DEADLINE – EXCLUSIVE: Here’s a sexy project making its way into the market to liven up a Sunday. Avengers and Captain America franchise star Chris Evans has been set to lead disaster thriller Greenland, the latest from District 9 helmer Neill Blomkamp. Fast-emerging outfit Anton is producing alongside Thunder Road Pictures’ Basil Iwanyk. Anton is co-financing with Riverstone Pictures. STXinternational is handling overseas distribution, presenting the project to buyers here, and will directly distribute in the UK and Ireland. CAA Media Finance arranged the financing and will rep domestic rights alongside Endeavor Content.
Details on Greenland’s plot are being kept close to the vest. It’s the story of a family’s fight for survival in the face of a cataclysmic natural disaster. Principal photography is set for the last quarter of 2018.
Anton’s Sébastien Raybaud and Harold van Lier are executive producing with Riverstone’s Nik Bower and Deepak Nayar. Thunder Road developed the picture with Riverstone and UK financier Ingenious Media.
“When we read Greenland, we knew it was exactly the sort of film we wanted to make as we build the Anton brand — smart, character driven genre with action and heart. We are very excited to work alongside our friends at STX with such exceptional talent as Neill Blomkamp, Chris Evans and Basil Iwanyk,” says Raybaud, CEO of Anton.
David Kosse, President of STXinternational, adds, “Greenland is the kind of highly commercial genre fare that sees Neill Blomkamp doing what he does best: delivering a smart, fresh, high concept narrative in a world we can easily recognize. We were immediately attracted to this talent-driven, wide release, theatrical title that is so distinctive of the STX brand. Working alongside Neill, Thunder Road, Riverstone and Anton to bring this to the marketplace is a tremendous opportunity.”
Evans is currently on screens in Disney/Marvel juggernaut Avengers: Infinity War which has grossed over $1.4B worldwide and counting. Of late, he’s also been expanding his creative range, making his directorial debut with drama Before We Go and upcoming has Gideon Raff’s The Red Sea Diving Resort, which STXinternational is also repping. He’s also currently on Broadway with a critically lauded turn in Lobby Hero.
Blomkamp shot to international acclaim as the co-writer and director of the groundbreaking sci-fi pic District 9, for which he was nominated for a Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar. His following films, Elysium starring Matt Damon and Chappie starring Hugh Jackman and Dev Patel, grossed over $388M combined.
Greenland is a hot project for the STXinternational slate which has blossomed since the division launched under Kosse in 2016. Upcoming releases include Baltasar Kormakur’s Adrift starring Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin (also co-financed by Ingenious) in June; and Mile 22 from director Peter Berg and starring Mark Wahlberg, and The Happytime Murders starring Melissa McCarthy, both in August.
Kosse says, “The recent reaction at CinemaCon to our current slate was a wonderful validation of the choices we make when investing in our films and filmmakers. There are only a handful of truly great films available for the international marketplace and STX is consistently managing to be a destination company for those films — both our own in-house productions and titles we represent. We came away from Cannes last year handling one of the most valuable titles in All the Money In The World and this year is looking equally rewarding.”
Anton has backed hits like the Paddington franchise and Shaun The Sheep, and is expanding rapidly into high-end TV dramas through its partnership with BBC Studio backing shows such as McMafia. It is also lead financing and selling Fireheart, the next animated project from the producers of Ballerina and Untouchables.
Evans is repped by CAA, 3 Arts Entertainment, Narrative PR and attorney Jason Sloane. Blomkamp is repped by WME and Gendler & Kelly.