News Briefs

SAG (the Screen Actors Guild) has been given until Aug. 15 to accept the studios most recent offer or any changes from there on will not be retroactive. Against strong protest from SAG, AFTRA (the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) has accepted a similar offer the studios that is retroactive to July 1. SAG has still not called for a strike vote.

Variety confirms that Robert Downey Jr has committed to Guy Ritchie’s take on Sherlock Holmes. Anthony Peckham’s script is based on a mixture of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic tales and the Lionel Wigram comic book adaptation. Ritchie turned in a polish of the latest draft. The project, which is set to begin production in October, is trying to race ahead of the Judd Apatow project, a comedy based on the same property and starring Sacha Baron Cohen and Will Ferrel.

/Film reports John Favreau has officially signed on for Iron Man 2.

Chud reveals that Quentin Tarantino’s film Inglorious Basterds sees a crack team of Jewish soldiers going into France on a mission to get revenge on the Nazis, they’re given a quota of 100 Nazi scalps. Its being called a “Jewsploitation” movie and is part of the post-Munich Tough Jew zeitgeist (which also brought us Zohan).

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Disney and Scott Rudin are coming together for ” Synchronicity“, a comedy about syncronized swimming. The project will center on male synchronized swimmers and follow in the steps of sports comedies from the likes of Will Ferrell and Ben Stiller. Marty Scott and Toni Kotite will write the screenplay.

Alcon Entertainment has picked up first look rights to Ian Shorr’s thriller, “Substitution“. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Steve Crystal came up with the story with Shorr. The project follows an emotional high school senior who unwittingly becomes embroiled in a murder plot orchestrated by his substitute teacher.

According to Variety, Participant Media is developing the eco-horror tale The Colony, based on a pitch by Stacy Title and Jonathan Penner. Steven Schneider of Room 101 and Vertigo Entertainment’s Doug Davison and Roy Lee are producing. No production date has been set.

Entertainment Weekly Reports that David Fincher will be tackling “Metal Hurlant” (“Heavy Metal” in the US), but not with Paramount, who has passed on making the second movie adaptaion of the seminal scifi and fantasy rag.

Disney is developing a dance comedy inspired by the professional squad that performs at every Chicago Bulls home game. The project, tentatively titled “The Matadors,” will be directed by Anne Fletcher, a one-time Laker Girl who went on to become a choreographer before making her feature filmmaking debut with “Step Up.”

Variety reports HBO has greenlit the pilot “Fat Sells,” which is set in the world of the $46 billion herbal weight loss industry. Forest Whitaker is attached to exec produce, along with 25/7 topper Dave Broome, exec producer on “The Biggest Loser.” The project will center on the head of a weight loss behemoth (and his family) and how his life starts to unravel when the FDA begins investigating the company’s claims.

Columbia Pictures has acquired “Mythological Veterinarian,” a comic pitch that will be scripted by Andrew Kurtzman and produced by Jimmy Miller. Laffer is about a modern-day veterinarian who’s recruited by a secret society that watches over the world’s mythological creatures. Principal Entertainment’s Danny Sherman will be exec producer.