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Fox Searchlight & Guillermo Del Toro ink overall deal, create new film label

Earlier today, Fox Searchlight Pictures Presidents Stephen Gilula and Nancy Utley announced that the studio has entered into a deal with Academy Award-winning director Guillermo del Toro to host any live action feature film projects written, produced and/or directed by the famed filmmaker. As per their new contract, any films created by del Toro will be financed, marketed and distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures. In listening to a smattering of Hollywood chatter, some are hailing the move to secure del Toro as a bold one on Gilula & Utley's behalf, particularly with the pending Disney merger on the horizon.

In talking about his excitement for the deal, the HELLBOY director stated that “For the longest time, I've hoped to find an environment in which I can distribute, nurture and produce new voices in smart, inventive genre films and channel my own. In Fox Searchlight, I’ve found a real home for live action production — a partnership based on hard work, understanding of each other and, above all, faith. After the wonderful experience I had with Fox Searchlight on ‘The Shape of Water,’ I am honored to have the opportunity to continue the relationship. I am more than grateful to Nancy, Steve, David [Greenbaum] and Matthew [Greenfield] for their trust in me and for joining me on this adventure.”

Then adding to Del Toro's impassioned words were Utley and Gilula, who said “Throughout the process of ‘The Shape of Water’ coming to life, we have observed first-hand Guillermo at work as a director, a writer, a producer — a creator. We believe in him and the vision for a new Searchlight label and we are eager to embark on this journey with him,” the duo jointly stated.

As work begins under the new arrangement, the first film to be presented will be del Toro's ANTLERS, a story about an elementary school teacher who takes in a troubled student that harbors a mysterious family secret with deadly consequences. Directing the feature will be Scott Cooper (CRAZY HEART, BLACK MASS) who will work from a script penned by Nick Antosca (HANNIBAL) and Henry Chaisson (BREAKER BREAKER, UNDER THE BED). Acting as producers on the ANTLERS project will be Guillermo del Toro himself alongside David Goyer, and J. Miles Dale, with Kevin Turen serving as executive producer.

“As well as being a brilliant filmmaker, Guillermo is a passionate collaborator, curator and advocate for other artists. Working with him on this new label, focused on the highest quality projects in the genre space, allows Searchlight to expand our reach to new filmmakers and new audiences around the world,” said David Greenbaum and Matthew Greenfield, Fox Searchlight Pictures’ Co-Heads of Production, in relation to the studio's exciting new partnership.

Fantastic deal, Fox Searchlight! I think a lot of people will be pleased to know that del Toro has found place to call home for his future film work, and that the studio trusts him so completely to create new and imaginative content. ANTLERS will certainly be one to watch, though I can't help but wonder what Del Toro's next original endeavor will be as plans for the new partnership continue to roll out. Here's hoping for great things to come!

Source: Joblo

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