Film News Roundup: ‘Bernie the Dolphin’ Movie Backed by Ambi Group
Ambi Group is teaming with Fairway Film Alliance to finance and produce live-action feature “Bernie the Dolphin,” Variety has learned exclusively.
Lola Sultan (“This Beautiful Fantastic”) has been cast in the lead role, alongside Kevin Sorbo, Patrick Muldoon and Stelio Savante. Kirk Harris will direct “Bernie the Dolphin” from a screenplay written by Terri Emerson and Marty Poole.
Producers are Fairway Film Alliance partners Poole and Harris and Ambi principals Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi, as we well as Tony Armer, film commissioner for St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fl. Executive producers are Barry Brooker and Stan Wertlieb with Stelio Savante as associate producer.
Sultan has appeared in more than 20 commercials including the Frito-Lay “Trade you” national spot, which has aired more than 15,000 times. She can be seen next in “Monsters at Large.”
Ambi introduced the project at the American Film Market and closed deal with Lionsgate’s Grindstone for all North America and 25 international territories.
The movie is set in Florida with a nine-year-old bookworm and her 11-year-old brother forming a bond with a pod of local dolphins they visit every day. The children nearly drown while trying foil a plan that would destroy their hidden beach and are rescued by the dolphins. “Bernie the Dolphin” will shoot on location in Florida in January.