The “Star Trek” and “Transformers” writers are shifting to David Ellison's company from DreamWorks on film projects
Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, the writing team behind "Transformers," "Star Trek," "Mission: Impossible 3" and "Cowboys & Aliens," are joining Skydance Productions, TheWrap has learned.
It's not clear exactly what their role will be; an individual close to negotiations between the producers and Skydance characterized it as "a uniquely structured deal," but did not provide further details.
The two currently run K/O Paper Products, which produces the CBS hit "Hawaii Five-O." In 2010, they signed a development deal with Fox television. And they have a two-year production deal at DreamWorks. That deal expires this December.
Producer David Ellison — son of Oracle co-founder and billionaire Larry Ellison — runs Skydance.
Kurtzman-Orci are writing and producing the "Star Trek" sequel with Ellison; all three are producing "Without Remorse," based on the Tom Clancy novel. Over the years, they have developed a friendship as well as a professional relationship.
Skydance has a $350 million fund it uses to co-finance movies at Paramount. Its projects include “Mission: Impossible 4 — Ghost Protocol” and “World War Z."
An individual close to DreamWorks told TheWrap that the two spoke with DreamWorks higher-ups before accepting the Skydance deal and explained that they had been offered something too good to turn down.
DreamWorks likes Kurtzman and Orci and has their project, "Racing Dreams" in development now. It's also releasing Kurtzman's directorial debut, "Welcome to People," in 2012. That movie is about a man who has to deliver $150,000 of his deceased father's fortune to his sister — whom he never has met.
Skydance declined to comment.