April 6, 2022

Mid-Budget Movies Are Dying? Producer of 'Ambulance,' 'Scream' Begs to Differ

Mid-Budget Movies Are Dying? Producer of 'Ambulance,' 'Scream' Begs to Differ

n the pandemic-impacted movie marketplace, it might seem like the only films that succeed in theaters these days are blockbuster titles featuring superheroes. But that's not the case, according to William Sherak, one of the principals at Project X Entertainment.

The company already proved the staying power of mid-budget movies with the success of Paramount Pictures' "Scream,"  the horror franchise that returned to form at the box office in January. Now, Project X is looking to do it again with the April 8 release of Universal Pictures' "Ambulance" — an action flick starring Jake Gyllenhaal directed by Michael Bay — for which Sherak has high hopes lightning will strike twice.

"The teams at both Universal and Paramount, when they planted the flag and said these will be theatrical movies, they turned on those marketing machines," said Sherak on the latest episode of the Variety podcast "Strictly Business." "And even though they are not the size of Marvel movies, when you see the campaigns behind both of them, you feel like they are big, big events that you are supposed to see in a movie theater."

roject X is focused on scoping out titles that don't require breaking the bank to be financially viable.  "When you're in the of mid-budget range, your cash-break number is such a lower number where I think we also have to redefine success, right?" said Sherak, who runs Project X with Paul Neinstein and James Vanderbilt. "Success no longer has to be $800 million at the box office with a mid-budget movie."

But that's just the beginning for this ambitious company intent on pursuing M&A in hopes of becoming Hollywood's next mini-major.
"Strictly Business" is Variety's weekly podcast featuring conversations with industry leaders about the business of media and entertainment. A new episode debuts each Wednesday and can be downloaded on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and SoundCloud.

January 19, 2024

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.

January 11, 2024

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.

December 7, 2023

Russell Crowe, Rami Malek and Michael Shannon to Star in Nazi Drama 'Nuremberg'

Oscar winners Russell Crowe and Rami Malek, as well as Oscar nominee Michael Shannon, are set to star in historical drama "Nuremberg," Bluestone Entertainment and Walden Media announced.

June 14, 2023

Giancarlo Esposito Joins Radio Silence's Secret Monster Movie At Universal

Giancarlo Esposito has joined the cast of in Radio Silence's untitled monster thriller at Universal. He joins Melissa Barrera, Alisha Weir, Dan Stevens, Kevin Durand, Kathryn Newton, Angus Cloud and Will Catlett.

May 12, 2023

Radio Silence Universal Monster Thriller Adds Angus Cloud, Kathryn Newton & Will Catlett; Sets Spring 2024 Release

Kathryn Newton, Angus Cloud, and Will Catlett have been set for Universal Pictures' untitled monster thriller from Radio Silence. The pic has been set for an April 19, 2024 release.