MALEFICENT 2 & BEAUTIFUL DAY SCRIBES TO DIRECT BOTTOMLESS BELLY BUTTON: A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil writers Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster will make their feature directorial debut with their scripted adaptation of Dash Shaw's graphic novel Bottomless Belly Button. The tale follows the wild adventures of the Loony Family, including the travails of long-married Maggie and David who shock their children by announcing their plan to divorce.
DR DISRESPECT STREAMER SIGNS DEAL WITH WALKING DEAD CREATORS: Popular Twitch streamer Guy "Dr DisRespect" Beahm IV has signed a deal with The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman's multiplatform production company Skybound Entertainment. Together, they will develop a narrative scripted television series based on Beahm's character. "There are lots of incredibly talented streamers, but there's something special about what Guy has done in creating this character," says Skybound co-founder and president David Alpert. "We really believe there's a unique world around the doctor." Beahm's alter-ego Dr DisRespect has more than 3.8 million followers with more than 100 million views.
THE IRISHMAN SNAGS 17.1 VIEWERS IN 5 DAYS: Martin Scorsese's mafia saga starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino had 17.1 million unique viewers in the U.S. in the first five days of its release on Netflix, Nielsen reports. By comparison, Sandra Bullock's Bird Box garnered 26 million views in the first seven days
OLIVER SACKS BIOPIC PICKED UP: Oliver Sacks: His Own Life, the Ric Burns documentary about the neurologist and author that bowed to great acclaim at the Telluride Film Festival, has been snapped up by Zeitgeist Films. The deal has the film opening in theaters in May 2020 at the Film Forum in NYC, with a national rollout to follow. "We were very impressed by the sensitivity Ric Burns showed in telling Sacks' story and his ability to get a very private individual like Sacks to open up to him," Zeitgeist Films co-presidents Nancy Gerstman and Emily Russo said of the pic, which played the fest circuit including New York, Hamptons and AFI. "It's not an easy thing to win the trust of such a person and we felt that we got to know Sacks intimately and gained an enormous empathy for what he experienced in his life. Everyone who thinks they know Oliver Sacks through his writings will be surprised by his lifelong struggles, and those few people who don't already know his work will be dazzled by his achievements."
KEVIN COSTNER TO WRITE AND PRODUCE PROCEDURAL: Kevin Costner has set a new drama at ABC. ISB will tell the story of elite special agents of the Investigative Services Branch, whose job it is to solve the most complex and heinous crimes committed in national parks in the Pacific West region. Former The Flash showrunner Aaron Helbing and Costner will co-write and exec produce. Helbing will also act as showrunner.