•• Virginia Madsen and Patrick Warburton have joined the ensemble cast of Australian thriller “Safe Neighborhood” in production in Sydney. They play parents whose 12-year-old son and babysitter are the victims of an unusual home invasion.
Billed as Home Alone meets Scream, the film follows Ashley, the regular babysitter for Deandra (Virginia Madsen) and Robert Lerner (Patrick Warburton), who has to defend their 12-year-old son from strangers breaking into the house in their so-called safe neighborhood in a quiet American suburb on a snowy evening in the lead-up to Christmas. In a night of terror they discover that this is far from a normal home invasion.
Directed by Chris Peckover, the film also stars young Australians Olivia DeJonge (The Visit), as Ashley, Levi Miller (Pan, Jasper Jones) and Ed Oxenbould (The Visit, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day). Chris Peckover has penned the script with Zack Kahn.
Producer Brion Hambel said: “With this stellar group of actors and Chris and Zack’s thrilling script, this promises to be a crazy night for our cast of characters and a crazier ride for the audience”. “We are honored that actors of the caliber and international standing of Virginia and Patrick have joined the cast along with Dacre and Aleks. With Olivia, Levi and Ed, this is the perfect ensemble,” co-producer Brett Thornquest added.
It was announced last month that Virginia Madsen will join the cast of the next season of CBS’ American Gothic; she was most recently seen in Joy. She is repped by UTA and Untitled.
Safe Neighborhood is being produced by Storm Vision Entertaintment’s Thornquest and Sidonie Abbene (Infini, Terminus, SFv1) and Best Medicine Productions’ Hambel and Paul Jensen (Scenic Route, Natural Selection), and executive produced by Steven Matusko, Shane Abbess and Lorenzo De Maio. XYZ Films is representing North American rights on the film and Versatile is handling international sales.
•• Gregson is finally getting a little lovin’ of his own when Virginia Madsen arrives on Elementary this spring
Sideways star will play Paige Cowen, a former NYPD detective involved in a budding relationship with Gregson (Aidan Quinn). Due to a scandal that forced her off the force, she’s been eager to protect Gregson by keeping their relationship under wraps.
Virginia Madsen is slated to make her Elementary debut in early March.
Elementary airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.
•• CBS’ “American Gothic” is adding to its cast. The straight-to-series drama has enlisted Virginia Madsen to co-star, The Hollywood Reporter has learned, with Matt Shakman set to direct the pilot.
Set to air in the summer, American Gothic centers on a prominent Boston family attempting to redefine itself in the wake of a chilling discovery that links their recently deceased patriarch to a string of murders spanning decades, amid mounting suspicion that one of them may have been his accomplice.
Virginia Madsen will play Madeline, a warm, intelligent Boston matriarch who is fiercely protective of both her family and her social standing. She joins a cast that also includes Justin Chatwin, Megan Ketch, Antony Starr, Juliet Rylance, Stephanie Leonidas and Gabriel Bateman.
Corinne Brinkerhoff (The Good Wife) will pen the script and executive produce alongside Amblin’s Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank (The Americans, Under the Dome, Extant), James Frey and Todd Cohen.
Virginia Madsen’s credits include her Oscar and Golden Globe-nominated role in Sideways and TV parts on Witches of East End, Hell on Wheels and more. Repped by UTA and Untitled, she can be seen onscreen in Jennifer Lawrence’s Joy.
Shakman’s directing credits include Fargo, Mad Men and The Good Wife. American Gothic is expected to join fellow rookie BrainDead, from The Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King, and returning drama Zoo on CBS’ summer schedule.
•• Virginia Madsen has landed a guest-starring role as a potential love interest for Gregson. A new woman in Captain Gregson’s (Aidan Quinn) life will be introduced in an upcoming episode of “Elementary.”
The Sideways star will play Paige Cowen, a former NYPD detective involved in a budding relationship with Gregson (Aidan Quinn). Due to a scandal that forced her off the force, she’s been eager to protect Gregson by keeping their relationship under wraps.
Virginia Madsen, whose TV credits include Witches of East End and Hatfields & McCoys, will appear in an episode slated for early spring. Virginia Madsen isn’t the only new face that fans will meet when “Elementary” continues its season 4 run this week following a short winter break. As previously reported, viewers will also meet Joan’s (Lucy Liu) stepfather, which will be played by “Home Alone” actor John Heard, and Fiona Helbron (Betty Gilpin), who will be introduced as a potential love interest for Sherlock (Jonny Lee Miller) on the Jan. 21 episode of the show.
Elementary returns Thursday at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.
•• Monterey Media has bought all U.S. and Canadian rights to Kaley Cuoco’s “Burning Bodhi,” two weeks after its world premiere at the Austin Film Festival, Variety has learned exclusively.
The drama, directed by Matthew McDuffie from his own script, is produced by Marshall Bear. In addition to “The Big Bang Theory” actress, it also stars Sasha Pieterse (“Pretty Little Liars”), Cody Horn, Virginia Madsen, Landon Liboiron and Andy Buckley.
“Burning Bodhi” centers on a group of lifelong friends who return to their hometown in New Mexico after word spreads on Facebook about the death of the most popular person in their group. The reunion stirs up feelings of love, longing and regret, intertwined with the novelty of forgiveness, mortality and gratitude.
Monterey plans a theatrical launch in March. The deal was negotiated with Bear and his representative Noor Ahmed of Reder and Feig LLP, and attorney Chad Mathis with Monterey Media’s Scott Mansfield.
•• JOY movie star Virginia Madsen has opened up about the experience of working on the project based on the life of Miracle Mop inventor Joy Mangano.
In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, the actress recalled the moment she got the call from director David O. Russell saying she was cast for the film.
“He said, ‘Do you have any problem with playing the mother of Jennifer Lawrence?'” Madsen shared. “I said, ‘I’ve never had a problem with aging.’ And I went on to tell him how much I liked her and how without knowing her I felt motherly toward her and I felt proud of her for what she’s done at such a young age. Well, I didn’t realize that Jennifer was sitting there.”
Virginia Madsen also shared what it was like to work with Robert De Niro, who plays Madsen’s husband and Lawrence’s father in the film.
“There’s still a part of me that was going, ‘Oh, my God, Robert De Niro is throwing things at me. This is so cool!'” the actress said. “I grew up admiring him as one of the greatest living actors ever. And there he is and such a dream come true to not just meet him but work with him.”
Russell had also opened up about the upcoming film.
Speaking with the New York Times, the director shared what made him interested in Mangano’s story.
“It’s the first story I’ve done that has a woman at the center of it,” he said. “Jennifer’s usually coming in from the side, like a rogue. [Laughs.] She kind of sneaks in and takes over half the movie. But here, she’s in the middle, not with a bow and arrow, but with her heart and soul.”
JOY will hit theaters on its release date of Dec. 25.