The Walking Dead‘s Jeffrey Dean Morgan will put down the baseball bat for a while as he has signed on to join Dwayne Johnson in the New Line monster movie Rampage. The film is on track for an April 20, 2018, release and has an ensemble cast that includes Moonlight‘s Naomie Harris, Malin Akerman, Joe Manganiello, Jake Lacy, Marley Shelton, PJ Byrne, Jack Quaid, Matt Gerald and Breanne Hill.
Rampage‘s exact logline is under wraps, but like the 1980s Midway arcade game on which it is based, the central conflict comes down to this: There are three giant monsters wreaking havoc across North America – and Johnson is the only hope of stopping them. Morgan will play Agent Russell, who works for a covert government division called OGA and rolls with serious swagger and attitude. Morgan takes the supporting role after quickly establishing himself as one of the more memorable small-screen villains for his role as the barbed wire-encrusted-bat-swinging Negan on The Walking Dead.
Rampage reunites Johnson with New Line, producer Beau Flynn and director Brad Peyton; they previously teamed for the global hits San Andreas and Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. The producers are Flynn through FlynnPictureCo, John Rickard through Wrigley Pictures, 7 Bucks Entertainment’s Hiram Garcia and Peyton through ASAP Entertainment. FlynnPictureCo’s Wendy Jacobson is co-producer, while the exec producers are Marcus Viscidi, Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia and Jeff Fierson.
The Rampage script is by Ryan Engle, with revisions by Carlton Cuse & Ryan Condal and Adam Sztykiel supplying the latest revisions. Morgan is repped by UTA, manager Rob Gomez and Bloom Hergott.
I’ve added HQ stills, posters and movie captures from another one of Jeffrey’s 2015 movies, Heist. Hope y’all enjoy!
I’ve added HQ movie captures from one of Jeffrey’s 2015 movies, Guns for Hire. Hope y’all enjoy!
School may be almost out, but that doesn’t mean Jeffrey Dean Morgan isn’t ready to offer some history lessons. The actor will soon appear in two period dramas about very different aspects of U.S. culture: History’s “Texas Rising” miniseries, about the formation of the Texas Rangers, and Lifetime’s “The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe,” where he plays baseball great Joe DiMaggio. (Later this summer, he’ll head to the future and star opposite Halle Berry in the second season of CBS’ “Extant”).
Morgan was candid with Variety about his attraction to both projects during an interview at the London Hotel in West Hollywood. Here, he explains that Westerns make for good entertainment because there’s less dialogue (“That’s the sign of bad television, they’re over-explaining. In a Western, you’re never over-explaining.”) and speaks of the tumultuous love story that was Marilyn Monroe’s relationship with DiMaggio.
“Texas Rising” premieres at 9 p.m. May 25 on History. “Marilyn Monroe” premieres at 8 p.m. May 30 on Lifetime.
Which project did you shoot first?
I did “Texas Rising” for about six months last summer. I lived in Durango, Mexico. Looking back on it now, it was one of the greater experiences I’ve ever had. While I was there, I was miserable because I was away from my family and I didn’t eat for six months. I lost almost 50 pounds to do the role. I tortured myself greatly.
Now, a year later, I made some great friends and had some adventures that could not be duplicated. I fell in love with being on the back of a horse. I’ve seen the finished product, and I think it’s extraordinary. As an actor who is pretty hard on himself, it’s rare to come away from it and think it’s pretty damn good.
Had you seen History’s other miniseries?
I’d seen “Hatfields & McCoys” and I watch “Vikings.” I think the stuff they do is really good television. They get writers and they get good directors and they get good actors. Roland Joffé directed [“Texas Rising”], and I think he’s one of the finest, if not the finest, director I’ve ever gotten to work with.
Mitch Glazer’s TV series “Magic City” is headed for the big screen with Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Bruce Willis, Bill Murray, Olga Kurylenko, Danny Huston and Kelly Lynch starring.
Glazer will direct the movie based on the Starz show he created and exec produced. The series was set in 1959 Miami shortly after the Cuban Revolution and centered on Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s character, the owner of Miami’s glamorous Miramar Playa who was forced to make a deal with a mobster (played by Huston).
The series ran for two seasons before Starz cancelled it in August, 2013.
Kurylenko played the wife of Morgan’s Ike Evans character while Lynch portrayed his former sister-in-law. The movie will be set in 1962.
QED will introduce the project to buyers at the American Film Market next week. Len Blavatnik of AI Film, Brett Ratner of RatPac and Gerry Schwartz of Onex Corporation will produce and finance with Steve Bing of Shangri-La Entertainment, Alan J. Helene and Glazer producing.
“Mitch is a fantastic creative partner and we’re thrilled to collaborate with him again,” Block said. “We loved Magic City the series and know that with Mitch’s sensational script and this outstanding cast, it will translate beautifully to the big screen.”
CAA will represent the film’s domestic distribution rights. Glazer previously directed “Passion Play” and has written “Scrooged,” “The Recruit,” “Great Expectations” and “Rock the Kasbah,” which he also produced along with QED.
Glazer worked with Murray and Willis on “Rock the Kasbah” and with Murray on “Scrooged.”