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Maude v Maude (D: Liang) - S: Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie

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Maude v Maude (D: Liang) - S: Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie

Old 04-19-23, 09:00 AM
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Maude v Maude (D: Liang) - S: Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie

EXCLUSIVE: Following an intense multi-studio bidding war that went into the weekend, Warner Bros has landed the package Maude v Maude that has Angelina Jolie and Halle Berry attached to star. Roseanne Liang is on board to direct from Scott Mosier’s script. Berry and Jolie will produce along with Berry’s producing partner Holly Jeter via their banner HalleHolly, along with Jeff Kirschenbaum and Joe Roth who will produce through RK Films. Mosier and Liang will exec produce.

Exact details are being kept under wraps, but and insider describes the pic as a “Bond vs. Bourne” type of globl action thriller with locations to be announced.

While Berry and Jolie have had careers that have spanned three decades, the two have never worked together. Both are veterans of the genre, though; Jolie starred as the title character in the hit action thriller Salt, and Berry played Jinx in the blockbuster Bond installment Die Another Day. Other action-heavy credits include Berry starring in John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum and the X-Men movies, while Jolie’s credits include starring in Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Maleficent as well as originating the role of Lara Croft in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.

The package hit the market last week and wrapped over the weekend, with Warner Bros getting aggressive and putting in the winning bid. Since taking over as co-studio heads, Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy having been pushing to get more movie star-centric packages into their future slate. Once this package with two of the bigger stars in the last two decades came together, it was too hard to pass up, with Warners putting in an impressive bid you haven’t been seeing from the studios as often these days, especially with the endless amounts of money the streamers seem to have.

While it’s become more common for streamers like Apple or Netflix to make aggressive plays for packages like this, De Luca and Abdy have never shied away from going after a project if they believe in the talent around it. They were two of the more active buyers in the market when the were running MGM, outbidding the competition for similar hot packages like Ridley Scott’s House of Gucci starring Lady Gaga and Adam Driver, and the Ryan Gosling-fronted Project Hail Mary. This latest sale shows they aren’t changing that strategy anytime soon.

Berry and Jeter joined forces in January 2022 with plans to produce an array of projects from hard-hitting dramas to light-hearted comedies, action, horror, and more with a focus on elevating complex, strong, women and women of color in leading roles both in front of and behind the camera. Berry is currently filming the Lionsgate pic Never Let Go with her and Jeter exec producing. Alex Aja is directing the pic, with 21 Laps producing.

As for Jolie, the Oscar-winner recently directed Without Blood starring Demian Bichir and Salma Hayek. Next up, Jolie will star in the biopic Maria centering opera singer Maria Callas to be directed by Pablo Larrain.

Liang’s most recent credits include Shadow in the Cloud starring ChloŽ Moretz. The film won the People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award at the 2020 Toronto Film Festival.

The Maude v Maude package marks one of the first majors sales for Mosier as a writer after cutting his teeth working for Kevin Smith helping produce some of his classic films like Clerks, Mallrats and Dogma. He would eventually jump into the world of animation, co-writing and producing the 3D-animated pic Free Birds starring Owen Wilson. More recently, he co-directed the Illumination hit The Grinch, which bowed in 2018.

Berry and HalleHolly are repped by WME, Range Media Partners and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole and Jolie is repped by WME. Liang is repped by WME and Grandview, and Mosier by CAA and Range.

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