Lionsgate and Kingdom Story Company announced that they have won the competition for Dallas Jenkins, creator of the series “The Chosen,” to adapt and direct “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” from Barbara Robinson’s book of the same name.
Other films Kingdom and Lionsgate have collaborated on include “Jesus Revolution,” which earned more than $50 million this year. Additionally, their film “Ordinary Angels,” with Hilary Swank and Alan Ritchson, is slated for release on Feb. 23. “Unsung Hero,” starring Joel Smallbone and Daisy Betts, is scheduled for an April 26 release.
More from Variety
Per the film’s description, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” focuses on the Herdman children, who are “absolutely the worst kids in the history of the world. But this Christmas, they’re taking over their local church pageant – and they just might unwittingly teach a shocked community the true meaning of Christmas.”
“This is a dream come true and the movie I’ve most wanted to make my whole career. And I wouldn’t want to do it with anyone other than Lionsgate and Kingdom, who make great movies while supporting filmmakers,” said Jenkins.
Production will commence next month in Canada, with the film slated for a 2024 holiday release.
‘Barbie,’ ‘The Pimp: No F—ing Fairytale’ Among FilmLight 2023 Colour Award Winners
The 2023 FilmLight Colour Award winners were announced at a dedicated color ceremony as part of EnergaCamerimage on Nov. 12. The awards recognize colorists on any grading platform and are judged by cinematographers, directors and colorists.
Yvan Lucas at Company 3 received the award for grading of a theatrical feature for “Barbie,” while the TV series award went to freelance colorist Dirk Meier for his work at D-Facto Motion on “The Pimp: No Fucking Fairytale,” which is also known as “Luden.” For Zara Man “SS23,” Tim Masick at Company 3 was given the award for grading of a commercial, and freelance colorist Marina Starke received the music video award for her work on “Horra” by Mayyas. Freelance colourist Cem Ozkilicci won the Spotlight award, which honors the craft that contributes to the creative impact of a low budget feature, for his work at Uhoert on “Possession.”
FilmLight leads and organizes The Colour Awards with EnergaCamerimage. The awards are supported by groups such as the American Society of Cinematographers, the British Society of Cinematographers, the French Society of Cinematographers, Colorist Society International, Chinese Society of Cinematographers, the International Federation of Cinematographers and the Polish Society of Cinematographers, among others.
Visit filmlightcolourawards.com for more information on the awards.
Eddie Murphy Unleashes Christmas Chaos In Prime Video’s ‘Candy Cane Lane’ Trailer
Prime Video has released the trailer for “Candy Cane Lane,” an upcoming Christmas movie starring Eddie Murphy and Tracee Ellis Ross, set for release on Dec. 1.
Directed by Reginald Hudlin, Murphy stars as Chris, a husband and father intent on winning his neighborhood’s competitive Christmas decoration contest. After Chris unwittingly makes a deal with a sneaky elf (Jillian Bell), she casts a spell that turns the 12 Days of Christmas into a shocking reality. Chaos thus ensues, and Chris must work to save the holiday for his family and community.
“Candy Cane Lane” is the first project reuniting Hudlin, Murphy and producer Brian Grazer since their collaboration on the 1992 film “Boomerang.”
Additional cast members in “Candy Cane Lane” include Thaddeus J. Mixson, Ken Marino, Nick Offerman, Robin Thede, Chris Redd, Genneya Walton, Madison Thomas, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, Lombardo Boyar, D.C. Young Fly, Danielle Pinnock, Timothy Simons, Riki Lindhome and Stephen Tobolowsky.
Watch the trailer below.
Jason Cassidy and Riley Keogh Appointed to Gotham Film & Media Institute’s Board of Directors
Focus Features Vice Chairman Jason Cassidy and actor, director and producer Riley Keogh will join The Gotham Film & Media Institute’s Board of Directors. The announcement came in advance of the 33rd Annual Gotham Awards that will be held in New York on Nov. 27.
As part of the Board of Directors, Cassidy and Keogh will help drive Gotham’s mission of supporting independent filmmakers and creatives. Led by Cassidy, Focus has released acclaimed films “Belfast,” “Promising Young Woman” and “BlacKkKlansmen.” Keogh recently starred in the successful Amazon series “Daisy Jones and the Six,” based on Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novel of the same name.
“We are so excited to add Jason, one of the most respected and innovative film executives, and Riley, an extraordinarily talented actress and critically acclaimed filmmaker, to The Gotham’s already incredible Board of Directors,” said Jeffrey Sharp, executive director of The Gotham Film & Media Institute. “With their genuine passion for championing independent creatives, we are confident that the organization will amplify its positive impact on the media industry through their expertise and perspectives.”
AGBO Announces Winners of 48-Hour Film Festival
AGBO has announced the winners of their 48-hour filmmaking competition, “No Sleep ‘til Film Fest.” Darren Hinchy won first place for his short film “Time of Your Life,” which tracks a college freshman’s life exclusively through her phone screen.
Tanya Lialina and Teodor Klimov won second place for their short “Just a Sec!,” which follows a man who pauses his funeral to address unfinished business. Grace McLeod was awarded third place for “02:00 Minutes,” which depicts two best friends awaiting pregnancy test results while picturing potential outcomes.
The AGBO Storytellers Collective Award went to Maxence Cazorla and Godefroy Ryckewaert for “Eon’s Echo.”
For the 48-hour competition, emerging filmmakers are tasked with creating a short film of three minutes or less.
“We are more impressed every year with the caliber of short films created in just 48 hours. Moreover, the enthusiasm from the participants continues to grow: This year we received over 500 submissions from over 45 countries,” said AGBO’s chief creative officer Angela Russo-Otstot. “We are proud to host a festival that celebrates and champions filmmakers of all levels from all over the world.”
The winning shorts can be watched here.
Egyptian Theater Adds Screenings of ‘Days of Heaven,’ ‘Don’t Look Now,’ ‘Lone Star’
Several more December screenings from the American Cinematheque and Netflix have joined the initial slate of programming at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.
From Dec. 8 to 14, classic film buffs can catch the Los Angeles premiere of brand new restorations of “Days of Heaven” and “L’amour Fou.” Also featured is a 50th anniversary screening of “Don’t Look Now” with a 35mm IB Tech print. A 35mm presentation of Douglas Sirk’s 1959 “Imitation of Life” will be followed by a Q&A with actor Susan Kohner along with a book signing by Foster Hirsch in connection with “Hollywood and the Movies of the Fifties.”
A new 4k restoration of “Lone Star” will include a Q&A with director John Sayles.
From Dec. 15 to Dec. 21, the theater will feature a 70mm run of Zack Snyder’s “Rebel Moon — Part One: A Child of Fire” ahead of its Netflix premiere. Just in time for Christmas, “It’s a Wonderful Life” will play in 35mm from Dec. 22 to Dec. 24.
The December screenings join the Cinematheque’s 70mm festival in November, which includes titles such as “Spartacus,” “Aliens,” “The Master,” “Nope,” “Playtime” and “The Wild Bunch.”
From Nov. 22 to Dec. 7, Netflix’s “Maestro” from Bradley Cooper will screen with Dolby Atmos, while on Dec. 5, Wes Anderson’s short “The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar” screens along with some of Anderson’s favorite shorts from 1995 to 2021. More information is available at the theater’s website.
Prime Video to Launch Charitable Campaigns With American Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity in Celebration of ‘Candy Cane Lane’ Premiere
In collaboration with American Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity, Prime Video is launching a series of charitable initiatives to celebrate its upcoming holiday comedy “Candy Cane Lane,” starring Eddie Murphy and Tracee Ellis Ross, which premieres on Dec. 1.
People who donate blood, platelets or plasma between Dec. 1-31 have the opportunity to win one of 12 prize packages. Each package includes a $1000 Amazon gift card and a 65-inch Omni QLED Series smart TV courtesy of Fire TV. There will also be a “Candy Cane Lane”-themed blood drive on Nov. 28 at The Culver Theater in Culver City, Calif.
“Candy Cane Lane,” directed by Reginald Hudlin, follows Murphy’s character on his mission to win his neighborhood’s annual holiday home decor contest. Thus, Prime Video is also teaming up with Habitat for Humanity to transform a selected neighborhood into a winter wonderland as seen in the movie using product donations from Balsam Hill and Govee. The eight chosen homes will also be gifted the new Fire TV Stick 4K Max and a 55-inch Omni QLED Series smart TV.
Additionally, Amazon employees will volunteer in Habitat for Humanity build days across the nation as part of a larger initiative from Amazon in the Community. Visit RedCrossBlood.org/Amazon to learn more about the charity initiatives and blood drives.
Best of Variety