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‘Maleficent’ Director Robert Stromberg Boards Thriller ‘Carnival’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety logo Variety 2/10/2017 Dave McNary
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Anonymous Content, Voltage Pictures, Peck Entertainment, and Bread & Circuses Entertainment have brought on “Maleficent” director Robert Stromberg to helm the noir thriller “Carnival.”

The project, written by Matias Caruso, centers on a knife-throwing master in a traveling circus, who uses his deadly skills to avenge the brutal murder of his sister. In hunting down the assailant, he enlists the help of the uniquely talented circus performers.

Stromberg made his directorial debut on “Maleficent,” which grossed more than $750 million worldwide. He won Academy Awards for his work as a production designer on “Avatar” and “Alice in Wonderland,” marking the first time a production designer has ever won back-to- back Oscars.

Stromberg also directed the virtual reality experience for “The Martian,” which was released at Sundance last year, and directed the pilot “Dawn” for Hulu and MGM.

The film will be produced by Bard Dorros, Craig Flores, Mitchell Peck and Nicolas Chartier. Kristin Overn will executive produce the project.

Matias Caruso is an Argentinean writer who broke out when “Carnival” made the Black List. He most recently penned the action movie “Mayhem,” starring “Walking Dead” star Steven Yeun, and sold the pitch “Judgement Day” to Warner Bros. with Guy Ritchie and Lionel Wigram attached to produce.

Producers are casting on “Carnival” with principal photography set to start in late fall. Voltage will finance and handle worldwide sales for the picture at the Berlin Film Festival.

Stromberg is represented by WME Entertainment, and attorney Michael Schenkman of Bloom Hergot. Matias is represented by CAA, Grandview Management, and attorney Matthew Sugarman of Weintraub Tobin Chediak Coleman Grodin.  Flores and Chartier are represented by attorney Irene Viksman Flores (Eisner Jaffe). Peck is represented by Gang, Tyre.

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