J.j. Abrams, The Next Spielberg?
J. J. Abrams, the 40-year-old writer-producer who co-created ABC's Lost and went on to direct Paramount's Mission: Impossible 3, has signed separate deals with Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. TV that together are worth more than $55 million, published reports said over the weekend. The two deals make Abrams, in the words of today's (Monday) Los Angeles Times, "one of the entertainment industry's most highly paid auteurs." Peter Roth, president of Warner Bros. TV, told the Times that "an opportunity presented itself" to woo Abrams away from Disney "and we went for it." Paramount Pictures Chairman Brad Grey added that he believes Abrams will become "the next Steven Spielberg" and called him "a triple threat: a great writer, producer and now, a first-class movie director." His first assignment for Paramount, the Times said, is likely to be a film that will revive the Star Trek franchise.