EXCLUSIVE: Princess Pictures has acquired screen rights to The Traitor’s Wife, the bestseller by Allison Pataki about Benedict Arnold’s historical betrayal of Gen. George Washington. Turns out that behind the most notorious turncoat of the American Revolutionary War was a wife half his age who orchestrated the whole thing. Peggy Shippen Arnold was a beautiful socialite with a loyalty to the British that led her to exploit her husband’s disillusionment into a scandalous move.
The label will team with Anonymous Content, which is coming off HBO’s True Detective. Washington learned of the plot when British Major John Andre was caught with Arnold’s traitorous documents in his boot. While Andre was hanged, Arnold fled and became a Brigadier General for the Brits. There has been a lot of chatter in the press about screen interest on this book by Pataki, who’s the daughter of former New York Gov. George Pataki. The film will be exec produced by Princess’ Pamela Fielder and David B. Ford, and Doreen Wilcox Little, Anonymous Content and Paul Green. Paradigm brokered the book deal with Lacy Lynch of Dupree/Miller, and Princess Pictures was also repped by Paradigm and attorneys Barry Hirsh and Ryan Nord.
Princess Pictures, run by Fielder and former Goldman Sachs honcho Ford, moved from film financing into producing and has Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes adapting his novel Snobs among a number of projects.