Michael Mann’s ‘Ferrari’ Secures SAG-AFTRA Interim Agreement; Will Adam Driver, Penélope Cruz Promote Pic At Venice?

SAG-AFTRA on Thursday named NEON’s Michael Mann-directed Ferrari as one of its latest recipients of an interim agreement for publicity.

The waiver allows the movie’s cast which includes Adam Driver and Penélope Cruz to publicize the feature at its Venice Film Festival world premiere, closing night at New York Film fest and other events the pic may screen at. Similar to indie studio A24, NEON is a non-AMPTP company; many of which have had no hurdles in nabbing SAG-AFTRA interim agreements.

There are two types of SAG-AFTRA interim agreements for indie features, one for promotional purposes and the other for production.

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Ferrari is not the first major title set to benefit from an agreement of this sort, joining a list that includes Luc Besson’s Dog Man and the Lily Gladstone-led The Unknown Country. But it’s certainly the starriest, boasting an ensemble that also includes Shailene Woodley, Patrick Dempsey, Jack O’Connell and Gabriel Leone, among others. It’s still early, however, it remains whether stars will come out in support of the pic, even with the SAG-AFTRA waiver in hand. As has proven the case on the production side, with titles like the MRC pic G20 to star Viola Davis, there’s the possibility that talent may opt out of exercising rights granted to them by their guild, simply due to optics.

Slated for release by Neon on Christmas Day, the latest feature from Mann is set in 1957, when the marriage of ex-Formula 1 racer Enzo Ferrari (Driver) and wife Laura (Cruz) has begun to fracture as a result of the former’s philandering and the tragic recent death of their young son. Their unsettled domestic world ends up on a collision course with Enzo’s work life as he faces a pair of major turning points: financial pressure to increase productivity, which means going against his long-standing desire to only produce race cars, and preparations for the treacherous cross-country open-road Mille Miglia race.

Troy Kennedy Martin (The Italian Job) adapted the screenplay from Brock Yates’ biography Enzo Ferrari: The Man and the Machine. In addition to directing, Mann produced via his Moto Pictures banner alongside P.J. van Sandwijk and John Lesher, as well as Marie Savare, John Friedberg, Lars Sylvest, Thorsten Schumacher and Gareth West. STX Entertainment and partners will handle the film’s international rollout.

Applications for interim agreements, allowing either production or publicity to proceed for projects from non-AMPTP-affiliated producers, have been available since the actors strike kicked off on July 14, with the guild subsequently being barraged with “hundreds of applications,” per SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland. The full list of projects benefiting from them, as of today, can be found here.

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