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Film News Roundup: High School Football Drama ‘Till the Whistle Blows’ in the Works

In today’s film news roundup, “Till the Whistle Blows” starts development, “All These Small Moments” is acquired, and End Cue invests in Greencard Pictures. 

DEVELOPMENT

Winter State Entertainment is producing high school football drama “Till the Whistle Blows” with plans to start shooting next year in Idaho Falls, Id.

The movie follows the story of 1967 high school football coach Vernon Ravsten, who saw his Idaho Falls team go undefeated as he battled cancer during his final season, and is based on the novel “A Promise Kept” written in 2000 by brothers Bruce K. Couch and Robert M. Couch, who both played for Ravsten.

“Till the Whistle Blows” is produced by Patrick Werksma, Mark Smith, and Winter State’s Hamid and Camille Torabpour, with the screenplay adapted by Hamid Torabpour, Werksma, and Smith. Chris Brewster will direct “Till the Whistle Blows.”

Brewster is also directing the zombie action-thriller “Outbreak Z” for Winter State. He is a stunt performer with credits including Marvel’s “Daredevil” on Netflix, “Black Panther,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”

ACQUISITION

Orion Classics has acquired the North American and Latin American rights to the drama “All These Small Moments,” starring Molly Ringwald, Brian d’Arcy James, and Brendan Meyer.

The film is the directorial debut of Melissa Miller Costanzo, who also wrote the script the story about a teenage boy’s infatuation with a woman he sees on the bus — which further complicates his already tumultuous adolescence. “All These Small Moments” premiered at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival to critical acclaim and most recently screened at Mill Valley Film Festival.

Ringwald and James play the parents of the boy, portrayed by Meyer. Jemima Kirke plays the woman on the bus. The cast includes Sam McCarthy and Harley Quinn Smith. Orion Classics will release the coming of age drama in theaters on Jan. 17 and on VOD and Digital HD on Jan. 18.

“As a stalwart supporter of some of the most memorable films in our collective lexicon, and a champion for thought provoking, character driven films, I am so thrilled to have found a partner in Orion Classics for the next chapter of this film’s journey,” said Miller Costanzo.

“All These Small Moments” was produced by Jemstone Productions’ (formerly Moving Pictures Artists) Lauren Avinoam, Jed Mellick, and Vineyard Point Productions’ Katie Leary. Executive producers include Vineyard Point Productions’ Bob Leary and Biz Stone, the co-founder of Twitter.

INVESTMENT

Production-development company End Cue has made an equity investment in Greencard Pictures to create a development incubator for emerging filmmakers, Variety has learned exclusively.

Together, the companies are aiming to create filmmakers by connecting talent with commercial projects and then serve as a launchpad for them to develop films. The aim is to provide the filmmakers leading-edge AI technology to reduce production costs and accelerate script creation.

Terms of the deal — which had been in the works for a year — are undisclosed.

The incubator program provides guidance from experienced directors, writers, and producers who have worked on films like “Cop Car “and Neflix’s “Print the Legend.” The companies plan to provide the incubator services to 10 directors annually.

“The power of our incubator approach is how talented young directors get direct experience building their portfolio by crafting commercials, music videos and more for world-class clients,” said Emily Wiedemann, founder of Greencard. “They learn so much so fast and quickly establish their chops to succeed in making their own art.”

New York-based Greencard Pictures was founded nearly a decade ago and is led by executive producers Emily Wiedeman and Chazz Carfora. It’s created campaigns for brands such as Google, Pepsi, Chase Bank, and American Express.

Culver City-based End Cue has created and invested in a number of companies applying artificial intelligence (AI) to the creative process. One of these companies is the recently launched RivetAI, the first suite of AI tools for storytellers. Participants in the incubator will have access to these platforms while also receiving guidance from the executives who lead them.

“Our goal at End Cue is to help talented filmmakers create great art, faster,” said Andrew Kortschak, CEO/founder of End Cue. “We believe that our approach — helping people break into the industry and providing first-of-their-kind tools to collapse the time it takes to bring something to market — will spark something magical.”

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