John Debney is reteaming with director Ivan Reitman on the upcoming sports drama Draft Day. The film’s cast includes Kevin Costner, Jennifer Garner, Denis Leary, Chadwick Boseman, Frank Langella, Sean Combs, Terry Crews, Sam Elliott and Tom Welling. The movie centers on the manager of the Cleveland Browns who struggles to acquire the top draft pick for his team on the day of the draft. Scott Rothman and Rajiv Joseph have written the screenplay. Reitman is also producing the project with Ali Bell and Tom Pollock (Hitchcock) through his Montecito Motion Picture Company. Debney has previously worked together with Reitman on the 2011 romantic comedy No Strings Attached starring Natalie Portman & Ashton Kutcher. The director’s other previous musical collaborators include Elmer Bernstein (Ghostbusters, Stripes), James Newton Howard (Dave, Junior), John Powell (Evolution) and Randy Edelman (Kindergarten Cop, Twins). Draft Day is currently in post-production and will be released in 2014 by Lionsgate.
Debney also has the animated feature SpongeBob SquarePants 2 coming up. The film is directed by Paul Tibbitt and features the actors of the popular TV series by Tom Kenny, Bill Fagerbakke, Rodger Bumpass, Clancy Brown and Carolyn Lawrence. The movie also features live-action scenes directed by Mike Mitchell (Shrek Forever After, Sky High) and starring Antonio Banderas. The Nickelodeon Movies and Paramount Animation production is produced by Mary Parent (Pacific Rim, Role Models), Craig Sost and Cale Boyter. Gregor Narholz composed the music for the 2004 original SpongeBob SquarePants movie. The sequel is set to be released on February 13, 2015 by Paramount Pictures.
As previously reported, the Academy Award-nominated composer whose best known film credits include The Passion of the Christ, Iron Man 2 and Elf has also scored the comedy Walk of Shame starring Elizabeth Banks & James Marsden, the dramatic thriller Broken Horses starring Anton Yelchin and the mini-series Bonnie & Clyde starring Emile Hirsch & Holliday Grainger. Also coming up for Debney is the psychological thriller Eliza Graves starring Kate Beckinsale, Jim Sturgess, Ben Kingsley, Michael Caine, Brendan Gleeson and David Thewlis. The movie marks the composer’s second collaboration with director Brad Anderson (The Machinist) following this year’s hit thriller The Call and centers on a a patient at a mental institution in which the inmates have taken over and are posing as doctors. Joe Gangemi (Wind Chill) has written the screenplay, which is loosely based on a short story by Edgar Allan Poe. Icon Productions’ Bruce Davey & Mel Gibson (Braveheart, The Passion of the Christ, Apocalypto), Mark Amin (The Prince and Me, Filth), Cami Winikoff and Oren Peli are producing the project. Eliza Graves is expected to be released in 2014 by Millennium Entertainment.
In related news, John Debney will be honored at Education Through Music-Los Angeles’ (ETM-LA) 8th Annual Benefit Gala on December 10, 2013 at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. The evening will be hosted by actor Ed Helms and feature presenters and performers such as Benji and Joel Madden, Gordon Goodwin Big Phat Band, Lisbeth Scott, as well as special surprise guests. Also appearing will be the music students of ETM-LA program and David Starr Jordan Middle School who will perform Debney’s theme from Jon Favreau’s hit comedy Elf and the holiday song, Pat-a-Pan Salsa. Proceeds from the event will benefit ETM-LA, a nonprofit organization with the mission to provide music education in underserved schools as part of the core curriculum. Also honored at the event will be music teacher Christine DeMore (Burbank Unified School District). Visit the organization’s official website for more information.