MadRiver Pictures announced today that Mark Romanek (NEVER LET ME GO) is in final negotiations to direct NORCO. MadRiver Pictures will finance and produce the actioner, which is based off a script written by Adair Cole (SAN PATRICIOS). Producers are Marc Butan and Mason Novick (JUNO, RICKI AND THE FLASH) with Edward Fee (THE LAST STAND) executive producing, and Michelle Knudsen (500 DAYS OF SUMMER) co-producing.
NORCO is inspired by the true story of a 1980 North Corona, California bank robbery and manhunt. The robbers were heavily armed with assault rifles, shotguns and pipe bombs. The subsequent shootout and high speed chase was the most violent in American history, and resulted in the destruction of over 30 police cruisers, the downing of a police helicopter and countless injuries. The famed shootout changed law enforcement forever and resulted in officers arming themselves with automatic weapons, the first step in today’s militarization of the police.
MadRiver’s Marc Butan said: “Adair wrote a script that tells this story with a raw, almost matter-of-fact intensity that it makes you feel like you are there. Adding Mark to the mix brings it all home, as he is one of the few filmmakers out there who provides the visual style this piece calls for but also gets the performances from actors.
Director Mark Romanek is represented by CAA and LBI Entertainment, and writer Adair Cole is represented by UTA and MXN Entertainment.
Butan launched MadRiver Pictures in Cannes following an initial capitalization from a round of private and strategic investors and a $30 million revolving equity investment from Vendian Entertainment. The company plans to finance and produce a broad slate of 3-4 wide release films per year in the $15-50 million budget range.
The existing MadRiver Pictures production slate includes: A WILLING PATRIOT starring Liam Neeson, which recently was acquired by Open Road Films; John Hillcoat’s TRIPLE 9 starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Casey Affleck, Woody Harrelson, Kate Winslet, Aaron Paul and Anthony Mackie, which will also be released by Open Road on September 11, 2015; Burr Steers’ PRIDE & PREJUDICE & ZOMBIES starring Lily James, Sam Riley, Jack Huston and Lena Headey, based on Seth Grahame-Smith’s bestselling novel, which will be released by Screen Gems on February 19, 2016 and James Gray’s THE LOST CITY OF Z starring Charlie Hunnam, which begins principal photography in August.