MARGOT ROBBIE’S BARBIE FILM MOVES FORWARD: Warner Bros. and Mattel have signed a partnership to bring the Barbie franchise to theaters in a first-ever live-action feature. Academy Award-nominated Margot Robbie is set to star. “This project is a great start to our partnership with Ynon and Mattel Films,” said Toby Emmerich, chairman of Warner Bros. Pictures Group. “And Margot is the ideal producer and actress to bring Barbie to life on screen in a fresh and relevant way for today’s audiences.” Robbie is also set to produce the film under her LuckyChap Entertainment shingle. “Playing with Barbie promotes confidence, curiosity and communication throughout a child’s journey to self-discovery. Over the brand’s almost 60 years, Barbie has empowered kids to imagine themselves in aspirational roles from a princess to president,” Robbie said. “I’m so honored to take on this role and produce a film that I believe will have a tremendously positive impact on children and audiences worldwide. I can’t imagine better partners than Warner Bros and Mattel to bring this film to the big screen.” Think Robbie will make a good Barbie?
DAVE BAUTISTA JOINS DUNE: Dave Bautista has signed on for Legendary’s Dune reboot, starring Timothee Chalamet, Variety reports. Denis Villeneuve is directing and co-writing with Eric Roth and Jon Spaihts. Bautista is a busy man; this year he is also set for the Fox comedy Stuber, the STX action-comedy My Spy and Avengers: End Game, where he will be reprising the role of Drax.
NIELSEN BACKS UP NETFLIX’S BIRD BOX CLAIMS: Yes, Bird Box is indeed a hit, Nielsen reports. After Netflix claimed the Sandra Bullock-toplined thriller had been viewed by a record 45 million+ Netflix accounts, the ratings measurement company said that between December 21-December 27, 26 million views had been logged in the U.S. alone. Nielsen reports that Bird Box was viewed 3.5 million times alone on its premiere dat.
BLUE PLANET II CREATOR JAMES HONEYBORNE LEAVES BBC: Blue Planet II creator and exec producer James Honeyborne has left the BBC with his director Renée Godfrey in tow. They plan to launch their own production company dubbed Freeborne Media to produce what they say will be "powerful" and "impactful" nature and science documentaries.