Tuesday, August 13, 2013

“Chicken Soup for the Soul” Becomes Movie


Warner Bros. based Alcon Entertainment Developing The Iconic Brand, 
Chicken Soup for the Soul, as a Major Theatrical Feature 
With The Kerner Entertainment Company

LOS ANGELES, CA., AUGUST 8, 2013—Alcon Entertainment (“The Blind Side,” “Dolphin Tale,” “P.S. I Love You”) has acquired film and television rights to the famed Chicken Soup for the Soul brand from Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC, as was announced by Alcon cofounders and co-CEOs Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove.

Alcon is set to finance and produce a major feature film that shares the brand’s name, “Chicken Soup for the Soul.” The film will be produced by The Kerner Entertainment Company and its principal Jordan Kerner (“The Smurfs 1&2”, “Charlotte’s Web,” “George of the Jungle,” “Fried Green Tomatoes,” and many others) along with Johnson and Kosove.

Writer Brandon Camp (“Love Happens”) will write the screenplay, which is inspired by a variety of characters and stories from the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” series. Warner Bros will release via Alcon’s output deal.

The film will be Executive Produced by Ben Haber (“The Smurfs,” “Across the Universe”), Bill Rouhana and Tim Rouhana (“The Path of Most Resistance”) with Kate Moulene set as coproducer.

Stated Kosove and Johnson: “We’re thrilled to partner with ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul,’ the world renowned brand that has become synonymous with inspiration and life improvement and has touched hundreds of millions of readers through the power of storytelling. The ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ series lends itself perfectly to a fictional narrative that will inspire, entertain and intrigue.”

Kerner added: “I have so much respect for the brand Bill Rouhana has built and continues to build and accelerate at Chicken Soup for the Soul. It is based on inspiration from true life stories, an inspiration which is much needed in the world today, as well as a set of beliefs that I hold near and dear.”

Originally created by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen in 1993, Chicken Soup for the Soul has evolved into a worldwide multi-channel brand now stewarded by publisher Amy Newmark and expanded by veteran CEO Bill Rouhana.

“On the 20th anniversary of our first book, I’m delighted to go back to my roots by adding movies and television to the variety of servings that Chicken Soup for the Soul offers. Our fans and readers trust us as their source for positive and moving stories and they’re hungry for more. It would be a disservice to them not to bring ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ to life in film. I know that Alcon, Kerner and Camp are the right partners to make that happen,” said Bill Rouhana CEO of Chicken Soup for the Soul.

Deal was negotiated by Alcon’s COO Scott Parish, and attorneys Scott Edel (Loeb & Loeb) for Alcon, Chuck Scott (Gang Tyre) for Kerner, Peter Dekom forChicken Soup for the Soul and Paradigm agent, Rand Holston, who represents both Kerner and Chicken Soup for the Soul.

ABOUT CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC, publishes the famous “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series. In 2007, USA Today named “Chicken Soup for the Soul” one of the five most memorable books in the last quarter century. With over 100 million books sold to date in the U.S. and Canada alone, almost 250 titles in print and translations into more than 40 languages, “chicken soup for the soul” is one of the world’s best-known phrases. Today, 20 years after it first began sharing readers’ experiences, Chicken Soup for the Soul continues to provide extraordinary stories through its new books but has also evolved beyond the bookstore. Chicken Soup for the Soul is known for high quality products including wholesome and balanced pet food that recognizes the unique relationship between pets and people and a new line of delicious
nutritious comfort food inspired by the connection between food and feelings. Chicken Soup for the Soul is “always there for you™.” For more information visit www.chickensoup.com

Alcon Entertainment co-founders and co-CEO's Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson founded the Company in 1997 with financial backing from Frederick W. Smith, the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of FedEx. Alcon, which is named after a mythological archer and ally of Hercules, has financed, and/or co-financed/produced over 19 films, including “My Dog Skip,” “Dude, Where’s My Car?”, “Insomnia,” “Racing Stripes,” the Academy Award nominated Best Picture “The Blind Side,” which earned Sandra Bullock a Best Actress Oscar; “The Book of Eli,” starring Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman; “Insomnia,” starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams, and Hilary Swank and directed by Chris Nolan; “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” “P.S. I Love You,” starring Hilary Swank, and the box-office success “Dolphin Tale,” a 3-D family film starring Morgan Freeman, Harry Connick Jr., Ashley Judd and Kris Kristofferson.

Alcon’s next film “Prisoners,” is a dramatic film about abduction directed by Denis Villeneuve starring Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhall, Viola Davis, Melissa Leo, Terrance Howard and Paul Dano. It will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and be released wide via Alcon’s output deal with Warner Bros. on September 20, 2013. They recently wrapped production on Wally Pfister's directorial debut "Transcendence" starring Johnny Depp, Paul Bettany, Rebecca Hall and Morgan Freeman among others.

Currently, Alcon is working with Ridley Scott and Hampton Fancher on developing a follow up to the iconic science fiction thriller “Blade Runner,” to which they acquired all-inclusive franchise rights. The filmmakers will reveal only that the new story will take place some years after the first film concluded. Scott will direct. Fancher will write.

ABOUT THE KERNER ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY Mr. Kerner most recently produced the live action/CG animation hybrid The Smurfs 2 for Columbia Pictures, which was released earlier this month opening as the #1 film in the worldwide box office. It retained the same cast members as its predecessor, including the addition of Brendan Gleeson, Christina Ricci, JB Smooth, Jimmy Kimmel, Shaquille O’Neal, Sean White, Mario Lopez, and Kevin Lee for this grand adventure in Paris. It was the sequel to The Smurfs, released in 2011, which grossed over $550 Million Worldwide. Neil Patrick Harris, Hank Azaria, Jayma Mays, and Sofia Vergara took live action roles in this adaptation of the classic books by Peyo. Voice talent included Jonathan Winters, Katy Perry, George Lopez, Fred Armisen, Alan Cumming, Anton Yelchin, Jeff Foxworthy, Keenan Thompson, Paul Reubens, Wolfgang Puck, and Jon Oliver. It was directed by Raja Gosnell.

Kerner previously produced a faithful live action adaptation of the revered E.B. White book Charlotte’s Web for a Holiday 2006 release. It was written by Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovich) and Karey Kirkpatrick (Chicken Run). The late Gary Winick (Letters to Juliette, 13 Going on 30) directed the film. It starred Dakota Fanning as Fern. The animated voice cast included Julia Roberts, Oprah Winfrey, Robert Redford, Kathy Bates, John Cleese, Steve Buscemi, and Thomas Hayden Church.

Aside from The Smurfs 1&2 and Charlotte’s Web, Kerner’s previous films include such titles as Snow Dogs, George of the Jungle 1 and 2, Inspector Gadget 1 and 2, Red Corner, Up Close and Personal, The Mighty Ducks trilogy, When a Man Loves a Woman, Fried Green Tomatoes, The War, and Less than Zero.
Kerner’s next production will be SMURFS 3 in the winter of 2014 and ALF for Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation and an assortment of projects at various studios.