EXCLUSIVE: The sluggish spec script marketplace will get a jolt today as Hollywood majors battle over a drama that has Hollywood’s highest paid and hardest working teen Taylor Lautner attached to star. I’ve learned the new lit agency Verve sent out the script by its client Shawn Christensen last night — and already two studios are ready to bid when the auction gets going at 9 AM PT today. Called Abduction, WME client Lautner plays a teen who has long felt disconnected from his parents, and figures out why. That unleashes a chain of violent events and enters Bourne territory. Considering he just got on the Hollywood radar because of the Twilight Saga (imagine, he was almost recast before New Moon) and just days ago blew out the candles on his 18th birthday cake, Lautner with his 8-pack abs is the newest and youngest action star in a dizzying volume of movie deals made over recent weeks. He’s already the lead in two major studio superhero franchises — Universal’s Stretch Armstrong and Paramount’s Max Steel — and was paid $7.5 million for the John Moore-directed Skydance Top Gun-esque thrill ride Northern Lights. Meanwhile, Abduction is the first big spec deal for Verve, whose principals came up at Endeavor and then recently left WME. Since Lautner is repped by WME (and Management 360), it looks like Ari Emanuel and company are playing nice with the upstart tenpercentery.
Studios Battle Over Taylor Lautner Project (Yes, Another One!)
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