I was told this morning that Dimension’s senior production vp Steve Barnett and director of development and production Alex Franklin are thinking about following production president Richard Saperstein out the door.
If the Barnett-Franklin story is true, this would leave Dimension honcho Bob Weinstein with no L.A. production execs, no creative presence…headless for the time being. No comment so far from Weinstein/ Dimension publicity staffers in Manhattan, so I called Franklin’s L.A. office. Franklin picked up and said that (a) he and Barnett are involved “in an ongoing situation that we’re all trying to resolve,” (b) that things are “up in the air” and (c) that he hopes to have his situation “resolved later this week.”
A non-Dimension production exec said this morning that Franklin is “walking for sure. They have an option on him but he told them in no uncertain terms he isn’t interested in staying. All I keep hearing are rumors that they [i.e., the Weinstein brothers] are running severely low on money.”
Saperstein’s departure was heatedly denied last week by Weinstein Co. spokes- persons, but “rumors continued to race around the industry that Saperstein had indeed been fired but that TWC was trying to figure out a way to avoid paying out a lengthy contract,” according to Variety columnist Michael Fleming.)
A Weinstein Co. spokesperson would only say that Barnett and Franklin “are employees at The Weinstein Company.”