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 Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home

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Dallas
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PostSubject: Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home   Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:18 am


http://www.deadline.com/2012/09/gerard-butler-drama-motor-city-stalls-before-reaching-start-line-crew-sent-home/

Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home


EXCLUSIVE: The plug was pulled this morning on Motor City, the revenge drama that was scheduled to start production late this month with Albert Hughes directing and Gerard Butler, Mickey Rourke and Adrien Brody starring. The film was in pre-production, and the crew was just told to go home. It is an abrupt and chaotic development. Insiders tell me that Motor City stalled after the film’s backers, Emmett/Furla Films, Envision Entertainment, and Mark Damon’s Foresight Entertainment, realized at the last moment that the release date given them by Warner Bros through its deal with Joel Silver’s Dark Castle turned out to be a drop dead date. Production was to start September 17th, meaning the film could only have 12 weeks of post production. It wasn’t enough time. They needed that studio release to justify all of the foreign distribution deals made for the film by Damon. As a result, they could not secure a bond and couldn’t move forward.

Insiders tell me they still want to make the picture, but they have to do some work under the hood of Motor City to put it all back together again. Since the plug was just pulled, the backers are now dealing with the ramifications with cast, crew and filmmaker. It is unclear at present if Warner Bros will be involved down the line. In the film, Butler plays a man who gets out of prison and is bent on revenge against those who framed him.

A spokesperson for the producers and financiers confirmed the shut down and issued this statement to Deadline:

“Faced with the realities of a very short post-production schedule and complicated visual and special effects, the producers have decided to push back production on Albert Hughes’ Motor City. We are dedicated to delivering top-tier productions such as 2 Guns starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg which is currently in production and Peter Berg’s Lone Survivor which is in pre-production. The circumstances surrounding this project made it impossible to meet the firm March 31st delivery date without compromising the quality of the film.”

When indie films get halted just before production starts often do so because of money woes, insiders said that isn’t the case here and that it was more about the requirement of a bond and the hardship that a hard release created. We will monitor the ramifications of this. Emmett/Furla Films, in partnership with Envision Entertainment, has become a prolific financier/producer of mid and higher range action drama, and recently got $275 million more in funding and a new TV division. On the feature side, EFF just wrapped the thriller Broken City with Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe and Catherine Zeta-Jones, with Fox releasing in January; EFF is also funding the Arnold Schwarzenegger-Sly Stallone teamup The Tomb with Summit releasing; the drama 2 Guns starring Denzel Washington and Wahlberg for Universal; the Reese Witherspoon starrer Rule #1; the action thriller Empire State with Dwayne Johnson and Emile Hirsch; the Stephen Frears-directed Lay the Favorite with Bruce Willis, Rebecca Hall, Zeta-Jones and Vince Vaughn with The Weinstein Company distributing; the John Cusack-Nicolas Cage-starrer Frozen Ground, Fire With Fire with Josh Duhamel, Willis and Rosario Dawson and Freelancers with Robert De Niro, Forest Whitaker and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. EFF is preparing to start production on the Peter Berg-directed Navy SEAL drama Lone Survivor with Wahlberg. That is a lot of production commitment in a short time and the next big test will be Lone Survivor, also a pricey picture that was originally developed by Universal and now will be released by that studio but not funded by it.



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Dallas
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PostSubject: Re: Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home   Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:19 am

http://collider.com/motor-city-production-cancelled/192564/

Production Shut Down on Gerard Butler Revenge Drama MOTOR CITY

Merely a few weeks out from the start of filming, production has been halted on the revenge drama Motor City. The film, from director Albert Hughes (The Book of Eli), has had a rather rocky development, with a number of actors (Dominic Cooper, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jeremy Renner) flirting with the lead only to subsequently drop out. Gerard Butler was finally set in the starring role of a felon who, after being released from prison, begins tracking down the men who framed him, with Adrien Brody onboard as the villain and Mickey Rourke in a supporting role. Filming was set to commence on September 17th, but the crew has now been told to go home due to some complex issues that have arisen behind the scenes. Hit the jump for more details.
Per Deadline, Motor City came to a halt when the film’s backers realized that the firm March 31st release date would be impossible to meet. As I understand it, this release date was intricately tied to the foreign distribution deals made for the film, so with producers and backers now admitting that they can’t make that release date, those distribution deals now need to be reworked. As such, the film could not secure a bond (ie. insurance) to move forward, so production has now been halted.

Warner Bros. issued the release date for Motor City via Joel Silver’s Dark Castle banner, but it’s now unknown if the studio will still be involved down the line. WB was only onboard for distribution, so the film’s financing should still be in place. Here’s how a spokesperson for the pic’s producers and financiers explained the decision to postpone production:

“Faced with the realities of a very short post-production schedule and complicated visual and special effects, the producers have decided to push back production on Albert Hughes’ Motor City. We are dedicated to delivering top-tier productions such as 2 Guns starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg which is currently in production and Peter Berg’s Lone Survivor which is in pre-production. The circumstances surrounding this project made it impossible to meet the firm March 31st delivery date without compromising the quality of the film.”

It’s clear that the film’s producers aren’t ready to scrap the project just yet, but there’s no guarantee that the entire cast will be available whenever they decide to pick production back up again. Butler is currently filming the White House actioner Olympus Has Fallen and has been circling the action-thriller Manhunt. Motor City has remained resilient through a number of stumbling blocks already, so the project may yet survive. We’ll be sure to keep you updated as more information becomes available.

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PostSubject: Re: Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home   Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:57 pm

Thanks, Dallas. I find this quite bizarre. Does it mean lack of reliable financing, poor story/scriptwriting or people going back on their word or something else entirely?

http://www.crazydaysandnights.net/2012/09/gerard-butlers-motor-city-is-really.html

You know you are an awful movie when you go straight to DVD instead of getting a theatrical release. But how bad are you when the financing people can't even get enough money together to finish post-production when you have a deal with Warner Brothers and Gerard Butler is your star. "Motor City" is just such an example. The producers are having trouble getting a completion bond which means they can't make their deadline for Warner Brothers which means Warner Brothers can drop the movie. If the movie was any good at all this would not be an issue. The movie must be spectacularly awful. Now I want to see it to see how awful it is.
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Dallas
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PostSubject: Re: Gerard Butler Drama ‘Motor City’ Stalls Before Reaching Start Line: Crew Sent Home   Sun Sep 02, 2012 5:57 pm

Here's another article that explains it with a few extra facts. I find it interesting about why Jake G. pulled out -- the start date. It seems odd that they just realized the drop dead date for completion (to meet the distribution deals that they had negotiated) didn't allow enough time for post production to be completed. This movie has been floating around for a long time - as it was on the Black List (list of Hollywoods hottest scripts for any given year). How could they just now figure out how much time they needed for post production?
The whole thing seems like a PR spin. It seemed so rushed and Adrien Brody didn't sign on for the other major role until very recently.
Maybe Adrien just found out about Gerry dating his ex on Friday with the rest of the world.....(-:

Personally I'm not sure I want to see another Gerry "revenge" movie. I would probably just see a mute Clyde Shelton in his character.



http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/gerard-butler-revenge-thriller-motor-city-suffers-engine-failure-20120902


Gerard Butler Revenge Thriller 'Motor City' Suffers Engine Failure

According to Deadline, "Motor City," the revenge thriller from solo Hughes brother Albert Hughes that was originally set to star Dominic Cooper… Then Jake Gyllenhaal… Then Gerard Butler… Has been shut down for good, with the cast being sent home over the weekend. We're pretty sure that this movie accidentally ran over a young gypsy while on vacation in Europe because this shit seems cursed.

Most of the difficulties surrounding "Motor City" had to do with casting, with a whole host of Hollywood's hottest both coming and (mostly) going from the project, including but not limited to Gary Oldman (who was ultimately replaced in what can only be defined as a "downgrade" by Adrien Brody), Amber Heard, Clive Owen, and Jeremy Renner. We were pretty sure that Mickey Rourke had left the project with half of Hollywood but Deadline reports that, at its time of death, Rourke was still a part of the film.

While it's a little hard to untangle, the issue was that "Motor City" shut down after (again, according to Deadline), "the film's backers, Emmett/Furla Films, Envision Entertainment, and Mark Damon's Foresight Entertainment, realized at the last moment that the release date given them by Warner Bros through its deal with Joel Silver's Dark Castle turned out to be a drop dead date. Production was to start on September 17th, meaning the film could only have 12 weeks of post-production. They needed that studio release to justify all of the foreign distribution deals made for the film by Damon. As a result, they could not secure a bond and couldn’t move forward."

Supposedly everyone still wants to make "Motor City," but the fact that the cast and crew was sent home means that pulling it back together again to prove to be a Herculean task. (The reason Gyllenhaal left the project was because he wanted the production to start later, but the producers were steadfastly wed to the September 17th date.) And Warner Bros, who notoriously parted ways with Dark Castle very recently, might not be involved with the production when it comes back together.

The producers/financiers gave Deadline a statement, which read: "Faced with the realities of a very short post-production schedule and complicated visual and special effects, the producers have decided to push back production on Albert Hughes’ 'Motor City.' We are dedicated to delivering top-tier productions such as '2 Guns' starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg which is currently in production and Peter Berg’s 'Lone Survivor' which is in pre-production. The circumstances surrounding this project made it impossible to meet the firm March 31st delivery date without compromising the quality of the film.”

Based on a Black Listed script by Chad St. John, the film concerned a small time crook (eventually played by Butler) who gets put away and when he gets out goes after the villains that set him up (they've also gotten a hold of his girlfriend… or something) It sounds like, if Hughes brought the right amount of stylistic heft, could be a pretty fun little B-movie. Whether or not we'll actually ever get to see that movie, remains to be seen.

.
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