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Taron Egerton Is Playing Elton John In Biopic 'Rocketman'

MARK MALLOUK Is Writing The Script For @b_l_media Upcoming CALABRESE CRIME FAMILY Film


Mark Mallouk (writer, BLACK MASS) will write a feature film about Chicago’s Calabrese Crime Family for Black Label Media

Film will be based on Kurt Calabrese life rights.

· His father, Frank Calabrese, Sr. was an extortionist, street loan lender and hitman, operating as a made man in The Chicago Mafia, otherwise known as The Outfit. Frank used violence and intimidation to bring his closest family members into The Outfit, employing his younger brother Nick as a collector and hitman, and forcing his two sons Kurt and Frank, Jr. into a life of crime at the ages of 12 and 13. In 1995, the FBI arrested Frank, Nick, Frank Jr. and Kurt for racketeering. Tired of being constantly threated by his father, Frank Jr. became an informant for the FBI, eventually leading to his father implicating himself in 13 gangland murders.

· Eric Shepherd and Jeff Chianakis will co-produce along with Molly Smith, Thad Luckinbill and Trent Luckinbill. Black Label Media will fully finance.

· Black Label Media was formed in 2013 by partners Molly Smith, Trent Luckinbill and Thad Luckinbill to finance and produce high quality films. By 2014, BLM had acquired an interest in “Begin Again,” starring Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo, which was released by The Weinstein Company that summer. Soon after, Black Label Media premiered Philippe Falardeau’s “The Good Lie” at Toronto Film Festival in the fall of 2014. Starring Reese Witherspoon, “The Good Lie” was produced and financed by Black Label Media with Imagine Entertainment and released by Warner Bros.

Black Label’s “'71” starring Jack O’Connell was then released in February 2015 to critically acclaimed reviews. The film was directed by Yann Demange and had premiered at the Berlin Film Festival in 2014.

Next up for BLM is “Sicario,” directed by Denis Villenueve (“Prisoners”) and starring Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, and Josh Brolin, to be released September 19th, 2015. The film recently premiered at Cannes and will have its U.S. premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. Black Label Media’s “Demolition” directed by Jean Marc Valle (“Dallas Buyer’s Club”) starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Naomi Watts will also premiere at Toronto as the festival’s opening night film, and will be released theatrically on April 8, 2016.

BLM will produce and finance the upcoming “Code Name Veil,” the story of a young CIA agent who struggles to maintain his morality while navigating the dangerous and absurd conditions in 1980s Beirut, to be directed by Michael Cuesta (“Kill The Messenger, “Homeland.”). They will also produce and finance “Salinger’s War,” the directorial debut for Danny Strong (writer of "The Butler" and "Hunger Games: Mockingjay.”).

· Screenwriter Mark Mallouk’s feature writing debut BLACK MASS, which he adapted from the New York Times Bestseller Black Mass: Whitey Bulger, the FBI, and a Devil’s Deal, will be released on September 18 by Warner Bros. The crime drama was directed by Scott Cooper and stars Johnny Depp as Whitey Bulger alongside Benedict Cumberbatch, Joel Edgerton and Dakota Johnson. Mallouk also serves as an executive producer on the upcoming thriller EVEREST starring Jake Gyllenhaal, and previously executive produced the Liam Neeson mystery drama A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES and the Golden Globe-nominated RUSH starring Chris Hemsworth. Mark is repped at United Talent Agency.

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Taron Egerton Is Playing Elton John In Biopic 'Rocketman'

Regular listeners to the Empire Podcast (sorry about the whole Call Me By Your Name theme ear worm, incidentally) will recall that we had Taron Egerton as a guest on the 300th episode, recorded in front of an audience on Valentine's Day. He talked up his hope that Elton John biopic Rocketman would finally come together, and now Paramount is closing a deal to finance and distribute the film worldwide.

The film, which has been through at least one previous incarnation (Michael Gracey directing Tom Hardy in the lead) is reuniting the Eddie The Eagle team of Egerton, director Dexter Fletcher and producer Matthew Vaughn, who has been trying to get the movie made for a while, with Elton's blessing and the support of his company, Rocket Pictures.

Featuring a script by Lee Hall, Rocketman will follow the career of the artist formerly known as Reginald Dwight, from a prodigy at the Royal Academy of Music to a global superstar, through his influential and enduring musical partnership w…