Samuel L. Jackson, Kellan Lutz eyeing ‘Deathgames’

Samuel L. Jackson and Kellan Lutz are in negotiations to star in “Deathgames,” an indie action movie from Motion Picture Corporation of America.

Jonah Loop, a visual effects supervisor on such pics as “Collateral” and “A Perfect Getaway,” is making his directorial debut with the film, which begins shooting next month in Louisiana. MPCA’s Brad Krevoy and Mike Callaghan are producing with Mark Williams.

The story centers on a young man (Lutz) who is kidnapped and forced into the savage world of a modern gladiator arena, where men fight to the death for entertainment of the online masses. Jackson orchestrates the games, overseeing them from his computer lair with the help of twin ladies who see to his every desire.

Michael Hultquist, Robert Martinez and Tony Giglio worked on the script. Loop also did a pass.

“Deathgames” is the first project to come out of MPCA’s $50 million film fund, and the $10 million production is out to other actors. The company is in post on “Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2″ and was behind last year’s Kevin Bacon HBO drama “Taking Chance.”

Jackson, repped by ICM and Anonymous Content, plays Nick Fury in “Iron Man 2,” which opens May 7, then will appear opposite Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg in the action comedy “The Other Guys,” set for an Aug. 6 bow.

Lutz, who appears in the upcoming remake of “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” next week begins shooting the Dermot Mulroney-directed romantic comedy “Keep It Together” opposite Mandy Moore. “Together” also is shooting in Louisiana, and the Innovative-repped actor will segue from that straight to “Deathsport.” In June, Lutz moves to “Immortals,” Relativity’s Greek myth fantasy in which he plays Poseidon.

Loop, repped by ICM and Zero Gravity Management, also is producing “Arena” at Summit.