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Director Kenny Ortega Puts The Brakes On Talks About MJ ‘Thriller’ Adaptation

Director Kenny Ortega Puts The Brakes On Talks About MJ 'Thriller' Adaptation

Sam Elliott Says He Knows Nothing About J. Jonah Jameson Talk, Katherine Heigl’s ‘Adaline’ Goes To Summit & More

They’re going to make a feature-length film out of Michael Jackson‘s music video “Thriller” (directed by John Landis) and Kenny Ortega — who directed “Michael Jackson’s This Is It” tour documentary — is going to helm it, right? Mmm, maybe not so much.

“[The story] got put out there before I’ve even really had a chance to think about it too much,” Ortega told EW. “It is still in very, very early stages of development. The [Michael Jackson] estate would have to sign off on it. I have been a part of some early creative meetings and if all goes well, I think it could happen in the next couple of years.”

Does he worry about tarnishing the impact of the iconic music video? Yes and no. “Michael used to say to me that there is nothing to be afraid of and fear just gets in the way anyway,” he said. “We were very good friends. I miss him. And I would never do anything to ruin his memory or one of his creations. But like I said, it is so early, so who knows what will materialize?”

So yeah, looks like another (Deadline) report has been over-exaggerated (they’ve been doing that lately). Other trade news we’re too lazy, or too disinterested, to write up in full is below the jump.

Bob Berney‘s FilmDistrict company has picked up the rights its first film, “Soul Surfer,” starring Dennis Quaid, AnnaSophia Robb and Helen Hunt. Here’s your first look and it’s now set for April 15, 2011 release [IndieWire]

Beyoncé is directing her own concert movie and it will premiere on Thanksgiving on ABC. [Vulture]

Summit Entertainment has picked up rights to Katherine Heigl‘s turn-of-the-20th-century romantic drama “Adaline” about a strangely ageless young woman who falls in love after years of isolation [THR]

Sam Elliott says he hasn’t been contacted about the rumored J. Jonah Jameson role in “‘Spider-Man” yet. As per usual that’s because Elliott is probably just on a wish-list list that leaked early and before his agent or any kind of offer or overture could be extended. A wish list is nothing more than a, “wouldn’t it be cool if?” idea from the studio. Often they don’t pan out, sometimes they do. [Zap2it]

Mike Fleiss, producer of “Hostel: Part III,” and “Shark Night 3D,” is plotting a feature biopic of Richard O’Barry, the dolphin crusader featured in the Oscar-winning documentary, “The Cove.” Must mean Fleiss is looking to reduce his awful:good ratio output in the universe. [Deadline]

Who needs screenwriters when you have agents? ICM agent, David Styne, who did 17 years at CAA actually learned something on his job: how to be creative. He’s sold a comedy script called, “Carnival!” and is basically calling it quits on his agency career to start a screenwriting one. [Deadline]

German filmmaker Wim Wenders is considering a film about priest abuse. That’s interesting. We’re considering calling it quits for the day, like tout suite. We love his classics, but can anyone remember the last time Wenders made a film worth talking about? Aw, the good ol’ days. [Yahoo]

You might have heard reports that James Cameron and his “Terminator“/”True Lies” star Arnold Schwarzenegger were going to team-up and announce a new “project.” Well, they did that alright. The fruit of that is is an awkward, pro-environment PSA against Prop 23, a “dirty energy” proposition. [NYMag]

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