Five L.A. productions break production dry spell

What could have been the driest first quarter for Hollywood production has been relieved by an April shower of business.

“ER” generally spends a long weekend in Chicago filming exteriors, but this month the L.A. visit will extend to six days, about the time spent filming an entire episode.

Touchstone’s pilot, “Enemies,” begins a 20-day shooting schedule in mid-April. Story is about two best friends who grow up to be a cop and a gangster. Director is F. Gary Gray, who was here last for “The Negotiator” in 1998 and has since directed “The Italian Job” and the upcoming “The Brazilian Job.” Chicago native Jeanne Caliendo is UPM.

John Cusack will star in “Grace Is Gone,” from his New Crime Productions and Plum Pictures, with a reported budget of $2 million. The story is about a father, who upon learning his wife was killed in the Iraq war, takes his two daughters on a road trip.

The political thriller “D.O.A.P.” starts filming April 6. Director is Gabriel Range (“The Great Dome Robbery”) and budget is under-$3 million.

Another thriller, “Butterfly on a Wheel” starring Pierce Brosnan, who’s also an executive producer, has begun filming in L.A. and will shoot here for about a week in late April. Story is about a perfect family’s dynamic is ruined by a kidnapper’s brutally efficient plot. Brit Mike Barber directs the $20 million feature for Icon Entertainment International.