Rick Schwartz will be appearing on the following panel...
12:00 12:45PM THE NEXT EVOLUTION OF ZOMBIE: ROMPER ZOMBIE! (Room 111)
Rick Schwartz is an independent producer and financier based in New York, whose credits include The Departed, Black Swan, Gangs of New York, The Aviator, Machete, and The Others.
Schwartz began his film career at Miramax under Harvey and Bob Weinstein, eventually serving as the company's Senior Vice President of Production. During his seven year tenure at Miramax, Schwartz oversaw the development and production of numerous high profile Miramax projects, including Martin Scorsese's Gangs of New York, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day Lewis and Cameron Diaz, and Alejandro Amenabar's The Others, starring Nicole Kidman and produced in conjunction with Tom Cruise.
Prior to launching Overnight Productions in 2008, Schwartz produced such award-winning films as The Aviator, directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett and Kate Beckinsale, as well as the Academy Award winning film, The Departed, also directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Mark Wahlberg and Jack Nicholson.
In 2008 Schwartz founded and is current CEO of Overnight Productions, which has financed and produced movies by directors like Robert Rodriguez, Darren Aronofsky and Gela Babluani. The first film to be released under the new banner was The Lucky Ones, directed by Neil Burger and starring Rachel McAdams, Tim Robbins, and Michael Pea. In 2009, Schwartz produced the thriller 13, a remake of the award-winning French film 13 Tzameti, Directed by Gela Babluani and starring Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke, Ray Winstone, 50 Cent and Emmanuelle Chriqui. Schwartz and his Overnight banner also financed and produced the $10m action movie Machete, an independent feature co-directed by Robert Rodriguez and starring Robert De Niro, Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Steven Seagal, Lindsay Lohan and Danny Trejo. Schwartz's success continued in 2010 with the Academy Award nominated, Black Swan, directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis, Vincent Cassel and Barbara Hershey. The $13m movie went on to gross over $320m worldwide, with Portman winning an Academy Award for Best Actress.
Future projects include Spectra, a supernatural horror film to star Nicole Kidman who is also producing; Southbound, a thriller to be directed by Jonathan Jakubowitz; Goree Girls, a musical drama to be produced with and starring Jennifer Aniston; and Fit Model, a teen comedy set in the world of high fashion modeling, co-developed with Full Picture, the creators of Project Runway and the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.
In total, Schwartz has been involved with movies that have grossed over $1 billion dollars in worldwide box office sales and earned 31 Academy Award Nominations.
Machete Kills is an upcoming action film written by Robert Rodriguez and Kyle Ward and directed by Robert Rodriguez. The film is produced by Schwartz's Overnight Productions along with Rodriquez, Aaron Kaufman and Iliana Kikolic through their QuickDraw Productions, Segei Bespalov of Aldamisa Films, and Alexander Rodnyansky of AR Films. Machete Kills is a sequel to the 2010 genre movie Machete (inspired by the fake trailer to the film Grindhouse) and stars Danny Trejo, Mel Gibson, Jessica Alba, Amber Heard, Michelle Rodriguez, Sofia Vergara, Demian Bichir, Antonio Banderas, Zoe Saldana, Edward James Olmos, Vanessa Hudgens, Cuba Gooding Jr., Alexa Vega, William Sadler, Lady Gaga, Marko Zaror, and Charlie Sheen. The plot follows the titular ex-fedarale Machete (Danny Trejo) as he is recruited by the U.S. President (Charlie Sheen) to stop an arms dealer (Mel Gibson) from launching a deadly missile. Open Road Films picked up the U.S. distribution rights in October 2012; the film is set for a September 13, 2013 release.
Schwartz's Overnight Productions has lined up financing for a Fall production start in Toronto for the indie genre film Tatua, starring Twilight actor Kellan Lutz. Danny Black, the film's main character, is involuntarily chosen to participate in a secret government program that develops high tech weaponry for covert assassination missions. Danny is tattooed with a powerful ink that allows him to pull weapons straight off his skin, giving him the power to access high security areas with ease. The side effect of this adrenalin fueled process is the physical and mental toll it takes on his body. When his young son is kidnapped by one of Danny's notoriously violent targets, Danny must risk his own life to save his child. A visually innovative genre film with a contained budget similar to Resident Evil and Underworld, Tatua will be produced by Schwartz along with Todd Breau and Kari Hollend. Paul Layden wrote the script based on an original concept by comic book creators Paul Jenkins and Rob Prior. Aaron Sims, whose eponymous company is a leading provider of visual effects in Hollywood, will make his feature directorial debut. Sims wrote and directed the short Archetype, which achieved viral success online in 2012.
Schwartz, along with his partner Jeremy Frommer, recently acquired a vast personal collection of memorabilia belonging to the late media mogul Bob Guccione from an unclaimed storage locker purchased at auction. The two are working on curating a multi-faceted exhibit from the collection, which will include a museum retrospective, book, tv and film projects, and other media related to Guccione. The locker purportedly contains items such as nude photos of Madonna, model Lauren Hutton, and Arnold Schwarzenegger, correspondence with Dick Cheney, the Unabomber, and a woman claiming to be Fidel Castro's lover, along with numerous other personal photographs and memorabilia related to Guccione's long career as a media mogul. His magazine titles included Penthouse, Omni, Longevity, Viva and many others. Chief among the finding was all 61 of Guccione's original works of art; he was a well respected painter throughout his life but refused to sell a single of his works.
Schwartz is Chief Strategic Officer for Lua Technologies, a suite of digital tools that helps teams communicate, collaborate, and build community on site. After an initial funding of $1 million from a 2012 TechStars Demo Day, in August 2012 Lua received a $2.5 million seed round of financing led by Roger Ehrenberg's IA Ventures. Among the other investors are Srauss Zelnick, and former Tumblr president John Maloney, Aryeh Bourkoff and Aaron Stone. Lua's clients have included film sets, sporting venues, construction sites and musical tours.