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‘MJ: THE MUSICAL’ Producer John Branca … HEADS BACKSTAGE TO MEET LEAD STAR!!

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When “MJ: The Musical” meets “The Producers” … you get slightly one thing like this.

John Branca — one of many guys behind Broadway’s greatest spectacle proper now — went backstage Friday night time to fulfill the present’s lead star … Myles Frost, who performs Michael. That they had a cool little photo-op second collectively — flashing smiles and searching sharp.

‘MJ’ has been taking part in since earlier this February — after numerous delays, because of COVID — and to date … it is a smash hit. Not solely has it been commercially profitable, but it surely has sat nicely with critics too … even snagging a handful of Tonys this 12 months, together with for Frost.

He received Greatest Actor in a Musical — and ‘MJ’ has received some technical Tonys too, similar to Greatest Choreography, Greatest Lighting Design and Greatest Sound Design. It is about Mike’s real-life 1992 Harmful tour, and the present provides a BTS glimpse at a few of his imagined rehearsals.

After all, it additionally covers a ton of MJ hits alongside the best way … along with his signature dance numbers in addition. There was controversy round this at first, however most of that appears to have fallen by the wayside, particularly this many months into an extended and constant run.

MJ’s children even got here to see it when it first debuted. Is smart — Branca is fairly tight with Michael’s property, so it is all within the household right here.

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Properly Leisure Faucets David Hickey as First Head of Manufacturing

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Properly Leisure has tapped David Hickey (pictured above proper) as its first head of manufacturing to supervise its new mini studio in Arizona, CEO Vanessa Shapiro revealed on Wednesday.

Hickey, who was most just lately inventive govt producer at Canada’s Actual One Leisure, will report back to Shapiro and oversee operations and productions together with “Mysteries of the Coronary heart,” starring Ansley Gordon (“Loopy Ex-Girlfriend”), pictured above left.

“Mysteries of the Coronary heart” is the primary movie on Properly’s 2023 Arizona manufacturing slate.

L.A.-based Properly, which launched three years in the past as an unbiased manufacturing and distribution studio, has launched over 50 films since its inception.

Hickey has 25 years expertise and over 90 improvement and manufacturing credit, together with A&E films together with “Right here Kills the Bride” and “Loopy Neighbourhood Mothers.”

“Along with our distribution operations in Los Angeles and Paris, we’re targeted in 2023 in constructing a preeminent mini-studio in Arizona, with a aim of taking pictures roughly 4 films per yr there,” mentioned Shapiro. “With greater than 50 films launched over simply three years, we’re excited to develop our operations and welcome a inventive govt of David’s calibre to move our content material manufacturing slate. We anticipate this yr to be an enormous milestone in Properly Leisure’s progress, each within the variety of productions on our roster and our international distribution footprint.”

Hickey added: “I’ve been observing the expansion of Properly Leisure over the previous couple of years and am impressed by the standard and quantity of initiatives that the corporate has produced with Vanessa on the helm. With its numerous vary of initiatives, from romcoms to thrillers and teenage dramas, and extra TV sequence within the pipeline, I’m so excited to work with Vanessa and her crew to assist construct the corporate right into a mini-studio powerhouse.”

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Berlin Movie Pageant Reveals Jury Lineup, Provides Liu Jian’s ‘Artwork School 1994’ to Competitors

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The Berlin Movie Pageant has revealed its juries, and the addition of Liu Jian’s animated function “Artwork School 1994” to its competitors lineup, which now has 19 movies and is full.

Along with the already introduced actor Kristen Stewart as president, the Worldwide Jury members can be actor Golshifteh Farahani (Iran/France), director and author Valeska Grisebach (Germany), director and screenwriter Radu Jude (Romania), casting director and producer Francine Maisler (U.S.), director and screenwriter Carla Simón (Spain), and director and producer Johnnie To (Hong Kong, China).

“Artwork School 1994” is ready in China within the Nineties. It follows a gaggle of younger individuals who “put together to face a world caught between custom and modernity,” in response to the competition. The movie, represented for world gross sales by Memento Intl., was initially destined for Cannes, however Liu and the movie have been reported to have confronted bureaucratic obstacles, which put the kibosh on these plans. The director was earlier in the principle competitors in Berlin with “Have a Good Day” in 2017.

The jury for the Encounters program, which options 16 movies, will comprise Greek actor Angeliki Papoulia (“Dogtooth”), Georgian filmmaker Dea Kulumbegashvili (“Starting”), and Italian competition programmer and educational Paolo Moretti.

The jury members deciding on the primary function award from 19 movie debuts in all sections of the competition are French competition programmer Judith Revault d’Allonnes, Egyptian director Ayten Amin (“Souad”), and Swiss director Cyril Schäublin “Unrest.”

The jury choosing the right documentary – from 20 movies throughout all sections – can be Emilie Bujès, inventive director of Switzerland’s Visions du Réel, Colombian producer, director and programmer Diana Bustamante (“Refugiado”), and British director Mark Cousins (“The Story of Movie: An Odyssey”).

The jury judging the 20 movies within the worldwide quick movie part will comprise Romanian editor Cătălin Cristuțiu, the U.S. artist and director Sky Hopinka, and the German director and screenwriter Isabelle Stever.

The jury members for Era Kplus are Filipino documentarist Venice Atienza, Latvian producer Alise Ģelze and German competition programmer Gudrun Sommer. The members of the jury for Era 14plus are German cinematographer and media educator Fion Mutert, Colombian filmmaker and artist Juanita Onzaga, and Ukrainian director and screenwriter Kateryna Gornostai.

The Perspektive Deutsches Kino part can be judged by two juries. The Compass-Perspektive and Kompagnon Fellowship jury contains German actor Dela Dabulamanzi, German movie editor Anne Fabini and Swedish director Jöns Jönsson. The jury for the Heiner Carow Prize can be Germany’s Freya Arde, a movie composer, guitarist and music producer, German director Peter Kahane, and German movie archivist Mirko Wiermann.

The winner of the Berlinale Collection Award can be chosen from a seven-strong lineup by Danish screenwriter, showrunner and government producer Mette Heeno, U.S. actor André Holland and Tel Aviv-born, Berlin-based producer Danna Stern (“Fauda”).

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Emma Thompson to Star in Brian Kirk Motion Thriller ‘The Fisherwoman’

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Emma Thompson is ready to star in Brian Kirk’s upcoming motion thriller “The Fisherwoman,” Selection can solely reveal.

Within the function, Thompson is ready to play a widowed fisherman who, whereas trapped in a Minnesotan blizzard, interrupts the kidnapping of a youngster and shortly finds she is the younger sufferer’s solely hope.

Kirk will direct from a screenplay by Nicholas Jacobson-Larson and Dalton Leeb, who’ve simply been tapped to put in writing the “Sizzling Wheels” film for Warner Bros and Unhealthy Robotic. The duo are additionally at present engaged on “The Fall” for Amblin and Blackmaled Productions 

Greg Silverman of Stampede Ventures, who’re co-financing the movie alongside Augenschein Filmproduktion, Movie und Medienstiftung NRW and German broadcaster ZDF, introduced the challenge on Wednesday.

Mossbank is dealing with worldwide gross sales and co-repping home rights with CAA Media Finance and Augenschein. Augenschein may also solely signify German-speaking European territories whereas Leonine is co-producing and distributing for German-speaking Europe. Mossbank, which is a partnership between Raven and Sculptor Media headed by Michael Rothstein and Sam Corridor, will introduce the challenge to patrons in Berlin later this month on the EFM.

Thompson, who may also exec produce the challenge, just lately acquired rave critiques for “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.” The 2-time Oscar winner has additionally appeared in “Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical” and is quickly to be seen alongside Lily James in upcoming romcom “What’s Love Bought to Do With It.”

Kirk is the co-creator and director of Idris Elba sequence “Luther” and has directed for sequence together with “Recreation of Thrones,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “Penny Dreadful,” amongst others. “The Fisherwoman” will probably be his first function since “21 Bridges,” one of many final movies Chadwick Boseman made earlier than he died in 2020.

Silverman will produce alongside Jon Berg on behalf of Stampede whereas the corporate’s Gideon Yu and Chris Bosco will exec produce. Jonas Katzenstein and Maximilian Leo are producing for Augenschein. Jonathan Saubach is exec producing alongside Thompson, Rothstein and Corridor.

“Dame Emma Thompson is a phenomenally proficient artist and the right incarnation of our movie’s titular character,” mentioned Jon Berg, president of manufacturing at Stampede Ventures. “We couldn’t be extra honored and excited to see her embody a personality that shares her distinctive energy, grit and intelligence.”

Maximilian Leo, producer and CEO of Augenschein, added: “With Stampede Ventures co-financing and Mossbank’s partnership, we’re capable of ship an unbelievable drama directed by the visionary Brian Kirk. Our mission to make daring, creative, and fascinating imaginative and prescient aligns completely with our companions and we’re excited to see The Fisherwoman turn into a actuality with Emma Thompson.”

Thompson is repped by CAA and Hamilton Hodell. Kirk is repped by Unbiased Expertise Group and Grandview. Nicholas Jacobson-Larson and Dalton Leeb are repped by CAA, Grandview and Jackoway Tyerman.

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