EXCLUSIVE: Producers Nick Wechsler and Steve Schwartz have acquired film rights to the next novel from author Jonathan Stone to be published sometime in 2014. Stone had been calling it In The Barn but it sounds like that title will likely be changed. The book centers on Stanley Peke, a tough old guy who survived the Nazis as a feral child in the Polish woods and became a success in American business. But his age makes him a target for thieves who prey on the elderly and steal their possessions. This time they picked on the wrong man, and Stanley’s going to get it all back in a powerful, harrowing and ultimately uplifting story. Chockstone Pictures and Nick Wechsler Productions are producing, reteaming the companies behind The Road and upcoming The Host and The Counselor, among other book-to-film titles. Wechsler, Schwartz and Paula Mae Schwartz are producers. Roger Schwartz and Lizzy Bradford are co-producing and Kevin Cleary and Patti Vasquez of Pooka Entertainment shopped the book in Hollywood and are exec producing.
Two studios were said to be circling after the manuscript was shopped out of the Frankfurt Book Fair, but Wechsler and Schwartz acted fast. They got their hands on a copy and made a pre-emptive offer to lock up film rights as book rights were simultaneously selling to Andrew Bartlett at Thomas & Mercer in New York. “It is an honor to have producers with such great taste like Nick Wechsler and Steve Schwartz adapting my novel to the big screen”, Stone said. “Closing both the film and publishing deals on the same day is a dream every author secretly harbors in their heart.” He is repped by Jill Marr of The Sandra Dijkstra Agency.
Chockstone and Wechsler Prods produced The Road, based on the Cormac McCarthy novel that starred Viggo Mortensen. They also are teaming for another McCarthy novel adaptation, The Counselor, which has Ridley Scott directing and a cast that includes Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and Cameron Diaz in a drama that has been called No Country For Old Men on steroids. The team is also behind The Host, directed by Andrew Niccol, based on the Stephenie Meyer novel, and starring Saoirse Ronan. Open Road Films is releasing that one March 29, 2013.