×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Film News Roundup: Topher Grace Joins Faith-Based Movie ‘The Impossible’

In today’s film news roundup, Topher Grace will play a man of God, the AMC movie chain names a new chairman, and Jillian Clare will star in romantic comedy “Roasted.”

CASTING

Topher Grace is joining “This Is Us” star Chrissy Metz in Fox 2000’s faith-based movie “The Impossible,” set up with “Miracles From Heaven” producer DeVon Franklin.

Roxann Dawson is directing from a script by Grant Nieporte, based on Joyce Smith’s book “The Impossible: The Miraculous Story of a Mother’s Faith and Her Child’s Resurrection.” Smith wrote the book about her 14-year-old son coming back to life through her prayer and faith — even though his heart had stopped after he fell through a frozen lake in Missouri.

Grace will play the pastor in the small town who helps the mother and community get through the ordeal. Grace’s credits include “War Machine” and Spike Lee’s upcoming “Black Klansman.”

Grace is repped by ICM Partners, Lighthouse Management & Media, and Ziffren Brittenham. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

EXECUTIVE APPOINTMENT

Popular on Variety

Wanda Film Group president Zeng Maojun (aka John Zeng) has been elected unanimously as non-executive chairman of the AMC Entertainment Board of Directors.

The move follows last week’s resignation of Lincoln Zhang from the chairman role at AMC. He was due to transition to a new senior position within AMC parent Dalian Wanda Group. Zeng is Wanda’s most senior executive in charge of all of Wanda’s film-related activity, including Wanda Cinemas, Wanda Films, and the Qingdao Movie Metropolis.

“His appointment as AMC’s Chairman reflects Wanda’s continuing commitment to AMC,” the company said.

Wanda’s parent Dalian Wanda Group bought AMC in 2012 for $2.6 billion. AMC is the largest chain in the U.S. with 661 locations.

Adam Aron, CEO and president of AMC Entertainment, added, “Wanda has been a terrific major shareholder of AMC, and we are fortunate that Wanda’s most senior executive in charge of its diverse film businesses has agreed to serve as AMC Chairman. John Zeng is both experienced and knowledgeable about our industry and our company, and undoubtedly will be a superb Chairman of AMC’s Board of Directors.”

MOVIE RIGHTS

Leonian Pictures has optioned the movie rights to Robert Hensley’s romantic comedy screenplay “Roasted,” with Leonian partner Jillian Clare attached in a leading role.

The story, which was developed by Hensley and Kris Deskins, revolves around an ensemble cast and their intertwining relationships. The action is set in a Los Angeles coffee shop.

Hensley, whose previous work includes the short film “The Taste of Salt,” is attached to direct. Leonian’s credits include teen drama “Miss Behave”; faith-based feature film “By God’s Grace”; the TV series “Acting Dead”; the feature dramedy “Pretty Broken”; and the teen dance film “To the Beat!”

Hensley is managed by Versa Manos of Gorgeous Media Group.

More Film

  • KARMELE

    Asier Altuna Preps Basque Historical Drama ‘Karmele the Hour of Waking Together’

    Basque cinema is booming, and director Asier Altuna is part of the vanguard leading it forward. The Spanish filmmaker, behind 2005 Youth Award winner “Aupa Etxebeste!” and 2015 Best Basque Film “Amama” at the San Sebastián Intl. Film Festival, attended this year’s Ventana Sur Proyecta sidebar with his next project, “Karmele, the Hour of Waking [...]

  • The Day is Long and Dark

    Francisco Barreiro Cast in Upcoming Julio Hernández Cordón Project (EXCLUSIVE)

    Julio Hernández Cordón, one of Mexico’s most-awarded independent filmmakers over the last decade, has found the leading man for his next feature “The Day is Long and Dark (My Friends are Vampires),” in Fantastic Fest best actor winner Francisco Barreiro, star of Adrián García Bogliano’s “Here Comes the Devil.”. Barreiro’s casting was shared with Variety from Buenos [...]

  • Macabre

    Rio Fest’s Compact Edition Opens Amidst Sectorial Crisis

    RIO DE JANEIRO  — The 21st Rio Intl. Film Fest opens Monday Dec. 9t with the screening of Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women” in the Odeon landmark theater. The smaller than usual edition, which was almost cancelled due to the lack of municipal backing, reflects the crisis of Brazil’s film sector, involved in a battle with the administration [...]

  • Papa-YouTuber

    Peru’s ‘Papa YouTuber’ Goes Global (EXCLUSIVE)

    Argentine sales agency FilmSharks Int’l label The Remake Company has sold remake rights at Ventana Sur to Peruvian family comedy hit “Papa YouTuber” (“YouTuber Dad”) to Mexico’s Cinepolis and Italy’s Colorado Films, with several other territories pending. Advanced discussions are underway in Germany, with Spain, France and the U.S. also pending. “The U.S. deal will [...]

  • Elia Suleiman attends the screening of

    'Pleasure Is Extremely Political,' Palestinian Filmmaker Elia Suleiman Says

    In a freewheeling masterclass held at the Marrakech Film Festival on Thursday, director Elia Suleiman offered as concise a mission statement as can be, defining his guiding beliefs in four short words. “Pleasure is extremely political,” said the Palestinian director, whose films have approached the fraught nature of life in the occupied territories with a [...]

  • Panel-Ventana-Sur-2019-1

    Ventana Sur: Industry Luminaries Converge, Talk Women In Cinema

    BUENOS AIRES – Ventana Sur’s Opening Windows conference series welcomed an esteemed line-up of women in film to Buenos Aires’ UCA campus on Wednesday afternoon for a panel that sought to familiarize the audience with the enormous weight of breaking into a male-dominated industry throughout the years. Among the panelists was Argentine Producer Lita Stantic, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content