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Daily Bite: Neeson to Star in ‘A Monster Calls’; ‘Flintstones’ Movie in Development; & Go Go Power Rangers
08 May 2014 : Aisling Newton
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Liam Neeson to Star in ‘A Monster Calls’
Irish actor Liam Neeson is set to star in J A Bayona’s ‘A Monster Calls’, which also stars Felicity Jones (The Amazing Spiderman 2).

Neeson will play the title character in an adaptation of the award-winning children’s fantasy novel of the same name by Patrick Ness. Ness wrote the book based on an original idea by the late Siobhan Dowd. ‘A Monster Calls’ is a drama about 13 year old Conor O’Malley who attempts to deal with his mother’s illness and the bullying of his classmates by escaping into a fantastical world of monsters and fairy tales that deal with courage, loss and faith. Bayona (The Impossible, The Orphanage) will be joined by producer Belen Atienza (Pan’s Labyinth).

The film is a co-production between River Road Entertainment, Participant Media, Lionsgate International, and Focus Features, with Belen Atienza producing. Executive producers are River Road’s Bill Pohlad and Mitch Horwits, Participant’s Jeff Skoll and Jonathan King, and Lionsgate’s Patrick Wachsberger.

Focus Features will distribute the fantasy drama in the US in October 2016.

New Animated ‘Flintstones’ Movie in Development
Warner Bros. have announced that work has started on the new animated ‘Flintstones’ reboot, courtesy of writer Chris Henchy (The Campaign) and executive producers Will Ferrell and Adam McKay through their Gary Sanchez Productions banner.

The full-length animated feature will be headed up by Andrew Fischel and Cate Adams. The show has had several short-lived reboots over the decades, most popular being the 1994 Spielberg produced movie starring John Goodman, Elizabeth Perkins, Rick Moranis, and Rosie O’Donnell. The movie took in over €244 million at the box office and was followed up by a prequel in 2000 starring Mark Addy and Stephen Baldwin. Seth MacFarlane also tried to bring the series back to television on FOX but failed after the pilot script was turned down.

The original cartoon series, which ran from 1960 – 1966, was created by Hanna-Barbera and was made famous for having 32 writers working on the script. The dormant franchise was acquired by Warner Bros. as part of parent company Time Warner’s acquisition of Turner Broadcasting in 1996, which had bought ‘Flintstones’ producers and animation powerhouse Hanna-Barbera in 1991.

Bedrock’s, Fred, Wilma and Pebbles Flintstone along with Barney, Betty and Bamm-Bamm Rubble will hopefully be making a return to our screens in the near future as the animated project begins development.

’Power Rangers’ Heads to the Big Screen
Lionsgate and Saban, original creator of the franchise, have announced plans for a live action reboot of 'Power Rangers’, two decades after the last film flopped at the box office.

The live-action feature will be based on the ‘Mighty Morphin Power Rangers’ film. The story is based around a group of high school kids who are infused with unique super powers but must harness and use those powers as a team if they have any hope of saving the world. The ‘Power Rangers’ franchise has been around since 1993 and most recently grossed 8.1 million US dollars in 1997 for ‘Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie’. The series has been seen in more than 150 markets around the world, translated into numerous languages and is a mainstay in the most prominent international children’s programming blocks. The announcement marks another step in Lionsgate’s continued commitment to build a broad portfolio of branded properties and franchises with global appeal.

"We’re thrilled to be partnering with Haim Saban and his team to maximize the potential of this immensely successful and universally recognized franchise,” said Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer.



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