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Credit: STX Films

WIRE Buzz: Michael Bay's Songbird to VOD; 'DNA' movie; Alicia Vikander to 'Dial M for Murder'

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Nov 17, 2020, 2:37 PM EST (Updated)

Another film is heading for video on demand, rather than opting for a theatrical release — much like most of this year's new release slate. Though this time, it's a very fitting decision, given that it's the Michael Bay-produced Songbird, also known as the first film to shoot in L.A. entirely during the pandemic... while also telling the story of a mutated strand of the coronavirus known as COVID-23, that continues to hold the world in its grip. 

The film will be available on premium video-on-demand (PVOD) on all platforms starting on Dec. 11 for $19.99. However, unlike some other films that have gone this route, Songbird only has a 48-hour rental window as the film will be following this up with a release onto a yet-to-be-named streaming platform later in 2021. 

A sci-fi thriller, the movie tells the story of a young courier (Riverdale's KJ Apa) who is immune to the virus, who then falls in love with an aspiring artist (The Descendants 2's Sofia Carson), who becomes possibly infected. With America going through its fourth year of lockdown, and infected Americans being forced into quarantine camps, it becomes a race to save his love from her potential fate. 

Adam Mason (Into the Dark) directs a script that he penned with Simon Boyes (Misconduct). Craig Robinson (What We Do In the Shadows), Bradley Whitford (Get Out), Peter Stormare (Constantine), Alexandra Daddario (Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters), Paul Walter Hauser (Cruella), and Demi Moore (Brave New World) also star.

Songbird hits premium video-on-demand on Dec. 11. 


Next up is a film about some very important notifications. 

Simon Kinberg's Genre Films and Amazon Studios will be adapting a film based on a series of illustrated novellas by TV writer Julian Meiojas (Raised By Wolves) and artist Mad Dog Jones. 

Titled DNA after the Death Notification Agency, a giant government organisation, at its heart, the sci fi noir film will be set in a dystopian future where people are informed of their death 24 hours in advance. The story follows Ramsay "Ram" Carnes, a process server (AKA "reaper") for the DNA whose job it is to deliver death notices. However, things go upside down when Ram receives his own death notice, prompting him to go on the run across the United States as he tries to uncover the larger conspiracy at play within the company he once worked for. 

Kinberg will produce alongside Genre Film's Audrey Chon and Russell Ackerman, John Schoenfelder and Jay Schuminsky, who published the original illustrated novella via their company NeoText.

No release date has been set yet for the project. 


And finally, it looks like a Hitchcock favorite is coming back, by way of Terence Winter (The Batman) and actress Alicia Vikander (Tomb Raider), who will executive produce and possibly star in it. 

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the pair are looking to make a television anthology drama based on Dial M for Murder, the famous play by Frederick Knott which was then adapted into the film of the same name. The TV series will tell the story of the same crime thriller, only this time from the female perspective, an idea conceptualised by writer Michael Mitnick (The Giver). However, the project has no network attached. 

Also serving as EP and creative producer on the series is Vikarious Film's Charles Collier, who is also Vikander's London-based agent. They will be joined by Andrew Mittman of 1.21 and Lloyd Braun, who will both executive produce. 

No release date has been set yet. 


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