Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Top 10 Takeaways: 'Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation' Opens Strong, But Summer 2015 Has Peaked Top 10 Takeaways: 'Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation' Opens Strong, But Summer 2015 Has Peaked Arthouse Audit: Controversy Reigns as 'End of the Tour' Tops Limited Newbies and Weinstein Dumps Jeunet's Latest Arthouse Audit: Controversy Reigns as 'End of the Tour' Tops Limited Newbies and Weinstein Dumps Jeunet's Latest Friday Box Office: Cruise and 'Mission: Impossible' Do Their Part, But Grosses Lag Friday Box Office: Cruise and 'Mission: Impossible' Do Their Part, But Grosses Lag Fall Calendar Reveals Awards Itinerary and Stealth Contenders Fall Calendar Reveals Awards Itinerary and Stealth Contenders Sarajevo Film Fest Lineup Has Auteurs, Cannes Winners and Favorites Sarajevo Film Fest Lineup Has Auteurs, Cannes Winners and Favorites Jason Segel Takes On David Foster Wallace in Controversial 'End of the Tour' (VIDEO) Jason Segel Takes On David Foster Wallace in Controversial 'End of the Tour' (VIDEO) First Look: Cynthia Nixon Plays—and Narrates—Emily Dickinson in Two Films First Look: Cynthia Nixon Plays—and Narrates—Emily Dickinson in Two Films Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) Read Martin Scorsese's Column on His Favorite Hollywood Leading Ladies Read Martin Scorsese's Column on His Favorite Hollywood Leading Ladies A Woman in Charge: Warner Bros. Names Sue Kroll Head of Global Distribution A Woman in Charge: Warner Bros. Names Sue Kroll Head of Global Distribution Netflix and Marvel Shake Up TCAs, Amazon Rescues Bryan Cranston Pilot Netflix and Marvel Shake Up TCAs, Amazon Rescues Bryan Cranston Pilot 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A)

McCormick Leaves WB to Produce as Studios Keep Trimming

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood October 19, 2009 at 8:40AM

Kevin McCormick is one of the good ones. He's got taste. He reads books. He cares about quality films for adults--the kind of movie that is in short supply these days because the studios aren't interested in making them anymore. McCormick is the head of production at Warner Bros., which lives and breathes franchise tentpoles, from Harry Potter to Batman.
1
Thompson on Hollywood

Kevin McCormick is one of the good ones. He's got taste. He reads books. He cares about quality films for adults--the kind of movie that is in short supply these days because the studios aren't interested in making them anymore. McCormick is the head of production at Warner Bros., which lives and breathes franchise tentpoles, from Harry Potter to Batman.

Today the studio announced that McCormick, a veteran in an industry aiming more and more of its product (and that's what it is these days) at kids, is taking a producing deal, effective January 1. Variety reports on his upcoming projects:

The first titles to be produced at McCormick's production company are "Dead Spy Running," adapted by Stephen Gaghan; "The Lucky One," to be directed by Doug McGrath and produced by Denise Di Novi; "Arthur," with producers Larry Bresner and Chris Bender; and an untitled project with writer Eric Roth.

Make note of the fact that like the other studios who have recently let go of top executives (who are costly), McCormick is not being replaced. Studio president Jeff Robinov, who had the job before him, is taking over some of his duties and reassigning others to his also-very-expensive production staff.

The studios are cutting back on production. And they don't need as many execs. THIS IS WHERE IT'S GOING FOLKS. Expect trims and more trims in the coming months as the studios continue to downsize.

One of the movies I had always hoped that McCormick would somehow get made is Ernest Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls. It would have starred Leonardo DiCaprio under the direction of Michael Mann. That's just the kind of movie that's in permanent limbo these days, stalled by a studio system that would make it too expensively for the potential returns--unless Mann and DiCaprio were willing to play in the indie sector. But wait, Warners has no indie division, they slashed all three of their indie-oriented subsidiaries, Warner Independent, Picturehouse and New Line, which is now a glorified production label.

The truly disturbing thing, as folks like McCormick leave the studios--and he actually helped to push through films such as Tim Burton's Sweeney Todd (with DreamWorks), The Corpse Bride and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Ed Zwick's Blood Diamond and The Last Samurai, Chris Nolan's Insomnia, Steve Gaghan's Syriana, and the lit adaptations White Oleander and The Perfect Storm--is the movies that Hollywood simply won't make anymore.



E-Mail Updates








Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.