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.

May 10, 2022

'Scream 6': Melissa Barrera, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega Set to Return

'Scream 6': Melissa Barrera, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega Set to Return
The creative team behind the reboot has already been prepping for this summer's shoot for the horror sequel.

February 15, 2022

'Bloom County' Animated Series Based On Berkeley Breathed Comic Strip In The Works At Fox

Bloom County, Berkeley Breathed's comic strip that ran in the 1980s, is being turned into an animated series at Fox.

February 3, 2022

'Scream' Sequel Moving Forward At Paramount And Spyglass

Following the box-office success of the latest installment, Spyglass Entertainment and Paramount Pictures have given the greenlight to move forward with the next installment of Scream. Returning for the next film are directors Radio Silence with Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett at the helm and James Vanderbilt & Guy Busick co-writing the screenplay. Project X Entertainment's Vanderbilt, Paul Neinstein and William Sherak are serving as producers. Creator Kevin Williamson and the third member of Radio Silence, Chad Villella, are executive producing alongside Spyglass' Gary Barber and Peter Oillataguerre.

October 25, 2021

STX Takes Global On Melissa Barrera Thriller 'Bed Rest' From Lori Evans Taylor

EXCLUSIVE: STXfilms has acquired worldwide rights to Bed Rest, a supernatural thriller to star In the Heights' Melissa Barrera for writer-director Lori Evans Taylor, who will make her directorial debut.