 minutes of work in [...]

  • Scott Derrickson

    'Doctor Strange' Director Scott Derrickson to Return for Sequel

    “Doctor Strange” director Scott Derrickson has signed up for Disney-Marvel’s sequel. The studio, which had no comment, is about to start searching for a writer. Derrickson co-wrote the 2016 original with C. Robert Cargill and Jon Spaihts. Benedict Cumberbatch is expected to reprise his role as Stephen Strange, along with co-stars Benedict Wong and Rachel McAdams. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content