Tessa Thompson to Star in the sci-fi thriller “Ash”

Tessa Thompson is ready to kick ash

The 38-year-old part-Panamanian and part-Mexican American actress will star opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the sci-fi thriller Ash, which the Grammy-winning musician and filmmaker Flying Lotus — otherwise known as Steven Ellison — will direct as his sophomore feature.

Tessa Thompson,Neill Blomkamp will executive produce the film, which its financier XYZ Films will rep for worldwide sales at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival.

The new film, for which the multi-hyphenate will also compose an original score, watches as a woman (Thompson) wakes up on a distant planet and finds the crew of her space station viciously killed, and must then decide if she can trust the man (Gordon-Levitt) sent to rescue her. But as their investigation into what happened sets in motion a terrifying chain of events, he begins to wonder how innocent she really is.

Jonni Remmler wrote the original screenplay for the film, looking to go into production in New Zealand next year.

It is Flying Lotus’ follow-up to the Sundance-premiering body horror anthology, KusoXYZ Films and GFC Films will produce, with Blomkamp exec producing alongside Echo Lake Entertainment.

“It’s an absolute dream come true to collaborate with some of the most talented actors out there!,” said Flying Lotus.

Thompson is an Emmy– and BAFTA Award-nominated actress and producer who reprised her Marvel role as Valkyrie for the recent Thor: Lover and Thunder, also recently returning for the fourth season of HBO’s Westworld.

Other notable big-screen credits from recent years include Rebecca Hall’s directorial debut Passing, and Prime Video’s Sylvie’s Love, which she also executive produced, as well as SelmaDear White People and the Creed films.

Among Thompson’s upcoming projects is Creed III, which is currently in post-production, with its release set for next March. Her production company Viva Maude is actively in development on projects including Secret Lives of Church LadiesLuster and Who Fears Death.

Tessa Thompson’s Viva Maude Partners with Gaumont to Develop Raven Leilani’s Novel “Luster” for HBO

Tessa Thompson is celebrating her luster

Gaumont has teamed up with the 38-year-old half-Afro-Panamanian and part Mexican American actress’ Viva Maude production company to develop for HBO Luster, the bestselling debut by Raven Leilani.

Tessa Thompson,

Scripting the project will be handled by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury, and Lileana Blain-Cruz, recipient of the Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award. They are joint winners of the Obie Award for Marys Seacole, and are among the founders of the exploratory theatre collaboration, Afrofemononomy.

Edie is a young Black artist living a precarious existence in New York City when she takes a white lover in an open marriage, eventually moving in with him and his wife in the suburbs. There she not only finds herself in an increasingly tense relationship with the couple, but also becoming an unlikely mentor to their adopted Black daughter Akila. The debut novel quickly became a number one bestseller on the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and other lists.

Raven Leilani's Novel "Luster"

The potential English language drama series for HBO marks the first collaboration between Gaumont and Viva Maude’s Thompson and Kishori Rajan.

Nicolas Atlan, President of Gaumont US said company toppers are “beyond thrilled to be developing Luster with HBO and Viva Maude’s Tessa Thompson and Kishori Rajan. We were riveted by this groundbreaking book, written by the incredibly talented Raven Leilani, and are blown away at how quickly the series creative team which includes our writers, Lileana Blain-Cruz and Jackie Sibblies Drury, has come together. We can’t wait to get started.”

It’s not clear at this point if Thompson will star. She has a strong relationship with HBO from Westworld. She is generating awards buzz for the Sundance hit Passing, and wrapped the lead role of Valkyrie in the Taiki Waititi film Thor: Love and Thunder.

Said Thompson of the book: “Luster marks the daring debut by Raven Leilani, a seminal voice for her generation. In her work, which defies categorization, there is an astonishingly singular quality that speaks to spirit of the types of narratives Viva Maude aims to showcase — bold, beautifully crafted, unapologetically human, imaginative and unconventional — it is thrilling to be teamed with Gaumont and the stunning talents of Jackie Sibblies Drury and Lileana Blain-Cruz to develop this story at HBO, the perfect home.”

Victoria Alonso Promoted to President of Physical, Post Production, VFX & Animation at Marvel Studios

It’s another Marvel-ous moment for Victoria Alonso

The 55-year-old Argentine film producer has been promoted to president, physical and post production, visual effects, and animation production at Marvel Studios.

Victoria Alonso

A 15-year studio veteran, Alonso will oversee the divisions across the studio’s slate of films and series and continue to report to Marvel Studios co-president Louis D’Esposito.

“Victoria has been an incredible partner and part of our team since the very first Iron Man,” said Kevin Feige, president, Marvel Studios and chief creative officer, Marvel, and D’Esposito on Monday. “She is one of the most dynamic, candid and accessible executives in the industry and we’re thrilled that she’ll continue to be by our side in this elevated role as we lead Marvel Studios into the future.”

Alonso will continue to serve as executive producer on all upcoming feature films including EternalsDoctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Thor: Love and Thunder, as well as EP on Marvel Studios’ upcoming series for Disney+ including Hawkeye, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk and Moon Knight.

“When Louis first suggested I come to work with the team on Iron Man, I never could have imagined the adventure ahead, and as far as I’m concerned, it has only just begun!” Alonso said. “We have an absolutely incredible group of people who are bringing their many talents to the exciting slate of films and series we have on the horizon, and I’m especially thrilled about ramping up our studio’s animation efforts, which is a personal passion of mine. Look forward to more singing!”

Alonso joined Marvel in 2006 as the company’s EVP of visual effects and post production, doubling as co-producer on Iron Man, a role she reprised on Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.

In 2011, she was upped to executive producer on the blockbuster The Avengers, a role she has maintained on all Marvel Studios releases since then including Iron Man 3, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Captain America: Civil War, Thor: The Dark World, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel, Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man: Far From Home, Black Widow and most recently Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.

During her tenure at the studio, Marvel films have amassed over $23 billion in global box office.

In 2021, Alonso became an Emmy-nominated producer for her work on the MCU’s first series on Disney+WandaVision. She has also become an important voice in Hollywood as a producer, a Latina, and a senior female executive.

She was named one of People en Español Magazine’s top “Poderosa” Most Influential Hispanic Women in 2019 and 2020, and was honored in 2015 with the Muse Award for Outstanding Vision and Achievement from the New York Women in Film & Television.

She was also the first woman to be presented with the Harold Lloyd Award from the Advanced Imaging Society, which is given to a filmmaker who has created a body of work and specific achievements in 3D that advanced the motion picture art form.

In 2017, she was the first woman to be honored with the Visionary Award at the 15th Annual VES Awards for her advancement of unforgettable storytelling through visual effects.

Tessa Thompson Launches Production Company ‘Viva Maude’

Tessa Thompson is expanding her Hollywood reach…

The 37-year-old part-Panamanian and part-Mexican American actress is moving into the production arena with a new production company, a first-look deal at HBO and HBO Max and executive-producing two big book adaptations – Who Fears Death and The Secret Lives of Church Ladies.

Tessa Thompson,

Thompson, who stars on HBO’s Westworld, has launched Viva Maude with a two-year deal at the WarnerMedia-owned cable network and streaming service.

“I’m beyond thrilled to officially launch my production company, Viva Maude, which has been a real passion project and labour of love over the last few years,” said Thompson. “I’m elated to begin this partnership and to bring entertaining and impactful television projects to my friends and collaborators at HBO and HBO Max. Together we are committed to developing interesting and inclusive stories with inventive creators and to discover new voices and visionaries.”

Thompson, who stars in and executive produced the Amazon Studios feature film Sylvie’s Love, will exec produce the two projects in development at HBO and HBO Max as part of the deal.

Who Fears Death is an adaptation of Nnedi Okorafor’s eponymous book. In the works at HBO since 2017 with Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin as one of the exec producers, Aïda Mashaka Croal, a writer on Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, has also come board as showrunner, writer and exec producer.

Who Fears Death tells the coming of age tale of Onyesowu in post-apocalyptic North Africa where her story makes her an outcast.  She must go on a journey from self-reproach to love, but to do so she’ll have to overcome untold obstacles—defeating her hated sorcerer father and becoming the instrument of prophetic deliverance for a land of oppressed people, all the while fighting to master the terrifying powers growing inside her.

At HBO Max, Thompson is also exec producing an adaptation of The Secret Lives of Church Ladies. The short story collection, written by Deesha Philyaw, was published in September and was a finalist for the 2020 National Book Award for Fiction. It contains nine stories about Black women, church, and sexuality.

The Secret Lives of Church Ladies explores the raw and tender places where Black women and girls dare to follow their desires and pursue a momentary reprieve from being good. Different generations of women characters grapple with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church’s double standards and their own needs and passions. With their secret longings, new love, and forbidden affairs, these church ladies are as seductive as they want to be, as vulnerable as they need to be, as unfaithful and unrepentant as they care to be, and as free as they deserve to be.

Thompson will exec produce with author Philyaw, who is also writing the adaptation.

Thompson’s other credits include Thor: Ragnarok, Avengers: Endgame, Annihilation, Sorry to Bother YouSelmaand Dear White People and she co-stars alongside Ruth Negga in Rebecca Hall’s directorial debut feature film Passing as well as Creed III and Thor: Love and Thunder.

She is also a producer on QCode’s fiction podcast The Left Right Game, which Amazon purchased the rights to adapt into a television series, with Thompson exec producing the series.