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Film News Roundup: ‘Three Identical Strangers’ Feature Adaptation Taps ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Writer

Dave McNary

In today’s film news roundup, “Three Identical Strangers” is moving ahead, Skeet Ulrich has been cast with Tom Hanks, the “Minions” sequel has been titled and “Vegas Dave” is getting a movie.

MCCARTEN ATTACHED

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“Bohemian Rhapsody” screenwriter Anthony McCarten will write and produce the feature adaptation of the documentary “Three Identical Strangers.”

Raw, Film4 and Sidney Kimmel Entertainment announced the project last year, based on the story of Robert Shafran, David Kellman and Eddy Galland, three complete strangers who inadvertently discover that they are identical triplets separated at birth. McCarten was nominated for an Academy Award for writing and producing “The Theory of Everything” and producing “Darkest Hour.”

Raw’s original documentary feature “Three Identical Strangers” premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and was awarded the Special Jury Prize for Documentary Storytelling. It grossed over $12 million at the US box office and won the DGA Award for Documentary.

McCarten will produce the feature film along with Raw’s Katherine Butler and Dimitri Doganis and SKE’s Sidney Kimmel and John Penotti. The news was first reported by Deadline.

CASTINGS

Amblin Partners has added Skeet Ulrich (“Escape Room”) and Laura Harrier (“BlacKkKlansman”) to the cast of Tom Hanks’ dystopian drama “Bios.”

The company announced Tuesday that it has concluded principal photography on the film, which was shot primarily in locations across New Mexico. The film is directed by Miguel Sapochnik (“Game of Thrones”) from a script by Craig Luck and Ivor Powell.

Hanks portrays a scientist who is one of the only survivors of a cataclysmic event that has left America, and the world, a wasteland ravaged by solar radiation. He builds a robot to keep his beloved dog safe.

Previously announced cast members are Caleb Landry Jones and Samira Wiley. Producers are Kevin Misher, Jack Rapke and Jackie Levine. Sapochnik exec produces with Robert Zemeckis,  Sapochnik, Adam Merims, Luck, and Andy Berman.

MINIONS TITLE

Universal Pictures and Illumination have titled their “Minions” sequel as “Minions: The Rise of Gru” and have kept the previously announced release date of July 3, 2020.

The first “Minions” was released in 2015 and grossed $1.16 billion worldwide as a spinoff to the “Despicable Me” franchise with Steve Carrell voicing Gru. “Minions” was directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda, written by Brian Lynch, and produced by Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy.

“Minions” also included the voices of Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney, Steve Coogan, and Jennifer Saunders.

DOCUMENTARY UNDERWAY

Producers Tatiana Kelly of Serena Films and Jim Young of Animus Films have launched production on a documentary about sports bettor David Oancea, Variety has learned exclusivley.

Jake Goldberger is directing the project, titled “The People Vs. Vegas Dave.” Oancea, who was indicted three years ago for 19 felonies, was sentenced this week to 150 hours of community service and banned from Las Vegas sportsbooks for three years.

Oancea, better known as “Vegas Dave,” resolved the case by admitting this year to causing a violation of record keeping and procedures. He also agreed to relinquish more than $550,000 in a related civil forefeiture.

“We are following the highs and lows of one of the most iconic sports bettors and marketing geniuses in the world,” Goldberger said.

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