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Cate Blanchett and an alien invasion

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Good morning: In today’s edition of The Industry, we look at:

Adrien Brody gets bruised, Sydney Sweeney gets bloody. Glen Powell Michael Clayton. Bundles! And a backpacking trip.

Let’s go!


Cate Blanchett is ready to conquer the Earth.

She is set to star in Alpha Gang, the latest in absurdist cinema from The Zellner Brothers (dir: Sasquatch Sunset).

Here’s the official synopsis:

Alien leader Alpha One and her crew disguise themselves as an armed and dangerous 1950s leather-clad biker gang to invade Earth. Their conquest plan derails when they experience the most toxic, contagious human disease of all: emotion.

Blanchett stated that the film:

“[Has] created a far out world in order to lampoon something much closer to home: the hilarious, absurd, and peculiar truth of the human condition.”

Blanchett’s recent roles have been tinged with an absurd lack of human emotion:

  • Tár (2022)
    • Cruel Maestro whose internal rhythm elicits terror
  • Don’t Look Up (2021)
    • Phony talks show host who takes pleasure in knowing humanity is doomed
  • Nightmare Alley (2021)
    • A psychologist who betrays Bradley Cooper

We couldn’t be more excited to see how she extrapolates these traits into this new role. Maybe it’ll be tinged with the poetic emptiness of Scarlett Johansson’s alien in Under the Skin.

Alpha Gang is launching at Cannes.

For More:

Blanchett’s trifecta of human cruelty:

Tar (2022). Meltdown clip.

Don’t Look Up (2021). Clip.

Nightmare Alley (2021). Clip.


The biggest bundle of 2024 has arrived. Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery will bundle their trio of streaming services:

  • Disney+
    • Pixar
    • Marvel
    • Searchlight
  • Hulu
  • Max
    • HBO
    • Warner Bros.
    • CNN

These bundles are largely motivated by declining revenue and decreasing subscriber bases. The trickle-down value to consumers is paying less for vaster amounts of content.

The bundling trend accelerated in 2023:

  • Verizon combined Netflix and Max
  • Disney bundled Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+
  • Paramount+ and Showtime streaming services merged

The Disney+, Hulu, and Max bundle will launch in the summer.

AMC Theaters Q1 Revenue. Here are the gains and losses:

  • $163.5 M net loss
    • $182 M loss Q4 2023
    • $235 M loss Q1 2023
  • $17.5 M debt reduction

Summer blockbusters like Despicable Me 4 (July 3, 2024) and Deadpool & Wolverine (July 26, 2024) may continue to help AMC reduce its losses.

Range Media Partners is expanding with four new hires. The management/production company has a strong pedigree:

  • Management talent
    • Luca Guadagnino (dir: Challengers)
    • Tom Hardy
    • Colin Farrell
  • Production Company
    • Longlegs (2024), starring Nicolas Cage
    • Babes (2024), starring Ilana Glazer

Here are two key hires:

  • Tahira Aiana (Manager in Film & TV)
    • Previous clients: Halle Berry, Serena Williams
  • Jay Baker (Film Lit)
    • Previous clients: Lee Isaac Chung, Oliver Stone, Duncan Jones
    • Outsted from CAA in 2021

This expansion comes after a significant investment in their business.

One of the challenges of a blended management/production company is having two masters to serve. But with talent like Fred Berger (producer: La La Land) and Brian Kavanaugh Jones (producer: Midnight Special) leading their Film division, we think they’ll crush it.


Adrien Brody is about to get bruised. He leads The Bookie & the Bruiser with Vince Vaughn in a role that shares DNA with his character in The Pianist.

Here’s the official synopsis:

1959. New York. Two WWII veterans, Rivner, a pensive Jewish man (Brody), and Boscolo, an oversized tough Italian-American (Vaughn), struggle to readjust to life after returning from war. The two friends partner up as a bookmaker and an enforcer and create an illicit gambling operation that proves to be very profitable, though risky, when they find themselves stuck between a powerful Irish gang and the Mafia.

Brody is a savant at encapsulating broken souls with special talents, as evidenced in:

It’s exciting to see Brody slip back into a character that fits into this schema.

And with the help of The Bookie & the Bruiser producer Anthony Katagas (Uncut Gems, Ad Astra, 12 Years a Slave), we hope it’ll rank with his most iconic roles.

The film is fully financed and will launch at Cannes; UTA Independent Film Group and Range Media Partners will serve as the domestic sales reps.

Shooting fall 2024.

Dudley Dursley dominated. Harry Melling is probably best known for being Harry Potter’s fat muggle bully of a cousin, Dudley. Melling has slimed down in recent years and landed critically acclaimed roles in The Pale Blue Eye (2022) and The Queen’s Gambit (2020).

Melling will be playing the love interest of Alexander Skarsgård in Pillion.

Here’s a summary:

Colin, a timid man (Melling), meets Ray (Skarsgård), a confident biker gang leader, who initiates him into a submissive relationship, challenging Colin’s mundane existence and prompting personal growth through their unconventional dynamic.

The film will chronicle Ray introducing Colin into this queer culture bike gang and will test their new relationship as a dom and a submissive.

Witness Harry Melling’s Dramatic Journey:

Melling’s wonderful gesticulations across from Christian Bale in the above The Pale Blue Eye clip make me think Pillion will be alluringly energetic.

Pillion will launch at Cannes and start filming this summer.


Renate Reinsve, best actress winner at Cannes for The Worst Person in The World (2021), stars in the Norwegian film Handling the Undead. The film premiered at Sundance 2024.

Official synopsis:

On a hot summer day in Oslo, the newly dead awaken. Three families faced with loss try to figure out what this resurrection means and if their loved ones really are back.

The trailer is unforgivingly enthralling. And my favorite of the edition.

Neon is releasing on May 31st in NY and June 7th in LA.

Sydney Sweeney gets bloody… again. She will play Christy Martin, e.g., the female Rocky, in Itching To Start Training, directed by David Michôd (Animal Kingdom).

Sweeney stated:

“I grappled and did kickboxing from 12-19 years old. I’ve been itching to get back into the ring, train, and transform my body. Christy’s story isn’t a light one, it’s physically and emotionally demanding, there’s a lot of weight to carry. But I love challenging myself.”

Sweeney has done nothing but excel in physically demanding roles, from her breakout role in Euphoria (2019-2022) to the recent Immaculate (2024).

The project will launch at Cannes.

First look photo of Natalie Portman as a 60s housewife turned investigative journalist in Apple TV+’s Lady in the Lake, set to premiere in July and directed by the talented Alma Har’el (Honey Boy).

Alicia Vikander is trying not to get beheaded in Firebrand (trailer). She plays the 6th wife of the tyrannical King Henry VIII (played by Jude Law in a remarkable transformation, still). Release date: June 14.


Cannes Market:

  • The Long Walk
    • Production Company: Lionsgate
    • Based on the Stephen King book
    • Dir: Francis Lawrence (Hunger Games series, I Am Legend)


A group of teenage boys compete in an annual contest known as “The Long Walk,” where they must maintain a certain walking speed or get shot.

  • Bear Country
    • Starring: Russell Crowe
    • Dir: Derrick Borte (Unhinged)
    • Sales Rep: A Higher Standard


Manco Kapak (Crowe), owner of a club, is robbed and faces threats from cartels. His dream of selling the club and retiring with his girlfriend is jeopardized. A newcomer pretends to be interested in buying the club, adding further complications.


Young attorney Brent Wisner (Powell) takes on a case against Monsanto on behalf of groundskeeper Dewayne “Lee” Johnson (Mackie), who used the company’s weed killer Roundup and developed cancer. Despite Monsanto’s toxicologist testifying to Roundup’s safety.

Sounds slightly Michael Clayton-esque.

Powell is hitting a hot streak with the new Twisters trailer and a recent announcement he may star in J.J. Abrams’s next project.


Cannes’ official selection, All We Imagine as Light, is the first Indian film selected in this section in four decades. Here is the trailer.


Gabriela Cowperthwaite returns to documentary film with The Grab. Cowperthwaite directed the landmark Sea World doc Blackfish (2013), which premiered at Sundance.

Since then, she has directed a pair of narratives:

  • Our Friend (2019)
    • Producer: Scott Free Productions
    • Played at TIFF
    • Starring: Casey Affleck and Jason Siegel
    • Criminally underrated
  • I.S.S. (2023)
    • Producer: Bleecker Street

Cowperthwaite has gone back to form with the terrifyingly sprawling investigative journalist documentary about the government vying for control over food as a means of population control amidst rising prices and global uncertainty.

Cowperthwaite stated:

“This is where World War III starts. There are people capitalizing on the scarcity and looking to grab up what is left for themselves at the expense of other people.”

The trailer just dropped.

Magnolia Pictures is releasing theatrically on June 14th.

Rebecca Hall will direct her sophomore feature, Four Days Like Sunday, inspired by her own childhood. Hall will also write and star.

Here’s the official synopsis:

Jane, a 12-year-old, navigates her role as caregiver for her mother, Sylvia (Hall), a divorced Broadway actress, as she begins to rebel against this responsibility amidst her mother’s struggles to maintain her career.

Hall has lined up an impressive team:

  • Production Company: Film 4
  • Production Company: See-Saw Films (The Power of the Dog)
  • Domestic Sales rep: WME Independent

One of the producers, Joanna Laurie (Carol, Youth), stated:

“A love letter to the camp and queer culture that gives our young heroine the safe space to triumphantly grow up and out into adulthood.”

Hall’s debut, Passing (2021), cut to the heart of hidden identity. It seems she will expand on these poignant themes in Four Days Like Sunday.

The film is currently in development.

India Donaldson’s Good One got rave reviews at Sundance.

Here’s the official synopsis:

​During a weekend backpacking trip in the Catskills, 17-year-old Sam navigates the clash of egos between her father and his oldest friend.

David Laub, the director of Metrograph, which recently turned to film acquisition, with Good One being one of the first, stated: ​

“India Donaldson has made a superb, delicate, and exquisite first feature, whose stunning emotional power stealthily sneaks up on you. This is exactly the type of project we want to support at Metrograph Pictures.”

Here’s the tense trailer.

In (Metrograph) theaters August 9th.


1958. Vertigo, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, was released.

See you Friday.

Written by Gabriel Miller and Spencer Carter.

Editor: Gabriel Miller.

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