In what is being called the largest deal in history between studios, financiers and comic book producers, independent comic book company Platinum Studios will see a number of its properties go to the big screen through New York-based Gold Circle Films. Under the $200 million, multi-project agreement, 10 motion pictures will be developed around characters from Platinum Studios’ library.
Gold Circle production exec Zak Kadison brought the Platinum Studios deal to the company, where he will oversee production with Paul Brooks, president of Gold Circle Films. The first four projects are Seen, a thriller about a photographer who finds himself stalked after accidentally photographing a crime; Casting Shadows, a psychological thriller about a group of friends whose seemingly harmless magical games turn serious when one of them turns up dead; Book of Mercury, based on the comic book stories by Alan Moore about a magical book with the power to rewrite the future; and In Law and Order, an action-comedy about an FBI agent forced to team up with his tough cop dad and his mother-in-law, a fiery liberal judge.
The four projects will begin production as early as 2005 with Brooks and Platinum’s chairman, Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, producing. Gold Circle’s Norm Waitt and Scott Niemeyer will exec produce.
Rosenberg comments, "With this $200 million fund from Gold Circle, there are no layers. We find a project and talent and can be in production within a year. From a financial standpoint, we participate at every level in a real way. Gold Circle has crafted a very forward thinking deal, and it is the first one of its kind that we have accepted, even though we’ve been approached with others."
Founded by Rosenberg in 1997, Platinum Studios is known for comic-to-film adaptations and currently has features in development with Sony Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, Miramax Films and DreamWorks, among others. In addition, Rosenberg’s Malibu Comics has the Men in Black franchise at Sony.
Gold Circle Films, which is backed by Gateway Computers billionaire Norm Waitt, previously released My Big Fat Greek Wedding, the highest-grossing romantic comedy of all time. The company recently signed a first-look distribution arrangement with Universal Pictures. The first releases from this deal will be the thriller, White Noise, starring Michael Keaton. It opens nationwide January 7, followed by the February 4 theatrical release of the Debra Messing romantic comedy, The Wedding Date.