Introducing Project X Entertainment
James Vanderbilt, William Sherak, Paul Neinstein Launch Production and Financing Company
New Venture Signs Multi-Year First Look & Co-Development Television Deal with Spyglass Media Group
Writer-producer-director James Vanderbilt, veteran producer William Sherak, and seasoned finance and business operations executive Paul Neinstein have joined forces to form Project X Entertainment, a new independent production and financing company focused on creating content for distribution across media platforms. Project X will develop and produce feature-length motion pictures as well as episodic programming and docu-series for streaming, broadcast, cable television and other distribution platforms.
To tap into the ever-expanding television market, Project X has closed a multi-year first look and co-development television deal with Spyglass Media Group, LLC ("Spyglass"), an independent premium content company, to co-develop and co-finance episodic content.
"We built Project X because we believe that smart content can be commercial and commercial content can be smart," said the partners. "We could not be more excited to provide a home and development funding for like-minded artists, where we can partner with and support storytellers in building content for the worldwide viewing audience, no matter the distribution platform. At Project X, creativity will come first. Always."
They added, "In addition to being a longtime friend and business partner, Spyglass' Gary Barber is the best in the business. Our deal with Gary, Lauren and the Spyglass team reflects our enormous respect for what they have built as well as our firm belief that our collective efforts will provide unique storytelling opportunities and distribution platforms for our creative partners."
Gary Barber, Chairman and CEO, Spyglass said, "The creative team at Project X is a natural fit for us. I've known and worked with Paul and William for many years and am grateful they introduced me to Jamie, who is one of the most in-demand writers in town. I am enthusiastic about our deal and look forward to working closely with them."
Lauren Whitney, President of Television for Spyglass said, "Jamie, Paul and William come to the table with an obvious passion for excellent material, and the access and experience necessary to pursue it. We've hit the ground running together, and I look forward to this being a very productive partnership."
Vanderbilt most recently wrote and produced the global hit Netflix feature "Murder Mystery," which was watched by more than 30.8 million accounts over its first three days, the biggest opening weekend for a Netflix film ever. He also produced Fox Searchlight's "Ready or Not" with Sherak. He will continue to focus on writing, producing and directing across genres through Project X. Next up, he is adapting Stephen King's classic novel "The Long Walk," for New Line and director Andre Overdal, which he will produce with Sherak, as well as "Murder Mystery 2" for Netflix. Vanderbilt's numerous writing credits include "Zodiac," "The Amazing Spider-Man" films, "White House Down," and "Truth," starring Robert Redford and Cate Blanchett, which he also produced and directed.
Sherak most recently served as President of Stereo D, the leading producer of 2D-3D feature films, as well as President of Post-Production for Deluxe Entertainment Services. Sherak founded Stereo D in 2009 and Deluxe acquired the company in 2011. He is returning full-time to his roots as a producer after producing a number of films with Vanderbilt over the last couple of years including "Ready or Not," "The House with a Clock in Its Walls," "Suspiria," and "Truth." Prior to founding Stereo D, Sherak produced features such as "Little Black Book" and "Darkness Falls," for Revolution Studios; as well as "Bangkok Dangerous" and "Daddy Day Camp," and the television series "Are We There Yet?" starring Terry Crews and Ice Cube.
Neinstein left his post as COO of RatPac Entertainment last year after selling the company's interest in its 76-picture library back to Warner Bros. During his tenure there, the company produced and co-financed over 85 films, documentaries and docuseries. Prior to that, he was Executive Vice-President in Charge of Business Affairs at Paramount Pictures where he structured, negotiated and administered slate financing, co-financing and distribution agreements as well as acquisition and major talent agreements for Paramount's live-action, animated and micro-budget theatrical motion pictures. Neinstein has also worked closely with Spyglass' Barber over the years, including at Spyglass Entertainment before Barber became chairman and CEO of MGM.
Spyglass launched as a partnership between Gary Barber and Lantern Entertainment Co-Presidents Andy Mitchell and Milos Brajovic and is committed to creating entertainment across all platforms for worldwide audiences. The company has strategic investment backing from Warner Bros. Pictures, leaders in the motion picture industry; Eagle Pictures, the largest independent distributor in Italy; and Cineworld Group, the second-largest theater chain in the world. Spyglass is home to more than 250 film library titles, scripted and unscripted television series, including Academy Award winners "The King's Speech" and "The Artist;" box office hits "The Upside," "Inglourious Basterds," "Silver Linings Playbook," "The Hateful Eight," "Django Unchained," "Spy Kids" and "Paddington;" genre franchises "Hellraiser" and "Scream" and the television series, "Project Runway."
Eiza González To Star Opposite John Krasinski And Natalie Portman In 'Fountain Of Youth' For Apple And Skydance
Eiza González is set to star opposite John Krasinski and Natalie Portman in Apple's Fountain of Youth, a feature film based on an original idea that will be directed by Guy Ritchie and hails from Skydance Media. Also starring John Krasinski, Domhnall Gleeson and Natalie Portman, the film will be produced for Apple by Skydance, Vinson Films and Project X Entertainment.
Written by James Vanderbilt, the pic follows estranged siblings (Krasinski and Portman) who partner on a global heist to find the mythological Fountain of Youth. They must use their knowledge of history to follow clues on an epic adventure that will change their lives — and possibly lead to immortality.
John Krasinski & Natalie Portman To Star In Guy Ritchie's 'Fountain Of Youth' For Apple And Skydance
Following the success of The Family Plan last month, Apple Original Films and Skydance are reteaming on another tentpole as Deadline is hearing John Krasinski and Natalie Portman are set to star in Fountain of Youth with Guy Ritchie directing. Skydance Media will serve as the studio, and the film will be produced for Apple by Skydance, Vinson Films and Project X Entertainment.