Elle Fanning, star and executive producer of Civic Center Media/MRC Television’s Hulu series The Great, is expanding her relationship with the indie studio partnership. She and her sister Dakota Fanning have teamed to launch Lewellen Pictures production company and have entered a first-look television deal with the studio, a joint venture between UTA and MRC. The Fanning sisters plan to develop feature film and television projects, as well as other forms of media, including podcasts.
Their first project under the pact is an adaptation of Megan Miranda’s bestselling novel The Last House Guest, which is being developed as a crime thriller series. Sarah Walker (The Secrets She Keeps, Wentworth) will write and executive produce the series. It centers on an intimate friendship between two girls who fall violently in love with each other’s differences, which, in the end, create doubt, betrayal and tragedy. The Fannings will executive produce alongside Brittany Kahan Ward and Mary Jane Skalski for Echo Lake Entertainment.
“Elle has brought such perspective and thoughtfulness as an executive producer on The Great,” said Elise Henderson, President of MRC Television. “We are excited by the vision she and Dakota have for Lewellen Pictures and for MRC Television to provide a home for the stories they will tell.”
Elle Fanning has received Golden Globe and Independent Spirit Award nominations for her work on The Great, which is now in production on its second season for Hulu. She recently starred in Sally Potter’s The Roads Not Taken and Netflix’s All The Bright Places, the latter of which she also produced.
Dakota Fanning was recently was seen in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time in Hollywood and TNT’s Angel of Darkness. She will next star in The First Lady for Showtime.
The siblings will star together for the first time in the feature film adaptation of The Nightingale for Tristar and director Melanie Laurent.
They have also brought together existing projects in development that they had been production individually and will now fall under the Lewellen Pictures banner. That includes feature I’ve Got Your Number set up at Amazon Studios with Dakota and Freddie Highmore attached to star, Kiwi Smith and Jessica O’Toole adapting the Sophie Kinsella novel, Echo Lake Entertainment, Alfresco Pictures and Joey Plager producing; One Click podcast which Elle will narrate and is executive producing along with Brittany Kahan Ward, Vespucci and Cadence 13; and The Girl From Plainville, a limited series for Elle to star in for UCP and Hulu, with showrunners Liz Hannah and Patrick Macmanus. Brittany Kahan Ward also executive produces.
Those wishing to see Elle and Dakota Fanning in WWII drama The Nightingale will have to wait even longer. Sony is pushing the film to Dec. 23, 2022. It previously had been moved to December 22 of this year. Elle Fanning currently is in production on Hulu/MRC’s second season of The Great.
Christmas falls on a Sunday that year, and Nightingale will square off against Paramount’s Babylon on Dec. 25 and an untitled Illumination and Universal title on Wednesday Dec. 21, 2022. Pic is produced by Elizabeth Cantillon.
In addition, Sony is dating Stage 6 Films’ R-rated romantic comedy Long Weekend for March 12. Pic follows Bart’s (Finn Wittrock of American Horror Story) chance encounter with the enigmatic Vienna (Zoë Chao), which leads to a whirlwind weekend together. The two fall fast and hard, but both carry secrets that could be their undoing or the chance for a fresh start.
Steve Basilone is making his directorial debut off his script. Pic is produced by Deanna Barillari, Laura Lewis, Theodora Dunlap, Sam Bisbee, Audrey Rosenberg and Jess Jacobs. Executive Producers are Franklin Carson, Lance Acord and Jackie Kelman Bisbee. The film stars Finn Wittrock, Zoë Chao, Casey Wilson, Jim Rash and with Damon Wayans, Jr. The film is produced by Invisible Pictures, Park Pictures, Fifty Seventh Street Productions, and Rebelle Media.
PREVIOUSLY, April 30: Sony’s The Nightingale WWII drama starring Elle and Dakota Fanning, which was suppose to come out at the end of this year, has been pushed to Dec. 22, 2021 due to the COVID-19 production shutdown.
Real-life sisters Elle and Dakota Fanning will play on-screen sisters in the coming-of-age story adapted from Kristin Hannah’s international bestseller. Pic, which is being directed by Melanie Laurent, is set on the eve of World War II and follows the sisters’ struggle to survive and resist the German occupation of France. The story was inspired by the courageous women of the French Resistance who helped downed Allied airmen escape Nazi-occupied territory and hid Jewish children.
The project reteams Laurent with Elle Fanning after the duo worked on the 2018 movie Galveston together.
The Nightingale has been published in 45 languages, and went on to sell 3.5 million copies in the U.S. alone and became a No. 1 New York Times Bestseller for a total of 114 weeks on the list.
Source: Deadline Hollywood
“Huzzah!” was the reaction from the set of season 2 of The Great, where Elle Fanning, who was in the midst of filming, learned she had nabbed her first-ever Golden Globe nomination.
“It was pretty exciting. Everyone obviously yelled ‘huzzah’ because that’s what we do on our show,” Fanning told Deadline.
She was nominated for Best Performance By an Actress in a Musical or Comedy for her performance as Catherine The Great in The Tony McNamara-created Hulu series, which picked up a nomination for Best Television Series.
Speaking on the show’s success, “I think it’s such a specific tone and I think it’s a beautiful, escapism to a historical world,” Fanning opined. “It’s very opulent, but there’s such a groundedness to it. It has that dark satire, comedic sense of humor that you can laugh at it but then the emotions really hit hard.”
The Great is a satirical show that tells the story of the rise of Catherine the Great from outsider to the longest-reigning female ruler in Russia’s history with only a few occasional facts.
Like Catherine, Fanning found herself with a new set of powers when she signed on to also produce the series. “I felt like I was, as Elle, coming into my power and learning my authority and navigating that world, which is often male-led,” she shared. “I found myself there and had to find my voice in a sense. Catherine is the same way. She’s finding her power.”
With Season 2 on the horizon, Fanning didn’t give away much but hinted at what’s in store for Peter and Catherine’s already complicated relationship.
“Catherine, I feel, has a real soft spot for [Peter], which gets to be explored. Their relationship gets way more twisted. So we have a lot working together.”
Source: Deadline Hollywood
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