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News Roundup: ''Survivor'' heads to China

Plus: ’70s rockers the Runaways hitting the big screen, MGM backing ”Fame” remake, Sega brings three more Marvel heroes into its lineup, and more…

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Next stop for Survivor: China
CBS announced that the location of the upcoming 14th edition of Survivor will be mainland China. It will be the first time the show has taken place away from an island setting since the sixth season, which was set in the Amazon jungle. Survivor will also become the first American network TV production to shoot an entire series in the communist nation. China is a difficult place to film because of logistical and government restrictions. Last year’s Warner Bros. drama The Painted Veil shot in China, but the Chinese government was given final say on the finished product and objected to several scenes, which led to tension between Chinese officials, the movie’s star, Edward Norton, and director, John Curran. (Variety)

Linsons set for movie on rock band the Runaways
Producers Art and John Linson have secured deals that pave the way for them to bring the story of the 1970s female rock band the Runaways to the big screen. Floria Sigismondi will write and direct the project, which is titled Neon Angeles. Sigismondi has directed music videos for the White Stripes, Marilyn Manson, and David Bowie. The Linsons secured music rights and deals that allow them to tell the stories of members Joan Jett, Cherie Currie, and the late Sandy West. They will also tap an unpublished memoir written by Curie. The movie is expected to cover the band’s heavy partying as well as the heartache they experienced as they struggled to be known more for their music than as girl-rocker sex symbols. The movie will be financed independently with Jett serving as executive producer. Both she and Currie say they want the movie to be R-rated and edgy. (Variety)

MGM moving on Fame remake
MGM is backing a remake of the 1980s musical Fame with producer Mark Canton (300) and Lakeshore Entertainment. The $25 million remake is slated for a summer 2008 release. MGM says it has a writer and director for the project, but has not revealed who they are. Casting is not yet underway. The original starred Irene Cara and Debbie Allen and launched a TV series and stage show. MGM says the remake will be an updated version, but retain many of the musical elements and songs from the original. (Hollywood Reporter)

Sega adds new Marvel heroes to its roster
Sega and Marvel Entertainment have expanded their partnership and added Captain America, the Incredible Hulk, and Thor to Sega’s videogame roster with exclusive multiyear deals. Sega already plans on developing an Iron Man game in tandem with the release of Paramount’s May 2008 movie, starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, and Terrence Howard. Sega is now working on a Hulk game to coincide with the June 2008 release of Universal’s movie, which will star Edward Norton as David Banner. Vivendi Universal put out a Hulk game in 2003 based on Ang Lee’s adaptation. (Hollywood Reporter)

Mr. & Mrs. Smith writer tapped for Hardy Men
Writer Simon Kinberg (Mr. & Mrs. Smith) has been tapped to rewrite Fox 2000’s comedy Hardy Men,, which stars Tom Cruise and Ben Stiller as an older iteration of the teen crime-solving duo. Shawn Levy is directing the project, which has been in the works for some time. Kinberg will start from scratch and is expected to take the story in a new direction. Fox 2000 is aiming for a January start on production. (Hollywood Reporter)

YouTube moving toward sharing revenue with users
YouTube has announced that it will be introducing an advertising model that offers users who upload content the option of including an advertisement at the beginning or end of their video and splitting the revenue 50-50. A major hurdle for this model is ensuring that a user actually owns the rights to the content he or she uploads. (Variety)

Investigators name suspect in Jam Master Jay murder
Federal prosecutors have named Ronald ”Tenad” Washington as the armed accomplice of a second unidentified gunman who shot Jam Master Jay, DJ for the seminal hip-hop trio Run DMC, inside his New York recording studio in 2002. Washington is also identified as a suspect in the 1995 murder of Randy Walker, a close associate of the late Tupac Shakur. Washington, 45, has denied any connection to either case and claims hostile detectives are hounding him about the slaying of his ”childhood friend,” Jam Master Jay. Washington’s criminal record dates to 1982, and includes convictions for assault, drugs, and grand larceny, authorities said. (Billboard)

Remini tapped for Web series
Leah Remini (The King of Queens) will star in a new Web series, In the Motherhood, being directed by Peter Lauer (Malcolm in the Middle, Arrested Development, Chappelle Show). The series is being described as a profile of the ”ever-hectic but always humorous” lives of three mom girlfriends, incorporating consumer-generated stories from real-life mothers into each webisode. It will premiere May 11 with a Mother’s Day episode at http://www.inthemotherhood.com, a site being hosted on MSN. (Hollywood Reporter)

AOL launching new line-up of Web programming
AOL announced a new slate of programming that includes projects from reality giant Endemol USA, Telepictures, and a continued relationship with Mark Burnett Prods., which produced AOL’s Gold Rush. AOL is also launching a series of games related to the launch of Shrek the Third produced by Burnett. Many of the series straddle the line between game and programming. One of the more TV-style launches is Endemol-produced iLand, an online community in which players compete for dominance of a group, set to air in the first half of 2008. The series will eventually move to the real world as contestants move to an island and try to assert power there with webisodes of the competitions, hosted by Brooke Burns, broadcast online. (Variety)

NBC doing show based on real-life rogue cops
Dick Wolf and NBC Universal are developing a new TV series based on the investigation of New York City police officers Stephen Caracappa and Louis Eppolito, who were convicted for moonlighting as murderers for a Mafia family. Three feature films about the cops are also in development. (Variety)

Columbus tapped for fantasy movie
Chris Columbus (Harry Potter, Rent) will produce and direct a movie adaptation of Rick Riordan’s fantasy novel The Lightning Thief for Fox 2000. The story is about a young boy who discovers that he’s the descendant of a Greek god and his quest to quell a battle between mythological figures. (Variety)

Paramount acquires urban drama pitch
Paramount Pictures has acquired a pitch for a supernatural urban drama from Kurt Sutter, an executive producer on FX’s The Shield. The project, titled Inland Saints, has been set up for Joel Schumacher to direct and Lorenzo di Bonaventura to produce; the duo previously worked together on two Batman films, The Client, and Falling Down. The Saints story is about a teenaged leader of a dangerous street gang who falls in love with the daughter of the detective hired to bring down his gang. (Variety)


People.com: Courtney Love insists she lost weight through dieting, not surgery, and reveals she had her breast implants removed.

Page Six: In the fallout of the Imus controversy, Rutgers woman’s basketball head coach Vivian Stringer has landed a lucrative book deal with Crown for her autobiography.