Solstice Studios has acquired “Unhinged,” a psychological thriller from “Disturbia” screenwriter Carl Ellsworth and “Warrior” producer Lisa Ellzey. The studio is currently out to directors. The script revolves around an extreme case of “road rage.” It’s the story of a mother whose decision to hit her horn upsets the wrong guy and leads to some very violent consequences.
It’s one of the first projects acquired by Solstice, a newcomer to the studio space. It launched in 2018 with the goal of producing three to five films a year that are geared at global audiences and acquiring an additional two to four films annually. Solstice releases will typically carry budgets between $30 million to $80 million. Major studios are steering clear of films in that price range in favor of making even costlier superhero films, leaving a hole that Solstice would like to fill.
The company is led by Mark Gill, the former president of Warner Independent Pictures and Millennium Films, as well as the producer of “Hitman’s Bodyguard” and the “Olympus Has Fallen” series. Production heads are Andrew Gunn (“Freaky Friday”) and Guy Botham (founder of Vitality VFX). The marketing and strategy head is Vincent Bruzzese, formerly at STX, OTX, and Marketcast. All four are listed as founders. Solstice announced it launched with capitalization of $400 million.
Solstice moved aggressively to secure a six-figure deal for the project, which had been asking for more than seven-figures, according to insiders.
Ellzey was a producer on “Kingdom of Heaven,” “In Her Shoes,” and “Domino.” Ellsworth’s credits include “Red Eye,” “Red Dawn,” and “The Last House on the Left.” He is represented by UTA, managers Robert Lazar and Larry Shuman, and attorney Karl Austen.