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Based on an original screenplay?

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While Bahrani's first feature credit was the 2000 film Strangers, he first gained real notoriety and started collecting accolades when he directed the New York-set Man Push Cart in 2005. He last wrote and directed the drama At Any Price with Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron, which had the two leads playing a father and son who don't see eye to eye about the future. Following debuts at the Telluride and Toronto film festivals last year the movie came out in the United States on April 24th of this year, in limited release. You can watch the trailer below:

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In addition to his performance in Man of Steel, Shannon also earned positive marks for his performance in the hitman thriller The Ice Man and had a small role in Jeff Nichols' Mud. He'll soon be seen in director John McNaughton's horror film The Harvest as well as David Wain's comedy They Came Together, and has completed production on Young Ones, a future-set action film starring Nicholas Hoult, Elle Fanning, and Kodi Smit-McPhee. He will soon reunite with Nichols on the sci-fi thriller Midnight Special, which will co-star Joel Edgerton and Kirsten Dunst, and can currently be seen weekly on HBO's Boardwalk Empire.

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There's no mention of when 99 Homes is planning to start production, but given the indie status of the film and the fact that it has enlisted its two lead actors we can probably expect production to start fairly soon. You will probably be able to find it on the festival circuit next year.

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Jason Blum is a fascinating figure in filmmaking. His career as a producer began in theater working for Ethan Hawke’s New York City theater company Malaparte. By the mid-1990s, he moved into movie production, producing indies like Noah Baumbach’s Kicking and Screaming, Mira Nair’s Hysterical Blindness, and the Hawke-vehicle Hamlet, which re-imagined the Shakespeare play in contemporary NYC. But in 2000, Blum made the bold move to delve into his love of the horror genre by founding Blumhouse Productions.

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The production company has dedicated itself to making low-budget horror features with reputable actors and a strong focus on story. Its model has paid off big. The Paranormal Activity franchise renewed the fervor for the found footage genre and has gone on to rake in more than $714 million worldwide off four films that cost between $15,000 and $5 million to make. Last fall saw the release of Sinister, which starred Blum’s long-time friend Hawke. The cryptic pic won critical praise, cost just $3 million, and made $77 mil worldwide. Similarly, the Blumhouse production The Purge also cost $3 mil, and was declared a big winner this summer, netting more than $85 million at the box office.

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Clearly, with all this success Blum has become a tastemaker in horror. And as an avid fan of the genre and the movies he has produced, I was eager to sit down with him to discuss his latest Insidious: Chapter 2. The sequel to the 2011 hit that won over critics and took in more than $97 million worldwide continues the story of the haunted Lambert clan. Reteaming with a cast that boasts Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, and Barbara Hershey, screenwriter Leigh Whannell and director James Wan crafted a creepy second chapter that not only takes audiences deeper into the Further, but also forces them to reconsider the events from the first film.

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I wasn’t sure what to expect from Blum as I approached the swanky hotel suite where the press junket had placed him for interviews. But I was delighted to find he his love of horror runs deep and sincere, and his ambition for the genre extends to Oscar gold. And, no, he won't be deterred by the genre's detractors.

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I was hoping you could talk about what you feel your role as a producer is because you’ve said before you think what’s key to making these small budget movies work is giving a lot of the creative control to the writer and director. So, what do you think your role as a producer is?

Based on an original screenplay by Ramin Bahrani, who will also be serving as director, the film centers on a young man (Garfield) who finds himself in deep economic debt and has his house foreclosed on him. In order to try and get his life back on track he is forced to take a job working for a real estate broker - but the twist is that his boss is the same man who took the protagonist's house. The trade notes that it will be Shannon who plays the antagonistic broker, and not only does he take Garfield's character's house, he also, "entices him into schemes to embezzle money from the government."