World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., Begins Pre-Production On Its Third Feature Film, "The Condemned," Starring Stone Cold Steve Austin And Vinnie Jones
STAMFORD, Conn., April 20, 2006 – World Wrestling Entertainment® (WWE) has begun pre-production on its third film, “The Condemned,” which will be distributed theatrically by Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), the leading independent filmed entertainment studio, it was announced today by Joel Simon, President, WWE Films, and Peter Block, Lionsgate’s President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions.
The film will star WWE’s Stone Cold Steve Austin and Vinnie Jones (“Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels,” “X-Men: The Last Stand”) and will be directed by Scott Wiper, who also wrote the screenplay from an original script by Rob and Andrew Hedden. “The Condemned” will commence principal photography on May 15, 2006, on location on the Gold Coast, Australia and at the Warner Roadshow Studios in Australia. Block will oversee the production for Lionsgate, along with Jason Constantine, Vice President, Acquisitions and John Sacchi, Vice President, Production.
The production follows WWE’s two previous feature productions, “See No Evil,” the horror thriller starring WWE Superstar Kane, which will be released by Lionsgate nationwide on May 19; and “The Marine,” which will be released by 20th Century Fox on September 8. “The Condemned” is produced by Simon and executive produced by Vince McMahon, Chairman, World Wrestling Entertainment and Michael Lake. Jed Blaugrund is co-executive producer and Ross Emery (“The Cave”) will serve as the director of photography.
“I am passionate about our WWE Films division and am thrilled to announce ‘The Condemned’ as the third feature film on our slate,” said McMahon. “Joel and his team are going into production on an action-packed, adrenaline pumping, psychological thrill ride.”
“We're delighted be filming in Australia once again,” said Simon. “We always find a wealth of very talented people over there, as well as some extraordinary locations. The settings will add to the look and feel of this high-octane action thriller.”
Block added, “Stone Cold Steve Austin, Vinnie Jones and the rest of the cast will blow audiences away. This film has a great story, extreme action and hard core heart. We very much look forward to working with the WWE for the second time to bring the film to moviegoers.”
An adrenalin-charged action thriller, “The Condemned” tells the story of Joe Conrad (Stone Cold Steve Austin), who is awaiting the death penalty in a corrupt Central American prison. He is “purchased” by a wealthy television producer and taken to a desolate island where he must fight to the death against nine other condemned killers from all corners of the world, with freedom going to the sole survivor.
About The Cast and Filmmakers
Stone Cold Steve Austin is one of the best-known and most successful wrestlers of all time. As an actor he has appeared in “The Longest Yard” and played Detective Jake Cage in the television series “Nash Bridges.”
Vinnie Jones first came to attention with his breakthrough performance in Guy Ritchie’s “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.” The former English soccer star most recently completed filming “X-Men: The Last Stand.” Other credits include “Swordfish,” “Gone In Sixty Seconds” and “Slipstream.”
Director/writer Scott Wiper is a graduate of Wesleyan University where his thesis film won the prestigious Frank Capra Prize for Best Student Film. In 1996 he wrote and directed his first feature “Captain Jack” and then in 2000 “A Better Way to Die,” which was financed by Newmarket and acquired by Sony Screen Gems and HBO. "A Better Way to Die" has since developed a cult following. Wiper recently wrote two scripts for Warner Bros: “Salvation” for veteran director Walter Hill and Silver Pictures and “Salvaged Lives” for Outlaw Productions. He also penned “Day for Night,” based on his original pitch sold to Hyde Park/MGM, with Lion Rock Productions and Vince Newman producing.
Lionsgate is the leading independent filmed entertainment studio. Fresh off the number one box office hits “Saw II,” “Hostel” and “Madea’s Family Reunion” and the Best Picture Academy Award ® -winning “Crash,” Lionsgate is a premier producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment and video-on-demand content. It has earned 25 Academy Award ® nominations and seven Oscar ® wins in the past seven years, more than any other independent studio. Its prestigious and prolific library of more than 5000 titles is a valuable source of recurring revenue and a foundation for the growth of the Company’s core businesses. The Lionsgate brand is synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the globe.
About World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc
World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. is an integrated media and entertainment company headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Toronto and London.
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