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Film News Roundup: Pam Grier Selected for Ad Astra Honor by Tallgrass Festival

In today’s film news roundup, Pam Grier is honored by the Tallgrass Film Festival, Paramount hires Michelle Hagen, “Hallowed Ground” has launched production, and musician Glenn Danzig is making a movie.

HONOR

Pam Grier has been selected as this year’s recipient of the Ad Astra Award for the 16th edition of the Tallgrass Film Festival, held Oct. 17-21 in Wichita, Ks.

Tallgrass Film Festival’s program director Nick Pope said, “Pam Grier is someone that Tallgrass has sought to bring to Wichita and honor for the longest time. She is the iconic feminine face of urban cinema in the ’70s. A prime inspiration both for an entire genre’s mainstream success, a muse for multiple filmmakers, and an inspiration and trend-setter for many actors and filmmakers that followed, it will be the biggest thrill to welcome her and celebrate her career.”

Grier broke into films with prison movies like 1971’s “The Big Doll House” and “The Big Bird Cage” (1972), followed by Blaxploitation movies “Coffy,” “Foxy Brown,” and “Sheba Baby.” She scored a SAG and Golden Globe nomination for her work in 1997’s “Jackie Brown” and had recurring parts on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and “The L Word.”

The festival will present the award on Oct. 18 along with showings of “Jackie Brown” and “Coffy.”

EXECUTIVE APPOINTMENT

Paramount Pictures has named veteran executive Michelle Hagen as executive vice president of worldwide promotions for the studio’s marketing team.

She will report to David Sameth, Paramount’s president of worldwide marketing. She joined the studio on Monday.

“We are thrilled to add Michelle to our team of accomplished and innovative marketing executives,” said Sameth. “Her strategic vision, track record of producing impressive, quantifiable results, and talent at building influence and engagement with audiences are among the many reasons that she will be a huge asset to the Paramount team. With Michelle’s guidance, we look forward to partnering with the brand community in new, exciting and disruptive ways.”

Hagen worked for more than a decade at NBCUniversal, where helped to strategize and build global franchises including “Despicable Me,” “Fast and Furious,” “Pitch Perfect,” and “Jurassic Word.” Prior to her time at Universal, Hagen was principal at the Hagen Company, a partnership marketing agency specializing in pitching and securing film promotional partnerships.

PRODUCTION START

Production has started in Mississippi on the horror movie “Hallowed Ground,” the fourth film from writer-director Miles Doleac.

Sherri Eakin, Ritchie Montgomery, and Lindsay Anne Williams are starring. Doleac and Williams will produce alongside Wesley O’Mary and Michael Williams.

The story centers on a married couple, trying to rebuild their relationship after an affair. They travel to a secluded cabin and stumble into a blood feud between the Native American owners of the property and the neighboring clan, who obsessively guard their land and punish those who trespass on it in terrifying ways.

Doleac previously directed “The Historian,” “The Hollow,” and “Demons.” “Hallowed Ground” will be distributed by Uncork’d Entertainment in 2019.

MOVIE DEVELOPMENT

Musician Glenn Danzig has signed a feature film agreement with Cleopatra Entertainment, a division of the Los Angeles independent record label Cleopatra Records.

Danzig will write, direct, and compose music for the feature film which will be structured as an anthology splitting its running time between three individual characters/storylines based on Danzig’s own Verotik comic book characters.

Brian Perera, CEO of Cleopatra Records/Cleopatra Entertainment, said, “Glenn has a fantastic track record of building brands including Verotik. We’re excited to bring his vision and passion to the screen.”

Verotik is Danzig’s long-running brand of horror comic books, which feature mostly deadly femme fatales and have been in print since 1994. Principal photography for the anthology film will begin in the fall.

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