Film News Roundup: Kevin Hart, Tim Story Reunite on Superhero Comedy ‘Night Wolf’

Dave McNary

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In today’s film news roundup, Tim Story is in talks to direct Kevin Hart in “Night Wolf,” Michael Moore calls off this year’s Traverse City Film Festival, and New York’s Israel Film Center Festival goes virtual.

DIRECTOR ATTACHED

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STX Films is in final talks for director-producer Tim Story to re-team with Kevin Hart on the superhero comedy “Night Wolf.”

Story collaborated with Hart on both “Ride Along” movies and the two “Think Like a Man” titles. Hart came on to the “Night Wolf” project last year and will star and produce through his HartBeat Productions.

“Night Wolf,” written by “Detective Pikachu” screenwriters Dan Hernandez and Benji Samit, follows Hart’s character meeting his future father-in-law for the first time only to discover he is secretly the superhero known as the Night Wolf.

Should the deal make, Story will direct and produce through his production company, The Story Company. Sharla Sumpter Bridgett will executive produce. Story has directed nine major studio feature films, including the “Ride Along” and “Think Like a Man” movies,” Fantastic Four: Rise of The Silver Surfer,” “Fantastic Four,” “Barbershop” and the upcoming “Tom & Jerry” for Warner Bros. Pictures that will debut in 2021.

Hart starred with Bryan Cranston in “The Upside,” which grossed more than $100 million domestically for STX last year. Story is repped by UTA and Ziffren Brittenham. Hart is represented by 3 Arts Entertainment, UTA & and Schreck Rose Dapello Adams Berlin Dunham. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

FILM FESTIVALS

Michael Moore’s Traverse City Film Festival will postpone its 16th annual gathering until next year due to the precautions being taken around the coronavirus pandemic. Next year’s festival will be held July 27-Aug. 1, 2021.

The festival’s year-round theaters — the  State Theatre and the Bijou by the Bay — were shut down with all other theaters in Michigan on March 16 by order of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has not indicated when the theaters will be able to open.

“We know that the Traverse City community loves the movies, and we are determined to bring back films once the order is lifted and our own local health officials deem it to be safe,” said Moore, TCFF founder and president. “We want to assure our community that we will work with medical professionals to open our theaters when we are allowed to do so and will follow all safety and sanitation measures, including reconfiguring our ticketing and seating to conform to the social distancing protocols. First and foremost, we will work together to keep our community safe.”

The festival is keeping some virtual activities alive. Film fans can purchase exclusive streaming rentals, including some TCFF 2019 titles, through the State and Bijou websites, where a portion of the proceeds benefits the theaters.

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The Israel Film Center Festival has announced that its eighth edition will be a completely virtual experience this year, running June 7-14.

The festival will be presented online by the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan. Films will be available for 24 hours after their initial screening time and include Q&A discussions with filmmakers and talent. Tickets cost $8 per screening.

The festival’s opening night selection will be the New York premiere of Gur Bentwich’s comedy “Peaches and Cream,” in which a neurotic film director experiences a breakdown on the night his new film is released.

The lineup also includes Alon Gur Arye’s comedy, “Mossad,” in which a  tech billionaire is kidnapped, causing an international espionage competition between the Mossad and the CIA; Boaz Armoni’s comedy “The Electrifiers”; Erez Tadmor’s “The Art of Waiting”; Yaron Shani’s drama “Chained”; the documentary “There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv”; four episodes of the documentary “Dayan: The First Family”; and Dani Menkin’s documentary “Aulcie.”

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