Airplane crash film delayed

JORDAN STRAUSS / ASSOCIATED PRESS Bay : To lead journalism school.
JORDAN STRAUSS / ASSOCIATED PRESS Bay : To lead journalism school.
Posted: March 28, 2014

MOVIES MAY STOP production for any of a hundred reasons ("the script isn't ready," "we can't raise the money," "we've run out of money," etc.), but here's one you thankfully don't hear every day:

The disaster movie "Deep Water," about a jet that crashes into the ocean on its way to Beijing, has been put on hold because of its similarities to the missing Malaysian plane, which disappeared on its way to . . . Beijing.

Arclight Films said yesterday that preproduction has been halted for the time being.

"We're delaying it out of respect for what's going on," managing director Gary Hamilton said.

"It's a pretty tragic event," Hamilton said at Hong Kong's Filmart trade show.

He played down the similarities, saying the movie "is not actually the same, it just deals with a plane crash."

The film is about a flight from Sydney to Beijing that goes down in the ocean, leaving an air marshal and a handful of surviving passengers and crew to fight off giant tiger sharks and other dangers.

According to a "Deep" synopsis posted on the company's website: "As the downed aircraft takes on water with every passing second, the surviving passengers and crew must face terror beyond reckoning."

Yeah, that seems close enough.


Eminem and Outkast will headline this year's Lollapalooza music festival in Chicago.

Festival founder Perry Farrell announced the lineup of more than 130 acts yesterday. Lorde, Kings of Leon, the Arctic Monkeys and Calvin Harris will also play the festival, to be held Aug. 1-3. This year marks Lollapalooza's 10th anniversary in Chicago's Grant Park.

* According to investigators with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and California Highway Patrol, the crash that killed "Fast & Furious" star Paul Walker and his friend Roger Rodas was not due to mechanical problems.

The cause of the fatal accident was unsafe speed: The 2005 Porsche Carrera GT Rodas was driving more than 90 mph in a 45 mph zone.

And two of its tires were 9 years old.

* reports that a hot movie package in Hollywood is set for "Ricky and the Flash," a script written by Diablo Cody ("Juno"), to be directed by Jonathan Demme ("Philadelphia") and star Meryl Streep.

In the movie, Streep would play a woman who abandoned her family when she was younger to find fame and fortune as a rock star. Decades later, she decides to be a mother again to her estranged children, one of whom is going through a rough divorce.

Penn alum Marc Platt will produce.

* Speaking of Penn folk, former model Willow Bay, a senior editor at the Huffington Post and wife of Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger, has been named the new director of the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

Bay said she wanted to put a focus on equipping students with a fluency in covering stories across multimedia platforms as jobs in traditional journalism decline in the digital age.

"There are exciting opportunities to make broader and deeper connections across journalism, media, entertainment, communications and all sorts of digital startups," Bay said in a telephone interview with Reuters.

Bay will start her new position in July, coinciding with the opening of Wallis Annenberg Hall, an 88,000-square-foot building that will feature a state-of-the-art newsroom for students, equipped with multimedia technology and most likely better than any newsroom the students will ever work in after graduation.

* The San Francisco-based film-funding startup Junction launched yesterday. Its crowdfunding model is open only to those who make $200,000 a year or have a net worth of more than $1 million.

Unlike poor-people crowdfunding, Junction investors share in potential profits, like normal film financiers. Contributors to projects on sites such as Kickstarter receive rewards, like a copy of the script or a signed movie poster.

Junction films are already fully funded, but open to adding more investors.

Probably to pay off the early investors.

Oprah Winfrey is taking a self-help show on the road.

The Queen of All Media will visit eight cities this fall for a two-day arena event called "Oprah's The Life You Want Weekend."

Winfrey will go onstage on a Friday night in each city. The next day, a circle of personalities she has championed will join in.

OWN personality Iyanla Vanzant, Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert and Pastor Rob Bell are among the people who will join the tour for each weekend, with author Deepak Chopra an occasional guest.

Philadelphia is not a scheduled stop. You'll have to go to D.C. or Newark, N.J.

Tickets start at $99 and go up to $999 for VIP packages.

Are there scholarships?

If you can afford $999 for two days listening to Oprah and her friends, you may already have the life you want.

You at least have the life we want.

- Daily News wire services

contributed to this report.


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