Leonardo DiCaprio to Produce Gorbachev Movie; Adrien Brody Cannes Comedy Halted

Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks to Produce HBO Movie on Mikhail Gorbachev
The former Soviet leader will serve as a consultant on the film, called simply Gorbachev, which chronicles the dissolution of the USSR as seen through his eyes. Gorbachev first met DiCaprio when he appeared in his environmental doc The 11th Hour and the Soviet chief later presented the actor with an environmental award at the Cinema for Peace Gala in Berlin, Deadline reports.

Tribeca & Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Announce 2013 Fund Recipients
Four projects from 127 applicants were chosen to share $140,000. The winning films are: 2030, Newton’s Laws of Emotion, Oldest Man Alive and The Doctor.  The projects, which all integrate science and technology themes and characters into their story lines, focus on subjects ranging from climate change and genetic engineering to physics, medicine and invention.

Twenty Feet From Stardom to Open Montclair Film Festival
The doc pays tribute to the backup singers behind some of the music world's greatest artists. It will open at Film Society on June 14. The festival, taking place April 29 – May 5, will also screen In A World… as its Centerpiece. Lake Bell writes, directs and stars in the film set in the world of Hollywood movie-trailer making. Concussion will close out the festival. The film follows a forty-something lesbian mom who takes on a double life as a high-end escort. 15 narratives and 14 docs will screen at the festival in northern New Jersey in addition to titles slated in the festival's comedy, New Jersey Spotlight, New Jersey Shorts, Family, African-American and other sections. Montclair will also host conversations with Ice-T, Alex Gibney and Michael Moore. For the full lineup, visit their website.

Adrien Brody Cannes-set Comedy Cancelled
French director Christopher Thompson's comedy set to star Adrien Brody as a beleaguered director attending the Cannes Film Festival has been cancelled two weeks ahead of scheduled shooting on the French Riviera. Thompson had hoped to set the shoot against the backdrop of the actual Cannes Film Festival. Also set to star Golshifteh Farahani, Gael Garcia Bernal, Emmanuelle Seigner, André Dussollier, Xavier Demolon, Alex Lutz and Ana Giradot, the project was halted due to a combination of financing problems and difficulty getting permits to shoot during the festival, Screen Daily reports.

Disney Shutters LucasArts
After buying Lucasfilm in what was then considered a sizable realignment of the studio planets, Disney has closed LucasArts, laying off 150 people. The move will mean an end to what had been expected to be "edgy" animated Star Wars 1313, featuring higher quality performance-captured animation, TOH reports.

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Discover: Frances Bodomo Crosses Cultures with “Boneshaker” image

Discover: Frances Bodomo Crosses Cultures with “Boneshaker”

Our second weekly column spotlighting emerging film talent focuses on Frances Bodomo, whose short Boneshaker stars Oscar-nominated actress Quvenzhané Wallis, premiered at Sundance, and screens this week in the 20th New York African Film Festival.

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