Posts Tagged ‘movies’

News Release: November 23, 2017 — New Zealand-based film production company Morcan Motion Pictures announced this week production of one of the films on its development slate received a boost with the successful international release of the crime-thriller Silent Fear (A novel inspired by true crimes).

 

Silent Fear (A novel inspired by true crimes)

Book’s launch a success.

 

Co-authored by father-and-son writing team Lance and James Morcan, Silent Fear  has attracted critical acclaim since its launch as a paperback and Kindle ebook on Amazon.

Amazon Top 500 reviewer Susan Elliot describes it as “A riveting crime novel.” Elliot writes, “There is so much to like about this book: the plot, the pace and the characters all came together in the most riveting crime novel that I’ve read in a long time.” She warns readers, “Do not read it on a train. You may just miss your station.”

Amazon Australia Top 50 reviewer Todd Simpson describes Silent Fear  as “Simply Splendid.” Simpson writes, “There is so much to love about this entertaining and well written murder mystery…Hands down this is a wonderful book, and well worth a read.”

The Morcans, who are adapting their novel to a feature film screenplay, added Silent Fear  to their production company’s development slate several years ago.

A spokesperson for the company says development of the planned feature film was delayed to accommodate the release of the novel. “That proved to be a wise decision,” he says, “given the interest the book is now generating for the movie.”

Set in a university in London, Silent Fear  was inspired by the true-life murders of students at Gallaudet University, one of the world’s premiere learning institutions for the deaf and hard of hearing, in Washington, D.C. It was written under the guidance of Brent Macpherson, one of the world’s leading deaf storytellers working in film, television and other creative mediums. Macpherson is also co-producer on the film adaptation.

The premise of Silent Fear  sees Scotland Yard detective Valerie Crowther being assigned to investigate the murder of a student at a university for the deaf in the upmarket Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The investigation coincides with a deadly flu virus outbreak, resulting in the university being quarantined from the outside world. When more Deaf students are murdered, it becomes clear there is a serial killer operating within the sealed-off university. A chilling cat-and-mouse game evolves as the unknown killer targets Valerie and the virus claims more lives.

A sequel is planned with more books in the series a possibility.

James Morcan says interest in the planned movie has already been received from film industry contacts. Speaking from Sydney, Australia, where he is based, he says the novel was crying out to be adapted because the storyline is very suited to the big screen.

“Silent Fear is a multi-genre story that has proven appeal to fans of the crime, mystery, thriller, horror, romance and sci-fi genres,” he says. “It’s exactly what movie-goers are looking for. However, we are under no illusions how difficult it is to greenlight movies so we will be aligning ourselves with a major producer to get it across the line.”

The Morcans invite expressions of interest from experienced producers.

Meanwhile, they have posted a trailer to promote the book and film on YouTube. It can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8bv1vbQxYo

Silent Fear  is the Morcans’ eighth novel to be published under the Sterling Gate Books banner. Their other books include the international thriller series The Orphan Trilogy, and the historical adventures Into the Americas  and White Spirit – both based on true stories – and Fiji.

The Amazon.com link for Silent Fear  is: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075HRYTVC/

The Amazon UK link is: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B075HRYTVC/

 

Media enquires: Email the publisher at – SterlingGateBooks@gmail.com

 

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Fiji

Suva-based Film Fiji has confirmed in writing its commitment to support Morcan Motion Pictures in our efforts to adapt our historical adventure novel Fiji and develop it as a feature film. We welcome enquires from experienced producers interested in spearheading this production.

Fiji A Novel cover image

Set in 19th Century Fiji, the film will be based on our book Fiji: A Novel (The World Duology, #2), a spellbinding tale of adventure, cultural misunderstandings, religious conflict and sexual tension in one of the most exotic and isolated places on earth.

Since its publication as a trade paperback and Kindle ebook by New Zealand publisher Sterling Gate Books in 2011, Fiji has been a regular visitor to Amazon’s bestseller lists. With the strong themes of love running through what is essentially a fast-moving and sometimes violent adventure story, it appeals equally to males and females.

In June 2014, Fiji was selected by the prestigious international travel site TravelersToday.com as one of the ‘Top 10 Books to Read While Traveling’ –http://www.travelerstoday.com/articles/9566/20140421/books-read-traveling-top-10-location-history-based-travelers.htm

 

Fiji: A Novel (The World Duology, #2) is available via Amazon as a trade paperback or Kindle ebook: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0057YCZM0/

 

The storyline:

In the mid-1800’s, Fiji was a melting pot of cannibals, warring native tribes, sailors, traders, prostitutes, escaped convicts and all manner of foreign undesirables. It’s in this hostile environment that an innocent young Englishwoman and a worldly American adventurer find themselves. Despite their differences, there’s an undeniable chemistry between them. When their lives are suddenly endangered by marauding cannibals, they are forced to rely on each other for their very survival.

 

Book reviews:

Amazon reviewers have resonated with Fiji: A Novel. Here’s a sample of reviews:

★★★★★ Once I got into it, I was hooked.-The Kindle Book Review

★★★★★ “I finished this book a week ago, and the memory of Susannah and Nathan’s experiences in Fiji are still fresh in my mind. If you’re a fan of adventure, history, even romance, you’ll want to pick up a copy of Fiji: A Novel and brace yourself for the ride. It’s an intense story that will have you turning the pages long into the night.” –Susan M. Heim, author and editor of the bestselling ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ series.

★★★★★ A new voice in historical romance.” -Beverly J.Rowe

★★★★★ “As a Fijian, I find the old traditions of our people fascinating and just as great as they are crude and gruesome. The novel touches on most of these now extinct practices, in mad detail and it’s AWESOME! … Racial prejudice, religion, culture and family were the underlying messages … The adventure, fast-paced and nail biting … The romance, sizzling, exciting, forbidden … I give it 5 stars because that’s the maximum amount of stars we’re allowed to give.” -Random Writings Book Reviews (Suva, Fiji).

★★★★★ A bit of everything – sex, violence, humor, historic detail & plenty of twists.–‘Great Historicals’

 

Fiji film adaptation:

We wrote the novel and hold the film rights, and we have put Fiji into development through our production company Morcan Motion Pictures. Our producing role will likely be Executive Producers or similar with more experienced producers spearheading the production.

We plan to write a first draft screenplay adaptation of Fiji. This will be done under the director’s guidance according to his or her vision for the film. Meanwhile, the novel remains the best representation of the story. Obviously, a honed screenplay will be required before approaching any of the major studios.

 

Tagline:

In Fiji all things are paid in blood.

 

Genres:

Historical | Action-Adventure | Romance

 

Budget:

US$25 million.

 

IMDbPro listing:

https://pro-labs.imdb.com/title/tt1277129/?ref_=sch_int

 

Director:

To be confirmed. (Will be an A-List director with an impressive track record and with experience in studio features).

 

The shoot:

Eight weeks for Principal Photography.

 

 

Shooting locations:

Viti Levu, Fiji

Levuka, Ovalau Island, Fiji

 

Cast to be confirmed:

These actors are likely candidates for the following roles:

Nathan Johnson – Leonardo DiCaprio, Liam Hemsworth, Matt Damon, Channing Tatum

Susannah Drake – Scarlett Johansson, Keira Knightley, Kate Beckinsale

Brian Drake – Sam Neill, Tom Wilkinson, Brian Cox, Russell Crowe

Joeli – Cliff Curtis (Once Were Warriors)

Most of the other roles will be played by indigenous Fijian actors.

 

Projected Box Office Returns:

With a reasonable US$25M budget, Fiji the film has strong worldwide commercial potential. This feature is very much designed for a mainstream release and is in no way an arthouse or niche film.

Comparing similar period films in terms of themes and/or budgets – including The Passion, Dances with Wolves, Braveheart, Apocalypto, Last of the Mohicans – projected Box Office returns for Fiji have been estimated at US$208M. (This figure is for worldwide theatrical sales only and does not include DVD/TV sales).

 

Executive summary:

The uniqueness of Fiji the feature film will give it every chance of success. There have been very few films set in Fiji – Tom Hanks’ Cast Away and Vince Vaughn’s Couples Retreat being two notable recent exceptions.

Major tax exemptions and rebates are offered to foreign filmmakers filming in Fiji. (See below).

It’s our intention to approach the Fijian Tourism Board to ask them to consider advertising in conjunction with the film’s release – just as the Australian Tourism Board got behind the Nicole Kidman/Hugh Jackman movie Australia.

Because the film’s title is also the name of a country, there is a commercial opportunity to work in with the Fijian Government and thereby increase awareness of the film as well as Fiji as a destination. Working in with the Fijian Tourism Board, there is the potential for various promotions. (e.g. Everybody who buys a ticket to the movie is entered into a draw to win a trip to Fiji). This could be advertised on movie posters as well as the front cover of Fiji: A Novel. Obviously, basing a film on a bestselling novel provides added value.

 

     

 

Fiji tax exemptions and rebates for filmmakers

There are four main streams of audiovisual tax incentives offered by the Fiji Government and administered by Film Fiji in collaboration with the Fiji Revenue & Customs Authority (FRCA). These are detailed in the Sixth Schedule of the Income Tax Act as amended (‘Sixth Schedule’) which is available for download.

Briefly, the film incentives are as follows:

The Film Making Incentive- Part II of the 6th Schedule of the Income Tax Act- is available to non-resident film companies only. The film company applies to Film Fiji for a reduced rate or total exemption of tax on the income of its employees who a non-residents and who are in Fiji for the purpose of conducting a film or television production.

The F1/F2 Incentive are two streams of the same incentive. Both streams allow you (as a producer) to raise half of your production budget from Fiji investors. The Fiji Government incentivizes Fiji investors to invest in half (i.e. 46.5%) of the production budget for your film by offering them a tax deduction of 150 percent (for F1 Incentive) or 125 percent (for F2 Incentive). To qualify for F1, at least 50 percent of the running time of the end product film must show Fiji as Fiji. For F2, there is no requirement to show Fiji as Fiji.

Film Tax Rebate is a cash subsidy offered to fully funded productions that come to Fiji to film. The rebate is 47% of the Qualifying Fiji Production Expenditure (QFPE). The rebate is paid by the Fiji Government after a production is complete.

There are some fundamental rebate requirements, including: The Production Company must have a minimum Qualifying Fiji Production Expenditure of F$250,000 in Fiji; The film must not be culturally derogative in its portrayal of Fiji; The Production Company must ensure that the total productions budget is deposited in a Fiji bank account before production commences in Fiji; The Production Company must engage the services of Fiji citizens in the movie production; The Rebate will only be payable upon release of the film. The conditions for the release of the film are that the film is released in at least three other Countries; and the film is released in a prominent and internationally recognized cinema.

Full details of the filmmakers’ rebates are available at Film Fiji’s website at: http://www.film-fiji.com/pages.cfm/incentives/

 

Enquiries welcome:

We welcome expressions of interest from experienced producers interested in the Lead Producer role on this film and also from A-List directors interested in helming this production.

 

Product Details

Fiji

——————— Morcan Motion Pictures ——————— 

Our British thriller movie SILENT FEAR, to be shot in London in 2015, features this week in IF Magazine, the Down Under film industry chronicle. It highlights the recent attachment of Australian director Antony J. Bowman to helm the production.

Antony J. Bowman's primary photo

Director Antony J. Bowman

The article, by IF Magazine columnist Don Groves, follows (unabridged):

 

Aussie director attached to London-set thriller

[Fri 18/07/2014 4:32 PM]

By Don Groves

Antony J. Bowman is attached to direct Silent Fear, a London-set thriller which will star Kevin Sorbo.

It’s the first feature from New Zealand producers Ronel Schodt, managing director of Shotz Productions, and Brent Macpherson of Stretch Productions, through their Stretch Motion Pictures.

In an unusual twist, the female protagonist is fluent in sign language, and Macpherson is a Deaf director.

The plot revolves around Valerie Crowther (yet to be cast), a Scotland Yard detective whose mother was Deaf. Valerie is assigned to investigate the murder of a student at London’s Wandsworth University, a learning institution for the Deaf.

Sorbo will play Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Bennett, who is her ex-husband, meaning they have a difficult working relationship. Valerie’s arrival at Wandsworth University coincides with the death of a student from a deadly flu virus as the government closes the borders to prevent the entry of the virus which has caused tens of thousands of deaths elsewhere.

The screenplay is by Kiwi-born, Sydney-based writer/actor James Morcan and his father Lance Morcan. James Morcan suggested the producers hire Bowman, who directed Paperback Hero and now works in the US and UK.

His most recent feature was Almost Broadway, a drama about a group of struggling actors in New York who capitalise on their friend’s unexpected possession of an incriminating sex tape, which starred Cameron Daddo, Ella Bowman, Bernard Curry, Taryn Manning, Dov Davidoff and Currie Graham.

“Brent and I have been working together now for over a year producing promotional and commercials for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities,” said Schodt, who has two short films, Dog on Duty and Pigeons, screening at the New Zealand Festival.

“I believe that with the insight of having a Deaf director working with Ant Bowman in creating our claustrophobic world when the University for the Deaf is cut off from the rest of the world through the killer virus, we will have a unique film.

“I read up about Ant, had a couple of Skype calls and really made a connection. Brent went over to LA to meet him and also connected, hence his attachment.”

Script editor Tanya Wheeler is giving the screenplay a polish, and the producers hope to put the finance package together in the next six months.

“We would like to be filming end of 2015 in London. However there is always a possibility to shoot the film in New Zealand, now that we have our own attractive tax incentives,” she says.

“Once our script is finalised then we are 100% in search of Valerie, which will have to be an experienced lead actress to fill Valerie’s shoes, as well as learning sign language.”

Sorbo has worked steadily since his breakthrough in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. One of his recent films, low-budget, faith-based drama God’s Not Dead, has grossed more than $60 million in the US.

 

The SILENT FEAR screenplay was inspired by the murders of two deaf students at America’s prestigious Gallaudet University for the Deaf, in Washington. A report on the original crimes is detailed in our earlier blog at: https://morcanbooksandfilms.com/2013/08/27/silent-fear-feature-film-inspired-by-murders-at-gallaudet-university-for-the-deaf/

Gallaudet University (above). Gallaudet students sign in class (below).

And here’s our teaser trailer for SILENT FEAR: http://youtu.be/Ll9O9dedd44

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New poster for our feature film in release MY CORNERSTONE

MY CORNERSTONE will screen in cinemas in all major Australian cities from April 25 onwards and in New Zealand thereafter. Plus it will screen in India later this year and will also be dubbed/translated into the following Indian languages: Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu, Kannada & Konkani.

MY CORNERSTONE was filmed in Sydney, Australia and Mumbai, India with an Australian and Indian cast and crew. It is the first Indian-Aussie cross-cultural feature film in cinema history.

CREDITS:
Director: Stanley Joseph
Writers: James Morcan (screenplay), Stanley Joseph (story)
Stars: Zenia Starr, Romin Khan, James Morcan

IMDb listing: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2527256/

Logline: A young Indian nurse moves to Sydney where she’s placed in the household of a wealthy Indian-Australian family and given the task of caring for an elderly lady.

Runtime: 119 mins

Thanks for everybodys support.
James

De Niro (left) and Stallone put the gloves back on in ‘Grudge Match.’
Warner Bros’ GRUDGE MATCH, starring Stallone and De Niro as a pair of aging boxing rivals coaxed out of retirement, looks like a real hoot if the trailer’s anything to go by.
Also starring Kevin Hart, Kim Basinger and Alan Arkin, the Peter Segal helmed GRUDGE MATCH will hit theatres on December 25 – a timely Christmas present for all those ROCKY fans.
This comedy drama’s storyline revolves around retired boxers Billy “The Kid” McDonnen (De Niro) and Henry “Razor” Sharp (Stallone), lifelong bitter rivals who are coaxed out of retirement and into the ring for one final grudge match 30 years after their last title fight.
ROCKY vs RAGING BULL one industry commentator called it. Whatever…I predict it will be a hit.
The GRUDGE MATCH trailer is good for a laugh…           http://www.youtube.com/watchv=GQa2NxevFao
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Truthdig.com movie reviewer Richard Schickel reckons Woody Allen’s latest movie, “Blue Jasmine”, starring Cate Blanchett, is one of his best.

Woody Allen has done it again.

In a perceptive review in the Arts & Culture columns of that must-subscribe-to online site, Truthdig.com, Schickel says, “…this (film) is one of his best—sober, sometimes excoriating, likely lingering in its effect…People grow and change if they’re lucky. And Allen is, among other things, lucky. Imagine—77 years old and still making movies as good as “Blue Jasmine,” when most directors his age are out of work or collecting dubious awards.”

Excerpts of Schickel’s review follow:

When we meet Jasmine French (Cate Blanchett) at the beginning of Woody Allen’s new movie, she is, with the help of booze, pills and endless monologues, in distress. She is alarmingly close to a full-scale breakdown. By the end of “Blue Jasmine,” she has, of course, gone completely around the bend.

Blanchett as Jasmine French in Blue Jasmine.

It was not always like this with her. Once, not long ago, she was rich. Now she is reduced to living humbly with her sister Ginger (Sally Hawkins) in a very tight apartment. Once, the idea of working for a living could be dismissed with the wave of a careless hand. Now she’s lucky to have a job—at which she’s terrible—as a receptionist in a dentist’s office. Once, she had a glamorous marriage (to a splendidly slippery Alec Baldwin, no less). He has become a major actor, without anyone especially noticing how good he is.

Alec Baldwin “splendidly slippery”

The men who slide in and out of Jasmine’s life are a dismal lot. You can’t imagine any former life in which she would manage more than a few words of strained politeness with them. So what we have here are the makings of a great performance, which Blanchett delivers. I’m not someone who regularly proclaims Oscar nominations this early—or ever, for that matter. But this is one of them. She is, putting it mildly, strung tight—lost, quivering, a woman of interior and exterior dialogues aimed at getting a grip on herself. Sometimes it seems as if that may actually happen. But she always falls back in disarray.

It gives nothing away to say that the movie arrives at an end that you can pretty much see coming from its first reel. We leave her muttering to herself without a hope in hell of finding her way back to something like what? Not sanity, surely, because sanity has never been an issue with her. She’s really just an everyday neurotic, the kind of person you more or less avoid, if possible. Or to whom you give the shortest possible shrift. Blanchett is up for all of this. This is a wonderfully shifty performance—full of nervous laughter, devious strategies, no small amount of desperation, and moments of slightly eerie calm. There are also violent confrontations, which startle and discomfit you.

For the full review go to: http://www.truthdig.com/arts_culture/item/woody_allens_latest_shows_hes_still_got_it_20130802/

 

Woody Allen on the set of Blue Jasmine

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Our British thriller feature film SILENT FEAR was inspired by the murders of two deaf students at America’s prestigious Gallaudet University for the Deaf, in Washington, some 13 years ago.

Gallaudet University

It was a case that gripped America from the time of the first murder, in September 2000, until an arrest was made following the second murder some five months later. Washington Metropolitan Police didn’t know if it was an ‘inside job’ and for a time nearly everyone connected to Gallaudet was under suspicion.

Signing in class at Gallaudet

A copy of a 2001 CNN report on the murder investigation follows:

Suspect arrested in Gallaudet murders

February 13, 2001

WASHINGTON (CNN) — A suspect has been arrested in connection with the murders of two students at Gallaudet University, police said Tuesday.

Washington Metropolitan Police Chief Charles Ramsey said 20-year old Joseph Mesa, a freshman at the university for the deaf, was charged with two counts of felony murder for the deaths of Benjamin Varner, 19, whose body was found February 3, and Eric Plunkett, also 19, who was killed in September.

Ramsey said the motive for the murders was robbery.

“We have sufficient evidence to charge him with two counts of felony murder,” Ramsey said.

Mesa will be arraigned Wednesday in District of Columbia Superior Court.

Varner, of San Antonio, Texas, died of multiple stab wounds to his face and body. Plunkett, of Burnsville, Minnesota, was beaten to death. He suffered from cerebral palsy.

Dr. I. King Jordan, president of Gallaudet, said there is a sense of relief that the suspected killer has been caught.

“At the same time, there’s a real sense of sadness that the individual who is said to be responsible for this is from our community,” Jordan said.

Both students were killed in Cogswell Hall, which will remain closed for the remainder of the semester, university officials said. Mesa lived in the dorm next to Cogswell Hall.

Another killing occurred at Gallaudet in 1981, when a male student stabbed his boyfriend to death after a heated argument. The murderer was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Gallaudet, was founded partly by President Abraham Lincoln nearly 140 years ago.

When first heard about the murders, it inspired us to write the SILENT FEAR screenplay. We found the idea of a serial killer at large in a university for the Deaf chilling and we immediately recognized it was high concept and tailor-made for gripping cinematic viewing.

While SILENT FEAR could be set just about anywhere in the civilized world, we’ve chosen to set it in London. In the London borough of South Kensington to be exact. We believe the thriller genre suits London and this story has a very British feel to it. That said, we are confident it will appeal to audiences worldwide – both normal hearing and Deaf audiences.

Here’s the SILENT FEAR premise in brief:

Scotland Yard detective Valerie Crowther is assigned to investigate the murder of a student at London’s Wandsworth University for the Deaf. Her investigation coincides with a student contracting a deadly flu virus, which results in the university being sealed off from the outside world. When more deaf students are murdered, it’s clearly the work of a serial killer. The stakes rise when Valerie becomes the killer’s next target and the deadly virus claims more lives.

Here’s our teaser trailer for SILENT FEAR: http://youtu.be/Ll9O9dedd44

New Zealand producers Brent Macpherson, of Stretch Productions, and Ronel Schodt, of Shotz Productions, aim to shoot SILENT FEAR on location in London as a likely 3D production in 2014. They welcome expressions of interest from experienced British producers interested in collaborating on this highly commercial feature film project as well as from A-List directors interested in helming it.

http://pro.imdb.com/title/tt1935228/

http://stretchproductions.co.nz/

www.shotzproductions.co.nz

 

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