Matt Walsh Joins ‘The Unexpecteds’; Lin Shaye, Bill Moseley Board ‘Scared To Death’; Sublimity Lands ‘Chapel’; Hulu/Firelight Kindling Fund Launch; ‘This World Is Not My Own’ Trailer – Film Briefs

EXCLUSIVE: 2x Emmy nominee Matt Walsh (Veep) has signed on to star alongside Alejandro De Hoyos (The Man from Toronto), Chelsea Rendon (Vida), Francisco Ramos (Gentefied), John Kaler (The Wrong Guy) and Jason Konopisos-Alvarez (Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay) in the action-comedy The Unexpecteds from writer-director Alejandro Montoya Marín.

Pic follows Gary (Walsh) and a group of his best friends as they seek revenge against a social media influencer who has scammed them of their life savings. De Hoyos is producing for Alta California Pictures, with Kaler, Jasmin Espada, Walsh and Pedro Pano co-producing. 

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Walsh is repped by UTA, Artists First and Ginsburg Daniels Kallis; De Hoyos by Marlene Agency; Rendon by Momentum Talent and Literary Agency and The Green Room; Ramos Innovative Artists, Silvera Arougheti Entertainment Group and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman; Kaler by The Acting Group Talent Agency, Open Range Management, Presley Talent Agency and Kreative Media Partners; and Konopisos-Alvarez by Crown North Talent Management, Synergy Talent, The Boysen Agency and Inclusion. 


EXCLUSIVE: Horror icons Lin Shaye (Insidious franchise) and Bill Moseley (The Devil’s Rejects) are set to star alongside Olivier Paris (How I Met Your Father) and Daytime Emmy winner Victoria Konefal (Days of Our Lives) in the film Scared to Death, which is heading into production in Los Angeles in March.

The feature from Mirror Films follows a group of young filmmakers who enter an abandoned children’s orphanage in order to do research for a movie…and that’s their first mistake. Paul Boyd (I, Challenger) will direct from his own script, with Eric Barrett (Echo in the Canyon) and Shaye producing.

Shaye is repped by Buchwald, Rugolo Entertainment and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman; Moseley by Judy Fox Personal Talent Management and Skrzyniarz & Mallean; Paris by J Pervis Talent and Curtis Talent Management; Konefal by Buchwald, Stride Management and Yorn, Levine, Barnes; and Boyd by RW Media and APA.


EXCLUSIVE: Sublimity Entertainment has secured worldwide sales rights for the crime thriller Chapel, starring Jeremy Sumpter (Peter Pan), out of EFM. 

The film tells the story of Cohen Black (Sumpter), a man who becomes a suspect in a serial murder case after waking from a coma with no recollection of who he is. Yeehaw Films’ Courtney Paige directed from her own script, with Lochlyn Munro (Riverdale), Taryn Manning (Orange Is the New Black), Kyler Fisher (Our Father’s Keeper) and Pardis Saremi (Hell of a Summer) rounding out the cast.

Yeehaw Films’ Nicholas Adam Clark, Paige, Fisher and Madison Bontempo produced the pic currently in post at Buffalo 8, along with Chris Harding and Nick de Graffenreid of 2111 Pictures, in association with Joanna Clark and Kevin Forrest Clark at Take a Bow Film, Jordan Wagner and Brandon Menchen. Exec producers include Gil Demeter, Kenn Henman, Chelsea Knipp, Rick Licht, Mike Bundlie, Gabe Shapiro, Shalom Auerbach, Carol Anne Watts, Tomy Brown, Laura Jacobs and Kathy Sue Holtorf.


EXCLUSIVE: Academy Award-nominated documentarian Stanley Nelson’s production company Firelight Films has partnered with Hulu to launch the Hulu/Firelight Kindling Fund, which will afford three mid-career filmmakers with $25,000 for the development of an original documentary feature or limited series.

In addition to the cash award, filmmakers selected for support will benefit from one-on-one professional development sessions on producing for Hulu with Hulu’s documentary division. Awardees will be expected to develop their projects into a robust treatment, pitch deck, budget and schedule for a first look by Firelight Films and Hulu. Project pitches considered for additional development or greenlight from Hulu will, if selected, be co-produced with Firelight Films, executive produced by Stanley Nelson, for streaming on Hulu.

The Fund is open to alumni of Firelight Media artist programs including the Documentary Lab, Groundwork Regional Lab, William Greaves Research and Development Fund, PBS/Firelight William Greaves Production Fund, Impact Campaign Fund, Spark Fund (NEH), Frontline/Firelight Fellowship, In the Making documentary short film series, and the Hindsight or Homegrown: Future Visions documentary short film series. Additional filmmakers may apply by invitation only from Firelight Films.

Those looking to apply must submit their project title, logline, treatment, and professional credits by March 31, with Firelight to then perform an interview review and select up to 12 finalists for pitch sessions. Submissions will be evaluated based on the strength of the project’s affinity with Firelight’s mission as well as Hulu’s content priorities.


EXCLUSIVE: Deadline has the first trailer for This World Is Not My Own — an animation-documentary hybrid featuring the voices of 3x Emmy winner Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black) and Amy Warren (Armageddon Time), which is set to world premiere in the Documentary Spotlight section of the 2023 SXSW Film Festival.

The film directed by Petter Ringbom and Marquise Stillwell (The New Bauhaus) of Opendox tells the story of self-taught American artist Nellie Mae Rowe (Aduba) and her life spanning the 20th century, including her relationship with her longtime agent and champion, Judith Alexander (Warren).

Ringbom and Ruchi Mital scripted the pic, juxtaposing innovative animation with archival footage and interviews, with Mital serving as its producer, and Dream Hampton and Stillwell serving as EPs. Watch its trailer by clicking below.

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