Warner Bros has been as stingy as any major on handing out overall production deals to actors in recent years. But I’ve learned the studio has just given a first look 2-year deal to Zac Efron. And Warner Bros plans to buy pitches, spec scripts, and books for Efron and his still unformed company to develop as star vehicles. His manager, Alchemy Entertainment’s Jason Barrett, will be an exec producer on the projects.
At 22, Efron is by far the youngest actor with an overall Warner Bros film deal. I’m told he hasn’t named his company and is still working out details like whether he’ll take office space on the lot. My insiders said the studio has been high on him for several years, especially his hustle on the New Line film “17 Again” which he promoted heavily in six overseas territories.
Warner Bros is determined to find him a franchise. Which begs the question whether he’ll be the next DC Entertainment superhero, or Bourne-like action thriller leading man, or buddy comedy co-star, or all, or none. True, Efron has made a determined effort to steer away from his “High School Musical” teen heartthrob image, dropping out of a “Footloose” remake to attach to Universal’s serious dramatic vehicle “The Death And Life of Charlie St. Cloud” releasing this fall.
But one of Zac’s upcoming projects I’ve already announced will be the first developed under his new Warner Bros – the Back To The Future-like film, as yet untitled, that melds two projects: a pitch from writers Tim Calpin and Kevin Jakubowski, and the other called “Algorithm” that the studio was already developing. [Source]