Lionsgate has acquired the North American distribution rights to “Moonfall,” the next film from director Roland Emmerich, it was announced today by Joe Drake, chairman of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group.
“Moonfall” is a sci-fi epic and will be the next collaboration between Emmerich and Lionsgate after the release of “Midway” earlier this month. The film will begin production in 2020 and will be directed by Emmerich from a script he co-wrote with Spencer Cohen and the writer on his film “2012,” Harald Kloser. A cast for the film has yet to be set.
In “Moonfall,” a mysterious force knocks the Moon from its orbit around Earth and sends it hurtling on a collision course with life as we know it. With mere weeks before impact, and against all odds, a ragtag team launches an impossible last-ditch mission into space, leaving behind everyone they love and risking everything to land on the lunar surface and save our planet from annihilation.
Emmerich is producing “Moonfall” under his Centropolis banner with Kloser producing through his company, Street Entertainment. The film was first introduced to buyers at Cannes back in May, with Centropolis raising equity funding alongside CAA Media Finance and AGC. AGC sold the North American rights to Lionsgate and is handling worldwide sales, and AGC and Centropolis came out of Cannes with deals in the high eight figures in hand.
Despite its price tag of $100 million, “Midway” was independently produced and financed by Emmerich and Cetropolis. “Moonfall” will be handled in the same way, with Emmerich and his company overseeing all aspects of production, financing and delivery, and collaborating with Lionsgate and its partners on marketing and distribution. “Midway” so far has made $102 million worldwide since opening on Nov. 8.
“Roland Emmerich is the undisputed master of spectacular high-concept epics, and the premise and promise of ‘Moonfall’ is the kind of action tent pole that will be event movie-going in 2021,” Jason Constantine, president of acquisitions and co-productions and who oversaw the deal for Lionsgate, said in a statement. “This is the kind of visual theatrical entertainment that Roland does better than anyone and we are thrilled to partner with him yet again.”
CAA represents the filmmakers. Constantine, along with executive VP of acquisitions Eda Kowan and John Biondo, executive VP of business and legal affairs for Lionsgate oversaw the deal for Lionsgate. VP of legal & business affairs Anant Tamirisa negotiated the deal for AGC Studios, and JP Pettinato and Richard Thompson negotiated on behalf of Centropolis Entertainment.