Ethan Reiff and Cyrus Voris
Reiff and Voris met while both were undergraduates at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Beginning in the late 1980s while still based in New York, they wrote - along with Mark Bishop - several scripts including Slayer and Demon Knight. The latter became a popular spec script that saw considerable positive coverage in Hollywood for a number of years.
Their spec script Demon Knight continued to draw interest from various studios before it was officially picked up by Joel Silver's Silver Pictures and was optioned to be third in a series of three Tales from the Crypt theatrical features. Universal Pictures executives thought the script had more potential than the other two scripts and the movie was quickly sent into production as the inaugural Tales from the Crypt feature with Ernest Dickerson directing. The resulting film, Tales from the Crypt Presents: Demon Knight, was released in the United States in January 1995 and proved to be a box office success for the company, garnering just over $21 million at the domestic box office, earned mixed reviews from critics and over the years became a cult film.
Josh Kirby... Time Warrior!
While Universal was making Demon Knight, the duo were hired as screenwriters by Charles Band's Full Moon Entertainment where they developed a number of scripts. Their biggest endeavor for the company was Josh Kirby... Time Warrior!, a six-part film series developed for family audiences that followed the titular teen as he journeyed through time. Reiff and Voris created the overall arch of the series and scripted four of the entries themselves.
During this time the script for Slayer was also optioned and planned as the U.S. film debut for acclaimed Hong Kong film director Ronny Yu. However, after years of development, this film would not come to fruition. The duo also contributed to the development of Freddy vs. Jason. They worked with producer Sean S. Cunningham and delivered several drafts before leaving the project.
During the summer of 1998, it was announced the duo had signed a developmental deal with Warner Bros. Television for a series titled Brimstone. The premise revolved around a dead policeman, played by Peter Horton, who returns to life to collect escaped souls for the Devil, played by John Glover. The show debuted on October 23, 1998 on Fox. The show garnered good reviews and a solid audience, but was cancelled in 1999 after one season. In the ensuing years it has gained a cult following and is currently ranked number 13 on TvShowsOnDvd.com's list of unreleased shows that should be made available as of September 28, 2017[update].
During this period they also worked on an unrealized project, Camelot 3000, for Warner Bros. and producer Mark Canton. This was an adaptation of the early 1980s limited comic book series written by Mike W. Barr and penciled by Brian Bolland.
In 1999, the duo wrote and produced the pilot M.K.3 starring Zoe McLellan. A futuristic retelling of the story of The Three Musketeers featuring a female d'Artagnan, the pilot was developed by Warner Bros. Television and Fox, but remains unaired.
The duo's first produced script of the new millennium was for Bulletproof Monk. The fourth U.S. feature for Hong Kong action star Chow Yun-fat, the film opened in April 2003 and earned $37.7 million worldwide.
In 2004, the duo returned to television with the announcement of a new show called The Cell for Showtime, where they acted as both writers and executive producers. The eventual show, re-titled Sleeper Cell, focused on a group of Islamic terrorists embedding in the U.S. and planning an attack on Los Angeles. The show debuted on December 4, 2005 and lasted for two seasons. The series garnered the duo the highest accolades of their career with over a dozen industry award nominations, including an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Miniseries.
In 2007, a screenplay from the duo titled Nottinigham was purchased by Universal Studios and producer Brian Grazer in an auction for seven figures. A retelling of the legend of Robin Hood, the script was re-developed and re-written to serve as the basis for the eventual Robin Hood, directed by Ridley Scott and starring Russell Crowe.
Kung Fu Panda
In 2008, the duo saw their biggest commercial success with the DreamWorks Animation family film Kung Fu Panda, based off their original story. As explained by Reiff, the final screenplay was a combined effort: "The story is pretty much exactly the story we wrote. The characters are the characters that we created. But the jokes and all the details came from the two guys from King of the Hill who got the screenplay credit, and they did an amazing job." The film was released in the U.S. in June 2008 and earned $631 million worldwide. The film soon blossomed into a large, successful franchise that includes two theatrical sequels, short films, a television show, and video games.
Also in 2008, the duo were brought on by Warner Bros. Studios and Bruckheimer TV as executive producers of Eleventh Hour. A remake of a UK television series, it ran on CBS from October 9, 2008 to April 2, 2009.
In 2014, the duo were brought on by Fox 21 Television Studios and TNT to serve as showrunners for the pilot and forthcoming series, Legends starring Sean Bean. Reiff and Voris helped hire the writing staff and ran development, generating multiple episodic stories & teleplays, but left the series prior to production. The pair are credited as contributing writers on the first three episodes.
In 2018, Reiff and Voris joined the History Channel series Knightfall for the second season, which premiers in March 2019. In addition to writing several episodes, they also are Executive Producers on the series.
In 2013, the duo sold the pitch and wrote a screenplay adaptation of Daniel Nayeri's short story Wish Police for Reel FX, to be directed by the Spanish animation producing-directing trio known as Headless.
In 2014, the duo again worked with Dreamworks Animation by writing several drafts of Princess Mei Ying and the Eight Immortals, an animation project inspired by the Ancient Chinese folktales of the Eight Immortals.
In 2015, the duo helped sell Vlad, Son of the Dragon - a historical retelling of the story of 15th Century Balkan Prince Vlad Tepes - to A&E Networks and History Channel, and wrote the pilot for the potential series.
|1993||Brainsmasher...A Love Story||Uncredited|
|1994||Men of War|
|1995||Tales from the Crypt Presents: Demon Knight||Co-written with Mark Bishop|
|Josh Kirby... Time Warrior!|
|2008||Kung Fu Panda||Story by|
|2011||Kung Fu Panda 2||Based on characters created by|
|2016||Kung Fu Panda 3|
|1998||Brimstone||Creators, executive producers, and writers|
|2008||Eleventh Hour||Executive Producers|
|2011-2016||Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness||Creators: based on original characters|
|2014||Legends||Original showrunners and executive producers, writers|
|2019||Knightfall||Executive producers, writers|
- Tales from the Script, by Anthony C. Ferrante, Fangoria Magazine, No. 140, March 1995
- Ethan Reiff and Cyrus Voris at Box Office Mojo
- "Tales from the Crypt Presents: Demon Knight (1995)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2018-12-15.
- Giving Away the Bride, by Matthew Kiernan, Fangoria Magazine, No. 178, November 1998
- Freddy & Jason Go to Development Hell: Part One, by Anthony C. Ferrante, Fangoria Magazine, No. 226, September 2003
- "With "Hollyweird" off Fox's schedule, the pressure is on "Brimstone"". varietyultimate.com: Variety. September 11, 1998. Retrieved October 10, 2017.
- "Bulletproof Monk (2003)". Box Office Mojo. Amazon. Retrieved 2010-06-01.
- "Showtime Climbing". Variety. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
- "2006 Primetime Emmy Awards". IMDb. Retrieved April 13, 2013.
- "Scott set for 'Nottingham'". Variety. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
- "Interviews in Sherwood: Ethan Reiff". boldoutlaw.com. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
- Real Science?, by Ian Spelling, Starlog Magazine, No. 370, November 2008
- "Weekend Box Office Results for June 6–8, 2008". Box Office Mojo. June 8, 2008. Retrieved May 30, 2011.
- "CBS PressExpress – Eleventh Hour – About the Show". CBS. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- "Cyrus Voris & Ethan Reiff Join TNT Pilot 'Legends' As Showrunners". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
- "'Knightfall' Gets Season 2 Premiere Date On History, First Trailer". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2019-02-18.
- "Barry Sonnenfeld Adapting Gil's All Fright Diner for Dreamworks Animation". Slashfilm.com. Retrieved 2017-10-10.
- "Cannes: IM Global Takes Reel FX's 'Wish Police' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2017-10-10.