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J.J. Abrams & Billy Ray Sell Mystery Adventure Pitch To Paramount

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist October 4, 2011 at 2:42AM

While pundits wondered if J.J. Abrams could really keep the monster and mystery at the core of "Super 8" under lock and key until it hit theaters, and still draw a mainstream audience to a film with no name stars that was largely sold on the Steven Spielberg association, the proof was in the pudding. Earning over $250 million worldwide, Abrams proved that not all summer blockbusters need to be preceded by endless clips and posters, and moreover, moviegoers are willing to go into a movie a little bit blind if the payoff is worth their time and money.
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While pundits wondered if J.J. Abrams could really keep the monster and mystery at the core of "Super 8" under lock and key until it hit theaters, and still draw a mainstream audience to a film with no name stars that was largely sold on the Steven Spielberg association, the proof was in the pudding. Earning over $250 million worldwide, Abrams proved that not all summer blockbusters need to be preceded by endless clips and posters, and moreover, moviegoers are willing to go into a movie a little bit blind if the payoff is worth their time and money.

So, while Deadline is reporting that Paramount has acquired a pitch by Abrams and screenwriter Billy Ray, it's not a surprise that any other details are firmly under wraps for now. Ray will write the script and we presume Abrams will at least be producing through his Bad Robot shingle and perhaps eyeing it as a potential directorial vehicle. But what is it? No one really knows just yet, and it will probably be a while before we get any more concrete updates on it as both are very busy.

Abrams, who has a million things going on at any given moment since he has feet planted in both the movie and television worlds, is currently prepping "Star Trek 2" for a late 2012 or early 2013 release. Meanwhile Ray is working with Channing Tatum, writing that Peter Pan prequel that was picked up by Sony, and he's still attached to "The Secret In Their Eyes" remake, for which producers recently offered the lead to Denzel Washington.

At any rate, Paramount are very pleased with Abrams and continue to endorse his creativity and accede to his demands to do things his way (if you remember, he refused to deliver "Star Trek 2" in time for its previously scheduled July 29, 2012 release date). And as long he keeps having this kind of success, he won't need to play by anybody's rules but his own.

This article is related to: Film Studios, Billy Ray, Paramount


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