Quibi and global content leader Lionsgate announced the series order of the drama “Swimming with Sharks” to be written and produced by Kathleen Robertson (“Murder in the First,” Lionsgate’s “Boss”) and directed by Tucker Gates (“Homeland,” “The Morning Show”). Chris Cowles (Chappaquiddick, Blockers) will also produce. Dana Brunetti (Fifty Shades of Grey franchise) and Liz Destro (Lee Daniel’s The Butler, Cake) will serve as executive producers as well as Jay Cohen and Stephen Israel, who executive produced the original movie. Production starts next February.
“Swimming with Sharks” is a contemporary update of George Huang’s original film that both celebrates and skewers the Hollywood studio system. In this adaptation, a young female assistant is at the center of a studio filled with manipulators, schemers and intrigue, but little do they know she is poised to outwit them all.
“We’re thrilled to partner with our friend Jeffrey Katzenberg and the incredible team at Quibi,” said Lionsgate Television Chairman Kevin Beggs. “The series underscores our commitment to partnering with emerging platforms and expanding our valuable library properties like Swimming with Sharks into exciting new forms of storytelling.”
Robertson adds to her growing list of writing credits including Little Bee, a film adaptation of Chris Cleave’s best-selling novel starring Academy Award® winner Julia Roberts. This follows another big screen adaptation of The Possibilities, Kaui Hart Hemmings’ follow up novel to The Descendants, with Helen Estabrook and Jason Reitman producing and Reitman planning to direct. She’s also adapting Dark Horse’s ‘Lady Killer’ comics into a feature film and recently starred in the family drama series “Northern Rescue.”
Gates has directed a number of award-winning hit television series including “The Sinner,” “Ray Donovan,” “Bates Motel,” “Parks and Recreation,” “Lost” and “The Office.” Upcoming projects include “Truth Be Told” for Apple TV+ and Stephen King’s “The Stand” for CBS All-Access.
Cowles is a partner and producer of film and television at Alldayeveryday. He previously served as the EVP of Creative at DMG Entertainment, and also led former Paramount Vice Chairman John Goldwyn’s Paramount based Goldwyn/Michaels (Lorne) production company spearheading the development of Showtime’s critically-acclaimed series “Dexter.” Prior to that, he served as an executive for Judd Apatow and Scott Rudin. He is currently a producer on the upcoming series “Grace of Kings” as well as “Dr. Mirage.”
Robertson is repped by Untitled Entertainment, CAA, attorney Jamie Feldman, as well as NCA Talent and Play Management in her native Canada. Gates is repped by UTA and Circle of Confusion. Cowles is repped by Craig Schneiderat Pinnacle.
Quibi launches April 6, 2020.