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Michelle Salcedo Directing ‘The Body,’ Thriller From ‘Inside Man’ Writer Russel Gewirtz for Catalyst Studios

Mark Holly Paul Catalyst Studios
Courtesy of Catalyst Studios

Michelle Salcedo will direct “The Body,” a new thriller from Catalyst Studios. The film boasts a script from “Inside Man” and “Righteous Kill” writer Russel Gewirtz. Salcedo previously directed “Woman of the House.”

Catalyst is the new banner from social entrepreneur Holly Levow, Mark Pennell and Paul Kampf. It was formed to produce compelling, high-quality, and commercial feature films. “The Body” is about a “tough, female, Detroit cop” on a mission to transport a witness across the country and arrive safely in the Motor City. “The Body” will be produced by Meg Messmer and Veronica Caicedo, along with Levow, Pennell and Kampf. Production is due to commence in Belgrade and surrounding areas in the fall of 2022, with Bandur Film providing production services. Highland Film Group is handling worldwide sales.

“There is great demand for the female voice in the marketplace and we will focus on that tremendous opportunity” said Levow, Catalyst’s chairperson. “The pieces are all falling nicely into place and we are thrilled to showcase the amazing talent of our female directors and production teams.”

Kampf and Pennell said: “We are excited by Michelle’s vision for Russell’s great script and know that with Meg and Veronica leading our producing team, we will have a great final product for the world market”.

With a mission to invest in and cultivate a collective of promising new filmmakers, Catalyst Studios has set multi-picture deals with an initial slate of six feature films directed and produced by women, and centered on female protagonists. The first film on the docket is “Alix,” written and directed by Ana Maria Hermida (“The Firefly”). It centers on the subject of sex trafficking in the jungles of Colombia. Production is due to commence in the fall of 2022.

Gewirtz is represented by CAA, Untitled Entertainment, and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson McGinnis Ryan.

Pictured: Holly Levow, Mark Pennell and Paul Kampf.