×

Film New Roundup: Spy Thriller ‘Quandary’ Eyes September Production Start

In today’s film news roundup, a spy thriller is set for a September start, “Permanent Green Light’ gets distribution, and “The Unhealer” wraps shooting.

PRODUCTION START

Producers are planning a September start for writer/director Daniel Lusko’s spy thriller “Quandary” about a CIA operative with PTSD, Variety has learned exclusively.

Lusko joins forces with Doug McKay (“What to Expect When You’re Expecting”), Dennis Rice (“Charming”), Mark Kamine (“Bad Moms”), Tom Sanders, and Tommy Goodwin to produce the film, which will be shot in Hawaii and Los Angeles.

Lusko said the story is inspired by true events and addresses the psychological effects of post-traumatic stress disorder on American intelligence operatives. He also asserted the story has been vetted and endorsed by FBI officials and CIA operatives.

The story centers on a CIA operative who struggles to maintain his sanity after an explosion where he sees his wife and son killed. Although he suffers from a traumatic brain injury, he seeks revenge against the men he holds responsible and his search leads him to an isolated Arab refugee camp — triggering mind-bending lapses between reality, memories, and hallucinations.

ACQUISITION

Altered Innocence has picked up North American rights to Dennis Cooper and Zac Farley’s second feature film “Permanent Green Light,” Variety has learned exclusively.

The film, an official selection of Rotterdam, focuses on a young man who wants to blow himself up in public, without any clear reason. He’s neither nihilist, religious, depressive, or suicidal.

The film will have its North American premiere as part of a special two night event at the Film Society of Lincoln Center in early September. A theatrical release is planned for 2019.

The film stars Theo Cholbi, O.B. De Alessi, and Sylvain Decloitre. The deal was negotiated between Frank Jaffe from Altered Innocence and Ricardo Monastier from MPM Premium.

SHOOTING WRAPS

Principal photography has wrapped on the independent feature film “The Unhealer,” directed by Martin Guigui.

The cast includes Natasha Henstridge, Lance Henriksen, Adam Beach, Branscombe Richmond, and Chris Browning. The actors portraying high school students are Elijah Nelson, Kayla Carlson, David Gridley, Angeline Appel, and Gavin Casalegno.

The story of “The Unhealer” begins when a Native American burial site is desecrated and robbed, releasing an ancient supernatural shaman medicine. A sickly and troubled teenager becomes instantly healthy when this otherworldly power is used to heal him, but also gives him superhuman abilities. When his high school tormentors do him wrong, he uses his newfound superpowers unleash the unnerving and bloody horrors of revenge.

The screenplay was written by Kevin E. Moore and J. Shawn Harris, combining the genres of drama and supernatural horror. The film was shot on locations throughout Arizona, including Apache Junction, Queen Creek, and Scottsdale.

Cristi Harris, a producer and co-founder of Shared Card Films, said, ”It was a big team effort that brought this film to Arizona and we view this project as laying the groundwork for re-energizing the state’s film business.”

More Film

  • Bradley Cooper A Star Is Born

    The Message of the Oscar Nominations: You'd Better Have a Social Message

    Each year at the Left Coast crack of dawn, when the Oscar nominations are announced, there’s generally at least one major nomination many pundits were predicting that fails to materialize. When that happens, entertainment media tends to rise up as one and say the s-word: snub. In truth, it’s not usually a snub; it’s just [...]

  • Elton John and Mark Ronson

    Elton John to 'Shallow' Songwriter Mark Ronson: 'You're Going to Win the Oscar'

    Elton John is willing to bet that Mark Ronson will win the Oscar for Best Original Song for “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born.” The nominations were announced this morning. The legendary performer spoke to Ronson on the latest episode of his radio show “Elton John’s Rocket Hour” on Apple Music’s Beats 1.  “You’re having a [...]

  • Olivia Colman Colin Firth Helen Mirren

    Playing a British Monarch Is a Step on the Road to Oscar Glory - Again

    “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” Shakespeare wrote of Britain’s care-burdened monarchs. Try telling that to the Academy. Once again, playing British royalty has proved to be a tried-and-true route to Oscar glory, with Olivia Colman as the latest actor to be nominated for an Academy Award for portraying an occupant of the British [...]

  • Black Panther Movie

    Oscars: 'Black Panther' Leads Best Picture Nominees to Near-Record Box Office Grosses

    This year’s Academy Award nominees proved the Oscars don’t need a popular film category to recognize movies with huge box office grosses. The 2019 crop of best picture hopefuls have generated an impressive $1.26 billion so far in North America alone. That bounty is led by “Black Panther,” which earned a sensational $700 million at [...]

  • oscar nominations 2019 stream online

    How to Watch This Year’s Oscar-Nominated Films

    The 2019 Oscar nominations have been announced, and if you want to catch up on the nominees, we’ve rounded up some easy ways to watch or stream the original films, documentaries, and songs competing for an award. Period comedy “The Favourite” and Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” lead the pack with 10 nominations apiece, while “Green Book” [...]

  • Pawel Pawlikowski "Cold War"

    Pawel Pawlikowski's 'Cold War' Makes History for Poland

    Alfonso Cuaron might’ve tied an Oscar record with four nods to his name for “Roma,” which scored 10 nominations overall. But another black-and-white film in a foreign language, Pawel Pawlikowski’s jazz-infused romantic drama “Cold War,” was honored with three Academy Award nominations Tuesday, the most in history for a primarily Polish-backed production. The film will [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content