EXCLUSIVE: The spec script went out last night and the mid against high 6-figure deal just closed. Century Fox acquired The Three Misfortunes of Geppetto for Shawn Levy’s 21 Laps. He’s attached to direct the screenplay by Michael Vukadinovich. 21 Laps execs Dan Cohen and Billy Rosenberg brought in the script that’s a prequel to the story of Pinocchio. Geppetto endures a life of misfortune, war and adventure all to be with Julia Moon, his true love. The sweep is reminiscent of Big Fish or The Princess Bride and it creates a fresh way into the Pinocchio story at a time when revisionist fairy tales are dominating the movie landscape. Warner Bros last year set up a live action Pinocchio film that has the interest of Tim Burton.
It gives Fox another project with Levy, who most recently directed Real Steel, which opened as last weekend’s top grossing film for DreamWorks. Levy’s now producing the Akiva Schaffer-directed Neighborhood Watch with Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and Jonah Hill, and he’s expected to next direct the Max Landis-scripted Frankenstein for Fox. Levy’s 21 Laps TV division just debuted the Tim Allen sitcom Last Man Standing to big ratings Tuesday night. The deal is the first big spec sold by Vukadinovich, who wrote the indie comedy Pete & Goat, which has Mark Palansky attached to direct with Ahmet Zappa and Dan Dubiecki producing, and Anton Yelchin and Amanda Seyfried attached. He also wrote Do Over, a script for Andrew Adamson’s Strange Weather Films. He’s repped by ICM.