As in their prior collaborations, Bigelow will direct the film from a script by Boal; joining them as producers are Ellison and her Annapurna colleague Matthew Budman. The “Untitled Detroit Project,” a crime drama set during the Detroit riots of 1967, is set to begin casting in the next few months, in advance of principal photography this summer. No studio is attached at this point, but the plan is to release the film in 2017, the 50th anniversary of the riots.
Via Annapurna’s partnership with Boal on the company Page One, the two parties are already in the midst of a collaboration: the second season of the blockbuster podcast “Serial,” which features Boal’s audiotaped conversations with American serviceman Bowe Bergdahl — who walked off his base in Afghanistan in 2009 and ended up in Taliban captivity for five years, before being released in May 2014. Bigelow worked with Annapurna most recently on her animated short “Last Days,” about illegal elephant poaching and the ivory trade.
The “Untitled Detroit Project” joins Annapurna’s healthy slate, which includes both forthcoming releases — Todd Solondz’s “Wiener-Dog,” which Amazon picked up out of Sundance; Richard Linklater’s “Everybody Wants Some” (Paramount, April 15), which will premiere at SXSW — and in-the-works projects from the the likes of Ana Lily Amirpour, Mike Mills, and Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.