Sylvester Stallone has lined up a feature with STX Entertainment, the studio announced during its CinemaCon presentation on Tuesday.
Neither party would officially reveal anything about the project, although Screendaily understands Lawrence Grey will produce through Grey Matter Productions.
STX sources confirmed to Screendaily that the project is not the mob film Scarpa, which Stallone has been shopping around.
“I’ve joined their family,” Stallone told attendees at the Colosseum. “We have an incredible film coming up. I’m not going to give you the name right now because I don’t want you to all go crazy.”
The appearance of Stallone, who thanked attendees for their support of 2015 hit Creed, was one of several high-profile talent to take the stage in a pure statement of intent by Bob Simonds’ fledgling studio.
Chairman and CEO Simonds himself kicked off the session alongside STX Entertainment president Sophie Watts.
They explained that the studio was well capitalised, backed by TPG and China’s Hony Capital and a slate financing deal with Huayi Brothers, and planned to operate as a global producer and distributor of mid-budget, commercial content that could unlock value in today’s changing media landscape.
As announced last week, Film4 head and former head of Universal Pictures International David Kosse will arrive in the summer to head the studio’s international division.
The plan is to set up direct distribution in select territories within a couple of years once the company’s output deals lapse. The UK, where Kosse and his team will operate, will be the first territory and executives are targeting a mid-2017 launch. STX will for the first few years combine output deals and direct distribution.
Chairman of the motion picture group Adam Fogelson hosted the CinemaCon presentation and said how in 18 months STX had already released four films.
Fogelson recapped the company’s first four releases – The Gift and The Boy were both hits, while Secret In Their Eyes and last weekend’s flop Hardcore Henry under-performed – before turning to the upcoming slate.
He introduced stirring footage from The Free State Of Jones and invited Matthew McConaughy, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and director Gary Ross on to the stage.
The Civil War drama will open on June 24 after the film-makers moved from the original date so as not to clash with the release of Marvel Studios’ Captain America: Civil War on May 6.
Ross explained how he received a treatment roughly ten years ago and read up on the little-known true story for two years before he wrote the screenplay.
McConaughey plays Newt Knight, the Southern unionist deserter who rallied others to his Knight Company against the Confederacy and married the former slave of his grandfather.
Fogelson showed first footage from sci-fi romance The Space Between Us starring Asa Butterfield, Britt Robinson and Gary Oldman, set to open on August 19, as well as a teaser from Intrepid Pictures’ horror release The Bye Bye Man.
Hailee Steinfeld, Kyra Sedgwick and writer-director Kelly Fremon appeared to talk up The Edge Of Seventeen, which Fogelson described as a coming-of-age story in the vein of a 1980s John Hughes film that was very much rooted in the present.
The executive showed a first look at its China-US thriller The Foreigner, a UK-set story set against the backdrop of the British government’s war with the IRA starring Jackie Chan and Pierce Brosnan, and screened a teaser from Jonas Cuaron’s immigrant thriller Desierto.
Rounding out the show were two teasers from the R-rated comedy Bad Moms. Cast members Milas Kunis, Christina Applegate, Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Annie Mumulo and Jada Pinkett Smith took to the stage and entertained the audience with banter. The film opens on July 29.